Frontier Museum

German house
Fancy Coup

Frontier Culture Museum

The Frontier Culture Museum covers several hundred acres in the Shenandoah Valley near Staunton, VA. Joy and I visited in May while Joy’s parents were in town. The day was calm and bright and the museum rather empty. I took my camera and remote flash and snapped away. Combining dark interiors with windows on the green outside proved quite challenging.

Bed with Trundle


Small farms dot the acres of the museum. A stone wall or split rail fence define a homestead. Each one describes a different nationality of settler on the frontier. Visitors explore the houses and grounds, and find actors ready to play out a role. I much enjoyed speaking with a lady in deerskin about the construction and utility of wigwams in this area.

Heating Iron

Blacksmith’s Shop

Even on a cool day, the blacksmith’s shop is warm. The blacksmith and his apprentice worked the bellows and hammered the metal, making new items for use around the homesteads of the museum. The hard work did not discourage these fine men from wearing proper attire. I took much inspiration from Strobist David Hobby’s video tutorial on photographing a blacksmith. I hope I did it justice.

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