Stephanie Metts (Founder of the Florida Quilt Trail) with Caroline Leonard (Live Oak Quilt Trail Catalyst) & Marilyn
Shortly after the Civil War, the small rural town of Live Oak was established and incorporated in 1878. Live Oak is situated at the junction of two railroads. One line going East and West, another North and South. As crews worked to extend the tracks for the railroads, it was understood that the crews would break for lunch under the cool shade of a huge live oak tree that stood along the tracks. Hence, the name Live Oak was chosen for the new town. The railroading history of the area was further entrenched with the startup of the Live Oak, Perry & Gulf in the early 1900’s. “The Lopin Gopher”, as it was nicknamed by the people that lived along the route, was a mainstay in transporting of the products of the area, lumber, tobacco, cotton, and watermelons, to other railroad lines for shipment to the northern markets. The railroad played an important part in the early economic development of Live Oak. And still today, the railroad has a presence with the railroad tracks situated in the center of town. It seems only natural that the Railroad Crossing Quilt Pattern should be selected to represent Live Oak as its first designated quilt block along the Florida Quilt Trail.