Tag Archives: Fort Ticonderoga

Fife & Drum Corps Muster at Fort Ti on Saturday


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Fort Ticonderoga celebrates more than eight decades of Fife and Drum Corps performance with its annual Fife and Drum Corps Muster on August 6. The muster will highlight several Fife and Drum Corps from across the northeast and as far away as Michigan performing throughout the day. The muster will crescendo into a combined Fife and Drum Corps performance at 3:30 pm on Fort Ticonderoga’s Parade Ground.

This event highlights the role Fife & Drum music has played in the commemoration of American history. Fife and Drum Corps gained increased popularity during the American bicentennial celebrations. In 18th Century military life, fifes and drums served as one of the primary modes of battlefield communication and camp regulation.

Fort Ticonderoga formed its first Fife and Drum Corps in 1926 on the eve of the 150th anniversary celebrations of American Independence. The Corps performed at the Fort each summer until the beginning of World War II. When the World’s Fair came to New York City in 1939, the Fife and Drum Corps was a featured performer on May 10th, Fort Ticonderoga Day celebrating the 164th anniversary of the capture of the Fort by Ethan Allen, Benedict Arnold and the Green Mountain Boys.

In 1973, in preparation for the bicentennial, Fort Ticonderoga revived the fife and drum corps to perform daily during the Fort’s summer season. The fife and drum corps has performed every year since and has been featured performers at many major public events including the 1980 Lake Placid Winter Olympic Games, the christening of the US Navy Guided Missile Cruiser USS Ticonderoga CG-47, and several Evacuation Day parades in Boston, Massachusetts.

Today the Fife and Drum Corps is comprised of Ticonderoga area high school students who are paid employees of Fort Ticonderoga, a private non-profit organization. The Fife and Drum Corps is part of Fort Ticonderoga’s Interpretive Department whose focus brings to life Fort Ticonderoga’s specific history through daily interpretive programs, historic trades and special events.

Fort Ticonderoga’s full schedule and information on events can be found online or phone (518) 585-2821. Fort Ticonderoga is located at 100 Fort Ti Road Ticonderoga, New York.

Photo: Fort Ticonderoga’s Fife and Drum Corps Performs at Fort Ticonderoga.

Fort Ticonderoga Highlights Role of 1759 Indian Agent


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Visitors to Fort Ticonderoga this summer will be able to explore the role of an Indian agent in 1759 as part of a new program entitled “Within Humane Bounds.” The program will be offered from 2 pm – 5 pm, Sunday through Thursday through October 20, 2011.

An historic interpreter representing an Indian agent of Sir William Johnson’s Northern Indian Department who supplied and coordinated with Mohawk warriors in 1759 brings this nuanced history to life. The program includes an impressive display of representative trade goods including leggings, shirts, powder horns and weapons that were that were needed to secure Mohawk support to the British army. Visitors will learn about the role the agent played in maintaining the bonds of alliance as well as being an important source for practical trade goods utilized in the native villages including agricultural tools and cutlery.

Native American allies in the French & Indian War were key players for both the French and British armies. Accordingly, both sides had extensive networks of agents and traders to try to forge those alliances and coordinate native warriors. Beyond the backing of the British crown, and a large supply of trade goods, Indian agents also had to use personal connections to fulfill their positions. Their fluency in languages, knowledge of local customs, as well as their own personal bonds of kinship within tribes were all essential in securing native alliances. These bonds were very often tested during these times of war, as Indian agents walked a fine line between encouraging native military support while keeping these warriors acting, “Within Humane Bounds”. Sir William Johnson’s directive to his Indian agents was to use the inherent skills of natives in woodland warfare, while keeping them acting within the moral morays of European warfare. Indeed, 1759 through the work of Indian Agents, the Mohawk allies had a reputation among the British army for discipline as admirable as their martial skill.

“Within Humane Bounds” program is part of Fort Ticonderoga’s broader interpretive emphasis this season which brings to life the year 1759. Costumed historic interpreters portraying members of Abijah Williard’s Massachusetts Provincial Regiment recreate 1759 through daily programs and historic trades demonstrations.

Photo: Fort Ticonderoga’s Historic Interpreter, Joseph Privott, portrays an Indian Agent of Sir William Johnson’s Northern Indian Department at Fort Ticonderoga as part of the “Within Humane Bounds” Program.

