You Look Great for 275

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In honor of Daniel Boone’s 275th birthday, staff and volunteers at the Daniel Boone Homestead, working with the Daniel Boone Middle School and the Kentucky Humanities Council, organized programs for school students and the public that explored Boone’s national significance. Boone was born in the Oley Valley of Berks County, Pennsylvania, on Nov. 2 (Oct. 22 in the old-style calendar), 1734, and spent his first 16 years there until his family migrated to North Carolina.

The 2009 program (Oct. 27-29 at Daniel Boone Middle School and Nov. 1 at Daniel Boone Homestead) was the latest installment of a birthday initiative that dates back to 2005, when the first collaborative effort with Daniel Boone Area School District began. As part of a three-week integrated curriculum for 6th graders at Daniel Boone Middle School, students learn about life in Berks County in the 18th century, using history, geography, language arts, music, art, and science. The project includes a field trip to the Boone Homestead for a first-hand experience of Boone’s birthplace. Each year, noted scholars are brought in to talk with students and the public about Boone’s pivotal role in the settling of Kentucky and the western United States. This year’s program included Ted Franklin Belue from Murray State University in Kentucky, Oley Valley historian Phil Pendleton, and Scott New, with a first-person presentation of a return visit Boone made to the area in 1781.

Scott New (above), whose participation in the program was supported by the Kentucky Humanities Council, began doing historical presentations on Daniel Boone about 10 years ago, having spent countless hours immersed in researching the frontiersman’s life and hoping to correct some of the misconceptions Hollywood has helped create about Boone.

For more information on the programs, check out articles from the Reading Eagle here and here.


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