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French and Indian War to be refought in N.Y.

CROWN POINT, N.Y. — Hundreds of re-enactors are expected as Crown Point State Historic Site hosts its annual French and Indian War Encampment Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 9 and 10.

The public will be able to see naval landings both in the morning and in the afternoon each day.

The British-versus-French “battles” will be lake-based this year, making use of several replica watercraft.

The best location for viewing the progress of the amphibious attacks from 11 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. will be the sidewalk of Champlain Bridge overlooking the Historic Site.

“There will be plenty of flintlock musket fire and even some artillery fire from boats,” Site Manager Tom Hughes said by email.

“Guests should arrive early, allowing them time to get into position for the best views and to park on the grounds of Crown Point State Historic Site.”

Parking is free of charge.

The site’s air-conditioned museum, with its high-definition audio-visual show and interactive exhibits, is open from 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays.

“Guests to the camp will be able to see, hear, walk among, and interact with the many volunteers who will spend the weekend portraying various people of Crown Point’s past,” Hughes said. “Visitors will want to bring a camera.”

He said sutlers (vendors) will show and sell their replica 18th century wares all weekend.

In 1734, the French military built an impressive stronghold at Crown Point, Fort St. Frédéric, with its tall limestone tower and even a fortified and wind-powered grist mill.

A quarter-century later, in 1759, the British arrived and added an even larger fort complex at Crown Point.

The limestone ruins of the French-built fort and the earthen walls and stone barracks of the British fort — located on a point of land that juts into Lake Champlain — still offer an inspiring location that has remained largely unchanged since a fire burned the British fort in 1773, Hughes pointed out, only two years before the start of the Revolutionary War.

The ruins are among the few remaining examples of pre-Revolutionary military construction in the United States.

Both fort ruins have been individually designated as National Historic Landmarks by the U.S. Department of the Interior, in recognition of their international importance, Hughes said.

Nearby Chimney Point State Historic Site in Vermont is also participating in the event this year.

lmckinstry@pressrepublican.com

 

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