Wednesday, December 24, 2008

About bread...

Bread is about as universal in time and geography as it gets. Flat breads go back thousands of years, and lighter yeast breads were often served on our 19th century ancestors' tables.

Just in time for the holiday season, here's an 1849 excerpt about bread from Victoria Rumble's OUTSTANDING compilation of historic foodways: Victoria's Home Companion (pp. 63-64)

"Bread made of wheat flour, when taken out of the oven, is unprepared for the stomach. It should go through a change or ripen before it is eaten. Young persons, or persons in the enjoyment of vigorous health may eat bread immediately after being baked, without any sensible injury from it; but weakly and aged persons cannot, and none can eat such without doing harm to the digestive organs. Bread, after being baked, goes through a change similar to the change in newly-brewed beer, or newly-churned buttermilk. During the change in bread it sends off a large portion of carbon, or unhealthy gas, and imbibes a large portion of oxygen, or healthy gas. Bread has, according to the computation of physicians, one fifth more nutrient in it when ripe, than it has when just out of the oven. It not only has more nutriment but imparts a much greater degree of cheerfulness. He that eats old ripe bread will have a much greater flow of animal spirits than he would were he to eat unripe bread. Bread, as before observed, discharges carbon, and imbibes oxygen. One thing in connection with this thought, should be particularly noticed by all housewives. It is to let the bread ripen where it can inhale the oxygen in a pure state. Bread will always taste of the air that surrounds it while ripening--hence it should ripen where the air is pure. It should never ripen in a cellar, nor in a close cupboard, nor in a bedroom. The noxious vapors of the cellar or a cupboard never should enter into and form a part of the bread we eat. Bread should be light, well baked, and properly ripened, before it should be eaten.

Bread that is several days old may be renewed so as to have all the freshness and lightness of new bread, by simply putting it into a common steamer over a fire, and steaming it half or three quarters of an hour. The vessel under the steamer, containing the water, should not be more than half full; otherwise the water may boil up in the steamer, and wet the bread. After the bread is thus steamed, it should be taken out of the steamer, and wrapped loosely in a cloth, to dry and cool, and remain so a short time, when it will be ready to be cut and used. It will then be like cold, new bread."

Friday, December 19, 2008

Closure reminders...

Holiday greetings, Log Cabin Villagers!

Just a reminder, we have a couple of closures coming up.
  • We will be closed December 25th through January 1st. We will reopen at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, January 2nd.
  • We will be closed January 26th through February 9th for maintenance. We will reopen at 9:00 a.m. on February 10th.

Hope this holiday season finds you merry and bright! Best wishes and safe travels...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Oh the weather outside is frightful...

...but at our event this past Saturday, it was SO DELIGHTFUL!

We had a great time stringing popcorn, playing dreidel, finishing our winter count, making pomander balls, and embossing cards. Here are a few pictures of all the fun...just in case you missed it (click on slideshow for larger images and to control the speed):

Here's also a couple of shots of the Mill's water wheel today...when the weather was not quite so delightful...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Village through YOUR eyes...

Although we are in the business of "the past," we definitely love utilizing the tools of the present (as evidenced by our use of blogs, web sites, Shelfari, Facebook--have you become our fan yet?, etc.)

One thing we particularly enjoy is "Googling" the term "Log Cabin Village" to see what comes up! Blog postings, calendar mentions, user reviews...we love seeing them all! If they're good, we are excited. If they mention weaknesses...well...we take that into consideration and make improvements.

Most of all we love seeing photographs that people have taken here and then published on the web. It's fun seeing the Village through other people's eyes! They notice details we may have missed and focus on things we may not realize are important.

We want to see the Village through YOUR eyes. Please send me your photos...and I will consolidate them into an online album which I will post here! Photos can be of anything it your family, one of our cabins, or something else that was just inspired by your visit. Please include your first name, your city, and the photo's caption.

The deadline is January 15, get those photos in!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Corn husk dolls...revisited... last month I issued a request--send me photos of your corn husk dolls after you made them.

My email inbox is sad.

So I'm sending a reminder... Send me a photo of you and your finished corn husk doll (plus your first name and the city where you live)...and we'll publish it here on our blog!

Hoping to hear my inbox "ding" soon... :) :)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

About a Village...

Have any of you ever noticed how much pressure blog writing places on a person/institution?

As the primary author of Log Cabin Village's blog...I strive to provide interesting and relevant content on a somewhat frequent basis. Yet sometimes, although our time period AND museum are fascinating, I draw a blank. What is it that our readers want to read about?

I could tell you about our day-to-day happenings--how the chill in the air has brought in scores of visitors seeking respite from the mania of the holiday season. I could tell you how we're anxiously preparing for the holidays ourselves, hanging garlands and popcorn and wreaths. I could even tell you about how I'm researching tamale-making, so that we can approximate an authentic experience for our holiday event on December 13th (by the way...if anyone out there is an expert've got my number--give me a call).

I could tell you how the Village cats are ticked off because they don't like the cold. Or how the curator and I have been feverishly huddled around computers trying to secure photos to go on the new web site (which will launch soon, by the way). Or even how the crackling of the potbelly stove in the one-room school makes me yearn to grab a cup of hot cocoa, move my desk outside, and finish this post fireside (which would make it awkward for the school group currently holding "Pioneer School" in there...but that's beside the point).

I could even tell you that I currently hear the anachronistic hum of a cordless drill as a City of Fort Worth employee fixes that nagging porch board that's been catching the back door lately.

All of these activities, sounds, thoughts, and feelings make up the daily rhythm of Log Cabin Village.

"Blog worthy?" Who knows.

All I know is that it's another beautiful day at the Village...and we look forward to seeing our staff and visitors--our family.

Happy holidays...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Holidays at the Hearth...

Our fun December family event is coming up...and we're expecting a crowd! Won't you join us?

Saturday, December 13, 2008: Holidays at the Hearth (1:00—4:00 p.m.)

Celebrate the holidays Village style! See how cabins would have been decorated, string some popcorn, help make pomander balls and tamales, spin the dreidel, and reflect on storied traditions as you pause from the holiday hustle and bustle. Make your own embossed greeting card to take home! No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $2 craft fee to make a card.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Log Cabin Village will be closed on Thursday, November 27th, and Friday, November 28th, in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. We will reopen as usual on Saturday, November 29th, at 1:00 p.m.

The history of Thanksgiving in Texas...

There are a number of legends surrounding the original Thanksgiving and its eventual celebration here in 19th century Texas. Like most "histories," somewhere amongst all the stories lies the real truth--a veritable cornucopia of intersecting emotions and family traditions that picks up bits and pieces of heritage like a snowball rolling downhill. The resulting celebration? A conglomeration (snowball) of people's lives all rolled into one!

And so, in the spirit of Pilgrims and Native Americans and turkeys and pie, we here at Log Cabin Village wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving.

Here's some fun info from the Texas Almanac:

The First Thanksgiving?

