American Indian Traditional Skills Demonstration Weekend
Contact: Jane Clark, 724-329-5811
Contact: MaryEllen Snyder
FARMINGTON, Pa., - Traditional American Indian Skills will be demonstrated on Saturday, July 12 and Sunday, July 13 at Fort Necessity National Battlefield from 9:00 am to 5:00 p.m. The Connellsville Area Historical Society will host the program with the support of a grant from the Pennsylvania Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Humanities’ We the People initiative on American history.
The history and lifeways of Eastern Woodland Indians will be interpreted through the demonstration of traditional skills. Presenters will dress in traditional clothing while demonstrating their skills. Ghost in the Head, of Huron descent, will demonstrate moccasin making. Visitors can learn about and participate in games led by Shining Spirit, who is of Cherokee ancestry. Dr. Kinorea “Two Feather” Tigri, also of Cherokee descent, will cook and talk about traditional gardens and foods.
Visitors will also see quill work and finger weaving. Many traditional items were decorated with dyed and bent porcupine quills. Traditionally-used items such as tobacco pouches and burden strap were made by weaving them with your fingers.
Other skills demonstrated include tanning skins to make leather, how bone jewelry was created, and the art of bow and arrow making. Visitors are encouraged to explore the fort area, where the demonstrators will be located, and to ask about skills and life ways of the American Indians during the 1750s.
In the visitor center theater, Perry Ground, a member of the Turtle Clan of the Onondaga Nation of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy, will tell stories. He has been telling stories for over 15 years as a means of educating people about the culture, beliefs and history of the Haudenosaunee. Story performances are scheduled for 10:15, 12:15, 2:15, and 4:15 on Saturday and 10:15, 12:15, and 2:15 on Sunday.
Fort Necessity National Battlefield is located 11 miles east of Uniontown, Pennsylvania on US 40 – The Historic National Road. Admission to the park is $5.00 per adult. Children 15 and under are free. Some scholarships are available to members of the public who can not afford the entrance fee. For more information on this and other programs at Fort Necessity, please call (724) 329-5811 or visit the Fort Necessity web site at www.nps.gov/fone.
Did You Know?
When James Sampey, the tavern keeper at the Mount Washington Tavern, died he had eight children ranging from an infant to a 24 year old. His wife, Rebecca, took over the operation of the tavern. Thomas Searight noted that “in many instances widows kept the best taverns along” the National Road.