Fear of British attack sets this year’s tone
By Melissa DabeContributing Writer
Two hundred years ago, the town of New Boston was in fear of an attack by the British. Relive the scary events of 1812 in Ohio at this year’s Fair at New Boston on Saturday and Sunday of Labor Day weekend.
“This is the Fair at New Boston’s 30th anniversary and we are pulling out all the stops,” said Pam Cottrell, marketing director for the George Rogers Clark Heritage Association. “We have extended our time period to 1812 to observe the Bicentennial of the War of 1812. Costuming will look a bit different from past Fairs. We will remember the events of 1812, when the British were on our doorsteps and had actually invaded the northwestern corner of Ohio. The threat of invasion will be on everyone’s minds all weekend. I think people will find the things scheduled to happen to be totally amazing. You will not see this stuff anywhere else.”
Everything at the fair will be representative of life in Ohio in the year 1812. You will be able to see a tinsmith making lanterns, a blacksmith working on tools, a lace maker will be making lace, and there will be a marketplace featuring pottery, herbs, dried flowers, handmade chairs, silhouettes, jewelry, books, lanterns, material,and clothing of the frontier era.
But that’s not all. There are many opportunities to see shows and interact with the fair mongers. Dr. Balthasar will try to sell an elixir cures all that ails you. Mr. Bailey, the Magician, will amaze you with his tricks of the eye, and Professor Thompson S. Gunn is planning to lie down on a bed of nails. “The Old Maid,” an 18th century play, will be presented at noon on both days. There will also be clowns, puppet shows and roving singers.
“Three times a day there will be duels behind the stockade. A new council house has been added to the expanded Indian Village, which is expecting a visit from Tecumseh. Simon Kenton will speak to visitors on Sunday. Pastor Jarboe will speak on the Cane Break Revivals in the Fairmaster’s tent, and the Grand Camera Obscura will make its debut,” said Cottrell.
As if that’s not enough, the Mad River Light Artillery will fire a bronze British Light Weight Six-pounder cannon at the top of the hill near the flagpole and militia encampment many times throughout the day. Each afternoon there will be a battle re-enactment with militia on foot and on horses, cannons, Shawnee warriors,and British troops.
For those not interested in the history, the food at the fair is worth the trip. Try the pork chops, turkey legs, sausages, buffalo, bean soup, corn, chicken and noodles, peaches and pound cake, raspberries and cream, creampuffs and much more.
The fair goes regardless of the weather. “When the weather is perfect, we can have more than 20,000 visitors over the weekend,” said Cottrell. “Don’t let the weather keep you from the Fair, just come prepared for the forecast. We will be here, rain or shine.”