Let Slip the Dogs of War: Carillon’s Canines

A veteran of the 1758 Battle at Carillon, Charles Lee was so fond of dogs that he preferred them to most people. Major Genl Charles Lee Alexander Hay Ritchie after B. Rushbrooke, c.1840-1895 (Collection of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum, 2002.0153)

In 2016, Fort Ticonderoga invited guests to bring their leashed dogs onto our campus to enjoy the remarkable scenic beauty and historic significance of the grounds. In recent years, more and more animals have been finding their way back to Ticonderoga with the beginning of our own historic breeds program in 2015.

Animals have formed a part of the Ticonderoga landscape from the beginning of its military occupation in the eighteenth century. Horses and oxen were used by the French military to haul timber and artillery. Captain Charles Osbone of the 44th Regiment of Foot kept cattle at the fort during his tenure here in 1764, and hired the wife of a soldier to tend to them. William Delaplace, the Captain of the 26th Regiment of Foot who commanded the fort when it was taken by Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen in May of 1775, kept a considerable quantity of livestock around the fort. These included a horse, an ox, a heifer, six cows, and forty-four sheep. These animals were here for draught purposes, riding, milk, or meat, not as pets. But, what of man’s best friend? Dogs are known to have accompanied some officers and soldiers during the wars of the 18th century. During his service as a General in the Continental Service, the Englishman Charles Lee (a veteran of the July 8, 1758 Battle of Carillon as a Captain in the 44th Regiment of Foot) was known to have a pack of his dogs with him. Dogs had been kept and used by Native Americans in Canada for centuries. During the French and Indian War, French officers were actually provided with dogs for use in towing toboggans loaded with provisions in winter, although these were clearly more for work than companionship.

Found in the ruins of Fort Ticonderoga, the dog’s owner was only recently identified as Lieutenant John de Birniere of the 44th Regiment of Foot, which garrisoned the fort from January of 1764 to June of 1765. The collar is pierced with a series of holes where leather would have been sewn over the rim. Lieutenant John de Birniere’s Dog Collar, c.1764-65(Collection of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum)

There is, however, at least one dog that may not have been a working animal that can be documented at Fort Ticonderoga. Early in the 20th century, workers recovered fragments of a broken dog collar in the ruins of the fort. Made of brass, the collar has an iron loop that passed through a corresponding slot on the opposite side of the collar to close it against the animal’s throat. The collar bears an engraving indicating the dog’s owner, although the fragment does not include the entire name, which left the owner’s identity and affiliation in question for over a century. New research into the peacetime garrisons of Ticonderoga conducted in the winter of 2017 has finally revealed his identity. The engraving “DzLieut Jno De Bdz” is all that is legible on the collar, but when searched against the British Army Lists held in Ticonderoga’s archives a match was found in Lieutenant John de Birniere. De Birniere served in the 44th Regiment of Foot, receiving his Lieutenant’s commission on August 9, 1760. The collar must have been lost at the fort between January of 1764 and June of 1765. During that time, a detachment of the 44th Regiment garrisoned Ticonderoga as well as Fort William Augustus and Oswegatchie on the Saint Lawrence River in Northern New York and Crown Point. We do not know how Lieutenant de Birniere’s dog lost its collar, nor what kind of breed it was, although given the size of the collar, it was likely a rather large dog. Its presence suggests that at least in time of peace, some officers may have kept animals with them for companionship as well as work.

You can see Lieutenant de Birniere’s dog’s collar on display daily in the South Barracks Exhibit Galleries. Your dogs are welcome to enjoy the grounds today, just remember that unlike the 18th century, they may not go inside the buildings within the fort.

 

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An Adventure made just for Scouts!

Fort Ticonderoga welcomes scouting groups of all ages to experience all that 2017 has to offer, including new experiences! Daily programs are offered May 6, 2017 through October 29, 2017. Additional program dates November-April are available upon special request. Enjoy a day trip, rain or shine, and take part in daily guided tours, weapons demonstrations, museum exhibits, hiking trails, self-exploration, and more! Additional scout experiences include the “Planting the Tree of Liberty” program, overnight experiences, and Girl Scout Day. Daily itineraries and special programming can be organized in advance by contacting our Group Tour Coordinator at (518) 585-1023 or rwiktorko@fort-ticonderoga.org. Reservations are required to obtain the group rate.

