The Questers is an international study club, which was founded in 1944 by Jessie Elizabeth Bardens. Its major objectives are to stimulate an appreciation of antiques and other collections and to encourage the preservation and restoration of existing historical landmarks. Its motto, “It’s fun to search and a joy to find,” has been the by-word for shared adventures and friendships in over 900 chapters across the country and in Canada.
When a Quester from San Franciso, CA, moved to Arkansas in 1970, she gathered together some of her new friends and formed Quapaw Chapter #519 in the Little Rock area. By 1977 there were five more chapters: Fairfield Bay #800; Petit Jean #819; La Petit Roche #822; Clara B. Eno #830; and Arkopolis #867. Now, in 2013, there are fourteen chapters throughout the state.
On May 2, 1980, Arkansas’ chapters became an “Organized Quester State”, with the first state-wide meeting held in Little Rock. The National President brought the State Quester Charter to the meeting and installed the first State officers.
Over the years, chapters have been formed and dissolved, but Arkansas’ first chapter, Quapaw, is still meeting and actively supporting not only their local and state preservation and restoration projects, but the goals of The Questers International as they have for 43 years!
There are two active chapters in Fairfield Bay who meet in the homes of members once a month. For information about Davis Special, call Fran Schroeder at 884-5440 or Willa Wells at 884-3218 for meeting times and information of the Indian Rock chapter.
Davis Special Chapter #1193 – Fairfield Bay, AR
Davis Special Chapter was chartered on February 21, 1991 at the home of Norma Miller. The Charter members were Dorothy Ball, Billie Covelli, Elda Gerndt, Maxine Hall, LaVon Hedges, Ruth Long, Norma Miller, Jacola Newton, Ollie Shelton and Melvis Sutton.
Through the years their main Preservation & Restoration project has been to help with the upkeep of Davis Special School, but recently we also started make regular donations to the Log Cabin Museum in Fairfield Bay. The latest project for both Fairfield Bay Quester groups was for signage at the Indian Thong Tree at Woodland Mead Park in Fairfield Bay. Indian tribes in this area pioneered trails and secretly marked certain trees in the forest to point to areas that had water sources, caves that provided shelter and safety, and other points of interest to them.
Indian Rock Questers, Chapter #869 – Fairfield Bay, AR
Indian Rock was chartered on December 5, 1977. The charter members were Esther Claybourn, Dorothy Gallagher, Encel Henning, Martha Hokanson, Lola McKenzie, Annette Mangan, Beatrice Plume, and Georgia Schoenecker
Their current project is the Fairfield Bay Log Cabin…Two log cabins, built in the mid 1850’s with hand-hewn logs chinked with mud and straw, were saved from destruction when they were moved during the 1950’s, from what is now the middle of Greer’s Ferry Lake. As the US government prepared to build a dam site there, the cabins were disassembled and re-built using cement instead of chinking materials. The smaller of the two cabins was placed in Fairfield Bay, with a fireplace constructed from local stone and a mantle of rosewood, walnut and pine.
Antiques are part of human history, a tangible record of the things of everyday living. A fascinating hobby, the study of antiques gives the most pleasure to those who strive to learn all they can about where, when, why and how they were made. Through discovery and knowledge of antiques, we may bring the past to life and profit by experiences of previous generations.