Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Handmade at Plimoth Plantation

This spring I revisited Plimoth Plantation for the first time since I was a kid. It was exactly like how I remembered it- maybe even better!

What's Plimoth Plantation? From their website: "Plimoth Plantation provides an engaging and experiential outdoor and indoor learning environment on its main campus and at the State Pier on Plymouth’s waterfront. Our permanent exhibits tell the complex and interwoven stories of two distinct cultures - English and Native. The main exhibits are enhanced with an exciting menu of special events, public programs and workshops that offer a rich and diverse exploration of the 17th-century."

One thing I noticed was all of the ways the plantation features historical crafting and how people in the 1600's created things they needed all by hand. 

At the Craft Center when we first walked in, there was a man making Native American headdresses out of dyed porcupine quills, something he'd learned how to do from his father who was a member of a tribe in Quebec. There were also people making traditional English items- from cabinets, to pots, to the costumes for the English Village.

In the Wampanoag Homesite, they were repairing nets for fishing, cooking in pots over campfires, and one man described how they make and maintain their canoes.

Once you arrive in the Village, the "settlers" are busy building or repairing the houses and they are more than happy to explain their techniques. We stayed with one builder for 15 minutes talking about how he framed one of the houses and constructed the chimney.

Even at the gift shop they have handmade things for sale! There are all kinds of craft kids for kids and pottery and woodwork from the Craft Center.


If you have never been to Plimoth Plantation or if it's been a while, I highly recommend a visit. So much of our history is preserved there and as appreciators of handmade craft, there is lots to see. It's amazing get an idea of what it must have been like to live here all those centuries ago!

137 Warren Avenue
Plymouth, MA 02360

The Wampanoag Homesite, English Village, Mayflower II and Plimoth Grist Mill are open everyday from the third Saturday in March (March 15, 2014) through the Sunday after Thanksgiving (November 30, 2014) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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