Prestigious National Endowment for the Humanities Grant Supports Residential Teacher Workshops this July at Fort Ticonderoga

NEH Teachers workshopFort Ticonderoga is preparing to host two week-long National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops for school teachers this July. Seventy-two teachers from 37 different states have been selected from a national applicant pool to attend “The American Revolution on the Northern Frontier: Fort Ticonderoga and the Road to Saratoga.”  The Fort Ticonderoga program is one of twenty-one programs nation-wide being offered for teachers this summer. The National Endowment for the Humanities is a federal agency that each year supports summer study opportunities so that teachers can work with experts in the humanities disciplines.

Participating teachers receive a $1,200 stipend from the NEH to help cover their travel, study, and living expenses during the week they are in Ticonderoga. The same workshop will be offered twice, July 12-17 and July 26-31, accommodating 36 teachers each week. Rich Strum, the Director of Education at Fort Ticonderoga, is the project director for the workshops.

Participating teachers will meet with NEH visiting scholars from across the country. Topics during the week include the French & Indian War, Overlooked Participants in the American Revolution, Benedict Arnold, the 1777 Northern Campaign, and the Legacies of the Revolution. Visiting scholars include:

  • Jon Parmenter (Cornell University)
  • James Kirby Martin (University of Houston)
  • Holly Mayer (Duquesne University)
  • Douglas Egerton (Lemoyne College)
  • Tom Chambers (Niagara University)
  • William Fowler (Northereastern University)

Topics for the twenty-one NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops offered for teachers this summer at other venues range from the American Revolution, 19th-century reform movements, the industrial revolution, the civil rights movement, and the 150th anniversary of Lincoln’s assassination. The approximately 1,360 teachers who participate in these studies will teach more than 170,000 American students in the coming school year.

To learn more about professional development opportunities for teachers at Fort Ticonderoga, visit Fort Ticonderoga’s website at www.fort-ticonderoga.org, click on the “Education” tab and select “Educators” on the drop-down menu.

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Support Fort Ticonderoga at the 15th Annual King’s Garden Party: A Fundraising Event at Fort Ticonderoga on Sunday, July 12

Spend an elegant evening in the King’s Garden at Fort Ticonderoga with music, food, cocktails, a silent auction, and good company. The 15th Annual King’s Garden Party will be held on Sunday, July 12, 2015 from 5:00 – 7:30 pm. This year’s theme will reflect the 1920s and Prohibition Era, highlighting the era of the beautiful colonial revival garden. Tickets are $60; advanced reservations are required. For more information or to request an invitation contact Martha Strum at MStrum@fort-ticonderoga.org or call 518-585-2821 ext. 226.

Guests who attend are encouraged to wear 20th-century Prohibition Era attire; prizes will be given for creative effort! Music will be provided by the New York Jazz Trio and the event will be catered by the Mazzone Hospitality Group. The Garden Party supports Fort Ticonderoga’s educational mission, including all horticultural programs. Honorary Chairpersons for the 15th Annual Garden Party are members of the Beaty Family, longtime Fort Ticonderoga supporters who helped make the King’s Garden restoration possible.

Inspired by the 18th-century military gardens, museum founders Stephen and Sarah Pell established the first ornamental garden on this site in the early 20th century as part of the restoration of the fort and their home, the Pavilion. The garden space became known as the “King’s Garden,” a reference to the jardin du Roi planted by the French soldiers of Carillon. By 1920, Sarah hired Marian Cruger Coffin, one of America’s first female landscape architects, to design a new formal garden plan. Coffin’s carefully planned garden became a place of quiet retreat for the Pell family as well as a place of entertainment for distinguished visitors and guests. The story of preservation, horticulture, and hospitality continues today.

Fort Ticonderoga is an independent non-profit educational organization.  All proceeds for the King’s Garden Party support Fort Ticonderoga’s mission to ensure that present and future generations learn from the struggles, sacrifices, and victories that shaped the nations of North America and changed world history. A special thanks to the following event sponsors: Amtrak, Best Western Plus Ticonderoga, Bridgepoint Communications, Glens Falls National Bank, International Paper Ticonderoga Mill, Pepsi, Trustco Bank, Wagon Wheel Restaurant, and individual sponsors.

