For Immediate Release: April 29, 2019
Contact: Marie Cheek, community relations for Culture & Heritage Museums
It’s time for Historic Brattonsville’s Gulf Coast sheep to get sheared
“Sheep Shearing Day” explores the wooly world of traditional textile arts
McCONNELLS, S.C. - The Gulf Coast sheep at Historic Brattonsville get an 18th century-style shearing on “Sheep Shearing Day.” Beginning at 10:30 a.m. and for every hour throughout the day, one sheep gets a gentle shearing. Once the heritage breed sheep are hand-sheared, the many processes of turning raw fleece into finished wool textiles follow. Period dressed interpreters will be busy sorting, cleaning, carding, spinning and dyeing wool for weaving and sewing throughout the day.
During Sheep Shearing Day, educator and fiber artist Beth Melton will be weaving on Brattonsville’s 1850s barn loom. She’s got an ambitious textile work in progress called The Coverlet Project. Inspired by an overshot weaving pattern found in a historical coverlet handwoven in York County, The Coverlet Project is based on research by Melton and Culture & Heritage Museums’ collections team. An award-winning weaver, Melton was first introduced to the loom as a novice volunteer at Historic Brattonsville over 20 years ago.
Sheep Shearing Day presents a flurry of happenings for ‘peeps’ of all ages. Make-and-take activities include finger spinning and dyeing samples of wool yarn with natural dye. Other fun learning opportunities focus on the art of tailoring and understanding why wool makes good clothing.
Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the day at Brattonsville’s 800-acre living history farm. Celebrate the agricultural heritage of the Carolina Piedmont with spring lambs, Red Devon calves and other critter babies. Watch historical cooking and explore the revolutionary battlefield site with interpretive trail.
Sheep Shearing Day is May 11 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Historic Brattonsville is located at 1444 Brattonsville Rd. McConnells, S.C. 29726
General Admission: Adults $8., Seniors $7., Youth 4-7 $5.; free for CHM members and ages 3 and under. For information on Historic Brattonsville go to www.chmuseums.org
IMAGES: Courtesy of Culture & Heritage Museums – (photographed on previous dates) 1.) Springtime lambs 2.) Make-and-take activities include dyeing wool yarn with indigo 3.) Beth Melton’s Coverlet Project on Brattonsville’s 1850s barn loom.
About Historic Brattonsville: Historic Brattonsville features over 30 colonial and antebellum structures, including two house museums. The plantation spreads over 800-acres and includes farmed land with heritage breed animals, a Revolutionary War battlefield site, and a nature preserve with miles of walking trails. Seasonal events, reenactments, and living history programs interpret Southern rural life from the 1750s to the 1850s.
Historic Brattonsville is included in “The Green Book of South Carolina” – a travel guide to African American cultural sites. https://greenbookofsc.com/
Culture & Heritage Museums is a family of museums in York County and includes Historic Brattonsville, Main Street Children’s Museum, McCelvey Center and Museum of York County. The mission of CHM is to communicate and preserve the natural and cultural histories of the Carolina Piedmont, inspiring a lifetime of learning.