The following rules were given to the Frontier families upon their acceptance to the project.
All participants agree to live as closely to the pioneer lifestyle of the 1880s as possible. This includes the wearing of clothing, the preparation and consumption of foods typical of the era, use of period equipment, and contemporary work routines. Wherever possible this lifestyle will be directed by the participants themselves. If persistent difficulties occur participants may seek advice from Frontier House consultants, normally via the postal service or, in urgent cases, via telegraph.
In certain circumstances consultants will visit location to assist with complicated/potentially dangerous activities. However, should you have any anxieties about other activities that may occur where we do not anticipate the attendance of a consultant please alert a member of the production team as soon as possible.
1. Communications With The Outside World
To maintain authenticity we will make outside communications consistent with the 1880s. This means use of the postal service, which will operate from the store. Any modern communication devices, such as mobile phones, must be surrendered at the exchange of clothing. Mail arriving for participants will be held at the store until a participant makes collection. Incoming packages may be opened to ensure the contents are consistent with the period.
2. Visitors From The Modern World
To make travel arrangements at this time was rare, as transport was a complex and timely affair. Therefore we do not anticipate contributors receiving numerous visitors throughout their stay. Visitors who do come will be accommodated, entertained and fed at the participant's property and expense. We ask that visitors respect the project and surrender all modern devices such as mobile phones, radios, contemporary media, and modern day foodstuffs. They will be asked to wear clothing that is sympathetic to the period dress worn by participants. All visitors will have to sign a release permitting their visit to be filmed and included within the program.
3. Working Collectively
Many accounts of this period record how part of homesteading life revolved around assisting neighbors at important periods -- like roofing a house or raising of a barn. Bartering of goods or services was a common occurrence too. These activities are encouraged. However, it must be remembered that the primary goal of each household was to work toward their own future, particularly in preparing for a potentially harsh winter ahead. Therefore we do not encourage a communal approach to the "Frontier House" project -- such as the combined use of labor to prepare just one kitchen garden or the nightly preparation of a single evening meal for all.