A new Thanksgiving tradition has taken root in Texas. El Paso residents now claim the first Thanksgiving in North America. The modern event, first observed in April 1989, commemorates a day of thanksgiving celebrated by Spanish explorer Juan de Onate and his expedition on April 30, 1598.

The History
Juan de Oñate was a member of a distinguished family that had loyally worked for the Spanish crown. His father had discovered and developed rich mines in Zacatecas, Mexico. Oñate, himself, had opened the mines of San Luis Potosí and performed many other services for the Spanish king. But he wanted to carve an unquestioned place in history by leading an important expedition into unexplored land.

He was granted land in the northern Rio Grande Valley among the Pueblo Indians by the viceroy of New Spain. The viceroy moved to a new post, however, and his successor was slow to grant Oñate permission to begin his expedition. Finally, in 1597, approval came. To reach his new holdings, Oñate chose to bypass the traditional route that followed the Rio Conchos in present-day Mexico to the Rio Grande and then northward along the Rio Grande into New Mexico. In the summer of 1597, Oñate sent Vicente de Zaldívar to blaze a wagon trail from Santa Barbara in southern Chihuahua, along which could be found adequate water supplies. Zaldívar underwent many hardships, including capture by Indians, in carrying out his instructions. No mention of the hardships was made, however, when he made his report to Oñate. (The trail blazed by Zaldívar has become the route of the modern highway between Chihuahua City and El Paso.)

By early March 1598, Oñate's expedition of 500 people, including soldiers, colonists, wives and children and 7,000 head of livestock, was ready to cross the treacherous Chihuahuan Desert. Almost from the beginning of the 50-day march, nature challenged the Spaniards. First, seven consecutive days of rain made travel miserable. Then the hardship was reversed, and the travelers suffered greatly from the dry weather. On one occasion, a chance rain shower saved the parched colonists.

Finally, for the last five days of the march before reaching the Rio Grande, the expedition ran out of both food and water, forcing the men, women and children to seek roots and other scarce desert vegetation to eat. Both animals and humans almost went mad with thirst before the party reached water. Two horses drank until their stomachs burst, and two others drowned in the river in their haste to consume as much water as possible.

The Rio Grande was the salvation of the expedition, however. After recuperating for 10 days, Oñate ordered a day of thanksgiving for the survival of the expedition. Included in the event was a feast, supplied with game by the Spaniards and with fish by the natives of the region. A mass was said by the Franciscan missionaries traveling with the expedition. And finally, Oñate read La Toma -- the taking -- declaring the land drained by the Great River to be the possession of King Philip II of Spain.

Some historians call this one of the truly important dates in the history of the continent, marking the beginning of Spanish colonization in the American Southwest.

A member of the expedition wrote of the original celebration, "We built a great bonfire and roasted the meat and fish, and then all sat down to a repast the like of which we had never enjoyed before. . .We were happy that our trials were over; as happy as were the passengers in the Ark when they saw the dove returning with the olive branch in his beak, bringing tidings that the deluge had subsided."

After the celebration, the Oñate expedition continued up the Rio Grande and eventually settled near Santa Fé. As one historian noted, when Jamestown and Plymouth were established early in the 17th century, they were English attempts to gain a foothold in the New World. Santa Fé was but one of hundreds of towns the Spanish already had established in the New World.

Sheldon Hall, president of the El Paso Mission Trail Association that sponsored the modern celebration, also said that the first drama presented in North America was part of the celebration. The play, written by a Capt. Farfan of the expedition, was produced by the soldiers and depicted the conversion of the Indians to Christianity.

The Celebration
More than 100 costumed participants re-enacted the celebration in the 1989 re-creation performed at the Chamizal National Memorial, a few miles from where the original observance took place. Tigua Indians of El Paso played the parts of the natives of the region who met Oñate at the Rio Grande.

Officials from Mexico and the United States were present, as well as Manuel Gullon y de Oñate, the Count of Tepa in Spain and a direct descendant of the colonizer. About 50 people also attended a reunion of the descendants of the members of the expedition.

San Elizario held a fiesta to note that the actual celebration by Oñate's expedition took place near the city, and a historical marker telling of the observance was unveiled.

The celebration is not an attempt to wrest the Thanksgiving tradition from New England. Ricardo Marti-Fluxa, Spain's consul general in Houston, attended the event and said, "We don't want to fight against any tradition. But we feel it was a deprivation not to acknowledge the full history of the United States of America." Hall, a Mayflower descendant and New England immigrant, hopes that the re-enactment will become an annual spring event in El Paso.

The First Thanksgiving
With El Paso's entry into the Thanksgiving sweepstakes, Texas now has two observances in what's becoming a crowded field of locales vying for attention as the site of the first Thanksgiving.

The second Texas claim was an event held earliest of all those claiming primacy. The Texas Society of Daughters of the American Colonists placed a marker in 1959 just outside Canyon. It declared that the expedition of Francisco Vázquez de Coronado in May 1541 celebrated the first feast of Thanksgiving in Palo Duro Canyon. Fray Juan Padilla said a mass at this observance. However, later research indicated that grapes and pecans were gathered by the celebrants for the feast, and neither grow in Palo Duro Canyon.

There is now some doubt whether this was a special thanksgiving or a celebration of the Feast of the Ascension. It was held in Texas, but may have been on one of the forks of the Brazos River farther south.

Other Claims to the First Thanksgiving
There's no doubt that today's Thanksgiving tradition is New England born and bred. It's not a single tradition, however, but a combination of traditions, according to one researcher. Randall Mason, a researcher for Plimoth Plantation Inc., which operates a model 17th century village at Plymouth, Mass., says today's celebration is a cross between a British harvest festival and a special day of religious thanksgiving, both originally observed by pilgrims in New England.
In 1621, just months after their arrival from England, residents of Plymouth celebrated a harvest festival, which was indistinguishable from those observed throughout Britain at the time. It was a secular event with feasting and games. The only religious observance was the saying of grace before the meal.

Two years later, the governor of Plymouth colony called for a special day of religious thanksgiving for the end of a drought that plagued the colony. This was an extra day of prayer and religious observance, according to Mason. Special days of religious thanksgiving were called throughout the colonial period.

Connecticut is given credit for initially adopting an annual day of general thanksgiving. The first for which a proclamation exists was called for Sept. 18, 1639, although some may have been held earlier. Another on record was held in 1644, and from 1649 onward, these special days of general thanksgiving were held annually.

Massachusetts Bay Colony began annual observances in 1660.
Several other states, however, claim the first thanksgiving. Puritans who arrived to establish Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1630 observed a special day of prayer that is often called the "first Thanksgiving." Even earlier in Florida, a small colony of French Huguenots living near present-day Jacksonville noted a special thanksgiving prayer. The colony soon was wiped out by the Spanish.

Maine, too, stakes a claim to the first Thanksgiving on the basis of a service held by colonists on August 9, 1607, to give thanks for a safe voyage.

