FM Quilters Helped Beautify The ND Governor’s Mansion

In 1986, North Dakota then-First Lady Jane Sinner asked North Dakota quilters to create a quilt for the guest room at the Governor’s Mansion and quilters around the state answered the call.

A design competition was held and the winning design titled “Waving Wheat” was designed by Carol Kelley of Grand Forks. Once the design was selected the call for volunteers went out Quilters throughout the state contributed work to the piece including some Fargo Moorhead Quilters (then know as Quilters’ Guild of North Dakota). Applique work was done at home by many of the quilters. The final construction was completed in the Governor’s Mansion.

According to a tag on the back of the quilt, work was done by:

  • Anna Amundson
  • Mabel Bernard
  • Ruth Burrage
  • Susan Carpenter
  • Ellen Dill
  • Sue Ann Frasier
  • Edna Fricke
  • Maxine Hoel
  • Louise Juliani
  • Carol Kelley
  • Ellen Luke
  • Mederdith Meyer
  • Lyla Maclean
  • Bertha Myers
  • Monica Pavek
  • Karol Pererson
  • Irene Reis
  • Muriel Sampson
  • Jane Schaubert
  • Dorothy Shermoen
  • Pam Solwey
  • Ethel Tishmack
  • Shirlee Van Erem
  • Sarah Wahl
  • Elaine Westerlund
  • Agnes Will
  • Fran Williams

An article by Muriel Sampson in the July 1989 guild newsletter revealed that they were invited to a formal reception at the Governor’s Mansion to receive thanks and see the quilt in its final home.

Little did I realize that after accepting a request by Carol Kelley to have quilters from our area work on the guest room spread for the Governor’s Mansion, that we’d receive an official invitation to a reception there and be able to view the finished product. It is simply beautiful! If you can, when [in Bismarck] go and see it.

Muriel Sampson
Image courtsey of the State Historical Society of North Dakota

The quilt remained in use for many years until the Governor’s Mansion was demolished and a new Governor’s Residence built. The quilt is now in the collection at the State Historical Society of North Dakota along with 800 other items that represent the fashions of home decoration of the times. An article on their website talks about the quilt and other decorative items contributed over the years.