Fort Ticonderoga Acquires Significant Papers


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A donation of four important manuscripts describing the American attack on Mount Independence on September 18, 1777 was recently made to the Fort Ticonderoga Museum. The collection of four letters was drafted by American Brigadier General Jonathan Warner and relate to Colonel John Brown’s raid on Ticonderoga. The donation was discovered and organized by Dr. Gary M. Milan and made possible by the generous support of George and Kathy Jones.

After the American army at Ticonderoga was forced to evacuate with the approach of the British army under General John Burgoyne in July 1777, Burgoyne left a small force of British and German soldiers to garrison Fort Ticonderoga and Mount Independence as the bulk of his army pursued the American army southward. In mid September two 500-men forces were ordered to test the defenses of the two posts and on September 18, the forces converged on the sleeping garrisons. Continue reading

Fort Ticonderoga to Recreate 1759 British Capture


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Re-enactors portraying French and British soldiers of the Seven Year’s War, also known as the French and Indian War, will converge upon Fort Ticonderoga this Saturday and Sunday, June 25 and 26 to recreate the tumultuous and chaotic events by which General Amherst’s British army captured the vital Fort. Visitors will experience the life of British soldiers and besieged French soldiers recreated around them, with all the sights and sounds they would have encountered at Fort Ticonderoga in the summer of 1759.

The modern recreation of this clash for empire will feature a variety of demonstrations and events. Highlights of the weekend include: a battle each day featuring re-enactors recreating events of the siege as reported in the diary of a private in Willard’s Regiment of Massachusetts Provincials, who was part of the British force attacking the Fort; artillery and musket demonstrations; a talk by author Russ Bellico on his book, Empires in the Mountains; 18th-century music performed on period instruments by musician Robert Mouland; a rousing game of 18th-century cricket; and historic merchants to give visitors an immersive experience in the inevitable victory for the British forces. In addition to these special events, visitors to Fort Ticonderoga on June 25 and 26 can also enjoy the museum’s extensive collection of artifacts and militaria and the King’s Garden; admission to this reenactment weekend is included in the price of general admission to the Fort.

During the Seven Year’s War the great rivalry between France and Britain played out in their American colonies. The summer of 1759 saw General Amherst, commander and chief of all British forces in North America, moving to take the French Fort Carillon (Ticonderoga) from the rear guard of soldiers posted there. Amherst moved his massive force of 11,000 to siege lines previously held by the French outside the Fort. The tiny French contingent of 400 pounded the British line with artillery for four days, in a futile attempt to stave off the inevitable. Finally, with their defeat in sight, the French spiked the cannons in the Fort, rendering them useless, and lit a fuse in the powder magazine, which exploded with destructive force. The French force retreated by boat to Fort St. Frederic in the north, also known as Crown Point. Out of the rubble of the old Fort Carillon rose the new Fort Ticonderoga as the British forces immediately moved in to begin reconstructing the fortifications.

Photo: Fort Ticonderoga’s Historic Interpreters Portray Massachusetts Provincial Soldiers in 1759. Courtesy Fort Ticonderoga.

Fort Ticonderoga Presents 2011 Author Series


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Fort Ticonderoga announces its 2011 Author Series, featuring authors of recent works related to the 18th- and 19th-century history of the Fort. The programs take place in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center at Fort Ticonderoga and are followed by a book signing in the Fort Ticonderoga Museum Store. Each program is included in the cost of admission.

The series includes:

June 19, 2:00 P.M.— Neil Goodwin, author of We Go as Captives: The Royalton Raid and the Shadow War on the Revolutionary Frontier.

June 25, 11:00 A.M.— Russell P. Bellico, author of Empires in the Mountains: French & Indian War Campaigns and Forts in the Lake Champlain, Lake George, and Hudson River Corridor.

July 31, 2:00 P.M.—Barnet Schecter, author of George Washington’s America: A Biography Through His Maps.

August 7, 2:00 P.M.—Richard Clark, author of Pathway to Liberty (historical fiction).

August 14, 2:00 P.M.—Tom Barker and Paul Huey, authors of The 1776-1777 Northern Campaigns of the American War for Independence.

September 10, 11:00 A.M.—James L. Nelson, author of With Fire and Sword: The Battle of Bunker Hill and the Beginning of the American Revolution.

