Fort Daniel Fair a success

The Gwinnett County chapter of SGA, Gwinnett Archaeological Research Society, and The Fort Daniel Foundation sponsored the fifth annual Fort Daniel Frontier Fair on Saturday, October 19, 2013 at Fort Daniel on Highway 124 in Buford, Georgia. Special new tee shirts were designed and sold in the fair’s Hog Mountain Trading Post tent to celebrate the bicentennial anniversary of the building of Fort Daniel in then-Jackson County in 1813. The Trading Post also sold hand-made frontier toys, GARS tee-shirts, used history books, square nail replicas, candy, and antiques.

Abby, the SGA Archaeobus was an honored guest, along with a blacksmith, two flintknappers, a pottery maker, craft vendors, face painter, authors, the Gwinnett Historical Society, The Gwinnett Library, a woodcraftsman, old tool display, and food vendors. The local Cub Scouts handled the flag raising at 11 am within the center of the fort. Barry Mann, Native American storyteller, presented an educational program with audience interaction. The Skillet Lickers Band entertained fairgoers in the afternoon.

Community archaeology continued under the supervision of Dr. James D’Angelo, Archaeologist, with the assistance of Dr. James Glover (GSU), Scot Keith, Leslie Perry, and Garrett Silliman. A certificate of participation was issued to all students participating. The fair hosted students from Georgia State University, Georgia Gwinnett College, Fort Daniel Elementary, and Twin Rivers Middle School, along with several visiting home-schooled students. Catherine Long supervised the children’s activities centering on pottery reconstruction, and assisted with the archaeology volunteer signups.

Despite the rainy weather, students were enthusiastic in volunteering to excavate and receptive to learning the history of the site aided by the stories of the artifacts in the museum tent. The GARS chapter signed up some new members, and the artifacts recovered during the fair were sent to the Fort Daniel Foundation curator, Siska Williams, for processing. New questions arise and old ones are answered with each shovel put to the ground.