Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Road Home Row Along...Welcome to My Home!


I want to give a big thanks to Marian from Seams To Be Sew and Amy from Sew Incredibly Crazy for all the hard work it took for them to bring us this hop!

And now...welcome to my home, Worcester County, Central Massachusetts.
As you can see on the map, my town of Lancaster (marked in red on the top image) is about one hour West/NW of Boston. It resides in Worcester County, which covers a large area. It's still very rural, but more and more people are moving out here even if they work near Boston, because of its comparable affordability. 

Here are some factoids (from Wikipedia) about the county as well as Lancaster itself:

About 800,000 people make Worcester County their home, making it the second-most populous county in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It is also the largest county in area. The City of Worcester remained the historic county seat until most of the state disbanded county government in 1998. It is the second-most populous city in the state, and indeed in New England.

On a side note...you might be wondering why Massachusetts is referred to as a "Commonwealth" instead of a "state." According to www.reference.com: "In terms of constitutional rights, there is no real difference between a commonwealth and a state in the United States. Commonwealth is an old term that has largely been replaced with the title of state."  But this is New England, and we hold onto our history here, so it makes perfect sense they still use the old term!

Now, back to our story...Incorporated in 1653, Lancaster is the oldest town in Worcester County. It was first settled as "Nashaway" (after the local Nashaway Indian tribe) in 1643. It was officially incorporated and renamed "Lancaster on the Nashua" in 1653. (The "Nashua" is a river that runs through part of the county, including Lancaster.) Lancaster boasts being the official "mothertown" to much of central Massachusetts. Towns such as Harvard, Stow, Bolton, Hudson, Marlborough, Leominster, Clinton, Berlin, Sterling, and Boylston were all once considered part of Lancaster.

Lancaster also can boast about some famous things and people. Bostonian Charles Bulfinch, the noted architect who designed (among many other buildings) the U.S. Capitol and Boston's Faneuil Hall Meeting House, also designed the Unitarian Church in Lancaster (formerly known as the Fifth Meeting House). It is a National Historic Landmark, and the building is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year. 
Also, Luther Burbank, botanist, horticulturist and a pioneer in agricultural science, was from Lancaster. He created hundreds of new varieties of plants, fruits, and vegetables, including the Shasta Daisy and the Russet Potato!

Some other famous people from Worcester County include Robert Goddard, the father of modern rocketry, and Harvey Ball, designer of the smiley face.
Interestingly enough, Ball drew the iconic image while working for the State Mutual Assurance Company in Worcester, as a way to boost employee morale. That company is now known as Hanover Insurance, and my husband works there as a lead IT professional.

One other thing we're known for (as is most of New England) is our wonderful Fall foliage. Here's some beautiful color on Worcester County's Mount Wachusett: 
"Wachusett" is the Algonquin Indian word for "The Great Hill." It is the highest mountain in Massachusetts east of the Connecticut River. The mountain is also home to the only known Old Growth Forest east of that same river; some trees are over 350 years old! It also boasts panoramic 360-degree views from the summit, including a view of Boston Skyline to the east. It is also the biggest skiing attraction in the area.

But one of the most famous persons or things from Worcester County, (and the most pertinent to the row I created for this hop), is a man named Johnny Appleseed.

Actually, his name wasn’t “Appleseed” at all, it was “Chapman.” He was born in Leominster, a town located in Worcester County, in 1774. The legend of Johnny Appleseed tells of him spreading apple seeds randomly everywhere he went. In fact he planted nurseries rather than orchards, left them in the care of neighbors, and went off to be a travelling preacher. And he actually did this in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Indiana, not Massachusetts! However, we certainly claim him as our own, and his influence is seen everywhere in Worcester County in its many apple orchards (40 by my count). If you ask people around here what this county is known for, no doubt many of them would say “apples!”

So when this hop was announced, it only took me a few moments to come up with the theme for my row…an apple orchard!

