The Pope County Quilt Trail was developed by volunteer coordinator Deanna Bohanan and co-coordinator Sharla Hartzell. Pope County lies in northwest Arkansas, halfway between the state capital and the cities of Fort Smith and Fayetteville. The county is geographically diverse, with the Ozark National Forest covering most of the northern portion, while the southern portion is located in the Arkansas River Valley and includes the cities of Russellville and Atkins. You’ll also enjoy discovering the towns of Dover, Hector, Pottsville, and London. The county is home to Arkansas Tech University. (Encyclopedia of Arkansas). Interstate 40 provides an easy east to west corridor to access various barn quilt locations along scenic highways. There are great places to dine and accommodations to rest your head after a day of seeing barn quilts. Don’t forget to visit the shops along the way for unique items. Highway 7 runs the entirety of Pope County from north to south. The Pope County Quilt Trail can also be reached as you leave the southern part of Searcy County’s trail on State Highway 27.
#20-1, My American Dream, is located at 412 West Parkway, Russellville AR at the Hartzell Homestead. Owner Sharla Hartzell writes: While enjoying road trips all over the United States, my eyes always scanned the scenery for quilt blocks painted on the sides of old barns. It was like a treasure hunt! Although I have never successfully quilted an heirloom quilt with needle and thread, painting barn quilt blocks makes my heart equally happy! When my lifelong love for crafting and the dream of having my own craft based business one day became a reality, I knew barn quilt squares would hang from my walls! Inside and outside, colorful quilt blocks adorn The Hartzell Homestead, Mercantile & Creative Studio. I also share my love for painted quilt blocks with others by teaching Barn Quilt Square painting workshops in our shop. Quilts have such a rich and deep rooted history in our lives, whether they were made from sack cloth, family member’s worn out clothing or fine linens bought from the bolt, many of us keep treasured quilts from our ancestors as prize possessions. Seeing the patterns come to life with color, whether in fabric or wood, is simply joyous! Learning the history and hearing the stories that come with each is truly priceless. ‘My American Dream’ is a 30” red, white, and blue variation of the LeMoyne Star. This patriotic barn quilt block hangs on the south side of The Hartzell Homestead Mercantile & Creative Studio. This barn quilt block represents my dream in pursuing my own craft based business.
#20-2, The ‘Golden Sun’ is a companion block at 412 West Parkway, Russellville. It’s a 30” Double Aster barn quilt block
painted as a happy sunflower in green and gold. This bright quilt block adorns the north side of The Hartzell Homestead Mercantile & Creative Studio as a creative tribute to our neighboring college, Arkansas Tech University. A bit of history about the college from Wikipedia: The Second District Agricultural School was created by Act 100 of 1909 of the Arkansas General Assembly. It was decided on February 10, 1910, to found the school in Russellville. On October 26, 1910, the first classes were held in Russellville. The original purpose of the school was to offer classes leading to a high school degree. Later on, the school took on the first two years of college instruction, and the school’s name was changed to Arkansas Polytechnic College by the General Assembly in 1925 to reflect this change in purpose. At this time, the course work leading to a high school diploma was phased out and in 1931, Tech formally only offered courses leading to a college degree. The school took on its current name of Arkansas Tech University on July 9, 1976. Today it has about 12,000 students, making it the 3rd largest institution of higher learning in Arkansas. Its men’s sports teams are known as the Wonder Boys and the women’s teams are the Golden Suns.
#20-3 “ Bohanan Field” is located at 444 Maple St. in Hector Arkansas. It’s a four patch Maple Leaf Block. Created and painted by Deanna Bohanan to pay tribute to her husband Jason’s family. The block hangs on what was the home of Monroe and Lillie Bohanan which was purchased in 1947. The center of the block represents the original Bohanan homestead which is still standing at Bohanan Field north of Hector, which was purchased in 1888. Both properties remain in the family.
#20-4, Gateway to the Ozarks is at 8904 Market St., Dover, AR. Jaylinn Williams designed and painted this custom piece for the Dover City Hall building in Dover, AR. Her inspiration came from the area’s beautiful scenery, being surrounded by the mountains and water. As Scenic 7 leaves Dover and leads drivers into the mountains, Dover has become known as the Gateway to the Ozarks and thus became the title of this beautiful quilt square.
#20-5, Gold Star, is at the River Valley Veterans Memorial Park pavilion at 395 Lake Front Drive, Russellville, AR. The Gold Star Lapel Button was designed and created in 1947 and is awarded to surviving family members of service members who have been killed in combat from World War I to the present day. It consists of a gold star on a purple circular background, bordered in gold and surrounded by gold laurel leaves. The reverse of the pin has the inscription: “United States of America, Act of Congress, 1 August 1947”. The Gold Star quilt block on the Veterans Memorial Park pavilion was created by local stained glass artisan Robert “Bob” Griffin and it measures 3’ x 3’. Bob dedicated it to his uncle James Harmon who was killed in action on Okinawa, Japan, and his wife’s uncle Jack Hilton, who was killed in action on the island of Iwo Jima, Japan. Both of their deaths occurred in 1945.
#20-6, Ozark Tales, is located at the Dover Public Library at 80 Library Road, Dover, AR. It was designed and painted by Lydia Gunter who is Branch Manager of the library. The block is a tribute to local and Arkansas authors who have had books published. Lydia methodically contacted the 28 authors whose books are featured to get their written permission to be included, then carefully painted their book titles and names onto the block. Lydia invites the quilt trail traveler to visit the library and even see some of the books that are in the quilt block. The Dover Public Library began in the 1950’s as a stack of books in a front display window at L.J. Churchill’s General Mercantile Store. These books came from the Russellville Library and Dover patron’s could borrow from the display and return the books to the window. The titles were changed periodically. In 1974 a dual-purpose building was built for the Dover City Hall and the Dover Library. The library was housed in less than 800 square feet of floor space. The citizen’s of Dover saw the need for a larger Library and kicked off a fund drive on Aug. 1, 1987. The residents of Dover and the surrounding areas raised $50,000 to build a new 2,400 square-foot library, and the land was donated by A.G. and Bettye Barton. Area businesses donated building materials, and about 60 people donated labor, all the bricks for the building were bought by the area school children. On December 11, 1988 the Dover Public Library opened at the present site, and the street was officially named Library Road.