Virginians are convinced their ancestors celebrated the first Thanksgiving when Jamestown settlers in 1610 held a service of thanksgiving for their survival of a harsh winter.

Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont and Maine had annual thanksgiving observances before the 19th century. New York joined the group in 1817, and Michigan, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin and Indiana soon followed.

Throughout the 19th century, Thanksgiving observances spread from state to state. Occasionally, special national days of thanksgiving were proclaimed by American presidents. George Washington called the first national observance in 1789.

Sam Houston proclaimed that March 2, 1842, Texas Independence Day, be a day of celebration of freedom and thanksgiving. But Gov. George Wood proclaimed the first Thanksgiving observance in Texas for the first Thursday in December 1849.

Abraham Lincoln initiated the tradition of a national annual day of thanksgiving with a proclamation in 1863, during the Civil War. Franklin D. Roosevelt deviated from the practice of observing the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving in 1939. Retailers noted that a November 30 observance of Thanksgiving that year would leave only 20 shopping days until Christmas, since the shopping season usually opens with the November holiday. A Nov. 23 observance was recognized by 23 states, and a similar number stuck to the November 30 celebration. Texas and Colorado commemorated both days. (Alaska and Hawaii, of course, were not in the Union at the time.)

In 1941, FDR signed the law making the fourth Thursday in November the nation's official Thanksgiving day. However, in 1944, 1945, 1950 and 1956, November had five Thursdays, and while other states changed their observances to coincide with the national law, Texas remained the lone holdout, observing the last Thursday in 1956. The Legislature changed the law in 1957 making the fourth Thursday in November the state's official Thanksgiving.

— Adapted from an article written for the 1990-91 edition of the Texas Almanac by Mike Kingston, then editor of the Almanac

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Amon Carter Museum's blog...

If you don't already follow the Carter's blog, you should add it to your "must reads."

Today's post is just one of the many reasons why...

Monday, November 10, 2008

And more Texas Day by Day...

Pioneer Texas inventor born in New York

On this day in 1801, Gail Borden, Jr., inventor, publisher, surveyor,and founder of the Borden Company, was born in Norwich, New York. He came to Texas in 1829 and became surveyor for Austin's Colony in 1830. In 1835-37 the ubiquitous Borden published the Telegraph and Texas Register, prepared the first topographical map of Texas, and helped lay out the site of Houston. In the middle 1840s he began inventing. He is supposed to have experimented with large-scale refrigeration as a means of preventing yellow fever and with a terraqueous machine, a sort of prairie schooner that would go on land or water. In 1849 he perfected a meat biscuit, made of dehydrated meat compounded with flour, which he tried to market on a worldwide scale in partnership with Ashbel Smith. In 1853 he sought a patent for his most famous invention, a process for condensing milk in vacuum. After several unsuccessful attempts, he opened a condensed milk factory in Connecticut in 1858. When the Civil War brought intensified demand for condensed milk, sales grew so much that Borden's success was assured. After the war he returned to Texas and founded the community of Borden, where he established a meat-packing plant. He died in Borden on January 11, 1874.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Audience participation... by now you may have read the post on corn husk dolls that I wrote earlier today. And that got me thinking...wouldn't it be great to see the corn husk dolls that Log Cabin Village's friends come up with?

So now, more than ever, I want to hear from all of you out there in the blogosphere. If you make a corn husk doll, either using the instructional video highlighted here or of your own design, send me a picture of you and your doll! Be sure to include your first name, age, and city of residence. I will feature these pictures on a future blog entry...probably sometime in December.

I'm watching my mailbox as we send 'em in!

Great stuff from the Daughters of the Republic of Texas...

This a recent post from their blog. They have a fantastic primary source collection. Enjoy!

How to make a corn husk doll... I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I would be posting a video showing how to make corn husk dolls. I did a little research online, and found that there is already a great video (plus numerous instruction sheets) showing step-by-step guidelines to corn husk doll creation! What luck!

Corn husk dolls are an excellent example of recycling. Rather than discarding the outer layer of an ear of corn (the husk), our ancestors (Native American, Mexican, African, Anglo, etc.) put them to use in a number of ways. They wove them into placemats and moccasins, stuffed mattresses and pillows, wrapped tamales, made dolls, and much, much more!

The video mentions purchasing corn husks from a craft store, but you can typically find them at your local grocery store or food specialty shop. You can even save them yourself from when you eat corn on the cob! Just lay them out until they are dry and crunchy.

Are you ready to try making a doll yourself? Here's the video... Good luck! Let us know how it goes...

Monday, November 3, 2008

November events...

Mark your calendars!!

November 21, 2008
10:00—11:00 a.m.
Featured story: Kindle Me a Riddle: A Pioneer Story by Roberta Karim. Frontier days are brought to life through a series of riddles in this charming story about a 19th century family. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

November 22, 2008
1:00—4:00 p.m.
It’s candle-making time! Come join us as we braid some wicks, dip some sticks, and have a great time making candles to last us through the winter! You can even dip your own candle to take home. No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $3 craft fee to dip candles.

Friday, October 31, 2008


Some of you in our area may have felt the slight rumblings of minor earthquakes last night. Earthquakes? In Texas?

This phenomenon is actually more common than you think here in the Lone Star State. According to the Handbook of Texas Online, "between 1847 and 1994 there were more than 110 recorded earthquakes of magnitude three or greater in Texas."

You can find more information about earthquakes here...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's almost cold and flu season...

So you may want to follow some of the advice found here...

This blog entry comes from a neat project being currently undertaken by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. They received a 2-year grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to process the papers of the Chew family. The resulting blog highlighting the process is both entertaining and enlightening, offering a fascinating glimpse into one family's personal history.

Check it out!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Another interesting tidbit from "Texas Day by Day"

On this day in 1845, two pioneer German-Texans, Friedrich Wilhelm von Wrede Sr. and Oscar von Claren, were killed and scalped by Indians at a place referred to as Live Oak Spring, ten to twelve miles from Austin, probably near Manchaca Springs. Wrede made an initial trip to Texas in 1837 and traveled and made notes of his observations in America. He returned to Germany in 1843 and compiled and published Lebensbilder aus den vereinigten Staaten von Nordamerika und Texas (1844). Wrede's travel book is a generally realistic account of the opportunities and difficulties of colonists on the American frontier, especially in Texas. The book helped to influence prospective German settlers to come to Texas, despite the negative effect of Wrede's own violent death in Texas the following year. Wrede returned to Texas in 1844 as an official of the Adelsverein. His companion in death, Oscar von Claren, immigrated from Hannover to New Braunfels, Texas, probably early in 1845. His family correspondence indicated his interest in the botany and wildlife of the New Braunfels area, and he collected turtles and snakes to sell to naturalists in Germany. He wrote Indianer bei Neu Braunfels im Jahre 1845 (1845), a group of essays depicting Texas Indians. The two authors were buried at the site of the massacre by United States soldiers, who gave them military honors. Wrede's son, Friedrich Wilhelm von Wrede Jr., settled in Fredericksburg but returned to Germany after the Civil War.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Jeepers Reapers! we had a great time this past Saturday!