September 11, 11:30 A.M.—Willard Sterne Randall, author of Ethan Allen: His Life and Times.

Ethan Allen Life and Times Talk


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Author Willard Sterne Randall will give a talk on Ethan Allen, one of Vermont’s best known historic figures, on June 18 at 1 p.m., at the Mount Independence State Historic Site in Orwell, VT. Randall’s new book, Ethan Allen: His Life and Times, which W.W. Norton will be coming out with later this summer, is the first comprehensive biography of Allen in a half century. Continue reading

Fort Ticonderoga’s King’s Garden Open


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The King’s Garden at Fort Ticonderoga opened for the season on June 1 with the colors of the bearded iris and other early blooming perennials and annuals. The garden celebrates the history of agriculture on the Fort Ticonderoga peninsula with tours, programs and special events throughout the season. Opportunities include hands-on family programs, adult learning, daily guided tours and quiet strolls through the scenery, volunteer initiatives, and a garden party.

The first program in the King’s Garden Workshop Series on herbs takes place on Wednesday, June 8th at 1:00 PM – Nature’s Wild Herbs Discovery Walk with local herbalist Nancy Wotton Scarzello.

Participants of this 90-minute walk and talk will tour the Healing Herb Garden and the garden grounds and field edges to learn about the traditional and folkloric uses of herbs and wild plants, identification, and ways they are used today. Pre-registration is required and the cost is $15. The rain date is June 9. For more information or to register, call (518) 585-2821 or email garden@fort-ticonderoga.org. Visit our website for a complete listing of programs in the Fort and King’s Garden, www.FortTiconderoga.org.

The King’s Garden is a restored pleasure garden located on the grounds of Fort Ticonderoga. Tours, educational programs, and demonstrations highlight the beauty and history of the garden throughout the season. The Discovery Gardens outside the walls and acres of manicured grounds offer a setting for exploration and relaxation. The King’s Garden is open June 1 – Columbus Day, October 10, from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm.

Photo: Poppies and bearded irises accent the King’s Garden teahouse located at Fort Ticonderoga.

Brodsky Praises Regents Collection Sales Reform


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Former Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, now Senior Fellow at Demos and the Wagner School at NYU, has released the following statement in response to the New York State Board of Regents enactment of deaccessioning regulations which closely track his legislative efforts over the past ten years:

“The regulations adopt the principle that museum collection should not be monetized for the purposes of operating expenses and assert the public trust and the public interest with respect to museum collections.

This is an extraordinary moment in the cultural history of the state. The Regents, under the leadership of Merryl Tisch and Committee on Cultural Education Chairman Roger Tilles, have vindicated fundamental cultural values, and help preserve New York’s museum collections for future generations. New York is again leading the nation and the world as new economic realities endanger museum collections everywhere. Repeated attempts to deaccession collections in order to pay bills has been a painful and repeated reality. It sets forth rules that permit institutions to function but protects the public interest in collections that the public has helped assemble.

The heart of this struggle has been to prevent the selling off of collections for the purposes of operating expenses. That principle has long been asserted by the museum community itself and groups such as the American Association of Museum Directors and the Museum Association of New York, have been stalwart and uncompromising in their principled positions. This victory would not have been achieved without their leadership.

It is important to note that the regulations leave with individual museums the decision about what to collect and what to deaccession. What the regulations do is assure that the current economic crisis will not result in a massive shift of publicly accessible art into private hands.

Our legislation would have extended these principles to all New York museums. There remain a handful of legislatively chartered institutions that are not subject to Regents supervision. I urge them to explicitly adopt these principles even as the Legislature continues to consider how best to set one uniform standard for all New York museums.

New York is the cultural capital of the world. We enjoy the generosity of private donors and philanthropists, huge numbers of semi public and public institutions, and the populous that supports and enjoys its thousands of museums. This action today by the Board of Regents will assure New York’s continued leadership and preeminence. My special thanks to my colleagues Matthew Titone and Steve Englebright who continue to lead this legislative effort, to MANY Director Anne Ackerson, to Michael Botwinick, Director of the Hudson River Museum and Vice President of MANY, Regent James Dawson, the staff of the Department of Education, and to the thousands of involved and passionate New Yorkers who insisted that our collections be protected.”

