Saturday, February 20, 2010

February-National Smocking Month

Did you know that February is National Smocking month? I don't know how this was decided, but it is at least a great excuse for SAGA chapters to hold displays in local libraries or hold smocking demonstrations in public places. Is your chapter hosting an event during February? If you do, don't forget to email a write up and photos to for Chapter Chatter. Your idea could inspire other SAGA chapters in the future.

Talking of smocking, did you know there is a village called SMOCK in Pennsylvania? I was looking for places with names that were sewing related (I know too much free time-in truth I was probably putting off doing something I should have been doing!) and came across Smock, PA. Smock is named after its founder, Samuel Smock who was a wealthy farmer, blacksmith and land speculator. He purchased land in 1869 and sold most of it to coal companies who developed the village's coal and coke industry. When the Pennsylvania Railroad came along, Smock granted them the right-of-way and in return had the station named after him, Smock Station. The station no longer exists, but the village later took up the name.

As a mining village, Smock was developed by several coal companies, resulting in various architecturally distinct settlements, as each company had its own style. These are now on the National Register for Historic Places. The coal miners in Smock came from Polish, Slovak, Italian, Russian and African-American extraction.

Smock is now a small community on State Route 4016 in Fayette County, Pennsylvania. It has a historical society formed in 1994 when they were placed on the National Register for Historic Places. They have established the Smock Heritage Museum to preserve the heritage of the special coal mining community. The museum is home to many maps, artifacts, photographs and even a wedding gown display. They also have a craft shop.

Visit  for more information.

If you ever get to visit Smock, don't forget to take photos and write something for SAGANews!

And the next issue of SAGANews should be leaving the printer by the end of next week and you know what this issue contains? Yes, the Convention Brochure! I hope that lots of you are looking forward to another great convention, this year in Norfolk, Virginia at the Marriott Waterside. You will have plenty of time to go through the brochure, pick out your classes, change your mind, go back again and make your final decision before the registration opens on May 1, 2010.

In your excitement, don't forget to read the rest of SAGANews as it contains some interesting articles.

Also, please visit the SAGA website (
and make sure your personal information is up-to-date, especially your email address. In an effort to 'Go Green' (okay and save money) SAGA is sending more and more information via email. Please add SAGA to your safe sender email addresses so you don't miss out on any important items-like your membership renewal notice that went out in December! If you have any questions on your membership, please contact the Registrar, Erna at . You can also contact your Region Representative with any questions you have.