 

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Fort Ticonderoga Unveils Two New Exhibitions on July 1

Fort Ticonderoga unveils its two newest exhibitions on July 1, 2015. Object Lessons: Perspectives on Material Culture and Diorama-rama: History in Miniature incorporate new interactive components, fun for the whole family. The exhibits are included in a Fort Ticonderoga general admission ticket and are located in the South Barrack’s exhibition space at Fort Ticonderoga. To learn more about these exhibits and related programs visit www.fortticonderoga.org or call 518-585-2821.

large_Object-Lessions Object Lessons: Perspectives on Material Culture offers a unique way to experience historical objects. Using objects from across Fort Ticonderoga’s museum collections, the exhibit will explore the multifaceted perspectives objects hold. This exhibit will show how every object has many stories to tell, and will provide a new understanding of an object’s value as a work of art, political tool, weapon, or all of the above. Have you thought of a canteen as a story of industrialization, rather than just a vessel for water; or a musket as a piece of art, rather than a weapon? Object Lessons will explore specific objects from a multitude of unique and informative angles.

large_DiroramaramaDiorama-Rama: History in Miniature: In the middle of the 20th-century dioramas were state-of-the-art means of reconstructing the past. Living history historical interpretation was still young, film was expensive, and computer animation was a fantasy. Vivid three dimensional models could reconstruct past events, buildings, people, and things like no other media. Fort Ticonderoga invested heavily in such dioramas which have remained popular parts of the visitors experience for nearly half a century. The interpretation of the events depicted has changed, in some cases dramatically in the past 50 years, leaving the dioramas captivating but not accurate portrayals of the current state of knowledge. Diorama-Rama brings together most of the museum’s collection of 20th-century dioramas depicting different periods in Fort Ticonderoga’s history and different perspectives on historical events, giving a sense of how our understanding and interpretation of history has changed.

“When the existing exhibits were installed nearly a half-century ago, they were intended to offer new perspectives on Fort Ticonderoga’s epic story,” said Matthew Keagle, Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator of Collections. “The implementation of these two new exhibits will allow those objects from previous exhibits to receive needed rest and enable a new generation of objects to offer fresh perspectives on the history discovered in the past 50 years, while showing the breadth of Fort Ticonderoga’s remarkable collections.”

Fort Ticonderoga holds one of North America’s premier collections of 18th-century military material culture. The exhibits contain thousands of objects and tell thousands of stories, narrating the history of Fort Ticonderoga from the military culture of the 18th century to the reconstruction of the fort in the 20th century. Fully restored in 1931, the South Barracks has been the museum’s primary exhibition space. The building encompasses three stories and nearly 10,000 square feet of gallery space.

Funding for the Object Lessons and Diorama-rama exhibits were made possible in part by the generous support from Amtrak, Arthur J. Gallagher, Best Western Plus Ticonderoga, Bridgeport Communications, D&E Technologies, GE Foundation, Glens Falls National Bank, International Paper Foundation, International Paper Ticonderoga Mill, McDonald’s, Pepsi, Ticonderoga Federal Credit Union, Eugene and Susan Zeltmann, and individual donors.

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Make History with Your Dad on Father’s Day at Fort Ticonderoga

Dad and daughter in Founding FashionIt’s that time of year when we celebrate how great every Dad is and how much they mean to us. There are a number of traditional and typical gifts that a majority of Dads will receive throughout the years; socks, a tie with a quirky cartoon design, a book or perhaps a garden tool. Whilst these are very much appreciated (as it is the thought that counts!), there’s no better gift than spending quality time with dad on his day.

Whether you see your Dad every day or perhaps only on occasion, take the opportunity this year on Father’s Day to whisk him away to Fort Ticonderoga, located in New York’s Adirondack Mountains.  Here are five reasons why a day at Fort Ticonderoga with dad is a perfect gift for Father’s Day:

  1. Rent a canoe and spend quality time enjoying the serene beauty of mornings at Fort Ticonderoga. Work together as you practice paddling techniques on the La Chute River, connecting Lake Champlain and Lake George, and see who can spot the most fish while you explore America’s most historic landscape!
  2. Rest your arms and witness 18th-century arms! Experience Dad w kids in tailors shopone of Fort Ticonderoga’s musket demonstrations and imagine what it was like in 1756 to guard the unfinished earth, stone, and log walls of Fort Carillon. Witness these professional French soldiers as they kept a cool head to load, aim, and fire muskets to hold this strategic ground. Be sure to check out our stunning weapons collection in the Bullets & Blades exhibit!
  3. Take Dad out for a nice Father’s Day lunch at America’s Fort Café. Savor fresh salads from Fort Ticonderoga’s King’s Garden and enjoy a wide variety of sandwiches and daily specials all while taking in the beautiful views of Lake Champlain, Mount Defiance, and the Green Mountains of Vermont. Don’t forget to treat Dad to a slice of our homemade pie!
  4. Step into the Tailor’s Shop on the Second Floor of the Officer’s Barracks to see what goes into clothing a soldier in New France. Try on your very own soldiers’ coats and take a photo to capture your experience! Then head over to our Founding Fashion exhibit to see the oldest known American made military uniform.
  5. Rack your brains and complete Fort Ticonderoga’s Scavenger Hunt. Explore the site and see who can find the answer to more questions! You should be able to find all of the answers in the museum exhibits, on signs, and by asking the soldiers and civilians from 1756 that you encounter.

Spend the day and make history with Dad at Fort Ticonderoga. Remember to show your appreciation for your fathers, father figures, and male mentors this Sunday on Father’s Day while you learn about our nation’s forefathers and their fight for independence!

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Celebrate Independence at Fort Ticonderoga! Special Living History Event July 3-5 Highlights America’s Greatest Triumph in 1776

 

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Rob Johnson, Black Sky Entertainment

Join Fort Ticonderoga for a three-day celebration this Independence Day weekend to commemorate America’s greatest triumph in 1776.  Walk in the marching steps of newly formed Continental soldiers at Fort Ticonderoga in 1776 as historic interpreters demonstrate weapons of independence and explain the daily military duties of soldiers garrisoning the Fort. Explore family programs that highlight the fight for independence and listen to patriotic performances by Fort Ticonderoga’s Fifes and Drum Corps. Come celebrate freedom by exploring one of the greatest triumphs of 1776 as you discover the stories of the men who helped transform America by overcoming tremendous odds to build the American Northern Army in the fight for liberty. Be in the moment as America began to take shape at Fort Ticonderoga!  Admission to this special holiday living history weekend, July 3-5, is included in a general admission ticket. Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821.

Meet the soldiers of the Northern Department of the Continental Army and their hive of military preparations at Ticonderoga in 1776 throughout the weekend. See artificers in action in the shoe maker’s and tailor’s shops busily working to resupply soldiers with clothing, shoes, and equipment. Discover how these soldiers prepare their cannons, ammunition, and themselves to meet the British army. See rations cooked, logs hewn, and the Fort’s 1776 restoration in action. Experience the raw power of oxen as these thousand-pound animals pull lumber for 18th-century soldiers’ huts.

“1776 was a year of rebuilding the Northern Army as part of building a new nation,” said Stuart Lilie, Fort Ticonderoga’s Senior Director of Interpretation. “While the Continental Congress discussed the finer points of declaring independence in Philadelphia, the shattered remnants of the Continental Army which had come so close to capturing Quebec trickled back down to Fort Ticonderoga. Frost bitten, starving, and decimated by smallpox, these soldiers began building up bulwarks and America’s first navy to defend their new nation. A new Continental Army emerged reinforced by soldiers from Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire and New York, to guard Fort Ticonderoga.”

While the declaration itself was signed July 4th, news of the document and the patriotic sentiment it carried would not reach the Northern Army at Fort Ticonderoga until July 28th. The new fortifications of Rattlesnake Hill were christened on Mount Defiance to mark the occasion of the first reading of the Declaration to these soldiers.

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Experience the Flash of Guns by Night at Fort Ticonderoga: Exciting Evening Program Returns for the 2015 Season

 

Guns by NightJoin Fort Ticonderoga for the return of its exciting evening program presented on Thursday evenings at 8:00 pm in July and August. This unique 90-minute tour and demonstration of 18th-century guns is your chance to experience the flash of musketry and roar of cannon fire by night. Your whole family can explore the workings of the firelocks and cannons that armed the many garrisons of Fort Ticonderoga and influenced and shaped the strategic significance of this important frontier citadel. The cost of this family adventure is $35 per person; advanced registration is required.

