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Surgoinsville Elementary celebrates bicentennial Friday with day long 'Heritage Roundup'

September 8th, 2015 5:30 pm by Staff Report

Surgoinsville Elementary celebrates bicentennial Friday with day long 'Heritage Roundup'

Children learned about life for early settlers during the 2010 'Heritage Roundup' at Surgoinsville elementary. (photo captured from video)

(Scroll down to see an article and a video from the last Heritage Roundup that took place at Surgoinsville Elementary in 2010.)

SURGOINSVILLE — Surgoinsville Elementary School will host a “Heritage Roundup” all day Friday in celebration of the Surgoinsville Bicentennial.

Every few years SES holds a Heritage event, inviting demonstrators and historians on campus to teach children what life was like for early settlers.

Surgoinsville also celebrates its bicentennial Friday and Saturday with a special two-day Riverfront Festival Sept. 11-12, but students will get a head start on the festivities with their day-long event.

Volunteers and guests will be sharing with the students what it was like to live 200 years ago.

If your child attends SES, please help them to dress in old fashioned attire as we celebrate the great heritage of Surgoinsville.

The last time SES hosted a heritage roundup was 2010, and prior to that it was way back in 1999.

Video from the 2010 event:

The following is an article about the Surgoinsville Elementary Heritage Roundup that occurred in October of 2010:

SURGOINSVILLE — The entire school day was set aside Thursday (Oct. 22, 2010) at Surgoinsville Elementary for a program that gave students a glimpse into what life was like for their pioneer ancestors.

Thursdays daylong Heritage Round-Up included artists and demonstrators who showed students some old ways of life that were fairly common daily routines 150 years ago.

Students got to see a variety of crafts and skills from making apple butter and apple cider to shaping horseshoes, milking a cow, weaving clothes from wool, tending animals, grinding corn, and cooking over an open fire.

They learned that they have a pretty easy life compared to their forefathers.

“I’m learning that back in the past was very hard,” fourth-grader Chelsea Dempsey said. “They didnt have machines.”

Chelsea said she enjoyed the demonstrations, especially the apple press that was used to make apple cider.

Apples were pressed and their juice was collected for students to sample, although they learned that cider took a little longer to make.

Chelsea said the apple juice sample was good. Still, Chelsea said she wouldn’t have wanted to live in the pioneer days.

“It would take a lot of work,” she said.

Fourth-grader Jason Spitzer said he could handle being a settler.

Jason said he enjoyed learning about the animals Thursday, milking the cow, and learning how fast horses can run.

“I’d like riding horses everywhere,” he said.

Surgoinsville Elementary School hasn’t hosted a Heritage Round-Up since 1999.

Event organizer Patsy Allen, who is the librarian, said this years program was held in concert with the schools Saddle up and Read program.

“Children are learning about animals and crafts and things that happened in the 1800s,” Allen said. “This is a chance for them to have some fun and some hands-on experiences, and they have a full day to do it.”

Some of the other attractions included a wood carver making old-fashioned toys, a rug maker, a hide tanner, basket weaver, musicians, and a couple of women who demonstrated washing clothes on a washboard.

Students also got samples of some rustic food including chili, cornbread and apple butter as it was prepared before their eyes the old-fashioned way.

In the cow area, there were ample examples of another reality of pioneer farm life in the form of a substance often used as fertilizer. It had a few small shoe prints in it too, probably much to some mothers chagrin later that afternoon.

It was all part of the educational experience.

“I hope that they’ll value their past and how hard farmers and early settlers had to work, and this will make them be more aware of the people who were here before and what a hard time they had,” Allen said. “We’ve talked about storytelling, and back then they didn’t have TV and video games. You had to make up your own entertainment.”

“I hope they’ll value their ancestors and their heritage a little more after this.”

Additional Photos

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