A pdf pf the rule can be found here.

Illustration: Gleyna, or A View Near Ticonderoga. The 1826 Thomas Cole painting held by the Fort Ticonderoga Museum which faced the possibility of selling a portion of it’s collection in recent years.

Fort Ticonderoga Offers ‘Art of War’ Exhibiit


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Fort Ticonderoga’s newest exhibit, The Art of War: Ticonderoga as Experienced through the eyes of America’s Great Artists brings together for the first time in one highlighted exhibition fifty of the museum’s most important artworks. Fort Ticonderoga helped give birth to the Hudson River school of American Art with Thomas Cole’s pivotal 1826 work, Gelyna, or a View Near Ticonderoga, the museum’s most important 19th-century masterpiece to be featured in the exhibit. The Art of War exhibit will be through October 20 in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center exhibition gallery.

The Art of War exhibit includes paintings, prints, drawings, photographs and several three-dimensional artifacts selected for their historical significance and artistic appeal. Artists whose works are featured include Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, Charles Wilson Peale, and Daniel Huntington among many others. As reflected in the exhibit, 19th-century visitors to Fort Ticonderoga included some of the greatest artists of the period who found inspiration in Fort Ticonderoga’s epic history and exquisite landscape.

Regional photographic artists such as Seneca Ray Stoddard recorded Ticonderoga’s ruins and landscapes over the course of twenty years. Many of his photographs were published in area travel guides and histories during the last quarter of the 19th century, keeping alive Ticonderoga’s place in American history while documenting early heritage tourism.

The Art of War uses the artworks to present the story of the Fort’s remarkable history and show how its history inspired American artists to capture its image and keep Ticonderoga’s history alive. The exhibit will graphically tell the history of the site from its development by the French army in 1755 through the beginning of its reconstruction as a museum and restored historic site in the early 20th century.

The Art of War: Ticonderoga as Experienced through the eyes of America’s Great Artists is organized by Christopher D. Fox, Curator of Collections.

Illustration: Gleyna, or A View Near Ticonderoga. Oil on board by Thomas Cole, 1826. Fort Ticonderoga Museum Collection.

Fort Ticonderoga Names Interpretation Director


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Fort Ticonderoga has announced the appointment of Stuart Lilie to serve as Director of Interpretation at Fort Ticonderoga, one of the oldest and most significant historic sites in North America.

“Stuart Lilie arrives at the Fort,” said Beth Hill “with tremendous vision and enthusiasm for the Fort’s future. He is extremely competent as a leader in the profession and has a clear commitment to the high quality historic interpretation required for the Fort to attain its vision to be the premier military historic site and museum in North America.”

He will begin work at Fort Ticonderoga on April 25, 2011 and will be responsible for the development and implementation of Fort Ticonderoga’s Interpretive Department.

With a Bachelor of Arts in History from The College of William & Mary, Stuart Lilie has extensive knowledge of material culture, trades and historic interpretation. He has worked in several interpretive and trades positions at Colonial Williamsburg and served as an apprentice archaeologist with the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities at Jamestown. An accomplished horseman and saddler, Mr. Lilie began and currently operates the only 18th century reproduction saddle company. He has consulted on historical equestrian matters for films at Mount Vernon, 96 Battlefield, Moore’s Creek, Vicksburg and Cowpens National Park.

An avid Revolutionary war and Seven Years war re-enactor for 15 years, Mr. Lilie has taken his belief in high standards of authenticity to work on the development of educational programming for many national sites including Colonial Williamsburg, Putnam Memorial State Park, Fort Dobbs State Historic Site, Minute Man National Park, Endview Plantation, Virginia War Museum, and Middleton Place. “I am both honored and excited to be part of such a great team, making such a huge difference at one of America’s most historic sites.”, said Mr. Lilie about his new post.

Photo: Fort Ticonderoga’s Director of Interpretation, Stuart Lilie. Lilie will begin work at the Fort on April 25, 2011.

Seven Years’ War College Teacher Scholarships


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Fort Ticonderoga is has announced the winners of teacher scholarships to attend the Sixteenth Annual War College of the Seven Years’ War May 20-22, 2011. They are: Wendy Bergeron, of Winnacunnet High School, Hampton, New Hampshire; Steven Hammerman, Falcon Cove Middle School, Weston, Florida; Judd Kramarcik, Commack Road Elementary School, Islip, New York; and Bill Sullivan, Northwestern Regional High School, Winsted, Connecticut.

