Second graders visit Hack House


By Joyce Ervin

The big yellow school bus pulled into the driveway of the Friend-Hack House Museum wrapping up the Paddock Elementary School students’ second-grade social studies lessons on community history.
The former 1800s Hack farm was just the place to learn about their community’s history.  Board members dressed in era costumes and demonstrated just how things used to be done.  The fun part came when the students got to do the same.
They pumped water, dropped corn cobs into a 1924 John Deere hand-operated corn sheller and lined up to form a bucket brigade after viewing the 1938 fire engine truck located in the newly built Fire Truck Museum.
President Anne Farmer greeted the children and showed them the summer kitchen, explained how food was cooked there and preserved before showing them the famous three-seater outhouse. A few were brave enough to lift the cover and then exclaim what a deep hole was in there.
Inside the kitchen, Janice Losee demonstrated an old ringer phone, a meat grinder, explained how ice was put in the refrigerator to keep food cold and captured their interest explaining and demonstrating how the kitchen pass through went through to the dining room on the other side of the wall.
They were definitely engrossed when she showed them how meat came wrapped in paper with string holding the wrapper.  She then told them nothing was ever wasted and put the piece of string in a string holder that hung on the wall over the old stove.
The students were taken on a tour through the house by board volunteers and then posed for pictures on the big porch.
Farmer said the children were delightful.  She was pleased they could view the house with so much history right in their own community.  She said, “I hope they will come back and bring their parents.”
The museum is open on Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m. through September.  It is located at 775 County Street.

Joyce Ervin is a freelance writer reporting on Milan.  She can be contacted at:  jlervn42 [at] yahoo [dot] com.

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