This, of course, is a very simplified version of how the Johnston Farm and Indian Agency came to be. Should you be interested in reading a full historical account, please visit the Farm's website: Johnston Farm and Indian Agency.
Since I first discovered this living history farm, I've wanted to visit. We finally had the opportunity over the weekend, and I really enjoyed this well-preserved piece of history. One of my great loves and passions is historic architecture, especially historic homes and farms, and if I could have a historic home for my own, it would be a dream come true. I love to think about the way that our ancestors lived before the instant gratifications of today: cell phones, internet, television programs that can be watched anytime and anywhere... however, fewer and fewer of these architectural gems exist, being torn down to make way for new highways, Wal-Marts, gas stations, etc. But this is another topic for another day. Because they are few and far between, I pounce on the opportunity to visit any historic place that is open to the public. Some places are well-preserved and cared for, others are less than perfect--the Johnston Farm is the former.
The park offers tours of a restored c. 1815 brick farm home, several outbuildings, and a ride up and down a remaining part of the Miami-Erie Canal, which was a real treat.
This sweet mule towed the boat up the canal and back for us.
He also allowed us to take a look at his large, hand-hewn beam double pen barn that predated the house by about five years.
|The inside of the bin, with my flash on. It looks like they might have burned the inside...?|
While waiting for a tour of the home, we also toured the other outbuildings on the property. This is the apple shed/cider house:
This is the outdoor courtyard with a cooking hearth and bake oven:
This is the outdoor fruit-drying kiln:
And this is the springhouse, which also predates the house by about five years:
This was Col. Johnston's home.
|A portrait of Colonel Johnston.|
The right side of the house, built in the second phase, contained a formal dining room and bedchamber.
|The table set for a family feast.|
|The only access to the kitchen is down the stairs on the left of the fireplace. Watch your head! Another interesting design element is the off-centered mantle and mirror above the fireplace. By the way, I love the mustard color paint.|
|I love these corner cupboards. This contains several family artifacts. The color is so great!|
|A secondary staircase just outside of the dining room leads directly into the girls' upstairs bedroom.|
The second floor contained three bedrooms, one over the parlor of equal size, and two over the dining room and bedchamber that were connected. The sons' bedroom was over the parlor, and had three beds, each sleeping at least two boys.
|This mannequin properly displays the undergarments worn under dresses every day.|
|These stairs lead up to the dining room.|