Add to the Ticonderoga experience by enrolling your scouts in the “Planting the Tree of Liberty” program. In this program, scouts form a platoon of soldiers, learning teamwork and discipline as they undergo a typical day in the life of Continental soldiers; practicing formation tactics, working with tools, learning about shelters, experiencing the confusion of battle, and witnessing a musket demonstration, all alongside Fort Ticonderoga’s interpretive staff. Scout badges are available after the completion of this program by pre-ordering them before your visit.

Give your troop the experience of a lifetime by allowing them to garrison Fort Ticonderoga for a night! Camp inside soldiers’ quarters in the fort’s barracks and discover the powerful atmosphere within these historic walls at night. Also, take a guided hike, tour original earthworks, prepare and eat soldiers’ meals, and participate in other special programs. Pre-registration is required by contacting our Group Tour Coordinator at (518) 585-1023 or rwiktorko@fort-ticonderoga.org. For more information and availability, visit http://www.fortticonderoga.org/education/scouting.

Fort Ticonderoga joins forces with the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York for Girl Scout Day held on Saturday, October 14th. Spend the day and take part in a series of programs designed for girl scouts. While interacting with historic interpreters, girl scouts will discover what life was like for 18th-century soldiers. Special guided tours and museum exhibitions will immerse them in Fort Ticonderoga’s epic history. Scouts will also thrill at the sound of musketry during the weapons demonstration, as well as explore the King’s Garden and the Heroic Corn Maze. To register, contact our School and Youth Programs Coordinator at (518) 585-6370 or bmccormick@fort-ticonderoga.org.For more information and a tentative schedule, visit  http://www.fortticonderoga.org/education/scouting/girl-scouts/girl-scout-day.

To learn more about programs for scout groups at Fort Ticonderoga, visit http://www.fortticonderoga.org/education/scouting.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo: Fort Ticonderoga welcomes scouting groups of all ages May 6, 2017 through October 29, 2017. Contact our Group Tour Coordinator to organize your scout visit.

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Spend the Day at Fort Ticonderoga! 2017 Season Begins Saturday, May 6

Experience Fort Ticonderoga on land and water during the 2017 season, beginning on Saturday, May 6. Fort Ticonderoga is a historic site, museum, and family destination that encourages visitors to build their perfect adventure in America’s most historic landscape. Every day is an event at Fort Ticonderoga and every year is a new experience. It is the only site in the world that tells a new story each year through dynamic historical interpretation. This year is 1757, the year made famous by the novel “Last of the Mohicans.” Visitors will discover the real story of 1757 as they step into Fort Carillon (later named Ticonderoga) bustling with activity with French soldiers, native warriors, and cannon preparing to take the fight for New France all the way up Lake George to British-held territory.

The daily experience will bring to life this epic story through new programs and museum exhibits, living history weekends, special events, breathtaking gardens, daily boat tours aboard M/V Carillon, Mount Defiance, hands-on family activities, hiking trails, and more!

“Fort Ticonderoga is a must-see destination, a center of learning, and an interactive, multi-faceted experience,” said Beth Hill, President and CEO. “It’s exploring the beautiful gardens, finding adventure in our events, marching with the Fife and Drum Corps, and learning about a historic trade. It’s a visit through the reconstructed fort, a stroll overlooking Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains of Vermont, and an afternoon in our exhibit galleries exploring our premier collections. Fort Ticonderoga is the one place in America that tells the complex international story of the origins of the nation’s military and its role in the founding of the United States.”

