More than 30 Madison County elementary-age kids sat with eyes wide open, watching as instructor Joann Fisher held the long stretch of white yarn in front of her.
It was day two on Thursday for the three-day Pioneer Camp held at the Madison County Historical Museum in London. The program ran from 9 a.m. to noon each of the three days.
Fisher was there to show the campers how a spinning wheel works and how our forefathers made clothing, explaining to the 36 children that more than 100 years ago, you couldn’t just walk into a clothing store and buy the clothes you needed to wear.
During the three days, the campers learned about pioneer life in Madison County in the 19th century, including cooking, making their own clothes and day-to-day life.
“This is our third year for Pioneer Camp,” said Madison County Historical Society Director Nancy Griffin Denver. “This is our highest attendance yet.”
In addition to the 36 children who signed up for the camp, there are 10 volunteers from London High School and the FAA to help with the activities.
Earlier Thursday, the campers were outside and watched as bread was made in a skillet over an open fire, as done in pioneer days. All the kids got samples of the food.
The event is held through the Madison County Historical Society. Sponsors of the camp are Advanced Drainage Systems, Madison Motors, Phat Daddy’s Pizza, Chaney and Thomas Insurance, and Darby Creek Counseling.
As Fisher showed the children how to prepare the cotton and material for the spinning wheel, the program’s director Annette Rinesmith was all smiles.
“This is a great program for the kids. They come from all parts of the county, all the Madison School districts are represented here,” she said. She pointed out what a positive experience this three-day camp is for the Madison County children.
“We need to have more things like this,” she said.