Annual Labor Day festival honors Georgia Salzburgers

Updated: Sep. 3, 2018 at 1:49 PM EDT
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EFFINGHAM CO., GA (WTOC) - An Effingham County group spent their Labor Day honoring their ancestors.

The Georgia Salzburger Society held its annual Heritage Festival near Rincon on Monday, Sept. 3.

Organizers said there were more than 40 opportunities to do, see, and eat at this year's festival. The Labor Day event honors the hardworking lifestyles of the Georgia Salzburgers.

The group was one of the first to move from Austria and settle into America. In order to pursue religious freedom, the Salzburgers settled in Ebenezer, an area just outside of Rincon.

On Monday, guests got the chance to learn what it was like to live back in the 1700s. Several demonstrations took place, including bread making and soap boiling.

"This is our historical aspect of it. This is part of what brought us in. My wife's grandmother used to make soap in her yard and we took the idea and ran with it," Michal Putnam, Belham and Co. owner said.

But these guys aren't just demonstrators, they're entrepreneurs.

Michael Putnam owns the soap making company with his wife. They travel all around to showcase the old way of making soap and sell their own bars.

Justin Cherry may act as the community baker, but he's actually the owner of Half Crown Bakehouse.

Cherry built a bread oven that is modeled after the ovens used by the Salzburgers.

Cherry tours the East Coast teaching people about the bread making process.

"I've been a professional cook for 12 years and a demonstrator for 30 years, so I just combined those two passions into one business," Cherry said.

The festival is being held at historic Ebenezer located at 2890 Ebenezer Road. It will continue until 3 p.m.

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