A Delectable Mountains quilt square
The Delectable Mountains
quilt pattern dates to the 1850s, as America’s pioneers traveled west from Loudoun and other counties, through mountain ridges to open western lands. The name of the pattern was inspired by Paul Bunyan’s 1688 Pilgrim’s Progress, a scriptural allegory describing the travels of the character Pilgrim to the promised land: “Then they came to The Delectable Mountains…they saw fruit trees, vines, shrubs, woods, and streams, and drank and ate of the grapes.”
The Delectable Mountains quilt in a private Loudoun quilt collection
The quilt pictured here (an 1860s quilt in a private Loudoun County quilt collection) illustrates the visual impact of concentric rows of “mountains” stitched around a central eight-pointed star. Two variations of the center blocks are illustrated above.
We have only to look to the west from many areas in Loudoun County to see the ‘delectable’ Blue Ridge Mountains. The blue and white combination seems particularly appropriate for a barn trail block in Loudoun County.The Blue Ridge mountains to our west