Lessons In Homestead Life

Have you visited our actual working 1880s homestead? Located along Homestead Ridge just off the Square, this quaint area of the park is an adventure in history.

The original cabin built in 1843 by Levi Casey and later owned by the McHaffie Family along Swan Creek in eastern Taney County was donated to Silver Dollar City and reconstructed just in time for opening day of the park in 1960. The only stipulation was that it was to remain a working homestead and that promise still stands fast today. Guests who tour the authentic saddlebag cabin step back in time to when tiny houses were all there were and luxuries were few and far between. If it wasn't made at the homestead you didn't need it!

Step inside Oak Trail School #2, the one-room schoolhouse for the homesteaders. Here you'll meet our very own school marm and explore lessons in 1880s learning when children went to school up until the 3rd and then had to start working on the farm to help provide food and clothing for their families.

Along with McHaffie's cabin and the schoolhouse, you'll discover the Barnyard, the Wilderness Church, Birdle's Cabin and the Picker's Shed (where the Homestead Pickers perform when not playing folk songs and storytelling on the porch of McHaffie's Cabin). The famed quartet are park favorites and celebrities with longtime season pass holders who call the boys by name and often shout out song requests that they are happy to oblige.

But, during fall it's like the Homestead gets new life with continuous log hewing courtesy of craftsman Mark Edwards next to the cabin and sorghum making out front as you watch the old mare circle the press turning the canes through the wheel to squeeze out every last drop for the Schrock Family who skillfully brews thick molasses.

Arrive early to the park and stop by Nellie's Apple Butter Shop located along the ridge for a real treat...piping hot Apple Turnovers fresh from the oven topped with, of course, Apple Butter! Remember, The City's Square opens at 8:30am during the fall, so you'll beat the traffic and get a tasty breakfast too.


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