Northeastern Indiana Digging Through History-Day 3-Multiple Speakers


Bring Your Own Artifact Led by Jim Bickel & Michelle Edington

Do you have an old artifact that you aren’t sure what it is or when/where it originated? Jim and Michelle are available to examine your artifact and (hopefully) tell you all about it.


Five Medals Living History Led by Mike Judson

Five Medals was such an important leader in our region that an organization and an event have been named in his honor. Reenactors will have numerous artifacts to share plus excerpts from the exciting history of the 1812 era.


1750s French Marine Led by Joe Zdziebko

Joe Zdziebko, dressed as a 1750s French Marine will display and discuss his equipment, uniform, musket, furs, maps, etc. He will also talk about old sayings that are still used today.


Flintknapping Hands-on Led by Jeff Mesaros

Want to know how Native American artifacts were made by hand? Jeff Mesaros will show you how. And here’s your chance to try making one!


Atlatl Weapon Demonstration Led by Jamie Clemons

The atlatl was a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in dart or spear-throwing, and includes a bearing surface which allows the user to store energy during the throw. Jamie will be demonstrating types from around the nation and let you participate with samples. You can try it too!


Metal Detecting in Archaeology Led by Angie Butler

Metal detectors can play a key role in discovering historical artifacts. You’ll be amazed at the display of items found under the waters of Lake Wawasee and along its shoreline.

You may reserve your spot by registering HERE.

Date and time:

Saturday, September 2 · 10am – 12pm EDT

Wawasee Area Conservancy 11586 Indiana 13 Syracuse, IN 46567

The Treaty of Paradise Spring, originally known as the Treaty of Mississinewa, was negotiated just two blocks from the current location of the Wabash County Museum. The treaty ultimately made way for the Michigan Road and the Wabash-Erie Canal. Papakeechie’s Reserve was one of several reservations created by this treaty. Many of the Native people who negotiated on behalf of the Miami and Potawatomi lived very close to or within what would become Wabash County.

About the Presenter: T.J. Honeycutt

TJ Honeycutt is the ex-Director of Archives and Outreach at the Wabash County Museum. He is a lifelong resident of Wabash County, a graduate of Manchester University with a Bachelor’s in History and Economics. He left Wabash to pursue a career in e-sports broadcasting after college, but in early 2017 returned to Wabash to work with history at the Museum in early 2017. TJ specializes in local and Russian history.


Date and time:

Thursday, August 31 · 6:30 – 7:30pm EDT


Syracuse Community Center

1013 North Long Drive Syracuse, IN 46567

Reserve your seats HERE.

“First Ladies, First!” to be presented at Wawasee High School

By Mary Hursh

Martha Washington and Abigail Adams were the wives of the first and second presidents of the United States, and, so much more!
These two women shared similar passions, which those in attendance at the “First Ladies, First!” program at Wawasee High School auditorium will learn. All are invited to this 2023 Patriotic Speaker Series event presented by Chautauqua-Wawasee from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 25. After the program, the annual Patriotic Pops concert on the lawn of the Oakwood Inn on Lake Wawasee will begin at 7:30 p.m. Carol Spacht and Kim Hanley, reenactment actors from the American Historical Theatre, will play Martha Washington and Abigail Adams, respectively. Because they are both experienced costume historians and seamstresses, they will be wearing costumes they made.

Martha Washington was born on June 2, 1731 at Chestnut Grove Plantation in Virginia. She married Daniel Custis in 1750. After his death, she married George Washington in 1759. When the Revolutionary War began, Martha worked with George at the Continental Army winter campground at Valley Forge as his secretary. She copied his letters, knitted for soldiers, and visited hospitals. Her passion was to raise money to help pay for uniforms and food for the soldiers. When George became president, Martha held public gatherings every Friday to receive members of Congress, dignitaries, and local citizens.
Abigail Adams was born on November 22, 1744 in Weymouth, Massachusetts Bay Colony. Although she did not receive a formal education, she could read and write and always championed women’s rights and the right for all to get a better education. She lived through the Boston Massacre and the Boston Tea Party and the beginning of the American Revolutionary War. Over that time period, she took care of the family farm and even made musket balls for soldiers out of melted utensils. Her letters to her husband John detailed life on the home front during the Revolutionary War. John became vice-president in 1788 and president in 1798. She, as well as Abigail Adams, promoted gender equality in public education, and equal rights for all people. She took the significant step of leaving a last will and testament claiming ownership of and the right to bequeath money that she had earned through her investments. “Abigal Adams just ended up in the right place at the right time for history to find her worthy,” said Hanley.

“Even though Martha Washington and Abigail Adams were of different backgrounds as far as socio-economic status, education, community involvement and lifestyle, they were both excellent managers of their home-economy. Both rose to the occasion presented to and required of their formidable husbands,” said Hanley. Carol Spacht, who will portray Martha Washington, studied theatre at Villanova University and graduated from Eastern University with degrees in literature and theatre arts. As a historic interpreter, she portrays several women from history. “Martha was a resilient woman. She was not afraid to speak her mind and make her own decisions,” said Spacht.

Three interesting facts about Martha are that historians believe Martha was probably left-handed and was forced to write with her right hand causing poor
penmanship; Martha’s beautiful needlework survives in the collections of Mt. Vernon; and Martha outlived all her children.For her presentation, Spacht will wear a 1790s hand-sewn silk gown. She will carry a period-appropriate fan. “Storytelling engages the imagination. The storyteller poses the question but encourages the listener to formulate his or her own response. Storytelling brings the past into the present with vibrancy,”
said Spacht.

Kim Hanley received her BFA degree from the State University of New York at Fashion Institute of Technology in the History and Restoration of Applied Arts. She began interpreting Abigail Adams with the American Historical Theatre in 1999. She has shared many portrayals of such women as Betsy Ross, Annie Oakley, ad Grace Coolidge with many historical and educational institutions around the country. She is an actor, singer, dancer, and costumer whose specialty is historical fashion.

When: Sunday, June 25th at 4:30 pm

Where: Wawasee High School Auditorium

Admission: FREE!