#20-7, Deep Connection, is at 916 S. Arkansas Avenue, Russellville, AR. It’s displayed in the store window at K’s Junktique. Owner Kristin Keaster writes this: Our quilt square is rich with meaning and history. The Keaster’s have deep roots in Alaska and we chose teal and pink as our signature colors when we opened our store because of the Aurora Borealis we remember as children. So, naturally our quilt square mirrors this theme with stitching allowing for the appearance of arrows pointing towards the center. We believe the center of our lives to be, first and foremost, God and then family.
#20-8, Nautical Star, is at 50 Price Boulevard, London, AR. Owner Sindy Lou Devereux shares the story behind it: Nautical Star is the perfect block for my family. My father, husband and son are all Mariners. I am a fifth generation quilter, and stars are my favorite. They are symbolic of divine guidance and protection. I am proud to display my Nautical Star on my home.
#20-9, Star of Honor, is located at 2440 W. Gum Log Road, Russellville, AR. Owner Becky Childres writes this: I call this barn quilt ” Star of Honor”. It is 24″x24″ made with MDO plywood. My daughter and I toured the Barn Quilt Trail in Kansas in 2016. We were lucky enough to find a class in Kansas that was making barn quilts. I chose the pattern and colors to honor my father and father-in-law and many other family members who fought in World War II. The love and respect for our country and military is very important to me.
# 20-10, God Bless America, is located in the community of Moreland at 35 Lone Oak Lane, Russellville. Owner Kim Vallee writes “ God Bless America! I chose the Patriotic Flag block pattern because I am very thankful for the freedom it represents. This is special to me because it was painted by my niece who shares a great love for our country as well. We have many family members and friends , who have served in the military and we are very proud of them and thankful for their sacrifice and service. We give honor to the many others who have served and are currently serving our great country.
#20-11, Pollinators, is located at 109 Warehouse Row, Russellville, AR and is visible from Arkansas Highway 64. John and Corinne Smith own and operate Central Beekeepers Supply, LLC in Russellville where they sell beekeeping supplies and tools, protective clothing, honey, beeswax and accessories. They have a passion for beekeeping that reaches back generations. Corinne grew up in North Carolina surrounded by barn quilts, including one that adorned her grandmother’s business. So when Gracie Gibson, 4-year employee of Central Beekeepers Supply, approached her about having a barn quilt on their business, she excitedly agreed. Gracie and her mom, Sharla Hartzell of The Hartzell Homestead and co-coordinator for the Pope County Quilt Trail, quickly got to work on designing and creating the 4 ft. square, Pollinators Barn Quilt, that now adorns Central Beekeepers Supply.
#20-12, Cruisin’ Through the Valley, is located at 1903 South Arkansas, Russellville, AR and is visible from Arkansas Highway 7. It’s at Sorrells Body Shop. Founded in 1971, Sorrells Body Shop has been a well established business in Russellville, AR for over 50 years. Sorrells believes the key to success for any business starts with being an integral and active part of your community. When presented with the opportunity to be a rather unique business included in the Pope County Quilt Trail, Sorrells excitedly accepted! The custom designed quilt block features a truck and area landscape. Cruisin’ Through the Valley is located on the south side of the main building and was created by local artist and Dover High School EAST student, Kaylee May.
#20-13, Grandmother’s Basket, is at 109 Warehouse Row, Russellville, AR and is visible from Highway 64. John and Corinne Smith own and operate Central Beekeepers Supply, LLC in Russellville where they sell beekeeping supplies and tools, protective clothing, honey, beeswax and accessories. Corinne grew up in North Carolina surrounded by barn quilts, including a large basket design that adorned her grandmother’s business. Corinne is a basket maker as was her grandmother. She enjoys teaching basket weaving workshops and also offers basket making kits at Central Beekeepers Supply, LLC. Gracie Gibson, 4-year employee of Central Beekeepers Supply, and her mom, Sharla Hartzell of The Hartzell Homestead and co-coordinator for the Pope County Quilt Trail, surprised Corinne with this basket of tulips. The 4’-square, Grandmother’s Basket, now adorns Central Beekeepers Supply as a reminder of the craft that expands across generations.
#20-14, Pottsville’s Wagon Wheel, is at the corner of 2nd Street and E. Ash Street in Pottsville. Mayor Randy Tankersley shares its story. The west may have been explored and mapped by men on horseback, but it was settled by the families who traveled on wagon wheels. This area of Arkansas, once known as Galla Creek, has a special relationship with the wagon wheel. It was the wagon wheel that carried Kirkbride Potts, his family, and their possessions to Arkansas. He built his home near the old military road and listened to travelers speak about the new land and the gold being found in California. In 1858, the old military road became part of the Butterfield Overland Mail Route, a gateway to the west. Wagon wheels brought mail and news on a regular schedule. They helped keep a growing republic connected over the long distance and they went right through Galla Creek that became Pottsville in 1897. Our wagon wheel-style quilt is displayed across the street from the Potts Inn Museum. The Potts Inn is one of the few original Butterfield Overland Mail Route stations left standing today. The Butterfield Wagon Wheel quilt block was designed and created in cooperation with community members and the Pottsville High School EAST program.