Recently I had the privilege of attending the open house of the first-ever junior historian program offered to young students by the Sterling-Rock Falls Historical Society.
What a delight.
Under the tutelage of Judy Warner Dennis, Mary Lynn Tedrick, and Peg Albert, students were given the opportunity to make their own creations of mustard from mustard seed, make and partake of many old recipes, learn early songs and play instruments, learn of the Underground Railroad and its presence in our area, design their own quilt squares, and play games from early times.
Trips were taken to view the Lincoln-Manahan home, the Lincoln statue, and the First Congregational Church of Sterling, whose members kindly offered their facilities for the program.
Throughout those activities and many more I surely failed to mention, students learned about local history and created a timeline that included the first settlers in 1835, Abe Lincoln’s visit here July 18, 1856, and many other significant happenings in the Sterling-Rock Falls area.
I cannot convey the enthusiasm and skills demonstrated by teacher and student alike. Of special enjoyment for me was each student’s selection of a favorite Abraham Lincoln quote. Although I’m not quoting verbatim, they included:
“Some people say I am two-faced. If I were, would I be wearing this face?”
“The best way to win over an enemy is to become his friend.”
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
Students read their favorite quotes they had included with their many other activities in their journals that they kept each day.
A big thank you to the students, teachers, and families who took a chance in enrolling their child in the first junior historian program. I hope the program will continue for years to come. It was educational, fun and, I’ll even say, inspirational. Wonderful job to all involved.