Posts Tagged ‘Martha File’

Oconee County Arts & Historical Ambassador Award Was Awarded to Martha File in Upstate, SC

January 31, 2018

The Oconee County Arts & Historical Commission announces Martha File as the recipient of the 2017 Arts and Historical Ambassador Award. File is the inaugural winner of the Ambassador Award, created to recognize a volunteer with “Outstanding Contributions” in the fields of Art, History or Culture in Oconee County. The Ambassador Award honors achievements that extend beyond the expected and make a difference in our community.

Martha File, a founding member of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail (UHQT), has worked diligently to educate and grow the efforts of South Carolina’s first quilt trail. Oconee County was the first County in South Carolina to embrace the quilt trail concept and there are now over 200 quilts on display across Oconee, Anderson and Pickens Counties. File has coordinated trail expansion, recruited numerous volunteers and as a result, the trail now has a studio in each of the three counties. In addition, she has worked with other counties across South Carolina and neighboring states to introduce and provide resources for additional quilt trails.

Mari Noorai, chairperson of the arts and historical commission says, “Martha’s service to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail has promoted Oconee County and its heritage. Her dedication and unwavering initiative make Martha the 2017 Arts & Historical Ambassador. Many thanks to Martha and all our exemplary volunteers that help us to ‘Celebrate Oconee.'”

Phil Shirley, director of parks, recreation and tourism for Oconee County says, “I remember Martha’s very first pitch to me about the idea of a quilt trail in 2009. I never imagined it growing to over 200 quilts and spreading across the Upstate. File’s dedication and leadership bring a shining light to our community and we congratulate her on being named the 2017 Oconee County Arts and Historical Ambassador of the Year.”

File says, “On behalf of the all the volunteers of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail we are honored to have been selected for this award. Helping preserve and promote the history of the Upstate through quilts and sharing the stories of those who made them is a very rewarding experience for us. We would like to thank the many people who have helped us on the journey and we look forward to the new adventures that await us.”

File will be recognized and presented an engraved plaque at the Spring Arts and Historical reception. In addition, a donation will be made in her honor to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

For more information on the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, visit (


Arts Council of York County in Rock Hill, SC, Offers Arts Talk Luncheon Which Celebrates the Art and Agriculture of York County, SC – June 18, 2014

June 5, 2014


The Arts Council of York County kicks off the York County 2014 Ag + Art Tour with an Arts Talk Luncheon on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, from 11:30am-1:00pm in the Courtroom at the Gettys Art Center, 201 E. Main St., Rock Hill, SC. Ag + Art Tour, scheduled for June 21-22 is a free, self-guided tour of South Carolina’s Catawba Region’s Farms featuring local artisans and farmer’s markets. This weekend-long tour expands to 4 counties this year and brings another layer of tourism to the region.

The kick off luncheon features two guest speakers: Martha File, founder of and lead coordinator of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, speaking about and the National Barn Trail Program and Lindsay Stuber, Programs Manager of The White Home in Rock Hill, sharing a presentation on Victory Gardens and their impact on the White family during World War I and World War II.

Luncheon tickets ($15) include a box lunch, beverage and dessert. Tickets must be purchased in advance by calling 803/328-2787. Please RSVP by Friday, June 13. Immediately following the luncheon, Martha File will conduct a hands-on Quilt-block Workshop from 1 – 4pm in the Courtroom. Admission to the workshop is $15. Please RSVP by Friday, June 13. Advance payment is required. All workshop materials will be furnished. Please bring a cover-up apron for painting.

The quilt workshop will focus on the creation of two, new, permanent, 4’x4’ wooden quilt blocks. The workshop leader will provide instruction and guidance as participants paint the new blocks which will be installed at the Center for the Arts and at a participating farm-site on the Ag + Art Tour of York County.

Martha File holds a Masters in Public Health from the University of South Carolina. Born in Aiken, she spent most of her summers in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. Throughout her career, File has assisted to develop and manage a wide spectrum of educational and service programs, spending much of her time focusing on educational tourism through the promotion of local artists and points of interest. She currently serves as the lead coordinator of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, and supports the development of the Barn Quilt Trail throughout South Carolina. The Arts Council of York County became a member of the Barn Quilt Trail two years ago after launching an effort to provide permanent wooden barn quilts to identify participating farms on the Ag + Art Tour. The goal is to build several quilts each year until all tour sites have been marked.

