One more post about Lang Pioneer Village

July 29, 2014 at 3:40 pm 2 comments

We’d covered a lot of ground in those few hours and yet there was more to see, the lumberman’s shanty and the mill.


DSCF7543Men from the village sometimes went to work in a lumber camp over the winter to earn extra money for their families. They left their wives and children behind and headed off to the forest and lived in a small shanty with little more than an axe they carried with them. As it says in this sign, that

Canada remained a competitor for the timber market because they were exempt from a heavy British duty.


DSCF7545Informational sign in the shanty at the village


DSCF7546How to sharpen an axe on the stone. One would approach this task very carefully, just as much so as cutting down a tree. No chain saws here. It was all manual labour.


DSCF7548The men at the lumber camp would sleep in bunks like these and hang up wet socks on the line above. There were no fancy closets to hang clothing, and if I remember correctly from the information posted there, the men came with very few extra clothing pieces.

Seeing this shanty and reading about it reminded me of the storyteller Deborah Dunleavy and her story of the Flying Canoe, in which men in a lumber camp were tempted to travel  home to their home town for a New Year’s party, and in particular one young man to visit a certain young lady, but I won’t spoil the story for you. The Crystal is the story CD you’d like to hear it. Storytelling at its best.


DSCF7549 Out in the field behind the shanty is an old harvester.


DSCF7550 And zooming in on the name, you can read who made it.


We took a short snack break before heading on to the mill.




DSCF7558The Lang Grist Mill was owned by the Otonobee Region Conservation Authority. The Quaker Oats Company had some input into restoring the mill for historical purposes.



DSCF7561Exhibits in the mill



DSCF7560Yes, horses were important. They pulled the wagon.


DSCF7562 The tools and equipment people used for harvest in the 1840s  may seem primitive as compared to twelve-row ploughs and tractors with stereos in them, but they did the job. A lot of manual labour was required. Lest anyone think that a modern farm is easy,  there is still need for manual labour.



DSCF7565Another exhibit piece but the sign was cut off. Anyone know what this is for?





A tool to cut straw and corn


There were many other exhibits, models and pictures of equipment used to harvest crops and presses and other equipment to grind the grain into flour. It was important also to keep the dust from the grain to a minimum.

The young man showing us around, whose picture I didn’t get, was very patient with the children who happened to be there at the same time. They asked a lot of questions and he answered them well, demonstrating things that he could. The children had a ride on the cart that took them to the weigh scale. They were surprised by the weight.




Back down the path and looking across the bridge and path. Quite a picture. I took few notes at the mill, but it was interesting nonetheless, and we were ready to go out for a proper meal. It had been hours, but it had been a good visit.




DSCF7568The welcome sign at the village gate


Thank you to Elizabeth King, Administrative and Volunteer Coordinator, for posting my links on the village’s blog and to all the  staff and volunteers who make this a living museum. I hope that my posts encourage others to come and visit the village as an option on their summer vacation.


Photos © C. and L. Wilker






Entry filed under: authors, community, country living, environment, family, history, lifestyle, Nature, photography, social media, storytelling, travel in Canada, winter. Tags: , , , , , , , .

More of our visit to Lang Pioneer Village A drive to Lakefield, Ontario

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mike Richards  |  February 7, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    Do you have any photos of the mill before the restoration? Mike

    • 2. storygal  |  February 7, 2015 at 6:16 pm

      Hello Mike,
      Thanks for stopping by my blog. I am not able to help you with pictures of that time. This past summer when we were at the museum is the first time we’d ever been there. Is there anyone else involved with the pioneer village who could help you?


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