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About Quilt Trails of the Tar & Ronoke Rivers




Quilt Trails of the Tar & Roanoke Rivers bring the tradition of displaying painted quilt blocks on buildings to Piedmont and Eastern North Carolina counties that border the Tar & Roanoke Rivers. The Quilt Trails of the Tar and Roanoke Rivers is designed to capture the history of our community through the display of quilt blocks on historic buildings and structures in Franklin and surrounding counties. 


Enjoyable not only for quilting enthusiasts, the trails aspire to educated and provide history of the region.  Each block features a pattern inspired by the place where it hangs and will be recorded in the Tar & Roanoke Rivers Quilt Trail Guide that will delve deeper into the rich heritage and stories of the region, relaying the significance of each block.





The Tar River Quilt Trail was launched by Theresa Brown and Stephen Filarsky in September 2011 as a moneymaking project for Franklin County Arts Council and a way to set Franklin County apart to attract visitors to the county.  

Theresa and Stephen turned the Quilt Trail project over to Charles Powell and a dedicated team of Art Council volunteers.  Charles was instrumental in the growth of the Quilt Trail; and, with growth and expansion into surrounding counties, this resulted in changing the name to Quilt Trails of the Tar & Roanoke Rivers.  Our trail is the only official trail in Eastern North Carolina and has a priority to bring tourist to the area to explore our rural heritage. Each block has a different story to tell about the owners and their location.

Members put in many hours building, priming, and painting the quilt patterns onto the wooden blocks. The blocks are square, wooden blocks sold in 2'x2', 3'x3', 4'x4', 6'x6' or 8'x8' sizes and are painted with a single quilt block pattern.

While navigating the Quilt Trails in Central and Eastern North Carolina, travelers can enjoy the area’s art, history, agriculture, and scenic byways. What began as a local endeavor has spread from Franklin County to 7 additional counties and is still growing.

The plan is to follow the Rivers to the coast and include all Eastern North Carolina.








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