Lindsay Stuber, serves as archivist, collections manager, exhibit designer, and program specialist for The White Home. She is a graduate of the College of Charleston and began working with Historic Rock Hill in January 2013, after working for the Charleston Museum.

The Arts Council received grants from Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina and from York Electric Co-operative to help fund the quilt project. Ag + Art Tour was developed in York County in 2011 by Clemson Extension of York County, the Arts Council of York County, the Olde English District Tourism Commission, the York County Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Culture & Heritage Museums. Now occurring in York, Lancaster, Fairfield, and Chester Counties, the Ag + Art Tour, is a free, weekend-long, self-guided tour designed to generate interest in local farms, fresh foods, and traditional arts and music. York County’s tour is partially funded by the York County Hospitality Tax, AgSouth, Clemson University and Rock Hill Accommodations Tax.

For more information on the Ag + Art Tour, please visit ( For more information on the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, visit (, and for more information on Arts Council events, contact the Arts Council of York County at 803/328-2787, by e-mail to (, or visit our webpage at (

Seneca Woman’s Club in Seneca, SC, Offers Lecture by Martha File About the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail – Feb. 26, 2012

February 21, 2012

The Seneca Woman’s Club in Seneca, SC, will offer as part of its Heritage Lecture Series – SC’s Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, featuring Chairperson Martha File on Feb. 26, from 2-4pm at the Historic Ballenger House, 212 East South Third St. in Seneca.

File will speak on the development of SC’s first trail of quilt blocks, placed on barns and historic buildings in 3 counties; Oconee, Pickens and Anderson.

Also featured will be Suzi Parron, newly published author of “Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement.” Parron will sign copies of her book which will be available for purchase at the event.

For further information visit (

Devils Fork State Park in Oconee County, SC, Joins Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail

February 21, 2012

Cynthia Leggett brings us news of the first quilt block/square installed in a SC State Park, the latest entry to the Quilt Trail. Devils Fork State Park has joined the Quilt Trail with the addition of a quilt block originally designed by local quilter, Betsy Ward of Seneca, SC. The original quilt hanging, called “Rolling Landscape – Lake and Mountains,” was mounted on the Ranger Station and designed and made by Ward as part of a class taught by Carol Britt of Wytheville, VA, at an Appalachian Quilt Gathering at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.  “In the class, we layered fabric and cut a soft curving line across the colors that we chose to be part of the picture.  By adding a small sailboat button, I was able to gain the proportional perspective,” says Ward.

Devils Fork State Park is situated on the southern shores of Lake Jocassee, in Oconee County, SC. The South Carolina State Park Service manages Devils Fork as a traditional state park. It is located 5 miles north of Salem and can be reached by traveling scenic Hwy. 11 to Lake Jocassee Road or Boones Creek Road. Devils Fork contains 644 acres and provides the only boat access to Lake Jocassee.  Facilities include two campgrounds with water and electrical hookups, 20 modern villas for those who prefer extra amenities for overnight accommodations, three picnic areas, two covered shelters and four boat launch areas with parking. Devils Fork also has several hiking trails through lush forests filled with wildflowers, including the Oconee Bell.

The  Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail is sponsored by the Mountain Lakes Region of the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor and the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor grant program.

The Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail started with one quilt square mounted on the Oconee Heritage Center in Walhalla. It quickly spread to over 30 quilt panels in Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties mounted on barns, businesses, homes and public buildings. There are currently over 70 quilt squares located on the Trail.

In a related event, on Feb. 26, from 2-4pm, Martha File, Chairperson of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail will give a lecture about the Trail at the Historic Ballenger House, 212 East South Third St. in Seneca, SC. Also featured will be Suzi Parron, newly published author of “Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement.” Parron will sign copies of her book which will be available for purchase at the event.

For more information about the Trail, stories and pictures, visit (