Celebrating the Fourth historically

Jul 9, 2019

For the forty-third year in a row, the Historical Society celebrated the Fourth of July with an opportunity to explore artifacts from the past on the Town Green at its Antique Fair, which also featured artists, food, and appraisals.

The Wareham Minutemen and Militia brought that history to life with an invigorating three-shot salute, performed by Howard Smith, Mack Phinney, Gary Franklin, accompanied by Jay Franklin on the drum and Cathy Phinney as a camp follower.

Phinney said that the militia were celebrating the Fourth of July as John Adams had described in a letter to his wife Abigail: “It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.”

Antique dealers across the green had pieces of history on offer, including some from Wareham.

William and Mary Manguso had two cranberry scoops for sale at their booth. One  scoop, pictured below, dates back to the early 20th century. The scoop still has tape wrapped around the handle to give the laborer a better grip, and an A.D. Makepeace label attached near what appear to be the original owner’s initials.

Carl Eratt, who mainly collects and sells antique glass bottles, also had some labels from the Tremont Nail Company for sale that were as bright red as the day they were printed. Eratt has written a book, titled “Dig,” that teaches aspiring antiquers how to find and dig antique bottles. 

Eratt said that he has found bottles from the Gleason Apothecary and the Onset Drugstore.

He suggested that people might have good luck near the Fearing Tavern, but further tips and tricks are available in Eratt’s book, which is available at the Sandwich Antique Co-op. 

In the church hall, artists and crafters were selling their work. 

Robin Ragle-Davis had a variety of jewelry for sale. She first learned how to make jewelry when she worked for a silversmith in high school, and began making it more seriously to support her horse, Karma. She also had soap for sale, which she began making as gifts for family and friends around the holidays. People liked it so much, she decided to make it to sell. To see Davis’s work, go to www.facebook.com/ragleanddaviscraftworks.

Dianne Enzian, a true jack-of-all-trades who owns the Art Farm, was showcasing goods ranging from framed photos to handmade wreaths and birdhouses made from gourds. 

Much of her work is made from natural materials collected in her garden or on the beach — her booth featured wreaths made from grape vines she grew and decorated with shells collected on Little Harbor Beach, smudge sticks made from herbs from her garden and accented with wild turkey feathers, and owls crafted from slices of wood. 

Enzian also crafts “Heavenly Hugs” memory pillows and toys to memorialize loved ones. Currently, she is working on a teddy bear made from a customer’s mother’s bathrobe. 

For more about Enzian’s work, go to www.facebook.com/artfarmnatureinspiredartsandcrafts.

Inside the Methodist Meeting House, the Historical Society and Marion Antiques Shop had antiques for sale, including many from Wareham-- and posters from an early Fourth of July celebration in Onset.