Fort Ticonderoga is open daily from May 6 through October 29, 2017 from 9:30 am until 5:00 pm. Special events and programs are offered throughout the year. General admission tickets can be purchased online at www.fortticonderoga.org or on site at the admissions booth upon entry. Members of Fort Ticonderoga and Ticonderoga Resident Ambassador Pass holders are admitted free of charge. Combination tickets for admission and Carillon boat cruises are available. Two-day admission tickets are available at a discounted rate.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photos: Spend the day at Fort Ticonderoga, rain or shine May 6-October 29. Special events and programs are offered throughout the year. Photo 1.)  Photo Credit Fort Ticonderoga. Photo 2.) Copyright Fort Ticonderoga, Photographer: Carl Heilman II

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Strategies to Control Deer in Landscapes

Dr. Leonard Perry, Horticulturist in Residence, King’s Garden
Horticulture Professor Emeritus, University of Vermont

Deer have become one of the most serious problems in gardens and landscapes, including the King’s Garden.  If you’ve been there near closing time, you may have seen the staff putting up the single strand electric wire fence around the beds outside the walled garden.  Obviously with the King’s Garden, those plants inside the walled garden are not touched by deer.  “Out of sight, out of mind” applies there. 

At the 6th Annual King’s Garden Symposium, Dr. Perry covered many types of repellents and fencing methods. One of the repellents mentioned was the Deer Chaser, developed by fellow symposium speaker Dr. Lee Reich.  This uses a motion sensor to activate a radio and light, using both sound and visual deterrents.

Knowing how to control deer successfully means knowing something about them and their behavior.  This is important in order to use repellents effectively, and to know when fences may be the only or best answer.  Here are some highlights from my presentation on Deer Control in Landscapes and Gardens at the 6th annual King’s Garden Symposium.  Check out more articles on deer control specifics that were covered at the talk, online (pss.uvm.edu/ppp/articleA.html).

Before you start investing in deer deterrents, you should first assess whether they have any chance of working.  Deer feeding is a function of alternative food sources.  If there are woods nearby, perhaps these will provide enough alternate food if your landscape becomes less inviting.

Deer feeding is primarily a function of population pressure.  Too many deer, and too little food, and they will eat most anything.  In this worst case, fencing may be your only effective control. To determine your control strategy for deer, first examine the current deer damage and pressure.  Understanding deer behavior, with many tips for control, are outlined in the book Deerproofing Your Yard and Garden, by Rhonda Massingham Hart.

If there are fewer than five deer per square mile, with only occasional browsing and buds
nipped in the spring, try repellents or more long-term landscaping choices.  If there are about five to ten deer per square mile, with damage through the summer including loitering and feeding during daytime, you may try the same techniques first.  If these don’t work, you may need to resort to controlled dogs and fencing.  Finally, if there are more than ten deer per square mile, with most plants being damaged and stripped to the ground, start with fencing and dogs but work toward cooperative community controls.

Deer are “neophobic” (afraid of anything new), so one tactic is to use several deterrents and to rotate them frequently.  This is because deer learn quickly.  Deer also have a main goal of not getting eaten.  Once they determine that something will not attack or go after them, and this only may take a few days, a particular control technique becomes ineffective. Keep deterrents mysterious or frightening to deer.

With low population pressure in my own landscape, I have successfully used motion-activated lighting for control. Yet when I fail to move this (it is mounted on a portable stand) every few days, the deer learn it is stationary and no threat.  Then there is the story of a neighbor with a chained dog.  Once the deer learned the dog was on a chain, and the length of the chain, they began feeding just outside the dog’s range in spite of its frantic barking.

Keep in mind that deer in wild country or rural areas will be more scared of humans than suburban deer who get used to having them around.  Perhaps this is based partly on hunting each fall in rural areas.

As with control of most four-legged garden creatures, deer are creatures of habit.  As with humans, it is easier to prevent habits before they even become habits.  The best controls often begin before there is a problem.  Start using deterrents in spring before deer visit your landscape or find your choice plants, and hopefully they’ll pass it by.  You might consider this as educating your deer.