Fort Ticonderoga’s teacher scholarships are supported by generous War College patrons and have been awarded to 53 teachers since 2001. Teacher scholarships are also offered for the annual Fort Ticonderoga Seminar on the American Revolution, held this year September 23-25, 2011. The seminar brochure and teacher scholarship application form are both available on the fort website at www.fort-ticonderoga.org by selecting the “Education Program” tab and then clicking on “Revolutionary War Seminar.”

Photo: Fifteenth Annual War College of the Seven Years’ War, May 2010.

Fort Ticonderoga Presents Material Matters Workshop


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Fort Ticonderoga presents the next “Material Matters: It’s in the Details” Winter Weekend Workshop on Saturday, February 26th. This workshop, focusing on the Revolutionary War era, takes place in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center at Fort Ticonderoga from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Pre-registration is required.

Designed for those who want a deeper understanding of the everyday objects that help tell the story of life during the 18th century, this workshop is a part of a series examining the material culture of the 18th century as it relates to Fort Ticonderoga’s role in the 18th-century contests for North America.

The February 26th workshop features William Hettinger, an expert on 18th-century jewelry; Jenna Schnitzer, who will speak on 18th-century women’s clothing; Chris Fox, the Fort’s Curator of Collections, whose presentation focuses on 18th-century lighting devices; and Eric Schnitzer, from Saratoga National Historical Park, who will discuss the use of artworks when researching 18th-century material culture. The workshop concludes with an opportunity for participants to examine examples of 18th-century artifacts with the panel of experts.

The cost for the day-long workshop is $35 and includes morning refreshments and lunch. To register, contact Rich Strum at 518-585-6370 or you can download a registration form at www.Fort-Ticonderoga.org and select “Adult Programs” under the “Education Programs” button.

Rare Maps of the American Revolution in the North


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The 1776-1777 Northern Campaigns of the American War for Independence and Their Sequel: Contemporary Maps of Mainly German Origin by Thomas M. Barker and Paul R. Huey is the first, full-scale, presentation in atlas form of the two, abortive British-German invasions of New York – events crucial to understanding the rebel American victory in the War for Independence. The book includes 240 pages with 32 full-color illustrations.

The bulk of the maps are from the German archives. The material has previously been little used by researchers in the United States due to linguistic and handwriting barriers. The volume includes transcriptions, translations, and detailed textual analysis of the naval and land operations of 1776 and 1777. It is written from a novel military-historical perspective, namely, British, German, loyalist, French Canadian, and First American.

The attack of Benedict Arnold and Richard Montgomery on Québec City, the colonial assailants’ repulse and withdrawal to the Province of New York and the Hudson River corridor, prior actions in the adjacent St. Lawrence-Richelieu river region of Canada, the Battle of Valcour Island on Lake Champlain, the forts at Crown Point and Ticonderoga, and the Battles of Bennington and Saratoga all receive detailed attention. The last section of the atlas deals with the less known, final phase of combat, in which the Britons, Germans, refugee tories, Québec militia, and Amerindians kept the insurgents off balance by mounting numerous small-scale expeditions into New York.

The significance of the publication is highlighted by Russell Bellico, author of Sails and Steam in the Mountains: A Maritime History of Lake George and Lake Champlain. He writes that Barker’s and Huey’s tome is “a superb work of scholarship based on exhaustive research on both sides of the Atlantic.” J. Winthrop Aldrich, New York State Deputy Commissioner for Historic Preservation, states that the maps “are of significant help now as we continue to build our understanding of what happened in our war for independence, and why. This rediscovered treasure and the illuminating commentary and notes superbly advance that understanding.”

Dr. Thomas M. Barker is emeritus professor of history, University of Albany, State University of New York at Albany. He is the author of numerous books about European military history, especially the Habsburg monarchy, Spain, World War II as well as ethnic minority issues. Dr. Paul R. Huey is a well-known New York State historical archeologist and also has many publications to his credit. He is particularly knowledgeable about the locations of old forts, battlefields, colonial and nineteenth-century buildings, and/or their buried vestiges. He works at the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historical Preservation Bureau of Historic Sites office on Peebles Island in Waterford, New York. The book is co-published with the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.

