Saturday, December 3, 2011

Candle Tea

One of the nice things about living where we do, is that we are near Old Salem.

Salem was founded in 1766 by the Moravians – a Protestant group of people that began in what is now known as the Czech Republic. The Moravians were missionaries who established an earlier settlement in Bethlehem, PA before beginning "Wachovia" in the North Carolina back-country in 1753. In the Wachovia Tract of nearly 100,000 acres, Salem was the central administrative, spiritual, craft, and professional town surrounded by five outlying congregations.

Old Salem is made up of many of the original structures and is manned by volunteers who give tours in Colonial garb.  It's a very cool place to visit if you are ever around the Winston-Salem area.

Every Christmas, Home Moravian Church sponsors the Candle Tea.  The Candle Tea is held in the Single Brother's House.  You get to see how early Moravians would have made the beeswax candles that are still used in Moravian Christmas Eve services and you get to see the Moravian putz which is a replica of early Salem and the Nativity putz and you get to munch on some delicious Moravian cookies.

I got to attend the Candle Tea with Sarah's Brownie troop on Saturday morning.  Here are a few pictures that I took:

The Brownies and Daisies waiting to go in.  Don't you love it when 12 moms line up to take pictures and no one is looking at the same camera at the same time?  I don't!

The lady in pink is telling us how the Moravians made beeswax candles in the mid-1700s.

Pouring hot wax into the molds.

This lady is trimming the candles.

This young man was doing quality control and cutting the bottom off the candles so that they are all 6 1/2 inches long.

A try of complete candles and a Moravian Advent wreath.

Pretty wreath hanging in the window.

Lily and Sarah waiting on their cookies!

In the kitchen of the Single Brother's House hearing about how the Moravians used to cook their food.

Dried chili's hanging in the kitchen.  (Love the light on this one!)

Part of the very large putz depicting early Salem.

Another section of the putz.


Living Life in the Lowcountry said...

I have always loved Old Salem, I attended Salem College back in the '80s!

Aimee said...

Very cool, I love stuff like this! And we happen to live ten minutes from the original Moravian settlement in Bethlehem. I'm telling you, those Moravians were ahead of their time - they had the first running water in Bethlehem and all sorts of other "amenities". We love to go to the Central Moravian church to see the putz - and they even have a "peep putz" contest, which is a putz made out of Peeps marshmallow treats. (Peeps are also made in Bethlehem). Very cute. :)