And here's my row for Worcester County, MA..."The Apple Orchard":

It consists of eight blocks: Two branches, three apple blossoms, and three apples. The branch blocks measure 6.5" x 12.5" and the blossom and apple blocks measure 6.5" square (including seam allowances). The row combines English Paper Piecing and fused raw-edge applique, as well as traditional joining of the blocks. The finished row measures 12.5" x 30.5" and here's a picture of a completed row:

Here's a close-up of the branch blocks:

The blossom block:

And the apple block:

After designing the row, I decided to make wall quilt by making three rows and joining them with sashing. I made the quilt using Quilter's Candy Mirage Mottled fabric and matching thread from Connecting Threads.
Here's the completed quilt, (with my rudimentary quilting that I did on my home machine with my walking foot!)


This row is available for free on Craftsy until the end of October:

Be sure to enter today's giveaways! You must leave a comment to be eligible to enter.
 Connect the Blocks

Connect The Blocks Gift Certificate - $50.00 a Rafflecopter giveaway

 Anita Good
Anita Goodesign Machine Embroidery Design CD (This giveaway can only ship to the US.)   a Rafflecopter giveaway

You must leave a comment to enter the giveaways, and I'd love to hear from you too! I'll respond (eventually) to everyone via email, unless you're a no-reply blogger.

Here's the list of participants for today; be sure to check everyone out!

September 15
bdieges designs
creates Road to Tehachapi (CA)
Elizabeth Coughlin Designs
creates Worcester County in Central Massachusetts (you're here!)
Cloth and Paper Studio
creates North Georgia Mountains
Patti’s Patchwork
creates Toronto, Ontario Canada
Seacoast Quilter
creates New Milford, Connecticut


And check out the following to see what everyone's created:
The Facebook Announcement Group
The FlickR Group
and the Pinterest Wall

Finally, thanks so much for travelling down my road home!

91 comments:

  1. I love your row and I enjoyed reading all the history of Worcester County. Thank you.
    Pauline
    perry94022 at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great row! My grandson is studying Johnny Appleseed next week at school ;-D How wonderful to be surrounded by so much history where you live. I'd love to visit one day. Your row is lovely! I enjoy doing EPP so this is great, hehe. Thanks for sharing, awesome job!

    usairdoll(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ah you live in a part of the country I've longed to visit - just beautiful, and I love the history!! Your row is awesome, especially with three put together - I may have to do that too, as we have apple trees in our backyard!! Just lovely!

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a fun row...thanks for sharing! I have been to your county when I was college shopping with my son. He ended up in Boston and has loved it for the most part (except the winter of '14-'15!!)

    ReplyDelete
  5. So much fun. You really put a lot into this. Thank-you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. It is so nice to learn about other parts of the country and the world. Thank you for the information about your home and for all the work that you put into making your row.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I really enjoyed all the history you shared. It was so interesting - Thank You!! Love your block and the explanation behind it. I love my fall and your area really seems to come alive with all the beautiful fall colors. Maybe I'll visit this area some day :)!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Great history in your area. Thanks for sharing. Your row is a great representation.

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a grrrreat information Post about your area!! Want to visit! :)

    Loooove your Row (& quilt!!)...Awesome job..thank you for Row Pattern! (& chance to win your give-a-way too! )

    ReplyDelete
  10. What a beautiful place you call home-love your block-thank you, Susan

    ReplyDelete
  11. What a beautiful area. I really enjoyed your row too. Especially nice with the apples for this time of year.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Very cute row. I love the history lesson as well especially the Johnny Appleseed story. Thanks so much for sharing.
    Swoot@att.net

    ReplyDelete
  13. Love the row and love your area. Thanks for all the great history.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Love the history lesson. While reading it, I was wondering what & how you were going to incorporate into your row. I like the different techniques in your row. Thanks for the close-ups of the different parts of the row.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I always enjoyed teaching my 2nd graders about John Chapman . . . They loved his story. And, of course, we watched the Disney cartoon about him ... not historical, I know, but it firmly imbedded his story (and name) into their little minds, and made them wonder what THEY could do to make America more beautiful. (Which mostly involved picking up trash, but, hey -- they were only 2nd graders!). Thank you for the memory! (lynnstck[at]yahoo.com)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Learning so much about each community and what people notice in the world around them

    ReplyDelete
  17. Your love of this area shines through, thank you for the row!