“Learn how these great guns were used to attack and defend the Fort during the French and Indian War and made it such an important prize in the American Revolution,” said Stuart Lilie, Fort Ticonderoga’s Senior Director of Interpretation. “Guns by Night concludes with a dramatic nighttime demonstration of weapons that you will not see anywhere else!”

In addition to the Guns by Night tour, visitors can immerse themselves in the epic history and incredible natural beauty at Fort Ticonderoga with several other richly informative and entertaining guided specialty tours this summer. Enlist in the Continental Army in the To Act as One United Body tour; discover the Sunsets and Secrets in the 1826 Historic Pavilion house tour; examine and handle original 18th-century weapons during the Beyond Bullets and Blades tour; and discover the first hammer blows of French soldiers in the Beneath Fortress Walls tour. Advanced reservations are required. To learn more about our specialty tours call 518-585-2821 or click here.

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Flag Day

American Flag flies over Fort Ticonderoga

American Flag flies over Fort Ticonderoga

Today, June 14th, is Flag Day. On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress passed a resolution “That the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation.”

By the time news of this new resolution reached the Northern Army, it had already abandoned Fort Ticonderoga to British forces under General John Burgoyne on July 5, 1777. Hence, this new flag did not fly over Fort Ticonderoga during the American Revolution.

An earlier flag, known by several names, including the Grand Union Flag, Cambridge Flag, or Continental Colors, did fly over the walls of the Fort while occupied by the Northern Army of the Continental forces in 1776 and 1777. This flag featured thirteen red and white stripes and the British Union in the upper left hand corner–a symbol of thirteen colonies united in efforts to defend their rights, but not yet ready to declare independence. This flag was first raised over General Washington’s camp in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on January 1, 1776, and continued to be used by the Continental forces after independence until the resolution of June 14, 1777.

Today, the flag of the United States flutters over the walls of Fort Ticonderoga daily. It represents the culmination of the struggle for liberty and independence that began here at Ticonderoga with America’s First Victory in May 1775.

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Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator Matthew Keagle Presents Research in Brussels, Belgium

 

Curator-Matt(Ticonderoga NY) Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator Matthew Keagle will be presenting at a conference today, hosted by the Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and of Military History in Brussels, Belgium. The conference, “From Battlefield to Drawing Room: Textile and (Military) Fashion around 1815,” coincides with the bicentennial of the battle of Waterloo. It will bring together curators, conservators, scholars, and researchers from major military museums, universities, and art museums across Europe.

Matthew Keagle will be the only North American presenter. His paper, entitled “Echoes of Independence? American Military Dress from the War of Independence to the War of 1812,” will address the evolution of military uniforms in the United States, and their significance to the development of American society in the critical period of the nation’s birth. To help illustrate this, examples of uniforms from Fort Ticonderoga’s extensive collection of Revolutionary and Federal era clothing will highlight not only the diversity of American military dress, but the strength of Fort Ticonderoga’s collections.

“Not only is this a chance to share research and ideas, it is an opportunity to put Fort Ticonderoga back into an international conversation. When the museum was founded in the early 20th century, the directors and curators corresponded with their colleagues in Europe; we hope to continue that dialogue across the Atlantic into the second century of the museum’s existence.”

Fort Ticonderoga holds one of North America’s premier collections of 18th-century military material culture. The exhibits contain thousands of objects and tell thousands of stories, narrating the history of Fort Ticonderoga from the military culture of the 18th century to the reconstruction of the fort in the 20th century.

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Go Beneath Fortress Walls at Fort Ticonderoga: Exciting New Tour Guides Visitors underneath the stone walls of Fort Ticonderoga

 

IMG_2824Join Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator of Collections, Matthew Keagle, for a unique opportunity to go underneath the stone walls of Fort Ticonderoga, off limits to the general public. Experience an in-depth exploration of Fort Ticonderoga’s hidden past to see remarkably preserved evidence of the Fort’s original structures, and discover how the Fort was built, and re-built, and how these spaces now support the modern museum. Beneath Fortress Walls begins at 5 pm near the Guest Services Desk in the Log House Welcome Center. Tours take place every other Wednesday July through August. The cost of this specialty adventure is $35 per person.

