The Barn Quilt Project & Committee

Washington County’s Barn Quilts started in 2007 with a local committee who began with the purpose of preserving our area barns. These barn quilts tell stories about individual farms while adding visual interest to the countryside and increasing rural tourism. A committee led by Terry & Julie Mangold (featured on the Agriculture Loop with Cows in the Pasture) began planning, identifying potential barns, and fundraising. The project divided the county into four loops, each with a name that announces a theme informing color and pattern selection. As many as 15-20 barn quilts would go up in one loop per year. While many of the loops are located on hard-surfaced roads, we invite you to cut across an unpaved road and even discover a new location.

Many out-of-state visitors are surprised to discover that glaciers created Washington County, carving the landscape into a series of drift plains, rolling hills, and shallow valleys. Pioneers were surrounded by prairie grasses and wildflowers that are still visible in over 2,100 protected areas. Agriculture (corn, soybeans, pork, cattle, turkeys, sheep) remains the county’s predominant economic activity.

We invite you to wind through the beautiful SE Iowa countryside and visit our Barn Quilts. We have 4 loops: the Amish loop, Ag loop, Nature loop and Liberty loop. We’re glad you’re here in Washington County and hope your Barn Quilt Tour is a safe and enjoyable one. Please:

  • Observe traffic laws. Remember: Amish buggies have the same traffic rights as cars.
  • Be aware of vehicles behind you if you slow down to observe a barn quilt.
  • The wide shoulders on our roads are used by the Amish buggies. Please do not park here!
  • Be respectful of rights-of-way and owners’ property if you stop.
  • Take only photos; leave nothing else behind.
  • You may start the tour at any point on the loop. Traveling one loop without stopping should take approximately an hour.

The Gazette wrote an article about us! Check it out here!

Download our Barn Quilt Brochure.

Barn Quilt Tour Loops

The first loop to be developed (2007), in the Northeast quadrant, has an Amish theme to celebrate the Amish presence in the county. Most of these barn quilts are ‘Amish’ because of their dark, jewel-toned or clear-hued, solid colors. Not all barn owners chose Amish colors, and all of these quilt block patterns have been made by Amish and ‘English’ (the Amish word for other people) quilters alike. None of the barn owners on this loop are Amish; barn quilts are too worldly for the Amish.


Amish Loop

1. Susannah Variation III (only visible from inside the hospital): 400 E Polk St, Washington

2. Lotus: 1703 IA-1, Washington

3-5. State Fair, County Fair & Iowa: 611 IA-1, Washington

6. Log Cabin: Sunset Park, Washington

7. Unnamed Quilt: 715 W 2nd St

8. Sunburst: 104 E 13th St, Washington

9. Card Trick: 1617 N Iowa Ave, Washington

10. Fannie’s Fan: 1430 N 12th Ave, Washington

11. Ia State: 2004 Riverside Rd, Washington

12. Pinwheel Square: 1815 IA-1, Washington

13-14. Mosaic 2, Attic Window: 1325 IA-1, Kalona

15-17. Churn Dash, Crown of Thorns, Schoolhouse: 715 D Ave, Kalona

18. Goose Tracks: 2495 IA-22, Kalona

19. Merry Kite: 2556 IA-22, Riverside, IA 52327

20-21. Double Aster, Barbershop Basket: 2690 IA-22, Riverside

22. Crazy Quilt (Behind Casey’s): Railroad St, Riverside

23. Album: 1465 Riverside Rd, Riverside

24. Log Cabin:1505 Spruce Ave, Riverside

25. Mosaic 4: 2696 150th St, Riverside

26. Saint Louis Star: 3104 130th St, Riverside

27. Spinning Wheel: 2075 Yucca Ave, Ainsworth

28. Sunflower: 201 Miller Ave, Ainsworth

The Agricultural Loop passes through the northwest corner of Washington County. Because the county’s dominate economic influence is based in agriculture, we honor that heritage in this loop, with quilt blocks featuring pattern names relating to agriculture. You will see quilt patterns named Rail Fence, Weathervane, Meadow Flower, Turkey in the Straw and Windmill to name a few. There are no particular color restrictions for this loop, so the traveler will see blocks with a variety of bright colors.


