~ Submitted on behalf of the Job Lane House and Farm Museum
Once upon a time, Pilgrims and then Puritans landed on our shores. The third grade from the Lane Elementary school studies this part of history, so what to do for the tours since Pilgrims and Puritans were thin on the ground in Bedford at the time the Job Lane farm came into being.
The Job Lane House volunteers talked to the school coordinator. Scripts were updated. Guides, a traffic control person, and a greeter were secured. The confirmed date, June 9, was rainy so it was changed to June 16. And the classes began to arrive, 10 of them in all, at 8:45 am.
The changed date meant finding new guides. Lydia Fitch—you may have heard about her, as she and her husband opened their Tavern on the morning of April 19th and served the men who marched to fight in Concord—stepped right up.
Jeannette Pothier was in the kitchen, showing the students how to plant the ‘three sisters.’ Indigenous people taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn, beans, and squash together—each providing nutrients and moisture for the others. The kitchen display sweet corn, Indian corn (Why do you put that on your door, asked the kids), corn meal, corn muffins/bread, and dried blueberries.
Stephanie Keep, aka Lydia Fitch, talked about fabric and clothing, buckled shoes and all. (Click to read her associated article)
The games had to be real—the kinds Colonial kids played they got their chores done. Checkers, spinning tops, and rolling hoops, all made by hand. There were also little sayings that twisted your tongue; guide Julia Whiteneck was proficient with the tongue twisters. .
A member of the Bedford Minuteman Company, Marla Flynn and her brother Eric Andexler (visiting from Oklahoma), controlled traffic as the students moved from room to room through the ancient house.
The guides loved each of the tours: The kids are very smart, they are curious, and want to tell you everything about themselves.
The teachers sent word back: It all was wonderful!!! The kids were so engaged with each discussion. Thank you so much for having us.