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Meet time travelers at Murrysville toll house

Shirley McMarlin
| Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018, 12:42 p.m.
The Murrysville Historical Preservation Society’s Eighth Annual Historical Festival is Sept. 15 at the Sampson/Clark Log Toll House.
The Murrysville Historical Preservation Society’s Eighth Annual Historical Festival is Sept. 15 at the Sampson/Clark Log Toll House.

Journey from the 1750s to the present with the Murrysville Historical Preservation Society via the group’s Eighth Annual Historical Festival on Sept. 15.

The event is planned for 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Sampson/Clark Log Toll House, 5302 West Pike St., Murrysville.

The theme for this year’s festival is “Gateways to Westmoreland County — From Indian Trails to Turnpike.”

Admission is free.

Visitors to the festival will “meet time travelers … from the 1750s to the 1850s on a path near the Turtle Creek where the Kittanning, Frankstown and Shamokin paths once intersected,” according to a release.

Re-enactors will demonstrate the activities of daily pioneer living on the farmstead of Nancy and Simeon Clark, sample pioneer treats, visit the garden, explore the wooded path and take an outdoor journey back in time, the release adds.

“The log tollhouse, dating back to the 1790s, is situated along what was the Northern Turnpike, proposed by the Pennsylvania Assembly in 1778 as a navigable road between the Juniata and Conemaugh rivers, passing through the former Salem Crossroads (now Delmont), as well as Franklin Township before continuing west toward Pittsburgh,” the release says.

“The name ‘turnpike’ originated with the use of a pole, or ‘pike,’ placed across the road to prevent passage until the toll was paid. The toll house was originally manned by the family of Simeon Clark, and later Nancy Clark, and it will house a variety of activities for festival-goers,” including the sampling of simple frontier-style foods, the release adds.

Re-enactors will portray traders, settlers and farmers.

Free parking will be available on Triangle Lane, off William Penn Highway, near the tollhouse.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, smcmarlin@tribweb.com or via Twitter @shirley_trib.

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