    ReplyDelete
  18. It's wonderful to see how everyone expresses their home in their row.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Great row, I think I am enjoying the mini history lessons as much as the beautiful rows.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The best thing about this Row Along is learning the inspiration behind the project. I get to see all the rows before the event, but I don't get to know what the inspiration is behind them, so for me, it's always a lot of fun to realize that inspiration and get to know the person just a little bit more. I've been to Boston, but not to the part you mention and it makes me sad that I never saw it, I'll have to try and do so on the next visit should it ever come. This is one of those rows that just stands out, it's a perfect rendition to the history of Worcester County.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Your row is wonderful. Loved the history of the smiley face.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Love reading the history of places we are traveling too.
    So your the county responsible for the smiley face! In todays world thats a huge icon! :-) Just had to throw that in there. LOL!!

    ReplyDelete
  23. your row is great. wow, thanks for sharing all that wonderful history.so cool

    ReplyDelete
  24. This was so interesting to read...thanks for sharing! Love your row and how it totally shows off where you consider home to be. :O)

    ReplyDelete
  25. I loved all the history that you shared with us. Yep, fall is definitely one of my first thoughts when it comes to New England. Thank you for the row pattern; it is lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Your row is lovely. I can't say how many times I've driven through parts of Worcester County but I don't think I've actually been in your town. Thank you so much for the history of the county.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Thanks for telling us about the history of your home - such famous people and things! ☺ And so beautiful, I'd love to come visit to see the colors. Such a fun row with your hexie apples and blossoms - it's perfect. Thanks for the free pattern!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Love your row block design. We also have a lot of apple orchards in Wisconsin.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Delightful trees and apple (and another hexie project is always appreciated!!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Lovely row! Interesting factoid about Massachusetts being a commonwealth. I didn't know that, although I know 3 other commonwealths (PA, VA, KY) which I only know because they are the 3 places I have lived in my life!

    ReplyDelete
  31. I love reading the history of your area as well as your row. Thank you for making your pattern, it's so pretty.

    ReplyDelete
  32. What an interesting history lesson. I thoroughly enjoyed that, thanks for sharing it. Your row is great!

    ReplyDelete
  33. What a super cute block! My daughter graduated from WPI, so I think I'll definitely want to make this one!

    ReplyDelete
  34. your apple orchard row is so very cute.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Very cute! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Very cute! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

    ReplyDelete
  37. What a great row. I love using multiple techniques in a quilt. I also love the history and geography lesson you gave me. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I really love apples and your row is so cute. crystalbluern at tds dot net

    ReplyDelete
  39. I love your row! And the three rows together make a wonderful wall hanging!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Love your row. Thanks so much for sharing

    ReplyDelete
  41. How fun to visit your blog and read the wonderful history you have shared! I use to live in a city called Lancaster (graduated from high school there). However, 'my' Lancaster is clear across the nation...in a desert in California. I was born in Washington state, and I am living here as well, so your row could very well represent my home state. We are well known for our apples!

    ReplyDelete
  42. What a great row! The east coast has such a rich history that many Californians envy! Although if we work at it, we do find much history in the Missions and Indian culture.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I love your row. It is a great idea for fall. Thank you for sharing where you live. Especially the changing of the trees. Beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Your state is one I have not visited in my lifetime, perhaps one day. It was nice reading about your inspiration for your row. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Thanks for the great history lesson!! and thank you for sharing you row on Craftsy!

    ReplyDelete
  46. I'm going to have to make this one too. love it

    ReplyDelete
  47. Nice history ty for sharing and i love your apple row..... happyness04431@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  48. I love fall colors! I want to make an autumn quilt.
    Johnny Appleseed has always been one of my favorite Tall Tales (thank you, Disney). Apple butter is delicious!
    reillyr2(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  49. Very interesting post about your region. My daughter is living in Woods Hole and often talks about local apples and now I know where they come from!

