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Rural Heritage Museum and Village toured by DAR

By Staff | Oct 7, 2016

Submitted photo Members and guests of Pack Horse Ford Chapter, NSDAR

Shepherdstown’s Pack Horse Ford Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) recently visited Washington County’s Rural Heritage Museum and Village in Boonsboro, Maryland, during its Sept. 10 meeting.

After the ritual, a moment of silence was held to remember those killed 15 years ago during 9/11. Guests Jennifer Gerholdt and Lois Kimble were introduced. In commemoration of Constitution Week, members and guests received 3×5 cards with only one to three words written on them. Participants were asked, while holding their random cards, to arrange themselves in order of the Preamble of the Constitution. With only a few words on each card, the activity was challenging and fun. At the conclusion of the icebreaker, all were able to recite the Preamble together.

The DAR theme for the next three years is “Moving Forward with Service.” Chapter members brought 150 children’s books to the meeting for contribution to the Henrietta Bedinger Lee Society, National Society Children of the American Revolution’s book drive. Regent Kathy Sholl presented President Taylor Fritz with the books and a monetary contribution for Society operations. Mary Wood, chair, Service to America committee, outlined the chapter’s plans for the National DAR Day of Service on Oct. 11. Chapter members will gather at the offices of the Jefferson County Community Ministries in Charles Town to clean and paint.

After the business meeting, the chapter visited the Rural Museum and Village. The mission of the museum is to preserve the past, educate, and stimulate public awareness of rural heritage in Washington County, Maryland, prior to 1940. The museum has exhibits from an authentic country store filled with typical items one might find from the past. Visitors can view sample rooms from a Victorian era farmhouse and a display of antique clothing and attire. Also housed in the museum is the inside of a one-room schoolhouse, including wooden desks and a pot-belly stove. A horse-drawn black hearse and a large pipe organ also can be found.

In a separate building, large pieces of farm equipment exhibits are on display. It shows the progression of farming from the human-powered and horse-drawn era to the motorized era with pieces for working soil, planting, harvesting and processing crops. There are farm implements such as tractors, cultivators, harnesses, plows and planters. Also on display are dairy processing and orchard items.

The third building features transportation exhibits prior to 1940. Rotating displays of local items are showcased including a collection of Hagerstown built automobiles and bicycles. There is a replica of a rural repair garage. The museum features a Conestoga wagon, buggies, various automobiles and other transportation items.

The Village, which is made up of several buildings, showcases a log church, a doctor’s office with a medicinal garden, blacksmith shop, cobbler and broom maker’s shop, country store, carpenter’s shop and a log home built in the early 1700s belonging to the Glass family.

The chapter was amazed by the collections, exhibits and village. Only a few miles from Shepherdstown and Sharpsburg, the museum and village hold a wealth of information about our country’s heritage and a sample of life our ancestors once lived. We were excited to learn that school children can take tours and participate in activities in the museum and village. During the Christmas holiday season, the village cabins are decorated inside with typical materials used in the 1800s. The chapter is looking forward to returning to the museum and village again next year.

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) is a nonprofit, nonpolitical volunteer women’s service organization dedicated to preserving American history, securing America’s future through better education, and promoting patriotism. To learn more about the work of today’s DAR, visit www.DAR.org. For more information about the Pack Horse Ford Chapter, contact Regent Kathy Sholl at 304-876-1250.