Heritage Day came to Cambria on Saturday over Memorial Day weekend complete with horses, a vintage firetruck and automobile, and demonstrations of butter making, weaving, basket making and painting. Jill Knight performed as the audience enjoyed chili, hot dogs, lemonade and root beer floats.
Sounds from hammers and saws filled the museum’s side yard as children and their families enjoyed working with vintage woodworking tools to make boxes and signs, toy airplanes and wood sculptures. With partial funding through a grant from the Cambria Community Council, the Historical Society is able to provide vintage family activities reflective of life in the late 19th century. For Heritage Day, the focus was on working with wood using hand tools of the era. Parents, grandparents and children of all ages worked together outside making things with wood much like families in the past did for chores and recreation.
For the upcoming summer months, the Historical Society will offer three “Family Life in the Late 19th Century” experiences on Saturdays at the museum: vintage games and outdoor activities June 24; weaving and knot tying July 22; and food preparation and daily chores on Aug. 12. All activities are from 1 to 4 p.m.
Here’s a closer look:
▪ June 24 — Join us at the museum for an afternoon of vintage outdoor activities and games that were typical of family leisure in the late 1890s. Experience what families did for entertainment, relaxation and socializing long before electricity and electronics came our way.
▪ July 22 — An afternoon of vintage activities involving weaving, knot tying, rope making and macramé. These were skills used in everyday life in working with livestock, wagons, blankets, clothes and everyday necessities for survival. Experience what families did to utilize their creativity and ingenuity for living.
▪ Aug. 12 — Food preparation and daily chores typical for families living in Cambria long ago: what adults alike had to do to maintain their daily existence.
These activities are designed to promote an understanding of how people lived and worked in earlier times, and how they were part of Cambria’s evolving community. We hope visitors will understand common historical themes and make connections between their own lives, the lives of people who came before them, and the lives of those to come.
Debbie Carolan, Marj Sewell and Terry Shue submitted this viewpoint for the Cambria Historical Society.