Hog Butchery Class Circa 1850s Texas

Processing a hog as they would have done in 1850s Texas, at  Barrington Living History Farm

Processing a hog as they would have done in 1850s Texas, at Barrington Living History Farm

This is Passport to Texas

In 1850s Texas people raised and butchered their own animals. Pigs were a popular choice back then.

They reproduce quickly. They’re useful for eating your garbage, and then you eat them. In that way, it’s kind of a closed cycle of consumption—as a recycling source.

Barb King, is lead domestic interpreter at Barrington Living History Farm at Washington-on-the-Brazos State park and Historic Site. Before refrigeration, Texans butchered animals in cold months. January 13 & 14 farm staff will demonstrate the process. They’ll dispatch an animal before guests arrive, but visitors will see everything else beginning with evisceration…

That’s actually one of my favorite times to teach anatomy lessons, because [the pig’s organs] are very close to human structures. So, we can talk about different organs, what their use is….

Afterwards, Barb says, they divide the meat into cuts.

Then, on Sunday, we grind a lot of the meat; visitors can help with that. Then we end up curing the meat on Sunday, as well. So, we show people the start of the process, and then we have a lot of people who go home and end up trying their own charcuterie at home. Or, they already make sausage, and they just want to see the beginning of the process. You know: how do you start with it on the hoof?

The Whole Hog demonstration is Saturday and Sunday, January 13th & 14th at Barrington Living History Farm. The program is weather dependent, so call to confirm. Find details on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

That’s our show for today… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

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