Over the past few years, Highland Village animation staff have been transitioning interpretation from 3rd person to 1st person (or role playing). Through this process, staff have developed their own personas each with their own stories and experiences. In this blog, we meet Anna Nìll Mhurchaidh (Anna MacLean), she has made a new home in Alba Nuadh | Nova Scotia.
Anna and her family live in a Taigh-logaichean (log house), a small one-room house built from logs with a loft for sleeping and a fireplace for cooking. Outside they have a garden for their crops, and a pasture for the farm animals to graze.
Anna must daily tend to the crops in the field. Her crop of lìon (flax) is particularly vital for her to be able to make linen.
After she has harvested the lìon (flax) and removes the seeds, it will go through the method of retting, lìon (flax) being soaked then left to dry. Dry lìon (flax) will be crushed and scraped (called scutching) to reveal softer fibers. Lastly the process of hackling is where she will pull the softened fibers through a series of metal combs from coarse to fine, leaving long fibers which are used for spinning into thread and can be used to weave clothing and blankets for her family.
Anna and her family pass many traditions down verbally. Part of her Gaelic culture involves sharing their history and rituals through songs, poems, and story telling.
– Anna MacLean is portrayed by Vicki Quimby from, Orangedale, Cape Breton. She has been with the Highland Village Museum for the past 24 seasons.