2009 Programs

The programs listed below are presented by the Friends of the Morrill Homestead in partnership with the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation. Choose an item below for more information or scroll down.

Justin Morrill’s 199th Birthday Party

Sunday, April 19th, 4 p.m.
You only turn 199 once! Stop by for refreshments and good company.

Make Your 2009 Garden a Victory

Sunday, April 26th, 2 — 4 p.m.
Learn to enhance your enjoyment and productivity of your garden this season through the application of insightful and exciting techniques. Gardener Tina Tuckerman will discuss how she plans and maintains her 2-acre vegetable garden. $8 Follow up with the canning workshop on Aug. 16th.

Pruning for the Home Landscape

Saturday, May 16th, 10 — 11:30 a.m.
Pruning is an art; the difference between a plant that has been cut, hacked, shortened and one that has been pruned for its pleasing contribution to the landscape or garden. A classroom discussion of styles, techniques, and do’s and don’ts will be followed by a pruning demonstration on nursery stock and an overview of pruning as an element of design on the Morrill Homestead grounds. Led by Michael Dathe, horticulturist & designer with 35 years experience in his informal/natural New England style. Admission $10 Rain or shine.

Rustic Furniture

Saturday, June 13th, 10 a.m. — 5 p.m.
Rustic furniture is timeless and was incorporated into Justin Morrill’s gardens. In this one-day workshop at the Morrill Homestead you will learn the basics of furniture design and an assortment of joinery techniques to create your own one-of-a-kind chair, bench or table from saplings. Seat finishing will be discussed. No woodworking experience is necessary. Presented by Mark Ragonese and the League of NH Craftsmen to reserve a place please call 603-643-5384 or download a registration form from www.nhcrafts.org/hanover/fibers.html $100 Materials included.

Rustic Trellis

Sunday June 14th, 10 a.m. — 5 p.m.
In this one-day workshop at the Morrill Homestead you will take saplings and with simple joining techniques make an outdoor trellis. The trellis may be as simple or as intricate as you choose and time allows. No woodworking experience is necessary. Presented by Mark Ragonese and the League of NH Craftsmen to reserve a place please call 603-643-5384 or download a registration form from www.nhcrafts.org/hanover/fibers.html $100 Materials included

"Barn To Be Wild"

Sunday, July 19th, 1 — 4 p.m.
In the 19th century it took someone with courage and gallantry to have eight pink barns in the Vermont rural landscape. Nancy Boone of the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation, will lead a discussion on the unique functions of Justin Morrill’s outbuildings and the agricultural heritage of Vermont barns. View a barn theme art exhibition, tour the historic gardens and grounds, hike the nature trail and make ice cream the old fashioned way. Lecture at 2 p.m

Canning Workshop "Preserves to Pickles; Yes We Can"

Sunday, August 16th, 1 — 4 p.m.
Canning and preserving are healthy and economical ways to save produce all year long. In our fast-paced, fast food society, the skills & techniques that grandparents and great-grandparents routinely used to store foods have been largely forgotten. Gardener Tina Tuckerman will lead a program on time-honored tradition of food preservation, canning, pickling, freezing, jam making & more. $8

A Walking Tour through Justin Morrill’s Strafford

Sunday, September 6th, 2 p.m.
Take a walking tour through the historic Upper Village of Strafford with stops at Morrill’s boyhood home, his general store, the Morrill Memorial Library, the Morrill Mausoleum, and a visit inside the 1799 Strafford Townhouse, one of the most photographed town meeting houses in New England. $10 Rain or Shine.

Wild Mushroom Hunt

Sunday, September 20th, 1 — 4 pm
Autumn is the perfect time to hunt for edible mushrooms. Mycologist Faith Hunt will teach which mushrooms can be eaten and which are better left alone on the forest floor. Afterwards, enjoy a "mycophagy" … an opportunity to taste a variety of cooked wild mushrooms. Rain or shine $25 Limited enrollment. Reservations required, please call 802-765-4964 or email:

19th Century Apple and Harvest Festival

Sunday, October 18th, 11 a.m. — 4 p.m.
Press cider in an antique press, sample cider, taste heirloom apple varieties, meet John Chapman (Johnny Appleseed), play period games, hike the nature trail, play Valley Quest, see traditional craft demonstrations and more. Rain or shine. Admission $5, Under 12 free, Family $12.

Other Programs

The following programs have been offered in the past and may be repeated in the future. If you are interested in any of these events, please contact us.

  • Morrill Scholars – Morrill Scholars from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) and their faculty advisers spend several days in Strafford each year. They learn about Senator Morrill, his Homestead, and living in Vermont today. While here, they participate in many activities including an archeological dig on Morrill’s underground irrigation system. [View Photo Gallery]
  • Open Studio
  • Craft Demos
  • Orchids
  • Painted Screens
  • Watercolors Class
  • Historic Drinks
  • School Visits

These programs are presented by the Friends of the Morrill Homestead in partnership with the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation.