American Girl Dolls at the PA Heritage Festival

American Girl Dolls at the PA Heritage FestivalAn American Girl Doll exhibit. Provided photo.

Congratulations are in order for the American Girl Dolls getting married in three different scenes from the Civil War Era during the 2019 PA Heritage Festival, planned for Sept. 21-22 in Troy, Pa. The display includes a lovely, blonde Southern Belle bride with her dashing Confederate bridegroom; a stunning dark haired Northern debutante bride and her gallant Union Officer bridegroom; and a daring slave couple’s wedding in their acceptable custom of “jumping the broom.” 

Each year the Roseville Ladies strive to compliment some segment of the PA Heritage Festival. This year the Ladies and their American Girl Dolls will present, for your viewing pleasure and education, displays in conjunction with an actual Civil War period wedding to take place in the little church on the Heritage Festival grounds.

American Girl Dolls at the PA Heritage Festival
An American Girl Doll exhibit. Provided photo.

American Girl Dolls easily lend themselves to this identifiable period in American history: Union blue and Confederate grey uniforms, hooped skirts over yards and yards of fabric, and slavery intent on living the best that could be managed – even with weddings. 

What did “jumping the broom” mean? Brooms were waved over the heads of marrying couples to ward off spirits. The couple would often jump over the broom at the end of the ceremony, symbolizing the wife’s commitment or willingness to clean the courtyard of the new home she had joined, and signifying their entrance into a new life creating a new family by “sweeping away” their former single lives. Obviously the Northern and Southern weddings take place early in the Civil War, given that bridegrooms eventually became sparse on both sides. The scenes depict weddings before Emancipation. 

You will enjoy the historical presentation of beautiful period wedding dresses, carefully coiffed brides, basic Civil War uniforms on male dolls new to the American Girl Doll collection, and beautifully dressed wedding guests. 

Join them Sept. 21 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. or on Sept. 22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free. 

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