Revisiting our June 23 Summer Event

We had a very successful event at the Akin House on June 23 called “Never Idle Hands-Living in Early America.”

We welcomed many visitors throughout this perfect day of

sunshine, community and conviviality.

This is the beginning of a tradition for a day-long event every year to kick off the start of Summer. We hosted talented and enthusiastic period demonstrators and re-enactors, gave tours of the Akin House, and talked local history. We exhibited historic artifacts, from our site and from the New Bedford Whaling Museum’s collection. We featured samplers and 18th century books.

Wall maps of Dartmouth caught the attention of many looking for context, then and now, comparing the visibly modern landscape to the areas and neighborhoods defined in the early maps.

This array of images captures the activities of the day, from 18th century cookery to wool spinning to blacksmithing. Glassblowing in the more modern style was reminiscent of the colonial days when glass was hand-crafted. The fine art of crafting muskets was on full display, made using the same traditions from the days of the Revolutionary War. Woodworking such as making house shingles, wooden dishes and bowls enhanced the spirit of our theme, “never idle hands.”

Today, we call this art and artisanry, back then, this activity was called a necessity to make a life in early America.

Music brought a period feel to the day’s festive atmosphere.

A bit of archaeological finds

How many of you living in Massachusetts and throughout New England have found historic artifacts on your properties, surface finds and below ground? We took this opportunity to display our partial collection of objects found on site and in the cellar of the Akin House. We are pleased to have such a diverse collection for visitors to enjoy.

Looking forward to next year…….

Our heartfelt appreciation goes to all of the participants of our Summer event who made this such a success. We look forward to planning next year’s gathering which has already started. We thank everyone who took time out of their Sunday to join us in going back in time for a few hours. Our goal was to provide a leisurely 18th century experience in the midst of a busy 21st century Dartmouth neighborhood. We hope we met that goal.


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