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Colonial Fair to focus on life during the French and Indian War

September 03, 2012

WELSH RUN, Pa. — The historic Rock Hill Farmstead is expected to bustle with colonial-era activities Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Colonial Fair provides an opportunity for visitors to experience everyday life as people might have lived on Pennsylvania’s Conococheague frontier during the French and Indian War era (1754-63). The occupants of Rock Hill Farm, established in 1736, bore witness to the fallout of the war.

Highlights of the eighth annual Colonial Fair include:

  • The debut of three stories inspired by the lives of children who grew up on the Conococheague frontier, read by author Bonnie Rose Hudson
  • Vignettes by re-enactors, including an Indian council and Ben Franklin mustering the men of the Conococheague
  • Guided, themed walks through the 30-acre site
  • Hands-on ranger training in the new bow-and-arrow and tomahawk target area
  • Colonial-era activities and games for children
  • Shopping for colonial-style crafts in the Market Faire

Colonial-era music will be performed throughout the site.

Lectures delving deeper into the history of the Conococheague frontier will be offered on both days of the fair.

On Saturday, Walter Powell will speak at 11 a.m. about the Conococheague frontier during the War of 1812. Deborah “Turtle” Swartz will offer her lecture, “18th-Century Cultures and Customs of Eastern Woodland Natives,” at 1 p.m.

On Sunday, Roger Swartz will present “The Significance of the Conococheague in the French and Indian War.”

Period craftsmen will demonstrate colonial skills such as blacksmithing, carpentry, book binding, basketry and flax processing. An assortment of 18th-century-style wares will be available for purchase.

Admission costs $5, but is free to members of the Conococheague Institute and to those 12 and younger.

Mikie’s, of Greencastle, Pa., will offer hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, pork sandwiches and ice cream.

The Conococheague Institute at Rock Hill Farm is at 12995 Bain Road outside Mercersburg, Pa.

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