It all started in 1967, when Dr. Bob Hart purchased land with the purpose of establishing a wildlife refuge. He began his wildlife conservation efforts by constructing 5 ponds and fencing 2oo acres of land. A friend mentioned that an old cabin would look neat out there and he knew where one was. And so it began. The doctor who conserved wildlife, would now preserve history. Today, there are over 70 structures on the site, with some dating as far back as the 1700’s. It’s the nation’s largest collection of original log structures.
Every fourth Saturday in October, for the past 30 years, Hart Square opens for the one day Festival. Skilled artisans, musicians, and history lovers unite to display an 1840’s town. It’s truly a one of a kind experience. People visit from all over the country.
The Native American Culture Area
The Trapper’s Cabin
They started with the silver bar on the left in the middle picture. They placed it in a pot over a fire until it melted. Then they poured it into a mold that was sitting just outside the fire. After the silverware was taken out of the molds, it had to be clipped and sanded. Any excess silver was reused.
The Quilting Cabin
The Broom Shop
The Farm Shed
Chapel of Peace and Covered Wooden Bridge
St. Mark’s Chapel
The Grist Mill
This water powered grist mill was actually running during this year’s festival. I gave a $3 donation in exchange for a bag of cornmeal made the day I was there.
The Cotton Press
The Cotton Gin
The Wood Steamer
The Wheelwright Shop
Stockade and Cabin
My very favorite part of the day; the music. There were at least four different groups of musicians throughout the village playing bluegrass style music.