Well once again we had a great turnout for our monthly special event this past Saturday. Visitors were able to help us thresh and winnow wheat; shell, grind, and press tortillas from corn; stuff pillows with corn husks; create bean bracelets; and see the blacksmith, candlemaker, and miller at work!

For your viewing pleasure, here is a video demonstrating the corn sheller and a slideshow of images from the day. You can click on the slideshow to enlarge the images and control the speed. You should be able to enlarge the video as well. We hope to see you here next month!

Be watching the blog within the next couple of weeks for a demo on how to make corn husk dolls as well...

Using a corn sheller at Log Cabin Village--Fort Worth, TX from logcabinvillage on Vimeo.

Friday, October 17, 2008

When educators mess up...

Did the title get your attention? Hope so...because THIS is a funny story. I was all excited about our upcoming event...all about harvest and fall schtuff. I came across a fantastic recipe for butternut squash ink. What could be more perfect! It's fall...there are butternut squashes EVERYWHERE...and what kid (or adult) wouldn't enjoy practicing their letters with butternut squash ink!

Except that the recipe is for butternut ink. No squash. Just nut hulls. Like walnut hulls. Color (or rather "un"color) me embarrassed.

Wanting to save face and to test the plausibility of actually creating butternut squash ink, I tried this project yesterday. It was not successful. You all saw that one coming, didn't you? I did, however, succeed in making a beautiful butternut squash dye--about 2 tablespoons worth.

The moral of the story? READ CAREFULLY...and have fun with your mistakes...

Enjoy a slideshow of the experiment! You can click on the slideshow for larger images and to control the speed...

Hope to see you here tomorrow! ink. :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The election that wasn't... least "wasn't" for Texas. Did you know that Texas was not allowed to vote in the 1868 presidential election, having not been readmitted to the Union after secession during the Civil War? Apparently this first Reconstruction election was somewhat contentious...

What a different 140 years makes!

In 1868, as it would be for the next several elections, the main issue was the Civil War and its aftermath. In the years before this election, President Andrew Johnson drew the wrath of the Radical Republican Congress in his attempts to bring the rebellious southern states back into the Union fold as quickly and as painlessly as possible. His political opponents felt that the South should be punished for their actions. The President and Congress clashed often. Johnson vetoed 28 bills during his tenure; Congress was able to override a record 15 of them (in contrast, FDR vetoed 635 bills; only 9 were overridden). Early in 1868, after Johnson ignored a law Congress had passed over his veto that would have required him to get Congressional consent before removing his Secretary of War, the House of Representatives impeached the President. He was aquitted in a Senate trial by only one vote. The Radical Republicans were able to set up a legislative agenda that, among other things, stripped the state governments of the southern states and replaced them with military districts, disenfranchised most white citizens who had supported the Confederacy, and gave thousands of former slaves the right to vote. For a while, blacks in the south with the right to vote actually outnumbered whites allowed to vote there. A fringe benefit (if not the main purpose) of these objectives gave Republicans a major stronghold in the South that would take years to erode. (

Thursday, October 2, 2008

October events...

Have you recovered from Harvest Homecoming? It's time for more fun!

Friday, October 17, 2008: TIMBER TALES STORYTIME --10:00—11:00 a.m.

Featured story: Anansi Does the Impossible: An Ashanti Tale retold by Verna Aardema. The adventures of Anansi the spider continue with this delightful tale from our West African ancestors about securing folktales for the people. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

Saturday, October 18, 2008: JEEPERS REAPERS!--1:00—4:00 p.m.

We just celebrated Harvest Homecoming, but now it’s time to reap what we’ve sown! Experience grinding corn and wheat by hand, experimenting with squash, and using corn husks to stuff mattresses and to make placemats! From grain and grist to bread and toys, we’ll have it all...and you’ll help! No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $2 craft fee to make a corn and seed necklace.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Recent fun in Waxahachie...

Our neighbors in Ellis County, TX, recently had a big event of their own! While we were busy with Harvest Homecoming, they hosted Texana: A Texas State of Mind.

Here are some neat videos of Caddo dances from the Blog for Ellis County Texas History.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Photos from Harvest Homecoming...

Sorry some are a little blurry...but when you have almost 2000 visitors, you gotta move quickly!! Please click on the slideshow to see larger images and to control the speed...

Monday, September 29, 2008


Thank you, thank you, thank you! More than 1900 of you wonderful people showed up at our annual "Harvest Homecoming" this past Saturday making it a record success! Photos from the event will be coming soon, but we didn't want to wait to tell our wonderful patrons "thank you."

We'll see you again soon!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Living off the grid...

It's no secret that we love Lehman's. Heck...when you need a butter churn or a spoke shave, they're just the people to turn to!

What I do find exciting is how "modern" this "non-electric" company is. They actively blog and even have their very own YouTube channel... I think y'all will find the videos interesting as they offer glimpses into forgotten ways of life (much as Log Cabin Village does)!

Speaking of the Village, we hope to have more videos of "forgotten arts" posted this fall. Stay tuned!

Lincoln-Douglas debates

More great information from the Gilder Lehrman Institute about the famous debates that shaped our modern style of debating!

Lincoln, Douglas, and Their Historic Debates

Long before television, the twenty-four-hour news cycle, and the sound bite, political debate was a vital part of civic life in this country. This week, the Gilder Lehrman Institute and the House Divided Project at Dickinson College look back at America's first great debates: the seven joint discussions between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas during the Illinois U.S. Senate campaign of 1858. Longtime rivals who would meet up again in the watershed presidential election of 1860, Lincoln and Douglas famously debated at length about the issues of the day, including slavery, economic development, and American expansion.

To take a closer look at each of the Lincoln-Douglas debates, click here:

Thursday, September 25, 2008

We're on Facebook!!!

Be sure to come check out our new space on the web...and show your support for Log Cabin Village by becoming a fan!

We can't wait to see you there!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Target Backs School Field Trips...

This news in recently from the American Association of Museums (AAM)...

If teachers and administrators in your area are struggling to fund visits to your museum, Target Corporation can help. AAM President Ford W. Bell and Target officials recently collaborated to spread the word on the company’s expanded field trip grants program. For the 2008–2009 school year, Target is offering 5,000 field trip grants of up to $800 each—triple the amount offered last year—with no strings attached.

Applications for field trips between February 2009 and the end of the school year will be accepted online through Nov. 1. All educators, teachers and principals wishing to plan a field trip for students are eligible to apply, including previous grant recipients. Applicants must provide brief descriptions (no more than 2,000 words) of the field trip and its benefits, as well as a breakdown of expenses. Funds may be used to cover field trip-related costs such as transportation, ticket fees, resource materials and supplies. Other criteria for selection of grant recipients include the field trip’s tie-in to the school’s curriculum and the number of students who will be involved. Successful applicants will be notified in January 2009.

