1,000 reenactors stage 1760 Ogdensburg battle - The final skirmish of French and Indian War
When Mark T. Valley, the star of "Human Target", was growing up in Ogdensburg no one told him about its role in the French and Indian War. But on Saturday, with musket in hand and wearing a French soldier's uniform, he was fighting British soldiers. "It's kind of like a movie set," Valley said as he stood on Lighthouse Point, preparing for the 250th anniversary of the last battle of the French and Indian War. During the "Battle of the Thousand Islands," 11,000 British and colonials, led by Sir Jeffrey Amherst marched down the St. Lawrence River - Standing between them and the defeat of New France was 350 French soldiers.
French and Indian War re-enactors train for the Founder's Day living history events at Lighthouse Point
French and Indian War re-enactors from across New England, Canada and even Europe carried out battle drills at the site of a former French fort. Wearing wool uniforms and tricorn hats, re-enactors from the colonial-era re-enactment group Forsyth's Rifles and several other units met on the Ogdensburg's historic Lighthouse Point to train for the annual Founder's Day living history events. Founder's Day will be held July 18-19 at Lighthouse Point - which will also host the state's 250th French and Indian War Commemoration events in 2010. Re-enactor David A. Clarke made the trip from Coventry, England, to play a French soldier: "I prefer the French side. You get to be the bad guy at home."
Cherokee Indians and frontiersmen battle in re-enactment at blockhouse in Scott (Article no longer available from the original source)
Tensions between the Cherokee Indians and frontiersmen boiled over in battle Saturday, marked by the booms of a cannon, rifles and muskets. Neither side "won", but the Native Americans got an edge because one frontiersman was wounded by a Cherokee musket ball and a frontier woman seized by the Cherokee chose to stay with her captors. It was day one of a 2-day living history lesson "Siege of the Wilderness Road Blockhouse" by the Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Association at Natural Tunnel State Park near Duffield. 250 people attended the event, which included a horse race, the siege battle, storytelling, 18th century battlefield surgery, frontier cooking and a night battle.
Re-enactors, vendors gather for 18th Century Market Fair at Fort Frederick State Park
It was like going back to the 18th century: Re-enactors were dressed in clothing that would have been common during the French and Indian War during the first day of the 14th annual 18th Century Market Fair at Fort Frederick State Park. However, shoppers looking for uniforms, blankets, weapons and other items were talking about the price of gas. Lt. Angie Hummer, park manager of the Fort Frederick complex, said she expects 8,000 - 10,000 visitors throughout the 4-day event. Ruth Konrad - one of the 135 vendors - is selling linens, fabric and sewing materials. She sells mainly to re-enactors.
Historians re-enact the massacre at Sabbath Day Point (Article no longer available from the original source)
Serving in the military could be lucrative for young men from New Jersey who left their farms to spend a season fighting in the French and Indian War. 350 soldiers in 22 whale boats were traveling north on Lake George on an expedition on July 24, 1757 when they landed near Sabbath Day Point for some unknown reason. American Indians allied with the French ambushed soldiers as they landed. One theory is that American Indians drew the soldiers to shore by wearing red arm bands used to id American Indians allied with the British. 150 of the soldiers were killed, more casualties than in the Fort William Henry massacre a few weeks later.
Re-enactors battle way back to French and Indian War
Soldiers in coats and leather boots joined warriors in moccasins and loincloths in battles to control the continent. A crowd watched a re-enament of a skirmish Sunday, the last day of the 2-day French and Indian War Muster at Fort Frederick State Park. John "Bear" Kirkpatrick said frontier icons like Davey Crocket and Daniel Boone helped spark an interest in America's early history. "I've just always been a history person. There's only two grades I got decently at school early-American history and construction." He was portraying a man who would have worked with British forces at the fort to spy on the movements of the French and Indians and hunt game.
Historic 1757 Lake George battle to be re-enacted (Article no longer available from the original source)
A re-enactment of the first siege of Fort William Henry. Picture yourself as a British soldier stationed inside the walls of Fort William Henry on a dark night in 1757. And from the distance you hear the sound of hatchets chipping away at the frozen surface of Lake George. It was the sound of French soldiers chopping the ice and the site of candles flickering that alerted the British of the impending March attack. About 130 re-enactors from the US and Canada will recreate the first siege of Fort William Henry, an unsuccessful attempt by French forces and American Indians to capture the fort in March 1757.
How the War Began: The French & Indian War 1754-1763 (Article no longer available from the original source)
"I heard the bullets whistle, and, believe me there is something charming in the sound," 22yo Lt. Col. George Washington wrote on May 31, 1754. Those shots, his first brush with combat, were fired 3 days earlier in a glen near Laurel Ridge. They ignited the French and Indian War and a period of turmoil for the Lehigh Valley. Virginia's governor had sent the young colonel with a regiment to confront French troops encroaching on land the British colony claimed. About sunrise, Washington and four dozen soldiers, guided by Indian warriors, surprised a smaller party of French Canadian militiamen in camp.
Indian warfare re-enacted, redoubt opens
Jack McCandless, who portrays a ranger from the French and Indian War era, found a thick layer of ice in his water bucket when he awakened at his camp on the Army Heritage Trail. He was one of many living historians who helped bring the era alive at Camp at Carlisle, 1757. Rangers were hired by the British to take them from Carlisle to Fort Pitt. Rangers were "a new type of fighting force that played a deadly game of hide and seek with their foes," said Michael Lynch. Their style of fighting was different from the British style of marching in a straight line and standing to fire.