Chehaw turns back the clock - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Chehaw turns back the clock

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By Jay Polk - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – If you take a trip to Chehaw Park on either Saturday or Sunday, you might wonder if you've stepped back in time.  Ben Kirkland, the Natural Resources Manager at Chehaw Park explains your confusion. 

"This is the 17th annual Chehaw Frontier Festival," he said.

Here, you won't find any of the usual modern conveniences that we take for granted today.  But you will find plenty of supplies for the well dressed frontiersman of the early 19th century.  There are furs to keep the traveler warm, guns to hunt the wild game, a water bottle to hold the clear waters of the river.  And even a quill pen and pad to write letters to the family that is so far away.

Kirkland said, "the traders are business people who do this for a living and travel all over the country."

There are both traders and re-enactors here.  And then there's Wynne Eden, he's an re-enactor who is playing a trader.

"During the 18th century, European people traded with the native people," he said.

Traders like Wynne would have come from countries like France, Scotland or England.  And even at that time, he would have actually needed a licence to trade with the people here.

"If I came from Charleston, I would have had a licence from the South Carolina governor," he said.

Kirkland says that no matter what era that they're representing, both the traders and the re-enactors share a common bond.

"This is just something that they enjoy," he said.

For the organizers, this weekend is more about just dressing up and camping out.

"It's a fun way that's also an educational way to learn history," Kirkland said.

And in this village they promise to greet you warmly and to keep the fire of history burning.

The festival runs through Sunday and admission is included with the price of entry to the park.

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