Remember though that deer are adaptable.  If they do taste and like your plants, in spite of your deterrents, they may just stick around.  As author Hart says, “once they adapt to your garden, they adopt it.”  If deer adopt your garden, you’ll need to try other deterrents and strategies.  Just as people have different tastes, likes and dislikes, so do deer.  This perhaps explains in part why deterrents vary so widely in effectiveness from one location to another, as well as “resistant plants”.  You’ll have to experiment and determine the best controls for your own landscape or garden.

When it comes to finding food and not becoming food themselves, deer are smart and clever.  But as author Hart points out, even on your worst day you are smarter than deer.  Remember you can be successful by using such knowledge of deer behavior with your controls.

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Found in Collections

In its one-hundred-plus year history as a museum and collecting institution, Fort Ticonderoga has been gifted, purchased, and has excavated a staggering number of internationally significant objects.  However, as many collections and curatorial departments know (from large city museums to small historical societies), the history of object collecting is rarely neat and tidy.  Exhibit cases, collections storage, and even closets, have historically hosted objects that carry no documentation.  And yet, these important pieces of material culture were at one time acquired with a purpose.  With a generous grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Sciences (# MA-30-16-0178-16), a team of four catalogers, project registrar, and project manager have been steadily working since November to clean, catalog, research, and re-house a group of objects, many with little to no documentation and have long resided in an unsuitable storage environment.

For this blog entry, the Collections Department is excited to share some of our discoveries and cataloging projects:

Cataloger, Amanda, photographs a shovel from the tool collection.

Tool Collection

Among the impressive archaeological finds uncovered at Fort Ticonderoga, is the largest assemblage of 18th-century tools in North America.  These tools aided in the building of structures and earthwork by three nations, French, British and American, and were found during the early 20th-century restoration of the fort.  A list titled ‘Relics from the Past Found at Fort Ticonderoga’ in the Summer 1949 Bulletin of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum includes, “Sledge hammers by the dozen” and “Spades and shovels of 8 to 10 different designs.”  We have cataloged over 1,300 tools through this project so far! Tool examples include shovels, axes, mattocks, picks, augers, fascine knives, Irish spades or loys, as well as masonry, wood working, and agricultural tools. We have found maker’s marks and even remnant pieces of wooden handles. The Collections Department is partnering with the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum to conduct a conservation assessment of this important collection, with plans for future conservation and exhibition.

 

“Thousands and thousands of grapeshot!” Persis diligently studies and measures the individual pieces of grapeshot.

Ammunition

On a landscape that saw extensive employment of Artillery, Fort Ticonderoga has an equally astonishing collection of ammunition.  As an example, the same ‘Relics’ listing from the Summer 1949 Bulletin notes “Thousands and thousands of grapeshot and little bullets from buckshot up.”  While the ammunition collection had been previously separated into groupings (cannon balls, mortar fragments, musket balls), their individual weights, calibers, and potential provenance had not been identified.  A dedicated cataloger has spent three months individually measuring each piece of ammunition with some exciting results: over 8,000 musket balls have been cataloged and re-housed. Unique examples range from ram rod impressions on musket balls to indentations indicating canister shots. Cannon balls have been separated with weights going from 1 pound up to 32 pounds, the latter the largest cannon known to have been used on site.  And thousands and thousands of grapeshot, weighing from 1 ½ ounces to a pound, have the most casting marks and flaws of all the types of ammunition.

 

Tabitha holds the lock plate with the intact bolt.

Archaeological Objects

Ammunition is not the only artifact collection to be found archaeologically at Fort Ticonderoga during its early 20th-century reconstruction.  An immense array of domestic, military, and naval objects, including copper kettles, tin canteens, and bayonets were excavated from the ruins and surrounding landscape.  While many of these undocumented historical pieces are easily identifiable, some are not.  Among the bulk of iron objects and fragments, a cataloger continued to find thin rectangular pieces, anywhere from 3 to 5 inches in length, with a large squared end and teethed protrusions along the opposite side. While cleaning and photographing locks, the cataloger turned over the plate to find the rectangular object in question still attached to its original housing.  As the doors of the fort succumbed to time and ruin, the iron locks suffered their own decay and while some retained the thin, rectangular bolt, others did not.  A number of these individual bolts have now been cataloged, and while their matching plate may never be found, their identification spurs further research.