Established in 2006, Target Field Grants enables educators to take learning outside the classroom. Last spring, the program awarded a total of $1.6 million to education professionals nationwide to fund 1,600 field trips. This year Target expects to award up to $4 million for field trips.

Tell your local school officials about Target Field Grants so that both teachers and museums can take advantage of this opportunity. For more information, visit the Target website.

Monday, September 22, 2008

So what are YOU doing this coming Saturday???

Hopefully you're checking out all the fun activities that Fort Worth's Cultural District has to offer! Just a reminder, the third annual Day in the District takes place this coming Saturday, September 27. Click here for more information...

Log Cabin Village will be participating with our annual "Harvest Homecoming" from 12:00-4:00 p.m. We'll have music from Celtic Crossroads, storytelling from members of the Tarrant Area Guild of Storytellers, drovers from the Fort Worth Herd, firepit cooking, craft demonstrations, and MORE! And it's all FREE.

It's also Smithsonian magazine's Museum Day. Let the State Fair of Texas wait one more need to be in Cowtown!

We'll see you Saturday!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hurricane Ike

While our primary concern during these difficult times are always about human life, we cannot help but also feel the pain of our sister cultural institutions to the south. The Texas Association of Museums Annual Meeting was actually held in Galveston this past spring, and the island and its citizens could not have been any more lovely.

For those evacuees who are currently staying with us in Fort Worth/DFW, and for those institutions whom we consider dear friends on the coast, our thoughts and best wishes are with you.

Ongoing information about how cultural institutions in Ike's wake are faring...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Timber Tales is this Friday!

Friday, September 19, 2008: TIMBER TALES STORYTIME Log Cabin Village, 2100 Log Cabin Village Lane, Fort Worth. 817.392.5881. 10:00—11:00 a.m. Featured stories: Tortillas and Lullabies by Lynn Reiser and The Copper Tin Cup by Carole Lexa Schaefer. How can the objects we treasure bring back powerful memories? Learn with two wonderful stories about the continuity of family and our heirlooms. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

Friday, September 12, 2008

Our September flora have arrived!!

Every year we are greeted by beautiful crimson lilies that sprout in dedicated little bundles around different places on the site. And every year I marvel at their sudden arrival...lying seemingly dormant beneath the soil one day...and displaying their full glory the next. Part of the fun is figuring out where they might "spring up" next!

They're technically called oxblood, schoolhouse, or hurricane lilies. According to (where you can also order the bulbs and find out more information, if you want lilies of your own), oxblood lilies are frequently found in older neighborhoods in Central Texas. The lilies, originally native to the Andes in Argentina, were introduced in 1807 and brought to Texas by German settlers sometime after 1865. Oxblood, of course, refers to the color of the flowers.

We think they're beautiful. What do YOU think?

Thank you so much!

Well...our supporters have done it again! Thanks to your efforts using, we just received our first check. Just by clicking a link to do your shopping, you raised $42.01 for Log Cabin Village in the second quarter of 2008!

Will you please continue to help us?!??!?!?! Here's more information...

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

This day in Texas history...

I mentioned this a few blog posts back, but you can sign up with the Texas State Historical Association to receive historical daily happenings in your e-mail inbox.

I thought today's entry was particularly interesting, and so I wanted to share:

Washerwoman buys valuable Dallas property

On this day in 1869, former slave Hope Thompson and her husband Isaac purchased a piece of property on Elm Street in what is now downtown Dallas. Thompson, a washerwoman, borrowed the purchase price of fifty dollars from banker William Henry Gaston and repaid the loan by doing Gaston's laundry. Isaac Thompson left his wife in 1872. During much of the next two decades, she was involved in a number of transactions and lawsuits involving the property, which rapidly increased in value, but succeeded in retaining title to it. In September 1885, her real estate was appraised at about $35,000, and in October 1886 the Cleveland Gazette reported her assets to be worth $30,000. Hope Thompson last appeared in the Dallas city directory in 1894-95.

Monday, September 8, 2008

We reopen tomorrow!!

Our maintenance is almost completed...and we look forward to seeing everyone when we reopen tomorrow (Tuesday, September 9th)! don't ALL have to come tomorrow. You can come Wednesday. Or even Thursday, if you like. Just come!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Did our ancestors worry about hurricanes?

I guess this blog posting comes from what's on all of our minds, lately...namely those sinister siblings Gustav, Hanna, Ike, and Josephine. While I can currently turn on any television or log on to any computer and pull up satellite images of where the hurricanes and tropical storms are, our ancestors didn't have that luxury. What did they know? Were they worried? What precautions did they take?

Here's a really neat timeline from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:

Hurricane timeline: The 1800s


Scientists began to understand hurricanes during the 1800s, and forecasters were able to issue warnings as storms approached. Despite this growing knowledge, hurricanes continued to cause incredible destruction throughout the century.

1815 -- Destructive hurricane hits New England. "The Great September Gale" hit New England in September of 1815. It first made landfall on Long Island, N.Y., and then again in Connecticut. The storm flooded Providene, R.I., and caused extensive damage throughout the region.

1819 -- Concept of hurricanes as "moving vortex" published A Harvard professor concluded in an 1819 article that a hurricane "appears to have been a moving vortex and not the rushing forward of a great body of the atmosphere."

1837 -- "Racer's Storm" leaves 2,000-mile path of destruction. Racer's Storm, named for a British sloop of war which encountered the storm in the northwest Caribbean, was one of the most destructive storms of the 19th century. It formed near Jamaica, crossed the Yucatan, struck the Gulf coast of Texas, and moved over Lousiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina before arriving off the North Carolina coast on October 9.

1846 -- September hurricane creates inlets on the North Carolina Outer BanksTwo major inlets on the Outer Banks of North Carolina were cut by a hurricane in September 1846. Later in the year, a severe hurricane struck the Florida Keys destroying or damaging all but eight of the 600 houses in Key West. Some experts say this hurricane was probably a Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

1848 -- Hurricane pushes a 15-foot tide through Tampa, Fla. Fort Brooke, site of the present-day city of Tampa, was nearly destroyed by two hurricanes that hit the area within a month of each other.

1873 -- First hurricane warning issued in the U.S. The U.S. Army Signal Corps warned of a storm approaching the coast between Cape May, N.J., and New London, Conn. The storm never made landfall.

1878 -- Hurricane remains over Florida for three days. A slow-moving hurricane made landfall in the Florida Keys and slowly made its way up the center of the state.

1881 -- Hurricane kills 700 in Georgia and South Carolina. Savannah and Augusta, Ga., experienced severe damage when this hurricane came ashore in August 1881. Several barrier islands were completely submerged by the storm surge.

1886 -- June storm dumps 21.4 inches of rain on Alexandria, La. After flooding the Louisiana coast, the storm moved into Texas where it completely destroyed the city of Indianola. Indianola was never rebuilt.

1893 -- Two storms kill thousands in South. In August, between 1,000 and 2,000 are killed in a storm that submerged the South Carolina barrier islands. In October, another storm flooded a Louisiana bayou, killing 2,000 people.

