The Hay Creek Valley Historical Association Offers History Classes at Historic Joanna Furnace
Fascinated by 19th-century history? Interested in early technology, crafts, cooking, or how about the art of ironmaking? Enjoy working with visitors, children and school groups? The Hay Creek Valley Historical Association and the Joanna Furnace Ironworks are now recruiting friendly persons who are interested in volunteering to be historical site tour guides or who just want to learn a little about the history of our community.
As a volunteer Tour Guide, you will learn how to lead small groups of visitors through the 229-year-old iron furnace complex. Your job will be to communicate the breadth of life in a 19th-century iron making community and introduce your group to the general history of our area. You will be taking the visitors back to a different place and time.
Each year over 30,000 people visit Joanna Furnace. The education programs reach over 2,000 students from Berks, Chester and Lancaster Counties. Since 1980, over 1.1 million guests have visited Joanna Furnace.
The Hay Creek Valley Historical Association invites interested persons to participate in one or all of our Joanna Furnace History Training Classes starting in March. These classes will give basic, introductory level, information on assisting with tours at our upcoming fall festivals, public events and spring educational programs.
The classes offered in 2020 are as follows:
History of Joanna Furnace — Tuesday, March 10th – 7 pm to 8:30 pm
Designed for volunteers to interact with the general public during events and welcome them to the Joanna Furnace Site. The class includes watching and discussing the History of Joanna Furnace video and reviewing of a training guide that will assist you at events. The goal is to have a general understanding of the significance of the Joanna Furnace site and to be able to communicate with guests from that perspective.
My Childhood Memories of Growing up in the Joanna Furnace Ironmaking Community –Tuesday, March 17th – 7 pm to 8:30 pm
Juliana Flora, the great-great-granddaughter of the last Joanna Furnace Ironmaster, will share letters written in the 1880’s by her great grandmother Daisy Smith Morris. Daisy recounts her life experiences and happenings as she was growing up at the Joanna Furnace Ironmaking Community.
Learn to be a Joanna Furnace Tour Guide — Tuesday, March 24th – 7 pm to 8:30 pm
Designed for volunteers to interact with the general public during events and welcome them to the Joanna Furnace Site. The class focuses on hands-on training inside the historic Joanna Furnace Buildings. Various Joanna Furnace Interpreters will discuss their personal perspectives on how they approach interpretation in a building. Volunteer garb will also be reviewed at the class. The goal is to have a general understanding of the significance of the Joanna Furnace site and to be able to communicate with guests from that perspective.
STAGING HISTORY: American Theater in the Time of Joanna Furnace –TUESDAY, APRIL 7TH – 7 pm to 8:30 pm
Presenter Aileen Lynch McCulloch of Morgantown has spent her life using theater to educate and explore history, since her 12th grade play A Time to Live (about time traveler) won an award for Outstanding Original One Act. In this one-and-a-half-hour presentation, McCulloch explores theater history in the time of Joanna Furnace, and the impact American theater has had on historical preservation. A brief history of American Theater combines with a fun interactive finale using Joanna Furnace history to present a short original theater performance. With over 30 years of educational theater under her belt, McCulloch has brought interactive education reenactors to Winterthur Museum, The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology and even the Philadelphia Art Museum, combining her love of theater and history to create memorable educational experiences in our region for over two decades. Her historical theater even garnered two Barrymore Award Nominations (and one win!) for unique theater collaborations!
19th Century Photography – Daguerreotypes to Cabinet Cards — TUESDAY, APRIL 14TH – 7 pm to 8:30 pm
Hay Creek members and Civil War relic collectors Janice and Tom Groves will offer this exciting program by sharing authentic photographs from the Civil War. The presentation will focus on their extensive collection of Daguerreotypes and Cabinet Cards. In addition, Janice will discuss the ladies’ clothing’s styles of the 1850’s & 1860’s as seen in the photographs. The Grove’s passions for history will shine through as they speak and show a sample of their 3,000 antique photos.
HISTORY ALIVE: Historic Reenactment and You — TUESDAY, APRIL 28 – 7 PM TO 8:30 PM
Aileen Lynch McCulloch of Morgantown, shares the art of reenacting and how anyone can become an historical actor. In anticipation of new interactive theater activities coming to Hay Creek, this one-and-a-half-hour presentation will include a discussion about how members can become involved in reenactment right here at the Furnace. With over 30 years of educational theater under her belt, McCulloch has brought interactive education reenactors to Winterthur Museum, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology and even the Philadelphia Art Museum, combining her love of theater and history to create memorable educational experiences in our region for over two decades. Her historical theater even garnered two Barrymore Award Nominations (and one win!) for unique theater collaborations.
Bake Oven Demonstrating —hands-on — Saturday, May 2nd – 9 am to 1 pm
Masonry ovens have been built in American homes since the first colonists landed in New England. These brick ovens were used to bake bread, pies and cookies. Although very few of these ovens exist today, the historic Joanna Furnace site houses two reproduction ovens that are used for interpretation at events and program. During this class participants will learn how to “fire-up” and “maintain” a stove for baking; plus, will mix their own bread and pie to be baked in the oven.
19th Century Metal Casting—hands-on class — Saturday, MaY 2ND – 10 am to noon
We will provide the basic information required to make a sand mold – using a pattern. The mold cavity made by the pattern will then be filled with molten aluminum. If we’ve done a good job of training you, you will have a casting to take home with you!
You may be aware of some of the Furnace history presented at the Hay Creek Festivals, and if you plan to be a demonstrator at Joanna, any information you hear during these training sessions will be useful. Of course, the emphasis here will be on the Furnace, Casting House, and metal casting products and procedures. Also: Iron ore, limestone and charcoal; Furnace, Blowing engine power; Pig iron, molds/ingots, and products; Making a mold; patterns, flask, rammer, riddle; Finishing a casting; cut off gates, file, smooth.
School of Soldier — Saturday, may 2ND – All Day
The PA 50th & 69th Civil War regiments will meet at Joanna Furnace for their annual training day where participants go over all safety aspects of the hobby including proper handling of the rifle, as well as proper rifle firing techniques. We also drill the troops, so they are ready to maneuver properly while fighting in the field. All personal equipment is checked to make sure that each member is ready to take the field safely. Guests are welcome to come out to Joanna Furnace on this day to ask questions and to sign up to be a part of this living history group. THERE IS NO CHARGE FOR ATTENDING THIS ACTIVITY.
Class size is limited therefore RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED to attend each of these programs (excluding the School of Soldier activity). For more information or to register please email Mark Zerr at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 610-286-0388. Reservations must be made by March 9th Note: A nominal fee will be charged to each participant to cover class materials.
The Hay Creek Valley Historical Association is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization dedicated to the preservation and education of America’s iron heritage. Net proceeds from this event support the restoration and educational projects of The Hay Creek Valley Historical Association and Joanna Furnace, a historically significant 18th and 19th-century charcoal-fueled iron furnace. The Joanna Furnace site is located three miles north of Morgantown, along Route 10. For entrance turn at Furnace Road.