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story.lead_photo.caption RACHEL DICKERSON/MCDONALD COUNTY PRESS June Freund of Granby demonstrates making brooms at the McDonald County Museum during "History Live" on Saturday, May 25.

The McDonald County Historical Museum's "History Live" kicked off the re-opening of the museum for the summer on Saturday, May 25, with live re-enactors and, for the first time, a poker run.

Karen Dobbs, president of the McDonald County Historical Society, said the poker run would involve stops at historical sites throughout McDonald County. Participants could win extra cards by finding specific facts along the route. There was also a prize for best bike, best hand and worst hand.

Re-enactors included blacksmiths, a broom maker, campfire cooking, wool spinning, treadle machine sewing and pioneer laundry, Dobbs said.

The museum will be open every Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and it is always free. The museum may be contacted for special tours through its Facebook page or by calling Karen Dobbs at 417-389-1865.

"We're excited and we're looking forward to having some fun events over the summer," she said. "We're going to have an event involving local artists and one involving local authors. And an ice cream social."

Linda Patterson and her granddaughter, Eliza Ruby, were demonstrating pioneer laundry outside the museum.

"Eliza likes history, so she said she'd come help me," Patterson said.

She continued, "I don't remember this, but I do remember my mom running (laundry) through the wringer."

She said both sets of grandparents did not have running water when she was a child, so they would have hauled water from a well and used a washboard to do their laundry.

June Freund of Grandby was demonstrating broom making. She said she got started in her hobby after seeing a man at Har-Ber Village making brooms. Her husband told her she needed a hobby because he is a blacksmith. She said they were in the process of making a broom machine when they were contacted by the Newton County Historical Society. The society had been given three broom machines, a vice, a cutter and a kick winder. They were given to the society with the understanding that they would be used, so the society asked Freund if she would like to use them. The machines are from 1878. They came out of a broom factory that used to be in Neosho, she said.

"I didn't have anybody to teach me, so I taught myself," she continued. "YouTube is wonderful."

She said the brooms are made from broom corn, which is no longer grown in the U.S. Hers comes from Mexico. She gets her supplies from Caddy Supplies in San Antonio, Texas.

"I enjoy the whole process from start to finish," she said. "It's something to see how things used to be done and what it took to make it. Some people say it's a lot of hard work. I think it's fun."

Javin Stull, a former U.S. Army officer, presented a Harry S. Truman reenactment in the courtroom upstairs. Before serving as the nation's 33rd president, Truman served in World War I. Stull described, from a first-person point of view, what Truman went through in the war. Much of the information used in the reenactment was gathered from letters exchanged with Truman's wife, Bess.

General News on 06/06/2019

Print Headline: 'History Live' Kicks Off Museum Re-Opening

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