Note: Books noticed on this site have been provided by the publishers. Purchases made through this Amazon link help support this site.

Fort Ticonderoga Receives Art Exhibit Grant


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Fort Ticonderoga has been awarded a grant in the amount of $3,000 by The Felicia Fund, Inc. of Providence, Rhode Island. The funds will support the upcoming exhibit, The Art of War: Ticonderoga as Experienced through the Eyes of America’s Great Artists exhibit. The new exhibit, scheduled to open in May 2011, will feature fifty works from Fort Ticonderoga’s extensive art collection together for the first time in a single exhibition. Included will be important American works by Thomas Davies, Thomas Cole, and Daniel Huntington.

The funding from The Felicia Fund supports the research, construction, and installation of the exhibit. The exhibit will use the artwork to explore human interaction at the Fort from the 18th century through the early 20th century. Fort Ticonderoga helped give birth to the Hudson River School of American art with Thomas Cole’s pivotal 1826 work, Gelyna, View Near Ticonderoga, the museum’s most important 19th-century masterpiece to be featured in the exhibit.

Beth Hill, Executive Director, said the generous grant provided by The Felicia Fund will “utilize the museum’s art collection to engage visitors with the role art played in memorializing the events that took place at Fort Ticonderoga and to encourage participatory activities that make the visitor experience part of the Fort’s continued legacy.”

The exhibit is being developed through collaboration with Winterthur Museum Graduate Program of the University of Delaware.

Christopher Fox, Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator of Collections, said the exhibit “will help the Fort reach new audiences by presenting its magnificent art collections in an exciting new format.”

The Art of War will be exhibited at Fort Ticonderoga in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center from May 20th through October 20th, 2011.

Multi-interdisciplinary art-themed educational programs developed with this exhibit will provide new opportunities for students and families to experience Fort Ticonderoga’s history and its 2000 acre campus.

Illustration: Thomas Cole’s “Gelyna, View Near Ticonderoga” (1826), courtesy Fort Ticonderoga.

Tories: American Revolution and Civil War


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In 1777, as General John Burgoyne’s army marched south, having taken Fort Ticonderoga, a temporary loyalist enclave was created in Rutland County, Vermont. While many rebel Americans fled before the British Army, a few stayed on. In Rutland Nathan Tuttle, a rebel known locally for hating and taunting loyalists, was one of them.

Tuttle’s decision to stay behind was not a very good one at a time and place when the American Revolution was a full-scale Civil War. As Burgoyne’s army passed through Rutland, Tuttle disappeared. Ten years later it was revealed by a local Tory that Tuttle had been bayoneted, his body weighted with stones and thrown into a creek. Nathan Tuttle was an American, and so were his murderers, likely men associated with the notorious Loyalist and close confidant of John Burgoyne, Philip Skene of Whitehall. Continue reading

Fort Ticonderoga Receives Program Grant


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Fort Ticonderoga has been awarded a grant in the amount of $15,000 by the Alfred Z. Solomon Charitable Trust of Saratoga Springs, NY. The funds will support an expanded interpretive program entitled “These Worthy Fellows are Second to None in Courage” highlighting the daily lives of the soldiers garrisoned at Fort Ticonderoga.

The funding support from the Alfred Z. Solomon Charitable Trust will help support interpretive staff and the purchase of interpretive clothing, weapons, accoutrement and tools. The Fort’s expanded programming will further bring to life the Fort’s social and military history as well as the material culture of the 18th century soldiers who served at Fort Ticonderoga.

Beth Hill, Executive Director, said the generous grant provided by Alfred Z. Solomon Charitable Trust will “support a significant initiative at Fort Ticonderoga that invests in the visitor’s experience, serves the heart of our mission and meets a national need.” As part of an institutional-wide assessment, Fort Ticonderoga has identified the need for more interpretive opportunities that engage visitors through expanded living history programs.

According to a recent national study, 83% of U.S. adults failed when tested on the beliefs, freedoms and liberties established during the American Revolution. A goal of the Fort’s interpretive initiative is to address in part the historical amnesia identified in the report. Fort Ticonderoga, often called “America’s Fort,” tells the story of how the blood spilled in the name of empire during the French and Indian War became part of the same story of the blood spilled in the name of liberty during the American Revolution.

