And every year we've had spectacular sunny storybook-perfect 4th of July weather - as good as one could ever ask for. Well...except for 2012; it got up to 101 degrees on that day. Yes, we truly were hot in all those clothes that year.
(And in 2013 we had clouds, but no rain, so there was really not a reason to complain for that year either).
To add to our historical experience, in 2014 we started wearing our colonial/RevWar-era clothing while visiting the historic Village, which gives an entirely new dimension to this holiday for me. Stepping into houses that were around during the time that we became an Independent Nation while wearing appropriate clothing gives one a feeling that...well...it's kind of hard to explain, but there's a strong sense of historical patriotism that engulfs you. At least it does for me.
And because of that we did the colonial thing again this year.
Mind! We are not technically reenacting while we are at Greenfield Village on the 4th of July; we just show up on our own accord and kinda become our own historical entity.
So, why do we do this?
Well, there is something very special about dressing in period clothing that simply adds to the experience when visiting an open-air museum, especially while celebrating a historical holiday (or, as my post title says, celebrating a holiday historically).
And, to be honest, we just enjoy it immensely.
However...it's more than that. There is really not just one answer; most of us do like to dress in period clothes any chance we get not only because of our love of living history, but it also enables us to have more of a feel for the past, and also gives us the opportunity to speak to the public a bit and give them some historical information in a more personal manner; by wearing period clothing we sort of give off a kind of aura that can help to transport people with a genuine interest in history to another time as we talk to them. I have been told by some visitors who I have spoken with that they felt as if they were actually in the presence of someone from the past.
And that, my friend, is as cool and as good a compliment a living historian can receive. And I know, fellow reenactors, I'm not alone here, right?
And, yeah, well, period clothing is pretty cool to wear.
So, once again, here are a few of the pictures (with snappy-quotes) that were taken on this day, a day that "ought to be Commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance..." (as John Adams wrote in a letter to his wife, Abigail, in 1776).
And a bit of a Bastille Day celebration at the end.
Hope you enjoy 'em:
|Meg & Rob peeping through the window of the tinsmith shop - - - what do you think they see inside?|
|Why...it's me they see, the local tinsmith, sitting behind my workbench. (I'm actually happy and not grumpy as this picture seems to show - I really do need to learn how to smile once in a while!)|
|Yes, the kind folks at Greenfield Village's tinsmith shop allowed me to give an impression that I was a tinsmith. Here I am soldering with a blow pipe. If you look close you can see the blue/orange flame.|
|I sat at the stump/work bench, pounding out what will become the bottom of a candle holder.|
|Here are a few of the tin lanterns in the shop.|
|The tinsmith shop was well-plenished with necessities for the 18th century home: candle molds, coffee and tea pots, more lanterns, candle holders, a candle box, and a few other items.|
Her jacket pattern is directly based off one found in “Costume Close-up” by Baumgarten.
As for her bonnet... the image of the one extant bonnet is from Colonial Williamsburg.
|What would a visit to the Daggett House be without my signature "Daggett House pose"? Here we see three former Greenfield Village presenters, and all have worked at this home at one time or another.|
|Dorothy takes a peak inside the Daggett parlor. This is the very same parlor where the ghost of a man was seen numerous times. What? You didn't know there were spirits in this house? Then maybe you should click HERE to read about it!|
|Two ladies make it twice as much lovely: Ruth joined us inside the Cotswold Cottage and the two posed for this photograph|
|A few of the locals discuss the latest occurrences of 1775: I had my daughter take a number of these posed pictures that I plan to use for a future posting I am currently working on about colonial taverns and travel.|
|Yes, a few of us did eat at the Eagle Tavern, built in 1831. Okay, so it is 50 years beyond "our" time, but the style is relatively close to a colonial tavern and can work fine for effect.|
|Here, my wife strolls along the fence, eyeing the sheep, while a team of horses pulling a cart moves past. Ahhh...life in the 1770s...|
|"Father wants me to weed all of this??"|
|My son and I relaxing over at the weavers shop.|
|A little time-travel twist-up: two colonial ladies sitting on a Victorian porch. In fact, it's the front porch of the 1880s Firestone Farm, birthplace of the tire magnet, Harvey Firestone. As you can see, an enjoyable time was had by all.|
The weather, as stated, was picture-perfect, and the company was wonderful. I can't honestly think of a better way to spend this holiday celebrating our Independence than in this manner.
The 4th of July and living history - - - yeah...it's all good.
The following weekend my friend Lauren invited my wife and I over for something a little different: a celebration of Bastille Day. Now, I had no idea what Bastille Day was until I looked it up.
Bastille Day ('French National Day' in France) commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution with the storming of the Bastille, a medieval fortress and prison in Paris that represented royal authority, on July 14, 1789, as well as the Fete de la Federation, which celebrates the unity of the French people on July 14, 1790. It is celebrated throughout Europe and the U.S. with festivities such as parades and French food.
(Yes, I copied and pasted this from the internet!)
So Lauren invited my wife and I over to her home, dressed period, of course, for a small celebration.And we took plenty of pictures that I thought you might like to see:
|Lauren has a fine kitchen garden growing squash, tomatoes, and other vegetables.|
|Patty and I brought a few of our "props" to accent some of the pictures.|
|We tried the same style of photo only this time I was asked to be included. I obliged.|
|Now, where are these two going?|
|Ahhh....off to share a few secrets...|
|Lauren prepares herself for the next picture.|
|Two roses amidst a lovely setting.|
|And here comes the thorn!|
A fine day in 1789 indeed!
Here are a couple of our other historical 4th of July excursions:
Celebrating Independence Day In A Colonial Way
The Glorious Fourth
I'd like to end this post with a bit o' humor that is pretty true:
Until next time, see you in time!