Shawano County has probably one of the most active and productive committees in the State of Wisconsin. With 222 quilts gracing barns throughout the county, most of them have been painted by the Shawano Country Barn Quilt Committee itself.
I must admit, I was aware of their presence through a mutual barn quilt admirer here in Wisconsin but for some reason, my state geography knowledge did not place Shawano County on our route to Antigo. Imagine my surprise as we were driving along Hwy 45 to stumble upon this wealth of artistic expression throughout the rural farmland of central Wisconin.
As much as I would have loved to have ventured out and about chasing after barns to photograph, I would have to settle for the opportunity to snap some pictures on our return drive home at the end of our camping weekend. Therefore the only photos I have to share with this story are the five we passed on our scheduled route.
The Shawano County Barn Quilt Committee has done a great job of promoting their trail, providing photos, descriptions and stories on each of their 222 (and counting) quilts. Their website may be found here: http://www.shawanocountry.com/ .
Here's just a little bit on the five quilts that I visited:
"Wedding Rings" was probably the easiest to research online because just looking at it, you *know* the name. A friend of mine at camp was asking if I had seen the pretty barn quilts on the way up and I asked if she was talking about the "wedding ring" one. We both laughed, because that was exactly what the patterned looked like to both of us. The image conveyed the artist's imagination. It is perfect in color and design. The barn that hosts this quilt was built in 1895.
My next favorite was the quilt entitled "Hands All Around" because it is intended to portray the helping hands of volunteers and others . . . people who selflessly give to others. It is also on a very pretty barn that sits on a very pretty barn with nice farmland surrounding it.
The most unusual barn I photographed with a quilt on it was the yellow barn near Eland, Wisconsin. I had never seen a yellow barn so to have the color imagery of the tall green corn fields in the foreground of this lovely barn and quilt, was very nice. "Christmas Memory" is the name of the quilt on this barn. It does sit rather far from Hwy 45 and at an awkward angle to the road. For folks traveling north on Hwy 45, you will completely miss it if you do not know it is there.
The last two barns with quilts that I photographed were near Tigerton, Wisconsin. The Ullmer Dairy Farm has the "Patriotic Prairie Star" on their barn while the "Amish Rubics Center" can be seen just a short distance way.
I know that I will return to the area and want to cruise around the rural roads of Shawano County to see more of the beautiful barn quilts that adorn barns and other farm buildings throughout the county.