Chippewa County Historical Society to host 'Horse Power Event'The Chippewa County Historical Society will host the seventh annual “Horse Power Event” on Saturday, September 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the historic Swensson Farm Museum.
By: Staff Report, Alexandria Echo Press
The Chippewa County Historical Society will host the seventh annual “Horse Power Event” on Saturday, September 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the historic Swensson Farm Museum.
The site is located six miles east of Montevideo or 11 west of Clara City on Highway 7, 5 miles south on Chippewa County Road 6, and 1/8 mile east on Chippewa County Road 15 or 5 miles south of Montevideo on Highway 212, .7 miles East on Yellow Medicine County Road 7 (Wegdahl turnoff), and 3 1/2 miles south and east on Chippewa County Road 15. From Granite Falls go 4 miles north on Chippewa County Road 5 and 2 3/4 miles west on Chippewa County Road 15. Signs will be posted.
This popular event celebrates farming in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and will focus only on horse drawn equipment. The 17 acre museum site consists of the 1880s timber-frame barn, grist mill remains, family burial plot, and 22-room family home.
More than 14 teams of draft animals, including horses and mules, will be on hand throughout the day to demonstrate plowing, disking, mowing, raking, feed grinding, manure spreader, baler, digging, hay loader, corn binder, hay tedder, and potato digging. Horse drawn wagon rides will also be available all day to move people throughout the site. Freshly dug potatoes will be sold to the public beginning at 11:30 a.m. and again at 1:30 p.m., as well as corn bundles. Additional featured horse drawn events include using the gang plow and the walking/sulky plow.
Activities will be held in and near the preserved 1880s timber-framed barn including rope making, floral arrangements, corn grader, farmer’s market, how to harness a horse demonstration, and blacksmithing. Small animals will also be on hand for everyone’s enjoyment! Back by popular demand is the horse drawn parade, which will begin at 3:45 p.m. near the Barn, and will showcase all of the teams and equipment participating in this year’s event. New this year will be square dancing in the historic Swensson Barn at 1:00 p.m.
To fully encompass early farming life, demonstrators and artisans will be located throughout the home, where you can also enjoy a taste of freshly made lefse, krumkake, bread, butter, and ice cream. New this year will be taste testing hay time switchel (the Gatorade of the 19th century.) Additional demonstrations will include knitting, cross stitch, spinning, hardanger, clothes washing, crocheting, quilting, rug loom and rug making, and chip carving. Many of the artisans will have items available for sale.
Guides will be situated throughout the Swensson family home to answer questions about the family and the site. Many fascinating stories will be available about the family including how Olof Swensson and his daughter Katie built the large two-story brick family home, and why Olof Swensson preached to feed sacks in the upstair’s private chapel. The Swensson’s home, family legacy and history are certainly unique and inspiring.
Lunch will be available on the grounds. Admission is $5 for adults and students 17 and under are admitted free. For more information or if you would like to bring a team of horses for the day, contact the Chippewa County Historical Society at (320) 269-7636 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.