Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Hands-On History at Pottsgrove Manor

Making candles

Pottsgrove Manor will host a day of interactive history with “The Plantation Whereon I Live: A Hands-On Experience of Everyday Life at Pottsgrove Manor” on Saturday, Oct. 24, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Learn what day-to-day life was like for the inhabitants of the iron plantation and colonial town of
John Potts. 

Participants in this program will experience chores, trades, and pastimes of the 18th century with a number of hands-on activities, living history demonstrations, and take-home crafts. 

Timed activities include: 
  • Dip a candle to take home (sessions at 12, 1 and 2 p.m.) 
  • Learn to make an 18th century stitched book (sessions at 11 a.m., 12 and 2 p.m.) 
  • Create decorative marbled paper (sessions at 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, and 2:30 p.m.) 
  • Learn about the role of the colonial militia and participate in military drills (sessions at 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, and 2:30.p.m.) 
Ongoing activities include:
  • Meet sheep, try carding their wool, and see how it and other fibers were made into yarn on a spinning wheel, 
  • See open-hearth cooking demonstrations – the cook may ask for help mixing ingredients, rolling out dough, or grinding spices, 
  • Help stir the pot to make apple butter over an open fire, 
  • Grind and press apples for cider, 
  • Learn how to write with a quill pen, and take home a sample of personal penmanship, 
  • Try weaving linen tape, and take a piece of hand-woven tape home, 
    Working the cider press
  • Try out the toys and games that colonial children would have played.
In addition to the scheduled activities, the first-floor of John Potts’ 1752 manor house will be open for self-guided tours. 

Guides will be stationed in each room to talk about the Potts family and how they, their servants, and their slaves lived in the house in the 1750s and 1760s. 

The Pottsgrove Manor museum shop will also be open for business throughout the day, selling historically-themed books, toys, and more. 

While it is an all-ages event, the scheduled activities are best suited for elementary-aged children. 

There is a $5 materials fee per participating child; adults and non-participating children are free. 

Preregistration is required for groups of ten or more. 

This event will be held weather permitting, and visitors should dress for the weather, as most activities will be outdoors. 

Making apple butter
While only the first floor will be open for tours during this program, the entire mansion and the current exhibit, “Pride of Place: The Local Legacy of the Potts Family,” can be toured during regular museum hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. 

Tours are given on the hour. The last tour of the day begins at 3 p.m.  The site is closed Mondays and major holidays. 

Groups of ten or more should preregister by calling 610-326-4014. 

Pottsgrove Manor is located at 100 West King St. near the intersection of King Street and Route 100, just off Route 422, in Pottstown. 

Pottsgrove Manor is operated by Montgomery County under the direction of the Parks, Trails, and Historic Sites Division of the Assets and Infrastructure Department. 

For more information, please call 610-326-4014, or visit the website at www.montcopa.org/pottsgrovemanor. Like Pottsgrove Manor on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pottsgrovemanor.

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