“Over 250 years ago French soldiers dug, chiseled, and blasted their way into the very rock of the Ticonderoga peninsula to create a fortress to defend New France,” said Matthew Keagle, Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator of Collections. “Within just a few decades from those first hammer blows, New France had fallen, a new nation was created, and Fort Ticonderoga had fallen into ruin. When it was restored in the early 1900s, much of what remained from the original fort was entombed beneath the reconstructed walls. This tour will go underneath and inside the fort to visit these areas, and uncover the handiwork of French masons and soldiers who toiled here two centuries ago.”

In addition to the Beneath Fortress Walls tour, visitors can immerse themselves in the epic history and incredible natural beauty at Fort Ticonderoga with several other richly informative and entertaining guided specialty tours this summer. Thrill at the power of artillery during the Guns by Night tour; enlist in the Continental Army in the To Act as One United Body tour; examine and handle original 18th-century weapons during the Beyond Bullets and Blades tour; and discover the Sunsets and Secrets in the 1826 Historic Pavilion house tour. Advanced reservations are required. To learn more about our specialty tours call 518-585-2821 or click here.

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Registration Now Open for Annual Fort Ticonderoga Seminar on the American Revolution

 

James Kirby Martin 3

James Kirby Martin, from the University of Houston, is one of nine presenters at Fort Ticonderoga’s Twelfth Annual Seminar on the American Revolution September 25-27, 2015.

Registration is now open for the Twelfth Annual Fort Ticonderoga Seminar on the American Revolution September 25-27, 2015. This annual seminar focuses on the military, political, and social history of the War for American Independence (1775-1783), bringing together a panel of distinguished historians from around the country and beyond. The Seminar takes place in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center and is open to the public; pre-registration is required.

Begun in 2004, the Seminar on the American Revolution has become a noted venue for presenters, featuring a mix of new and established scholars in an informal setting for a weekend of presentations related to the military, social, and cultural history of the Revolution. Speakers include:

  • Joseph M. Adelman, professor of history at Framingham State University, “News of the Killing Stamp: Information Networks and the Stamp Act Crisis.”
  • Stephen Brumwell, author of George Washington: Gentleman Warrior, “George Washington at War.”
  • Michael Harris, author of Brandywine: A Military History of the Battle that Lost Philadelphia but Saved America, September 11, 1777, “General John Sullivan and the Battle of Brandywine.
  • James Kirby Martin, Cullen University Professor of History at the University of Houston, and Mark Edward Lender, Emeritus Professor of History at Kean University, “Celebrating ‘A Respectable Army’: George Washington and the Making of the Continental Military Establishment.”
  • John Nagy, scholar in residence at Saint Francis University, “The Most Dangerous Spy in American History: Dr. Benjamin Church.”
  • Bruce M. Venter, author of The Battle of Hubbardton, “The Battle of Hubbardton: The Rear Guard Action that Saved the Northern Army.
  • Philip D. Weaver, independent historian, “The 2nd New-York Provincial Battalion (1775): On Additional Continental Service.”
  • William M. Welsh, president of the American Revolution Round Table of Richmond, “Washington’s Lieutenants: The Generals of the Continental Army.”
  • Marko Zlatich, Library of the Society of the Cincinnati, “George Washington: The Soldier in the Blue and Buff Uniform.”

The Seminar also features a presentation by Fort Ticonderoga’s Curator of Collections Matthew Keagle. Keagle will give a presentation “Whose Brunswickers? A Visual and Material Mystery.” Follow the trail of a series of watercolors thought to depict Brunswick soldiers from the American Revolution. An analysis of these images reveals a complex story of the international soldier trade of the 18th century, friendships forged through the American War, and ultimately the re-discovery of material culture that sheds light on the uniforms of Britain’s German Auxiliaries.

Registration for the Seminar is now open at $155 ($130 for those registering by July 15); additional discounts available for members of Fort Ticonderoga. Registration forms can be downloaded from Fort Ticonderoga’s website at www.fortticonderoga.org under the “Education” tab by selecting “Workshops and Seminars” on the drop down menu. A printed copy is also available upon request by contacting Fort Ticonderoga at 518-585-2821.

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