Photo: Interpreters portray Loyalist militia at Fort Ticonderoga.

The Jersey Greys in New York Event


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Fort Montgomery State Historic Site (690 Route 9W, Fort Montgomery, NY) will be offering an evening lecture, “The 3rd New Jersey in New York: Stories from “The Jersey Greys” of 1776″ on Thursday, December 2nd at 7 PM.

Speaker Philip D. Weaver will utilize correspondence, company account books, and period diaries to acquaint you with one of the best equipped, most interesting, and dysfunctional regiments in the early Continental Army, the 3rd New Jersey of 1776. Attendees will be given a quick introduction to the organization and the personalities, followed by a discussion of their New York campaign. Weaver will focus on a number of stories and anecdotes. The program will also include information on their garrisoning of Fort Stanwix and their subsequent relocation to “the old French Barracks” at Fort Ticonderoga.

This lecture is FREE and open to all. For more information or directions, call (845) 446-2134.

Image: Charles Wilson Peale portrait of then Captain Joseph Bloomfield of the 3rd New Jersey.

George Washington’s Great Gamble Author Event


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Fort Ticonderoga’s 2010 Author Series concludes on Sunday, October 17th, with James Nelson, author of George Washington’s Great Gamble: And the Sea Battle That Won the American Revolution. The program takes place in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center at Fort Ticonderoga at 2:00 p.m., followed by a book signing at 3:00 p.m. in the Fort Ticonderoga Museum Store. The program is included in the cost of admission.

In George Washington’s Great Gamble, Nelson tells the story of the greatest naval engagement of the American Revolution. In the opening months of 1781, General George Washington feared his army would not survive the coming campaign season. The spring and summer only served to reinforce his despair, but in late summer the changing circumstances of war presented a once-in-a-war opportunity for a French armada to hold off the mighty British navy while his own troops with French reinforcements would drive Lord Cornwallis’s forces to the Chesapeake. The Battle of the Capes would prove the only time the French ever fought the Royal Navy to a draw; but for the British army it was a catastrophe, leading to Cornwallis’s surrender at Yorktown.

James L. Nelson is the author of 15 works of fiction and nonfiction. His novels include the five books of his “Revolution at Sea” saga and three in his “Brethren of the Coast” series. His novel Glory in the Name won the American Library Association’s W.Y. Boyd Literary Award for Best Military Fiction. He is also the author of Benedict Arnold’s Navy and George Washington’s Secret Navy, which earned the Samuel Eliot Morison Award.

Fort Ticonderoga Hosts Garrison Ghost Tours


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Discover the unexplained past at Fort Ticonderoga during evening Garrison Ghost Tours, Fridays and Saturdays, Oct. 22 and 23 and Oct. 29 and 30. The lantern-lit tours, offered from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m., will highlight Fort Ticonderoga’s haunted history and recount stories featured on Syfy Channel’s Ghost Hunters.

Garrison Ghost Tours, led by costumed historic interpreters carrying lanterns, allow guests to enter areas of the Fort where unexplained events have occurred. The forty-five minute walking tour in and around the Fort offers historical context to the many ghostly stories that are part of Fort Ticonderoga’s epic history. The evening tours allow guests to experience the magic of Fort Ticonderoga at night. Guests can also take their own self-guided walk to the historic American Cemetery where a costumed interpreter will share the many stories related to its interesting past.

Fort Ticonderoga has a long and often violent history. Constructed in 1755, the Fort was the scene of the bloodiest day of battle in American history prior to the Civil War when on July 8, 1758 nearly 2,000 British and Provincial soldiers were killed or wounded during a day-long battle attempting to capture the Fort from the French army. During the American Revolution nearly twenty years later thousands of American soldiers died of sickness while defending the United States from British invasion from the north.

Tickets for the Garrison Ghost Tours are $10 each and reservations are required. Call 518-585-2821 for reservations. No exchanges and refunds allowed. The Garrison Ghost Tours are a rain or shine event. Beverages and concessions are available for purchase. Garrison Ghost Tour dinner packages are available through Best Western Ticonderoga Inn & Suites. Visit www.fort-ticonderoga.org for package details.

Photo: Twilight at Fort Ticonderoga