My husband and I joined a group of friends last night to attend a very special evening at one of our many local historical treasures, the Compass Inn. The Compass Inn dates back to the 1799 and was a prominent stage coach stop along the now Lincoln Highway. We experienced “living history” as we were served a delicious, period specific meal prepared in the cook house and over an outdoor fire. We ate dinner in the “common room” with other guests of the inn with dim lights just as it would have been back in the day.
We were treated to a wonderful demonstration by reenactors representing Colonel John Proctor’s Milicia. In the mid 1700’s Colonel Proctor was the sheriff of our county. After the Revolutionary War, he was given the the position of commanding the Pennsylvania First Battalion. Several of the members of the group had family who were part of this Battalion. They are so passionate about preserving and sharing their family history.
I grew up here, but I lived away for many years. I returned to my roots 23 years ago this month. I wanted my young daughters, then then three years old and six months old, to know the people who loved them, just because they were part of a family. It is a decision my husband and I have never regretted. Well, maybe in the middle of winter here when we are missing the San Diego sunshine….Both girls got to spent lots of time with their great grandmothers who were lovely, hard-working, God fearing women. They built strong bonds both of my parents and their loving aunts and uncles and cousins. The great grandmothers and both of my parents are now gone, way too soon. But the love and support that that they received because they “belong” to a family have meant so much to our girls as they did to me growing up. My family dates back seven and eight generations. I am the oldest of 38 cousins….talk about belonging to a “tribe”. Lots of history there for sure.
Our home is built on property that was once part of a large farm. The family suffered “much” at the hands of the Indians during the French and Indian war. If you visit some of the local cemetaries, there are tombstones that vividly describe the suffering of these families. George Washington was a young British soldier during that war stationed at another historic gem, Fort Ligonier. Our area has many of these wonderful historic spots. There are always opportunities to attend events, see an exhibit, experince living history. All of those things make our lives much richer and fuller. There are also lots of ways to get involved and give back.
So the next time you have a weekend with sometime on your hands, get out there and experience some history.
Cheers to your heritage,
Kim and Taryn