Mary Jemison

Adams County teenager abducted by Indians in 1758

Remembering her on the 250th Anniversary after her capture.

Sponsored by the Biglerville Historical and Preservation Society

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April 5th, 2008 Festival

Lectures, presentations, vendors and food reflecting Mary's Irish, Colonial and Native American heritage.

Vendors Form

See the Calendar of Events for a list of all events with their times and locations.

Program Performers:

Highland Bagpipers, York PA

Highland Bagpipers from York, PA Bagpipers are Bryant Dettinger, Michael Lyter and Andrew Lyter and they will provide some Celtic pipe music that highlights the Scots, Irish, Native Americans and French - all those nations involved in  the time frame of our program study.  The composition they will play to start the festival is an old tune from the French and Indian War period, 'Meeting of the Water'. It commemorates the conflicts of the Colonial New World with Great Britain and the Native Americans.

Roger Swartz, of R. G. Swartz and Associates, Keedysville, MD

Roger is a Colonial, French and Indian War and Native American historian and cultural specialist. He is an instructor at Elizabethtown College, Frederick Community College, Howard Community College, Hagerstown Community College, Harrisburg Area Community College. He has led programs for The Smithsonian Associates in Washington D.C. and the National Park Service, Fort Necessity, Mount Vernon and Elderhostel programs.  He was awarded the Instructor of Honor in 2002 by Hagerstown Community College    Roger is the author of two books dealing with frontier history of Pennsylvania and he holds two Master degrees from Lehigh University.

Deborah “Turtle” Swartz, Keedysville, MD 

Deborah is a member and clan mother for the Southeastern Woodland Indian Loyalist Confederacy. She has conducted educational programs for Colonial Williamsburg, Mt. Vernon, Fort Necessity,  Fort Loudoun and Smithsonian Associates. She is a living historian and member of Shelby’s Volunteers and is also a story-teller and dancer.   

Turtle and friends will be constructing a traveling lodge in front of the Buchanan Valley Fire Company Hall and they will be available to answer questions throughout the day.

Evelyn "White Feather" Comer

Daughter of Roger and Deborah “Turtle” Swartz stands in front of a traveling lodge or weigwey which will be set up at the Buchanan Valley Fire Company during Remembering Mary Jemison on April 5 from 10 am to 3 pm.

Allan Jamieson, eighth great grandson of Mary

John Thomas of Castile, NY

John is a researcher and Mary Jemison enthusiast. He has led programs at Letchworth State Park in New York.

Timothy H. Smith, Biglerville, PA

Tim is an Adams County historian and research assistant for the Adams County Historical Society. He is an instructor at Harrisburg Area Community College and has led Elderhostel programs. He has authored several books and is also a Licensed Battlefield Guide at the Gettysburg National Military Park

John Bechtel, III Gettysburg, PA

John is a French and Indian War reenactor and researcher. He has performed in F & I War reenactments across the East Coast.

Brian Schriven & Roland Beck of Letchworth State Park, Castile, New York

Roland Beck has been employed with New York State Parks for 30 years. He began his career as a teen and has worked his way up though the ranks. For the last 5 years he has been the Park Manager of Letchworth State Park. Roland and his wife Patti have 5 children and one grandchild. 

Brian Scriven has spent most of his adult career with the New York State Park system.  Beginning in 1974 as a New York State Park Police Officer and then working on the recreation side of parks developing and overseeing programming his interest in history eventually led him into his present position as Historic Site Manager at Letchworth State Park.  Brian is married and has two daughters.

James Blake of Gettysburg

James Blake is a French and Indian war historian and reenactor. He has volunteered at Harrisburg State Museum and Bushy Run battlefield in Pa. He is a craftsman and material culture buff of the American woodland Indians and has appeared in numerous documentarys for PBS and the History Channel and serves as a consultant for the movie The New World. He travels all around the country giving talks and lectures on Woodland Indian Material Culture. His work is in various museums across the country. He will set up a traveling lodge and will be at the Fire Hall throughout the day answering questions and giving information.

Tom Jolin, Slim Harrison, The Barnstormers with the RockCandy Cloggers

Slim Harrison and Tom Jolin teamed up over 28 years ago to perform traditional, old time, American folk music.  After many collaborations with the Rock Howland and Candy Ranlet, they officially joined forces in 2005 to form the Barnstormers with the RockCandy Cloggers.  Slim plays the fiddle, banjo, guitar, mountain dulcimer, harmonica, jaws harp and sings.  He is also a sought after traditional dance caller.  Tom plays the hammer dulcimer, banjo, button accordion, guitar, harmonica, bowed psaltery and sings.  Candy plays the string bass, concertina and jaws harp.  Rock Howland plays the fiddle.  Both Candy and Rock are award winning cloggers that dazzle audiences with amazing footwork.

Marian Benchoff

For many years, Marian assisted her late husband, Hobart, in sharing Mary's story with students at the Franklin Township Elementary and later the Gettysburg Area School District. Marian will have Indian articles as part of her show and tell.

Exhibitors and Vendors:
Allan Jamieson, eighth great-grandson of Mary Jemison

Adams County Winery

Adams County Winery will be releasing this label on April 1st through April 30th.  The label can be placed on any bottle of Adams County Winery wine for an extra $1.

 For more info, contact: Jessica Fogas, Marketing Manager, Adams County Winery, 251 Peach Tree Rd, Orrtanna, PA 17353


White Savage Trading Company, 143 Chambersburg Street, Gettysburg, PA 17325

Oxford Hall Celtic Shop, New Cumberland PA

They offer the best in Celtic jewelry, apparel, woolens and fine gifts from Ireland and the British Isles and feature wedding bands, engagement rings, claddagh jewelry, Irish sweaters and woolens, Irish, Welsh, Scottish China, Pottery and Crystal, Antonio Pacelli dance shoes and dance apparel. Scottish Clan jewelry, highland wear and kilts as well as kilt rentals. We try and offer items that honor the cultures of the ancient Celtic people.

Seneca Faceless Corn Husk Dolls

Anoitte Scott a Seneca from Caratariqus Reservation is New York State will bring her museum quality dolls for sale. (Her mother Lillian Kane tought her to make these traditional dolls and has had them on display at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C.) I have inquired how many family members will be a part of her party. Some will also participate in the dancing.

John Bechtel, III Gettysburg, PA

John is a French and Indian War reenactor and researcher. He has performed in F & I War reenactments across the East Coast.

Knights of Columbus

Land Conservancy

Letchworth State Park

Remembering Mary Jemison Committee T-shirt sales

Connocacheaque Traders; Pioneer, Colonial, French and Indian, Indian trade goods.

Deborah “Turtle” Swartz

The King George II reenactors

3 Scottish Pipers

Help Us with this Remembrance

We need financial assistance to reach local people about Mary's story. If you’re interested in becoming involved or learning more about Mary Jemison, contact Deb McCauslin at (717) 528-8553 or by email at 

Checks may be mailed to:

Mary Jemison Committee, c/o Bigerlerville Historical and Preservation Society, P.O. Box 656, Biglerville, PA 17307