You can also find historical hurricane photos on the site, although they are later than Log Cabin Village's time period.

And here is great information from MY favorite online source, The Handbook of Texas online:

HURRICANES. The largest and most destructive storms affecting the Texas coast are the tropical cyclones that occur seasonally from late June through October. From 1818 to 1885 at least twenty-eight hurricanes struck Texas, and from 1885 through 1964 sixty-six tropical storms were recorded, about two-thirds of which were of hurricane force (with winds of more than seventy-four miles an hour). Two major hurricanes occurred in the five years from 1965 to 1970. Frequently these storms rushed inland, causing destruction and flooding in the interior, but the heaviest damage has always been to population centers along the coast.

A hurricane spoiled Jean Laffite's pirate encampment on Galveston Island in 1818, and "Racer's Storm" passed over the same area in 1837. This strong wind, named for the Racer, a British sloop-of-war that encountered the storm in the Yucatán Channel, reached Brownsville about October 4, curved up the coastline over Galveston, and then moved eastward to the Atlantic Ocean near Charleston, South Carolina. Racer's Storm wrecked nearly every vessel on the coast and blew away all the houses on Galveston Island. It sent floodwaters inland fifteen to twenty miles over the coastal prairies.

Five years later, in September 1842, Galveston was again prostrated. No lives were lost, but parts of the city were tossed about like "pieces of a toy town." Damage to ships and buildings amounted to $50,000. Another September storm struck Texas in 1854 between Galveston and Matagorda. Matagorda was leveled, Houston sustained a $30,000 loss, and heavy damage was reported at Lynchburg, San Jacinto, Velasco, Quintana, Brazoria, Columbia, and Sabine Pass.

The entire Texas coast felt the hurricane of 1867, which entered the state south of Galveston on October 3. Bagdad and Clarksville, at the mouth of the Rio Grande, were flattened, while Galveston was flooded and raked for a loss of $1 million.

On September 16, 1875, a hurricane washed away three-fourths of the buildings in Indianola, Calhoun County, and killed 176 people. Five years later, on October 12-13, 1880, many lives were lost and Brownsville was nearly destroyed by a tropical wind. A second hurricane in Indianola on August 19-20, 1886, struck the town, destroying or damaging every structure.

The Galveston hurricane of 1900, on September 8-9, is known as the worst natural disaster in United States history. Although the wind was estimated at 120 miles per hour, flooding caused most of the damage. The island was completely inundated. Property loss amounted to about $40 million, and an estimated 6,000 to 8,000 persons perished. On August 16-19, 1915, Galveston again received the brunt of a vicious hurricane. Damage amounted to $50 million, but only 275 lives were lost because of the protection afforded by a new seawall.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Political Conventions Throughout History

Great info from the Library of Congress Blog...

Posted on: August 26th, 2008 by Matt Raymond

As Americans settle in to watch the two major party nominating conventions this week and next, have you ever wondered what political conventions were like before the days of the Web, television, or even the telegraph?

The Humanities and Social Sciences division at the Library of Congress has provided timely summaries of the Democratic and Republican national conventions dating back to 1832 and 1856, respectively. (As I write this, it is labeled “New” on the page of the Library’s Main Reading Room.)

As of today, staff have completed summaries for all the Democratic conventions and expect to complete the remaining Republican summaries in the next couple of days.

In a related vein, Microsoft is using historical content from the Library of Congress in new technology being showcased at both conventions:

Microsoft is also introducing Surface, a combination of hardware and software in a 30-inch tabletop device with a touch interface. [...] It will [...] provide information and images from past conventions that has been made available by the Library of Congress [...] .

I saw a video demonstration of the tables, and they look pretty nifty. You can pull up a map of the United States and touch on the cities where past conventions have been held. Then you can manipulate digital assets from each convention such as photos, text and videos, splaying them before you a la Tom Cruise in “Minority Report.”

Getting "back to basics?"

As an educator at a 19th century living history museum, I consistently find myself torn between two worlds. We are trying to educate about the past while remaining relevant to present and future generations. The mix can sometimes be maddening! How do you retain authenticity and a sense of serenity while still trying to reach new audiences and serve the needs of our existing patrons?!?!?!?!? More on that in another post...

What is truly fascinating is an emerging emphasis on the ways of the past. Our ancestors thought nothing of growing their own food...they pretty much had no other choice. Now...150-some years later, city-dwellers are looking to reclaim this lost heritage and regain control of their food supply. Are we coming full circle? Are contemporary folk looking to increase personal and societal sustainability by modeling a frontier way of life?

Here's an interesting post from Fortworthology on a project here in Fort Worth.

Are we looking at the modern day equivalent of Victory Gardens?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Riddle me this...

Somewhere along the line...probably about the same time that "Google" became a verb...we all became obsessed with information sharing. This isn't a new notion, really. Consider ye olde towne crier...Paul Revere and his lanterns...bells...books...smoke signals...itinerant ministers...letters from dear ones back east...and eventually the telegraph. Gossip used to pass for news (and sometimes still does). What HAS changed is the scope, sheer volume, and interactivity of our communication. I can sit here at my computer (in a log cabin, no less) and instantaneously reach millions of people around the world.

But I digress.

For some reason, this morning I was in the mood for some pioneer riddles. I was thinking more about jokes...but when I "Googled" pioneer riddle, I found this great site developed by some kiddos in Canada. I thought the riddles were a lot of fun...and you could instantly see whether you'd solved them correctly or not!

The internet is an amazing thing. What would our ancestors have thought? And would they be surprised with our fascination in their everyday life? Given their intense workload, they definitely wouldn't have had time to search the 'net. But then again, they might have been able to buy some butter from their neighbor's web site rather than churning their own. :) :) :)

Monday, August 18, 2008

It's almost time for our summer maintenance!

Just a reminder...Log Cabin Village will be closed from August 25th through September 8th for our annual summer maintenance. This is an important time each year for the Village as it allows us to perform tasks (like inventory and deep cleaning) that just aren't possible when the doors are open!

We look forward to seeing everyone again when we reopen on September 9th!! Happy "end" of the summer, y'all...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Great resources from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History!

Introducing History in a Box: Elementary School Edition Now available for sale at

Engage your students in American history with the newest multimedia resource from the Gilder Lehrman Institute!

American History: Elementary School Edition introduces critical topics in American history with ten units, each featuring hands-on activities based on primary sources.

Suitable for use at the elementary and middle school levels, this latest volume in the "History in a Box" series is an essential resource for teaching and learning about America's past.

Vibrant, Classroom-Ready Materials--Ten color-coded units cover more than 400 years of American history, from Native Americans to the civil rights movement.

Tools for Historical Investigation--Hands-on activities and primary documents with questions promote critical thinking and literacy skills.

Purchase more than $50 of material from the Gilder Lehrman History Shop, and receive a free copy of our new "Treasures of American History" booklet, recently released in paperback. This beautiful booklet, featuring a unique collection of American historical documents, will be automatically included in your order.

