October 15, 2010
Museum in the Park at Chief Logan State Park will sponsor a Frontier Days Weekend Nov. 5 - 7 in partnership with the Shawnee Trail Associates. Activities will take place from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., on Friday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, Nov. 6, and 1 - 6 p.m., on Sunday, Nov. 7. The weekend event is free and the public is invited to attend.
Local and regional re-enactors will create an encampment on the Museum’s grounds and demonstrate crafts and different techniques used by settlers to survive and be comfortable in early America. Visitors can learn about candle making, needle crafts, calligraphy, blacksmithing and gunsmithing, leather working, horn and woodcarving, flint knapping and making tools, and various techniques for gathering, preparing and storing food. In addition, sutlers, civilian merchants who sold provisions to an army in the field, in camp or in quarters, will have historic and traditional-themed goods for sale.
Friday, Nov. 5, has been designated as “School Day,” and local and regional schools are invited to visit and see demonstrations of early chores, tasks, and diversions of the early settlers from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Children can see traditional foods prepared using cast iron cookware on open campfires. Re-enactor Henry Tucker of Bancroft, W.Va., will share stories about the life of his ancestor, William Tucker, an 18th-century pioneer scout who fought at the Battle of Point Pleasant on Oct. 10, 1774. There also will be special demonstrations by the Native American Indian Federation, based in Huntington, including traditional dance steps, drumming, and storytelling. Children will be invited to participate in drumming techniques.
On Saturday, the Native American Indian Federation will continue their storytelling, drumming and dancing sets; cast iron cooking demonstrations, campfire stories with Tucker and other re-enactors; and crafts and occupations of the era, also will take place. From 6 - 8 p.m. on Saturday, there will be a special storytelling session around a bonfire with Tucker and other re-enactors.
Historically-themed craft projects for children, aged four to 14, will be available on Saturday from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., and on Sunday from 1 - 4 p.m. Kids can try their hand at making cornhusk dolls, weaving baskets, leather stamping, beading and making feather headdresses.
Events on Sunday will feature more stories of the frontier with Tucker, and demonstrations of cooking, crafts and occupations.
The West Virginia Department of Agriculture has donated 95 copies of their publication, Cast Iron Cookbook Yesterday and Today, which will be available on Saturday and Sunday as supplies last.
Shawnee Trail Associates is a non-profit group of re-enactors from Southern West Virginia whose primary purpose is the accurate portrayal of the frontier-era settlements in Appalachia through first- and third-person historic and educational interpretation.
For more information about Frontier Days Weekend, contact Elizabeth Williams, site manager at the Museum in the Park, at (304) 792-7229.
Visitors also are encouraged to tour the current exhibits at the Museum, including the recently-installed Pieces of Hope, a memorial exhibit honoring the 29 coal miners who lost their lives on April 5, 2010, in the explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine in Montcoal, Raleigh County. Thorney Lieberman: Honoring America’s Coal Miners features life-size, full-length photographs of coal miners by Thorney Lieberman of Charleston. The exhibit consists of 18 full-size portraits. Lieberman took between 30 to 40 photographs of each miner and put them in a grid, life-size, on eight-inch by 10-inch film covering the entire person. He then made contact prints from the negatives and assembled them to create a full-size person. Most of these portraits were developed in black and white and mounted on 16 gauge hot rolled steel sheets. The final images are almost seven-feet tall.
Other exhibits on display include West Virginia 1960: The Primary That Made a President, which tells the story of John F. Kennedy’s campaign through West Virginia prior to the West Virginia primary election in 1960; We Are Marshall, which displays items produced as props for the movie production; Dehue . . . A Special Place which examines aspects of coal camp life; and the story of Logan County’s 1972 disaster at Buffalo Creek is told through photographs, newspaper articles and a video entitled “The Buffalo Creek Flood: An Act of Man,” produced by Appalshop in 1975. There are also two quilts made by the late Katie Barnett of Logan.
Museum in the Park is a regional cultural center showcasing the best in West Virginia history and the arts. It features changing exhibits and displays of artwork and historical items from the collections of the West Virginia State Museum and the State Archives. One area of the museum is dedicated to local and regional history. It is operated and maintained by the West Virginia Division of Culture and History and is located four miles north of Logan on West Virginia Route 10 at Chief Logan State Park. The museum is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., and Sunday from 1 - 6 p.m.
The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. Its administrative offices are located at the Culture Center in the State Capitol Complex in Charleston, which also houses the state archives and state museum. The Culture Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. The agency also operates a network of museums and historic sites across the state. For more information about the Division’s programs, visit www.wvculture.org. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.