Agriculture Loop

75. Meadow Flower: 2110 IA-92, Washington

76. Honey Bee: 2270 Juniper Ave, Keota

77. Cows In The Pasture: 1835 IA-92, West Chester

78. Frist Mill: 1735 IA-92, West Chester

79-80. Sunbeam Star, Cross Roads: 1720 230th St, Keota

81. Weathervane: 508 Main St, West Chester

82. Turkey In The Straw: 1320 IA-92, Keota

83. Black & Gold: 2075 Ginkgo Ave, Keota

84. Rail Fence: 2025 Ginkgo Ave, West Chester

85. Windmill 4: 1160 190th St, Keota

86. Weathervane Variation 2: 1591 Ginkgo Ave, Wellman

87. Dresden Plates: 509 9th Ave, Wellman

88. Windmill: 1630 130th St, Wellman

89. Weathervane Variation 2: 1210 Juniper Ave, Kalona

The 2008 loop in the Southeast quadrant has a Liberty theme to acknowledge the Republican Party’s origins in Crawfordsville, celebrated as the Birthplace of the Republican Party. This loops features a variety of patriotic-colored Barn Quilts and also winds through Washington, dubbed City of Flowers & Trees, and travels through the rolling, rural farm fields that include the community of Wayland.


Liberty Loop

29. Windmill: 624 7th St, Ainsworth

30. Whirlwind Flag: 2659 Spruce Ave, Ainsworth

31. Square and Star: 3060 305th St, Crawfordsville

32. Mosaic Star: 3077 Vine Ave, Crawfordsville

33. Union: 412 E Columbus St, Crawfordsville

34. Iowa Star: 2884 Vine Ave, Crawfordsville

35. Home Treasure: 2805 US-218, Crawfordsville

36-37. Mariner’s Compass, Pig in a Blanket: 3110 335th St, Crawfordsville

38. Mrs. Tafts Choice: 3020 Wayland Rd, Wayland

39. Liberty & Heritage: 2561 320th St, Wayland

40. Square & Star: 2660 320th St, Wayland

41. Clay’s Choice: 2460 280th St, Washington

42. World’s Fair: 2785 Wayland Rd, Washington

43. Stars & Nines: 2687 Wayland Rd, Washington

44. Union Square: 2665 Wayland Rd, Washington

45. Summer Star Flower: 421 E Van Buren St, Washington

46. 415 S 8th Ave, Washington

47. Mosaic Square: 2480 IA-92, Washington

48. Dutch Girl: 2515 Palm Ave, Washington

49. Yankee Pride: 2630 IA-92, Washington

In 2009, the Nature Loop was developed with barn quilts representing nature themes in honor of Lake Darling and the country’s numerous parks and recreational opportunities. Therefore the blocks on this loop feature patterns named from nature such as Flying Geese, Crossed Canoes, Bird’s Nest and Flower Basket. When you travel this loop, take time to drive into Lake Darling State Park and see the barn quilt on the sign at the lodge parking area, Crossed Canoes


Nature Loop

50-51. Bouquet in Fan, Flight of the Swallows: 2645

IA-1, Washington

52. Farmers Daughter: 1925 270th St, Washington

53. Wild Goose Chase: 2815 IA-1, Washington

54. Starstruck Geese: 3056 Ginkgo Ave, Brighton

55. Jack in the Pulpit: 507 E Main St, Brighton

56. Bear Paw: Brighton City Park

57. Wind Flower: 1575 335th St, Brighton

58. Dancing with the Stars: 1454 IA-1, Brighton

59. Crossed Canoes: 111 Lake Darling Rd, Brighton

60.Lady of the Lake: 1245 IA-1, Brighton

61-62. Bird Tracks, Gone Fishing: 1175 IA-1, Brighton

63. Birds Nest #2: 190 1st St, Rubio

64. Flock of Birds: 1305 310th St, Brighton

65-66. Birds Nest, Wyoming Valley: 1315 275th St, Brighton

67. Wild Waves: 1395 Hoot Owl Hollow, Washington

68-69. Ohio Star (both buildings have same pattern): 1390 250th St, Keota

70. Autumn Leaf: 1570 250th St, Washington

71. American Flag: 1691 250th St, Washington

72. Crows Foot: 1795 250th St, Washington

73-74. Crows Nest, Tiger Hawk: 2075 250th St, Washington

About Washington County Barn Quilts and the Mini Barn Quilt Project

In 2022 the Washington Middle School extended learning program students, and gifted art students, partnered on a mini barn quilt tour project for most of the year. Approximately 70 students identified a local barn quilt that can actually be found throughout Washington County to replicate. The project challenged the students in areas of math and geometry to sketch the quilt designs. Communication skills were brought in when the students contacted the barn quilt owners to ask about the history and significance of the design that was selected for their property. These individual stories can be heard through the voices of the student artists by scanning a QR code found on the back of each mini barn quilt. Take a look at their class project here!

These mini barn quilts are now up for purchase! We are asking a minimum donation of $50. Half of the donated funds will put to use in the ELP classroom on their next project and the other half will be used towards the costs of renovating the existing barn quilts.  Click here to view all of the available quilts. To purchase, please contact Connie Kuhlman at [email protected]

Stay in the “loop” and follow the WMS Mini Barn Quilt Facebook Page.

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