Are you a teacher or librarian interested in purchasing items in quantity for your school? If so, contact

Friday, August 8, 2008

Pssst...We've Got a Secret...

Don't tell anyone...but we will be unveiling a new look for our web site soon. We're very excited! I'll keep you posted once it goes live...

One great component of the new site will be an area for kids. That area is still under we'd love to hear what you'd like to see! Please add a comment here or e-mail me with suggestions...

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Log Cabin Village Selected to Receive IMLS Connecting To Collections Bookshelf

776 Museums, Libraries, and Archives Selected to Receive IMLS Connecting to Collections Bookshelf

Washington, DC—Dr. Anne-Imelda Radice, Director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), announced today that 776 museums, libraries, and archives, representing every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam have been selected to receive the IMLS Connecting to Collections Bookshelf. The contents of the bookshelf were selected by a blue ribbon panel of conservation experts; it includes an essential set of books, online resources, and a user’s guide that can profoundly affect the ability of small libraries and museums to care for their collections.

To see the list of recipients, click here

“The Connecting to Collections Bookshelf provides museums, libraries, and archives essential instructions on how to rescue treasures of yesteryear that they hold in trust,” said Radice. “These Bookshelves, once they are all distributed, will touch institutions around the nation.”

The IMLS Bookshelf was made possible by a cooperative agreement with the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) with support from the Getty Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation, and the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. It is part of Connecting to Collections: A Call to Action, a strategic initiative by IMLS to address the challenges described in A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Health Index Report on the State of America’s Collections. The report concluded that:

  • 190 million objects need conservation treatment,
  • 65 percent of collecting institutions have damaged collections due to improper storage,
  • 80 percent of collecting institutions lack an emergency plan for their collections and trained staff to carry it out, and
  • 40 percent of institutions have no funds allocated in their annual budget for preservation and conservation.

Most recipients have small budgets and staff, and have demonstrated an urgent need for this permanent resource. History museums, historic houses, and academic libraries with special collections are especially well represented among the recipients. Ten zoos, aquaria, botanical gardens, and nature centers are also represented. In addition, ten art museums with Kress Collection items will receive the bookshelf with funding from the Kress Foundation.

Recipients are located in 327 of the nation’s 435 congressional districts.

“Given the Getty's longstanding commitment to the care of museum and archival collections, we are pleased to partner with IMLS and other foundations to provide key conservation resources to the institutions that most need them,” said Getty Foundation Director Deborah Marrow.

“We are delighted to help make this important material reach so many institutions around the country,” said Ellen Holtzman, Program Director for American Art at the Henry Luce Foundation.

“The Kress Foundation is delighted to be working with IMLS to ensure the broadest possible access to this important reference resource,” said Max Marmor, President of the Kress Foundation.

The IMLS Bookshelf focuses on collections typically found in art or history museums and in libraries' special collections, with an added selection of texts for living collections. It addresses topics including the philosophy and ethics of collecting, collections management and planning, emergency preparedness, and culturally specific conservation issues. Among the publications selected were The National Trust Manual of Housekeeping (published by the British National Trust in 2005), the Field Guide to Emergency Response (published by Heritage Preservation in 2006), and Essentials of Conservation Biology (published by Primack in 2006).

Based on the enthusiastic response to the bookshelf, IMLS will offer a third round of competition to distribute an additional 1000 Bookshelves. Applications can be submitted to AASLH between January 5, 2009, and March 9, 2009, at

Federally-operated institutions, for-profit institutions, and libraries that do not hold special collections are not eligible to receive the IMLS Bookshelf. For more information, please contact Terry Jackson at or 615-320-3203.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit

About the American Association for State and Local History The American Association for State and Local History is a non-profit membership organization comprising individuals, agencies, and organizations acting in the public trust, engaged in the practice of history, and representing a variety of disciplines and professions. It provides leadership and support for its members who preserve and interpret state and local history in order to make the past more meaningful to all Americans. To learn more, visit

About the Getty Foundation The Getty Foundation provides support to institutions and individuals throughout the world, funding a diverse range of projects that promote the understanding and conservation of the visual arts. The Foundation is part of the J. Paul Getty Trust which also includes the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, and the Getty Conservation Institute. To learn more, visit

About the Henry Luce Foundation The Henry Luce Foundation was established in 1936 by the late Henry R. Luce, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Time Inc. With assets of approximately $750 million, the Luce Foundation supports American art, higher education, Asian affairs, theology, and women in science and engineering. To learn more, visit

About the Samuel H. Kress Foundation The Samuel H. Kress Foundation was created in 1929 and devotes its resources to advancing the scholarship, conservation and enjoyment of works of European art. The Kress Foundation’s programs focus on the preservation of significant monuments of European art and architecture, as well as the nurturing of professional expertise in art history and art conservation. To learn more, visit

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Keeping the past alive...

Log Cabin Village has dedicated itself to educating its visitors about the past. As time marches on and entire ways of life disappear in developed nations, our role in preserving historic crafts becomes even more critical. Increasingly more and more of our visitors are unable to say, "I remember when Grandma did that." The past as it relates to the frontier is becoming farther and farther removed.

While we all are certainly anxious to leave some of the hardships of the past behind (cholera, anyone?), we feel it is important to retain knowledge of frontier skills. It keeps our collective memories alive, it weaves us into the multicolored fabric our ancestors started, and it helps ground us in a realization that each of us represents one spot on an infinite timeline.

As our programming continues, our visitors increase, and our interpreters teach, we will be mindful of connecting our patrons to their history. We are continuing to seek local artisans who are interested in volunteering their time at our events to help keep the past alive. From knitting and sewing to carving and weaving, we invite everyone to escape the present...experience the past.

If you have a special skill that you'd like to share at Log Cabin Village, please e-mail me for more information about volunteering. We'd love to learn from you!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Log Cabin Village announces its fall line-up!

Mark your calendars now! Our special events will be returning soon!

September 19, 2008
10:00-11:00 a.m.
Featured stories: Tortillas and Lullabies by Lynn Reiser and The Copper Tin Cup by Carole Lexa Schaefer. How can the objects we treasure bring back powerful memories? Learn with two wonderful stories about the continuity of family and our heirlooms. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

September 27, 2008
12:00—4:00 p.m.
No admission charge for this day only!!! Celebrate Fort Worth’s “Day in the District” at the Village! Enjoy a day full of music, crafts, living history and activities for the whole family. This is the Village's biggest event of the year! No reservations required. Be sure to visit other exciting “Day in the District” participants as well, including the Modern Art Museum, Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, Kimbell Art Museum, National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame, Community Arts Center, and more!