    ReplyDelete
  50. Love the story of the history of the area. Thanks for sharing your row!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Your apple orchard is delightful! And the history of Worcester County is interesting! Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Thank you for sharing so much about your area's history. Love the block.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Thanks for the history of your area. Love the picture of the fall colors. I really miss that part of the year. I remember when I was little, we would walk in the leaves and they would crunch. And the pretty colors.

    ReplyDelete
  54. I love to visit for the fall colors!

    ReplyDelete
  55. Hello, lovely work. Thank you for the chance to win
    laura333369@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  56. Hello, lovely work. Thank you for the chance to win
    laura333369@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  57. "The Apple Orchard" row is terrific!
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  58. We have apple trees, so I love your block, but I was especially impressed to hear that you live in the same area as the inventor of the Shasta daisy! This falls under the category of "learn something new every day". Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  59. Great info and such a cute row. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Cute row. I love the branches. I used to teach a unit on Johnny Appleseed. The best part was tasting different types of apples. Pink Lady was the usual favorite.

    ReplyDelete
  61. lovely row for this time of the year as well

    ReplyDelete
  62. Thanks for a pretty row and the interesting history of your part of the world!

    ReplyDelete
  63. I love apple season, as fall is my favorite time of the year. Awesome row! I grew up in RI and spent my summers and fall weekends in Oakham, MA. We always went to Brookfield Orchards to get our apples every fall.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Love your hexie/apple block. I just watched a program about the inventor of the Harvey Ball Smiley Face about a month ago. How fun! I am enjoying apple/hexie season, I lost all my apples to frost the past 2 years. raydeer@memlane.com

    ReplyDelete
  65. Great row, apples are ripe now in NW PA. I love apples-with homemade caramel dipping sauce, apple pie, apple crisp... Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway!
    cork@pa.rr.com

    ReplyDelete
  66. Thanks for the cute row by row block.

    ReplyDelete
  67. Thanks for sharing the history information of your home! I enjoyed learning about it and especially finding out the Harvey Ball and Johnny Appleseed are natives from Worcester County. From Johnny, you were inspired to design your row...it's great!

    ReplyDelete
  68. Cute row, love the hexie apple! Enjoyed the bits of history and other information. I used to have a leather purse with a smiley face on it way back in the 70's.

    ReplyDelete
  69. Thanks for the history highlights of your area. "Johnny Appleseed" really helped create apple orchards. What a legacy. Love your apple row.
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  70. Thank you for a lovely row. I especially love the smell of apples cooking. What a gorgeous place to live.
    warm hugs,
    ruthie.peterburg@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  71. What a delightful row. I can't think of a better way to pay homage to Worcester County Massachusetts. Thanks for the history and info on Johnny Appleseed as well.

    ReplyDelete
  72. I'd love to visit Worcester County, Massachusetts! Love your apple blossoms.
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  73. Lovely block! I'll be in your neck of the woods in a few months....kind of. Visiting Plainville before heading off to Tx for the winter. Enjoy yor day!

    ReplyDelete
  74. The smiley face creator made me chuckle :) Thanks for the lovely row.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Love your row. The Smiley Face is one f my favorite things; I collect them. Thanks for the lovely giveaway

    ReplyDelete
  76. This has been a wonderfully inspiring and creative hop/ I am so glad I got to visit your blog. Thanks for the history of where you live. I have been to Boston, my only trip to MA. I hope to explore the state more.

    tushay3 (at) yahoo (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  77. Your row deserves the biggest smiley face!
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  78. Great history lesson!! Like your row!

    ReplyDelete
  79. Such an interesting post! Great row block.

    ReplyDelete
  80. You are lucky to live in such a historic area.

    ReplyDelete
  81. I really like how the branches create a border in the quilt. Great row.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Really like your branch blocks!
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  83. What a fun row!! Very original! Thanks for sharing!!

    ReplyDelete