On a beautiful but slightly cloudy fall day, we discovered a very special place. We’d seen a short video on it on our local PBS station, and I’d read about it in Our State, our state magazine. It’s called Hart Square and it’s just up the road near Hickory, North Carolina. Over forty plus years, a man and his wife have saved 100+ log cabins from around NC, VA and SC. Saving them from falling down and being covered with vines thus becoming forgotten.
Google Hart Square and read how one man has made this his mission to find and then save these beautiful old structures. They’ve dismantled the log buildings, numbered each log, and then rebuilt it from the ground up. Complete with working fireplaces and furniture of the period, they’ve also furnished each of them. There’s also a covered bridge and working chapel. Actually there are two chapels and couples can marry and even bring their babies back to be baptized. There are places of business, such as a cotton gin, a wheelwright shop, a book binders corner, an assayer’s office, and even a resident sheriff.
This place is so well loved that tickets to the annual event need to be purchased a month in advance. We forgot to do this but thankful that there were a couple of cancellations at the last minute. Arch questioned the price of the tickets but within just a few minutes, he announced that it was well worth the price.
One of the draws on this day are the artisans that come to show off their trade and to demonstrate how these daily jobs were accomplished a hundred plus years ago.
All of the artisans are dressed in 18th and 19th century clothing. There were soldiers, musicians, workmen, both men and women teaching jobs and chores that families had to do in everyday life. Men were tanning hides, shooting muskets, binding books, caning chairs, and splitting roof shingles. Women were stirring apple butter in large copper pots, churning fresh butter, spinning linen and wool, tatting and cooking stew over open fires. Young girls, dressed in long calico dresses and bonnets, showed how cracked corn was ground and turned into corn meal. We saw boys dressed in short pants and straw hats running between the cabins laughing and having so much fun. There were several groups of musicians, but all playing wonderful old tunes on fiddles, banjos and guitars. My favorite was the one with 2 men each playing a cross cut saw. Amazing the sounds that could coax out of them! It was as though we’d stepped through a portal into another time and place.
Will we go again next year ? We hope so! And hope to take some grandchildren with us! We were there pretty much all day, but couldn’t get to each of the cabins or even across the dam to visit the church and covered bridge. But next year, I’ll be calling that month ahead! Come join us!
And yes we made some memories that day and I took over 300 photos!
For those of us in the United States, I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. And for our friends in other places around the globe, wishes for happy times to you too.
Happy memory making, Anne