OSWEGO – Fort Ontario State Historic Site on East Fourth Street in Oswego hosts a Revolutionary War encampment on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 25 and 26.
The event features living history demonstrations and three battle re-enactments.
Highlights include a Continental Army attack on a British outpost in Washington (East) Park on Bridge Street in Oswego at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday.
A detailed map shows the movement of troops planned for Saturday, August 25. The re-enactment begins at 10:30 a.m. as the Continental Army attacks a British outpost in Washington Square (East) Park and forces its occupants to retreat.
The attack successfully forces the Loyalists to retreat and fighting continues up East Fourth Street to the gates of the British-held fort.
A full-scale ‘Assault on the Fort’ by rebel troops begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday and again at 1 p.m. on Sunday.
During the weekend, British, Continental, and Native forces re-create the sights, sounds, and scenes of the American War for Independence from 1775 to 1783, a time when Fort Ontario served as a waystation for Loyalists fleeing rebel persecution, and as a base for British-Loyalist-Native raids into New York and Pennsylvania.
Fort Ontario was also the objective of the last Continental Army campaign of the Revolutionary War. In February 1783, approximately 750 New York and Rhode Island troops on snowshoes arrived within sight of the fort at sunrise, too late to launch a surprise night attack as ordered by Lt. General George Washington.
As a result, settlement around Oswego was forbidden until 1796, when Fort Ontario was turned over to the United States according to terms of the Jay Treaty.
Liaisons Plaisantes, a group of re-enactor musicians from the Mohawk Valley, performs music of the 18th century in one of the fort’s cave-like underground casemates at 12 and 3 p.m. on Saturday and at 12 p.m. on Sunday.
The Oneida Great Peace Living Historians Group conducts a program about their beliefs and traditions in the Continental Army camp at 1 p.m. on Saturday and at 11 a.m. on Sunday.
A fashion show illustrating clothing and uniforms of soldiers, officers, women, and children of the 18th century begins at 4 p.m. on Saturday in front of the Enlisted Men’s Barracks.
From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, historian Shari Crawford introduces kids to 18th century toys and games and a world of child’s play before the age of electronic gaming, communication devices, television, and radio, while living history expert Paul Supley interprets the role of an 18th century physician and surgeon.
Supley will bring a display of reproduction and original 18th century medical tools, equipment, medicines, and treatments.
For more information, contact Fort Ontario State Historic Site Manager Paul Lear at 315-343-4711 or [email protected] Find Fort Ontario on Facebook for more updates.
For Oswego County visitor information, go to www.visitoswegocounty.com or call 1-800-248-4FUN (4386).
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees 180 state parks and 35 historic sites which are visited by 60 million people each year.
A recent study found that New York State Parks generate $1.9 billion in economic activity annually and supports 20,000 jobs.
For more information on any of these recreation areas, call 518-474-0456, visit www.nysparks.com, or connect with the agency on Facebook and Twitter.
MILITARY STRATEGY – A tactical weapons plan provides an overview of the battle demonstration in Washington Square (East) Park scheduled for Saturday, August 25. The event begins at 10:30 a.m. and continues along East Fourth Street to the gates of the British-held fort. For details, call Fort Ontario at 315-343-471 or find it on Facebook.