|AAI Family Tree Quilt - in progress|
|American Legion Auxiliary Fundraising Quilt, Salem, Oregon, 1931|
The 1931 American Legion Auxiliary quilt from Salem, Oregon, is a great example of this type of quilt. It includes a center medallion prominently featuring the Auxiliary logo, and rows of embroidered names around the medallion. Leaders of the organization received prime positions on the quilt, with names and titles appearing around the inner circle closest to the logo. Two names of deceased supporters appear with gold stars embroidered next to their names.
|Spanish American War Commemorative Inscribed Quilt, c. 1915|
Adoption Advocates International, a Port Angeles, Washington based international adoption agency had a great idea for this year's fundraising quilt. For the past few years, AAI volunteer and quiltmaker Barb Patton has made an annual quilt to raise funds for Layla House, a child care facility operated by AAI. These quilts were raffled off and the proceeds supported the agency's humanitarian mission. This year, AAI is trying something unique and different - a family tree quilt.
|Here's what the Family Tree looked like as an unfinished top|
|Supporters can add leaves and other elements with inscribed names|
This quilt is waiting for just one thing before completion - the names of families and supporters on the leaves, branches, trunk and background. There are birds, butterflies, snails, squirrels, rabbits, and even shooting stars - and each supporter makes the quilt more fun and lively. Since I am adopted and have such admiration for my parents and those who adopt, I made a donation for a leaf with my family's name. November is National Adoption Month, so it's a great time to support AAI's efforts by helping them fill the landscape surrounding their beautiful family tree. To learn more about the AAI Family Tree Quilt, click here.
|"On a Quilted Breeze" by the Oregon Coastal Quilters|
|"Before I-84" by the Northwest Quilters|
So, the tradition of fundraising quilts is alive and well and today's quilters, taking a page out of the notebooks of their ancestors, are making creative, important quilts. If you see a raffle quilt or other type of fundraising quilt, I hope you'll participate in the benevolent tradition of beautiful and unusual American quilts. I know I do. I've got stacks of old raffle tickets. Maybe I'll get lucky one day. :)