Stepping into the past with the Heritage Celebration

Messenger photos by Dedra Cordle
The city of Grove City and the Southwest Franklin County Historical Society hosted the annual Heritage Celebration on June 10. Taking place at Century Village in Fryer Park, the popular event allows visitors to step into the past by offering a glimpse into the lives of those who inhabited these lands in the mid-to-late 18th and 19th centuries. Although the local educational non-profit organization tries to remain as accurate to the era as possible, volunteers Linda Crews (left) and Janice Evans (right) took some liberties as they played a game of checkers at the Haines-Black House. Crews said that women were not usually allowed to partake in the gaming hour as it was seen as more of a time for the men to unwind. “Women were too busy working around the house,” she said.
SWFCHS volunteers Hunter Thompson (front) and John Maxson try their hand at the stepping boards. Maxson said children of the era used these boards as a toy, which also tested their coordination. He added that it was much harder than it looked.
Denice Fogel, a volunteer with the SWCFHS, proudly displays the hardtack she made for visitors. According to Fogel, hardtack is a type of dense biscuit or cracker made from water, flour, and sometimes salt if available and was used by the people of this era because it was long-lasting and inexpensive to make. She said these crackers had a reputation as being hard enough to chip a tooth, which is why it was always recommended to dip it in broths or soups before taking a bite. She mentioned that her homemade hardtack was much softer for the teeth.
Andy Bauman works the forge at the Augenstein-Spillman Blacksmith Shop. The Galloway resident was making his first bottle opener.
SWCFHS volunteer Janet Shailer portrayed a schoolteacher at the Heritage Celebration.
Musician Ed Swim plays bluegrass tunes during a jam session.
Tom Wilhelm, a volunteer with the SWFCHS, uses a canvas of leather to create a portrait of a mountain man hunting in the wilderness.
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