The Filley Ladies Aid Society Fundraising Quilt



8636-1, Source: Mrs. K.L. McGill, Lindsborg, Kansas

Recently, I’ve begun researching fundraising quilts. Many typical fundraising quilts have names stitched or inked all over the front.  This quilt, however, is quite unique and I thought I would share it with you. 

This beautiful crazy quilt was a fundraiser for the Ladies Aid Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Filley, Nebraska. Members of the group were responsible for securing as many names as possible at ten cents per name. Instead of putting the names on the front, the fundraiser’s name was displayed on the front and those contributing 10 cents each had their names put on the back. The woman who acquired the most names got to put the quilt together and keep it.

The lucky woman that acquired the most names was Kate Williams Filley. The fundraising effort coincided with the Filleys’ wedding and subsequent trip to the Chicago World’s Fair and to the east. Mrs. Filley collected names wherever they visited and thus was able to collect the most names for the quilt. She cut strips of fabric to a size that would fit into a typewriter and typed the names on the fabric. The strips were joined together to form the backing.

Do you have a Nebraska fundraising quilt with an interesting story?  I’d love to hear from you.

-Laura Mooney, Senior Museum Curator

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3 Responses to The Filley Ladies Aid Society Fundraising Quilt

  1. peg lutton says:

    One of the circles of the Congregational Church in Ashland, Nebraska made a quilt as a fund-raising project. Names were sold for 10 cents each and were stitched on the front of the quilt. One of the ladies wrote all of the names in cursive and then they were embroidered. The quilt was auctioned off and purchased by a gentleman who gave it to his son and daughter-in-law as a wedding gift. The year was about 1933. As an elderly woman, the recipient gave it back to the church. It now hangs on a wall in the pastor-s study.

    I researched this quilt a few years back and alphebetized all the names so they are easy to find on the quilt. I am presuming perhaps the ladies worked on this quilt at their meetings. As I recall they raised about $34 which was a tidy sum at that time.

  2. peg lutton says:

    A circle of ladies from the Congregational Church, Ashland, Nebraska made a quilt in 1932-33. They sold names for 10 cents each as a fund-raiser. One of the women copied the names on the pink and white fabric and all of the ladies in the circle embroidered the names.

    The quilt is hanging in the pastor’s office at the church. It was auctioned off and purchased by Mr. Peterson as a gift for his son John and bride, Inez Isaacs, at the time of their wedding. Inez Peterson displayed the quilt in her home and gave it to the church when she moved to an apartment.

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