October 17, 2008
10:00-11:00 a.m.
Featured story: Anansi Does the Impossible: An Ashanti Tale retold by Verna Aardema. The adventures of Anansi the spider continue with this delightful tale from our West African ancestors about securing folktales for the people. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

October 18, 2008
1:00—4:00 p.m.
We just celebrated Harvest Homecoming, but now it’s time to reap what we’ve sown! Experience grinding corn and wheat by hand, experimenting with squash, and using corn husks to stuff mattresses and to make placemats! From grain and grist to bread and toys, we’ll have it all...and you’ll help! No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $2 craft fee to make a corn and seed necklace.

November 21, 2008
10:00—11:00 a.m.
Featured story: Kindle Me a Riddle: A Pioneer Story by Roberta Karim. Frontier days are brought to life through a series of riddles in this charming story about a 19th century family. $3 fee includes a story, fun activities, and a craft, all geared towards 3-5 year olds. Please call 817-392-6769 to make your reservation (required).

November 22, 2008
1:00—4:00 p.m.
It’s candle-making time! Come join us as we braid some wicks, dip some sticks, and have a great time making candles to last us through the winter! You can even dip your own candle to take home. No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $3 craft fee to dip candles.

December 13, 2008
1:00—4:00 p.m.
Celebrate the holidays Village style! See how cabins would have been decorated, string some popcorn, help make pomander balls and tamales, spin the dreidel, and reflect on storied traditions as you pause from the holiday hustle and bustle. Make your own embossed greeting card to take home! No reservations required. Cost is regular Village admission plus a $2 craft fee to make a card.

Please note: we will be closed December 25 through January 1.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

What does jazz have to do with Log Cabin Village?

Plenty! While our 19th century Texans may have swayed to tunes other than the soulful stylings of Buddy Guy, we KNOW they would have been appreciative of the community efforts that inspire us to mention the 6th Annual Jazz by the Boulevard Music & Arts festival.

Jazz by the Boulevard is an annual fundraiser produced by Camp Bowie District, Inc. designed to help raise money to preserve and beautify the Camp Bowie District. And a good frontier neighbor is always willing to help in these kinds of efforts!

Mention that you are a "friend/member" of the Village, and get 20% off a VIP package at Jazz by the Boulevard! (you must show your membership card at the time of payment)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Blog Gremlins...

Sorry about some of the crazy formatting in yesterday's "Help Wanted" post (if you were viewing using Internet Explorer)! Everything should be fixed now...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Help Wanted...

Would you like to work for Log Cabin Village? Here's your chance!

Position: Customer Service Rep. I (Historical Interpreter)

Hourly Rate: $10.28 an hour, less than 1040 hours per year, no benefits


· Greet and help organize program groups

· Provide historical presentations and pioneer craft demonstrations

· Provide high quality customer service

· Assist curatorial staff with chores such as cleaning the cabins, dusting museum artifacts, and helping with reports

· Produce pioneer crafts for sale in the gift shop as time and duties permit

· Read and research Texas pioneer history as time permits

· Assist staff with special projects as necessary

· Position reports directly to Curator


· Must speak to large and small groups of all ages

· Must wear 19th century historical attire

· Must work outdoors with no climate control

· Must be willing to learn Texas history and pioneer crafts

· Must be able to work every other weekend (both days)

· Previous customer service experience preferred

· Must have high school diploma or GED

To apply, please visit the position opening on the City of Fort Worth's Human Resources web site.

The position closes July 25, 2008. Good luck to all candidates!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Tasty beverages...Village style!

It's hot outside. Even the geckos are sweating. What could possibly make you feel better on a sticky, sweltering afternoon?

How about an ice-cold tasty beverage?!?!?! Let's consider what our 19th century Texans might have chosen. Coca-cola wasn't invented until 1886. Dr Pepper debuted right here in Texas in 1885. What other options were there? Well, there was always water: mineral water was important, in particular. Iced tea has been mentioned in the 19th century, but remember--ice wasn't always widely available in the age before widespread refrigeration. Texas did play an early role in the soft-drink industry, but these drinks weren't always served "on the frontier."

As always, people made use of what was available, be it mineral water or drinks made from local fresh ingredients (or ingredients carried in by ship, trail, and eventually rail).

Here are some recipes you can try at home to beat the heat!
(recipes courtesy Children at the Hearth: 19th Century Cooking, Manners, & Games by Barbara Swell)

Strawberry Water

1 cup strawberries with caps removed

1/2 cup sugar

4 cups cold water

Juice of one lemon

Crush the strawberries with the back of a wooden spoon. Add one cup of the water and rub mixture through a screened tea strainer, (or whirl them in a blender). Add the sugar, lemon juice, and remaining three cups of water. Serve over ice with a lemon slice placed on the edge of the cup.


Peel a fresh, very ripe pineapple and cut it up into very small pieces. Sprinkle some sugar on top, then smash with a potato masher or a cup. Add water (you decide how much based on how much pineapple flavor you would like) and pour into a pitcher with a strainer lid. Chill for a few hours, then pour over ice.


Squeeze the juice from 3 lemons, mix with 2 cups water and add sugar to taste.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Day in the District 2008 Date announced!

Fort Worth Cultural District Museums and Art Center Host Day in the District

September 27, 2008 from 10 am to 5 pm (Log Cabin Village will be from 12-4 p.m.)

The museums and art center in the Fort Worth Cultural District are happy to announce the 2008 Day in the District, a celebration of the rich and diverse cultural organizations in Fort Worth, with exciting, entertaining, and interactive programming and performances. The museums offer free admission, and various performing arts organizations offer free performances in and around the museums. Outdoor performances and events encourage patrons to walk through the beautiful grounds surrounding the museums. This festival is designed to invite local residents to enjoy the world-class cultural experiences offered in Fort Worth. It also provides an opportunity for those who are not aware of the various organizations in our community to discover something wonderful and new. Come spend an enriching and entertaining Day in the District!

Sponsored in part by Museum Place. Complimentary transportation provided by The T.

Participating Museums and their exhibitions:

Amon Carter Museum

Sentimental Journey: The Art of Alfred Jacob Miller

Fort Worth Community Arts Center

Fort Worth Museum of Science and


Dinosaur Roundup on display at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame

Art Museum

The Impressionists: Master Paintings from the Art Institute of Chicago

Log Cabin Village

Harvest Homecoming

Art Museum of Fort Worth

Kara Walker: My Complement, My Enemy, My Oppressor, My Love

No Room to Answer: Teresa Hubbard and Alexander Birchler

Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame

Spirit of the Cowgirl, The Hall of Fame, Connie Reeves Discovery Corral

Into the Arena, Kinship with the Land, Claiming the Spotlight

With Performances and Demonstrations by

Arts Fifth Avenue

Butterfly Connection

Centro Cultural de las Americas

Celtic Crossroads

Danza Cultural Inc.

Fort Worth Classic Guitar Society

Fort Worth Public Art

Fort Worth Zoo

Imagination Celebration

Hip Pocket Theater

Kids Who Care

Latin Arts Association

Lone Star Chorus

Mondo Drummers

Stage West

Taps ‘n Tunes

Texas Boys Choir

Texas Camerata

Youth Orchestra of Greater Fort Worth