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Taming The Wilderness – Sept 24

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Taming the Wilderness: An 18th Century Living History Event at Ellwood

Friends of Wilderness Battlefield is pleased to host their 11th annual 18th Century Living History event called Taming the Wilderness, on Sunday, September 24, from 11am to 4pm. Visitors will enjoy a full day as craftsmen, artisans, and living historians provide demonstrations of many aspects of life in the late 1700s through the early 1800s. These demonstrations will highlight the building trades and homemaking skills related to the construction of the historic structure Ellwood, the settling of the Wilderness and the day to day life there.

Various artisans will be present throughout the day, demonstrating skills of the time such as stone masonry, the hewing and shaping of logs for cabin construction, and basic hunting skills. Domestic activities include spinning and weaving, the tanning of deer hides, and open-hearth cooking. Other living history impressions will depict inn and tavern life, as well as frontier life on the trail. Also present on the grounds will be portrayals of a period musician, period dancing, children’s games, an 18th century surgeon and an itinerant sketch artist. The Germanna Foundation will have a display of artifacts from the historic Spotswood property.

In addition to the ongoing living history demonstrations, Friends of Wilderness Battlefield (FoWB) volunteer and avocational archaeologist Dale Brown will give a talk on the structure of Ellwood and the outbuildings in the side yard at 11am. His talk will be complete with models of the now missing outbuildings.

Special presentations regarding tavern life will be given at 12:30pm and 2:30pm by FoWB volunteers Milbrey Bartholow, Elaine Pratt, and Ruth Pavlik.

Bringing a comfortable lawn chair is recommended, to enable visitors to sit, relax and listen to the various presentations throughout the day.

FoWB volunteers will conduct guided walking tours of the Wilderness Crossing Trail at noon, 1:45pm and 3:30pm. Sturdy walking shoes and bug spray are recommended for this 75-minute program, and don’t forget to bring along a bottle of water.

Historic Ellwood Manor will be open during the day from 10am to 5pm, and FoWB interpreters will be on hand to answer questions.

FoWB volunteers will be available to assist visitors with possible ancestral connections with the Battle of the Wilderness or Ellwood, in the Heritage Program tent on the grounds.

All programs are free and open to the public and donations are always welcome.

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