Quilting is so much fun! From the fabric, the tools, the notions and the friendships… But have you ever thought of how it all came about? How long have we been quilting? Why do we quilt?


Quilting can date back to 3400 BC. The oldest quilt still around today is The Tristan Quilt dated around 1360-1400.


According to dictionary.com, the word “quilt” dates back to around 1250. The term in Middle English was “quilte,” based on old French word cuilte derived from the Latin word “culcita” for mattress.


The world’s largest quilt is the AIDS Memorial quilt and weighs approximately 54 tons. The first rotary cutter was invented in 1979 for garment making but soon quilters realized the wonderful advantages to it.


Some quilts were created out of necessity, while others were encoded with secret messages and symbols–African Adinkra symbols popular amongst the Akan of Ghana, West Africa–to aide enslaved Africans in their escape from chattel slavery. The Dresden Plate quilt block was the most popular quilt block in the 1920s and 30s. Although when first published in the early 20s, it had different names like Grandmother’s Sunburst, Dahlia and Sunflower. Stop by the Charleston Public Library during the month and check out the fabulous display of locally-made quilts. The library is located at 12 South School Street and is open Mondays 12 PM to 7 PM, Tuesday through Thursday 9 AM to 5 PM and Saturdays 10 AM to 12 PM. For more information, call 479-965-2605.