Howell Farm invites visitors of all ages to get a grip on history by grabbing a saw, drawknife or cant hook on Saturday, March 21st when helping hands are needed to cut firewood, make barn pegs and ready logs for the sawmill.
The work will begin at 10 a.m. when farmers use a portable sawmills to make floorboards for barns and sheds. Visitors can help by using spud bars to de-bark logs and cant hooks to roll them to the mill. Helping hands are also needed to stack the finished lumber, and to load slabwood onto wagons for transport to the barnyard where it will be cut into firewood to fuel the farm’s woodburning stove and maple syrup evaporator.
Visitors can join the action by using a two-man saw to cut sections that they can then split into firewood, wheel chocks and barn peg blanks. Mallets, froes and draw knives are among the tools visitors can try. Youngsters can make and take home a barn peg like the ones used to hold together the farm’s timber frame barns. The very young can help by carrying wood shavings and kindling into the farmhouse for use in the cookstove.
Howell Farm is operated and maintained by the Mercer County Park Commission. It is located on Valley Road, just off Rt. 29 two miles south of Lambertville, NJ. Seasonal hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon-4 p.m. Sundays. Parking and general admission are free.