Residents of the area who seek to better understand the community’s history will have several opportunities coming up soon. In conjunction with the Grand Rogue Living History Encampment Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 15 and 16 at the Grand Rogue Camp and Sport Resort, 6400 West River Drive, the Hyser House Museum will be open. Hyser House Museum is located adjacent to the campground at 6440 West River Drive. Visit Saturday, Sept. 16 from noon to 4:30 for craft demonstrations at the museum, an exciting addition to the historical enactments representing all periods of American history happening at the Encampment. Find demonstrations of butter churning, knitting, candle making, rag rug making, wool spinning, weaving, tatting, perhaps basket making and chair caining will take place at Hyser Museum, which was home to pioneer settler and doctor William Hyser. Another historic opportunity is offered by the Plainfield Township Historical Committee, who need help in collecting old school photographs. Anyone with an old grade school photograph is asked to allow the committee members to make a copy for historic us. In special interest are photographs from the old school districts such as Belmont, Colton, Post, Goff, Sage, D.W. Richardson, Wilson, Peach Grove, Brownell, Atwater, Comstock Park and Oakwood. Anyone with old photographs is asked to call the township hall at (616) 364-8466. Please leave your name and number or e-mail address so you can be contacted or bring photographs to the township to be scanned. Learn life lessons at Cemetery Memory Days on September 15 and 16. Township Trustee Chuck Weldon will lead a presentation and tour of the Plainfield Township Cemetery located at the corner of Packer Drive and Rogue River Drive. Meet Chuck at the north end of the cemetery at 10 a.m. on either Saturday, Sept. 15 or Sunday, Sept. 16 to learn about cemetery history.
Grand rogue Living History Encampment
by MATT MARN From German WWII trucks to working British Revolutionary War cannons, the Grand Rogue Living History Encampment helped history come alive. From excited young children to individuals who lived through some of these time periods, everyone who walked through the encampment stepped through to another time. What’s more, they all learned something about what shaped our country and the people in it into what they are today. The encampment was held Saturday and Sunday, September 17-18, at the Grand Rogue Campground and Paddle Sports, 6400 West River Dr., Comstock Park. “The encampment was an example of many held around the country,” said Dave Schmid, a 34-year reenactment veteran at the professional level, working before classes and crowds on a regular basis. “Most have a hard time understanding how life was like back then,” Schmid said, who joined the ranks of reenactment participants right out of high school. “As you watch their faces… then they get it, like a light was switched on. They start to ask questions, and they go home and learn about their own past, and they learn from that. There’s the reward.” The encampment portrayed a wide array of time periods, from a World War II German camp to colonial times and Revolutionary War soldiers from both sides of the field to French and Indian War time period with authentic Native American camps and tents. Schmid, dressed completely in traditional frontier explorer attire in the Native American camp area, said he was portraying and studying Champlain, the founder of Quebec. “In dealing with both royalty and the colonials, and keeping everyone happy… His story was amazing,” Schmid said of Champlain. “So many heroes of the past, they turned out to be ordinary, nondescript people who just stepped up.” Encampment visitors Robert and Cammi Adams and their children know this better than most. Their family travels to all kinds of reenactments, and appreciate this one is locally based, and covers more than one time period. One of the kids went to the encampment as a class trip Friday, so the family decided to make the trip out the following day. Exploring the German World War II campsite in the encampment, Cammi said she has been all over the world, including a […]
Take a trip back in time and share Plainfield Charter Township history with a tour of the historic Hyser House Museum, 6440 West River Drive (next to Grand Rogue Campground and Paddlesports). The museum is open annually the weekend of the Grand Rogue Living History Encampment (at the campground). The museum will be open Saturday, September 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. A crafter will demonstrate from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday.
by BETH ALTENA What was it like when a trip to the doctor meant a long ride in a covered wagon? Maybe that wasn’t even an option. How about building a homestead without power tools? Cooking dinner? Doing a load of laundry? Defending your country 100 years ago? Find answers to these questions and more this weekend at the Grand Rogue Living History Encampment held each year at Grand Rogue Campground and Paddle Sports at 6400 West River Drive, Comstock Park. The encampment features military re-enactors from every war since the French and Indian war in the 1750s. American history is fascinating in real life. Watch spinners weave wool, cover your ears during the cannon demonstration, and see re-enactors in period dress beginning Saturday, Sept. 17, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., and again Sunday, Sept. 18, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The event is free to the public, and among highlights are battles in the woods between soldiers and Native Americans, both on horseback and on foot. A trading post will offer some items for sale. The public is encouraged to ask the re-enactors questions about life in their chosen time period or about reenacting in general. Where do the authentic costumes come from? How do we learn about the battle tactics of the past? In addition to a variety of demonstrations throughout the two-day event, there will be activities for children and adults, and demonstrations of all sorts of weaponry. Re-enactor Mike DeJonge said most of his fellow re-enactors are pleased to do their part to interest youngsters in history. Often entire families take part and represent what family life was like during the Civil War, the Revolutionary War and as a pioneer during times of peace.
Youngsters learned what it was like to prepare to charge into battle (above), and what sort of items a Native American was likely to have for daily use. The 23rd annual Grand Rogue Living History Encampment was Saturday and Sunday, September 19 and 20. Reenactor Mike DeJonge said participants are very dedicated, and rules about period dress and behavior are very strict. To the public, it is like walking back in time from the French and Indian War on up to WWII, showing both military and civilian living. To learn more visit grandrogueencampment.com.