Want to see how East Hampton farmers lived a hundred years ago? The East Hampton Historical Farm Museum grand opening is October 11. The museum, at the corner of North Main and Cedar Street in the 1758 Captain Jonathan Barnes House, will show how the Lester family lived at the turn of the century. "The opening signifies the beginning of a wonderful journey for the public, back to a time of growth, relative prosperity, and old Bonac values, as practiced in 1880-1920," says Chairwoman Prudence Carabine, a descendant of the Talmages, a local founding family.
In 1876, Selah Lester moved the original Captain Jonathan Barnes House from Old Montauk in Amagansett to the property, which he bought from Sybel Dominy for $300, when land was measured in rods and chains. According to Ms. Carabine, life then in the area was bustling. "Different from 'up-street' and far from the beautiful cottages on the ocean," said Ms. Carabine, "Yet eggs, produce, labor, and Dominy products went under the railroad bridge up to Main Street and Newtown Lane constantly. Barter and bits of cash got the taxes paid and occasionally new shoes."
At the grand opening on October 11, the public can help plant garlic behind the barn, listen to banjo and fiddle music, snack on donuts and apple cider and enjoy the two-and-a-half acre community park. Still a work in progress, the Farm Museum will be open every Saturday from 10AM to 4PM through December 6, the day of the Christmas Parade, and will reopen in April 2015.