July 14, 2024 Donate

Chelsea, Dexter

Historic Webster Village Celebrates Dexter’s Bicentennial

On July 13th, the Historic Webster Village will transport visitors two centuries into the past for a special Pioneer Day event celebrating the Dexter Bicentennial. Webster has an intimate connection to the area’s pioneering history and founder, Samuel Dexter, which makes this celebration particularly meaningful.

“Step back into an earlier, simpler time with us as we celebrate our 200-year kinship with Dexter and its founding father, Samuel Dexter,” invites event chair Joanne Westman, emphasizing the unique opportunity this event presents.

In 1824, two years before Webster’s first settlers arrived, Samuel Dexter purchased a large tract of land, including all of section 31 and parts of sections 32 and 30, in the southwest corner of what would become Webster Township. Remarkably, all three of the homes Dexter resided in over his lifetime – a log cabin, a frame house, and the grand Gordon Hall – were in Webster. So, while the village bore his name, Samuel Dexter’s personal residences and earliest development footprint were firmly rooted in neighboring Webster Township.

“This pivotal role in Webster’s pioneering story makes the 2024 Dexter Bicentennial a particularly historic milestone for the Webster community to celebrate,” Westman emphasizes, fostering a connection to the community’s past.

Bring the whole family to immerse themselves in games, crafts, music, demonstrations, and living history throughout the Village. Visit the one-room schoolhouse for reading from Little House on the Prairie, watch the blacksmith at work, visit the Old Town Hall, stop by the general store to take in a game of checkers near the old potbelly stove, then don’t miss a visit to May’s Barn with its newly completed farm museum. Docents will be in each historic building to bring the history of the building alive.

Historic Webster Village Town Hall and visitors. Photo by Joanne Westman.

Exhibitors will showcase traditional skills like spinning, weaving, basket making, chair caning, beekeeping, and blacksmithing. The village green will host family-friendly lawn games, a special children’s game area, and plenty of space for picnicking. The day will be filled with music featuring the Huron Vally Harmonizers, Nathan Sweet, guitarist, and “paula d. and the Copycats.”

Don’t miss this unique chance to experience pioneer life and history in Webster on July 13th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Historic Webster Village, 5583 Webster Church Road. Snacks and beverages will be available for purchase. The event is free.