Julia uses the HEPA filter collections vacuum and a screen to clean the 1746 petticoat.

Textiles

While cataloging continues on archaeological objects, team members have also been busy removing textiles from the old unsuitable storage environment. These textiles have been put through an important routine of freezing to kill any possible insects. The textiles are gently cleaned with a HEPA filter collections vacuum before being cataloged and placed in acid-free storage boxes.  In some instances, custom blueboard boxes have been made.  An exciting artifact, a yellow silk petticoat dated 1746, with a red linsey-woolsey interior and an embroidered English Coat of Arms now resides in its own custom box to prevent unnecessary folds in the fabric.  Among the textiles, have been invaluable new additions to the institution’s history.  A pair of turn of the 20th century J & J Slater heeled silk shoes with glass bead decoration on the toe caps, owned by Sarah G. T. Pell, co-founder of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum, have been cataloged and will be part of an exhibit on Sarah’s life and involvement in the Equal Rights Movement opening May 6th.

As the Collections Department continues to rediscover and catalog our collections, we look forward to sharing our exciting finds!

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services grant # MA-30-16-0178-16.

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Fort Ticonderoga Brings Education onto Lake Champlain

Fort Ticonderoga recently received a grant from the South Lake Champlain Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation to support regional youth maritime educational programs. Aboard the 60-foot touring M/V, Carillon, each 90-minute narrated boat tour focuses on the historical importance of the Lake Champlain waterway through centuries of history, and highlights elements of geography, natural history, and lake stewardship. This experience enables students to better grasp the strategic importance of the Champlain-Hudson corridor in the 18th century and its role in the founding of America.

“Fort Ticonderoga is very grateful to the South Lake Champlain Fund for their support for our maritime educational programs,” said Beth Hill, Fort Ticonderoga President and CEO. “We are committed to programs that engage young people in new and exciting ways. The exploration of our rich regional history and its role in our national story gives tremendous perspective and inspires us all to continue our ecological stewardship of the Lake Champlain region.”

Fort Ticonderoga engages more than 25,000 students per year through expeditionary learning, outreach programs, and onsite educational activities. Grant support from the South Lake Champlain Fund of the Vermont Community helps make possible an expanded all-inclusive experience for students at a discounted rate. Schools in New York and Vermont are eligible to apply, for more information, visit www.fortticonderoga.org or call the Group Tour Coordinator at (518) 585-1023.

The M/V, Carillon, is a 60-foot boat that offers daily tours around the Ticonderoga Peninsula. Fort Ticonderoga acquired the M/V, Carillon, in 2015 thanks to generous donor support. Funding was also received in 2015 through the New York State Regional Economic Development grant awards to support the first phase of development in a waterway transportation and recreation system including the recent installation of a dock. Visit www.fortticonderoga.org to learn more about boat tours, charters, and sunset cruises.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo: Photo Credit: Fort Ticonderoga. Fort Ticonderoga recently received a grant from the South Lake Champlain Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation to support regional youth maritime educational programs.

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2017 Graduate Fellowships Fort Ticonderoga Awards

Four graduate students from across the United States have been awarded the 2017 Edward W. Pell Graduate Fellowships at Fort Ticonderoga. This program runs from June 12-August 18 and will provide the students with practical, hands-on experience, working with the staff on cutting-edge programs and research.

“These Fellowships for graduate students offer an opportunity to work side by side with our dedicated museum staff,” noted Fort Ticonderoga President and CEO, Beth Hill. “These Fellows will focus their research and creative energy to support exhibitions, collections, and programs related to upcoming projects at Fort Ticonderoga.”

“While working individually with their project supervisors,” added Rich Strum, Director of Education, “The Fellows will also meet and work together throughout the two-month experience. They will have an opportunity to work with the museum’s professional staff as part of our team-approach to all major projects.”

This year’s Fellows will help lay the ground work for exhibitions, programs, and educational initiatives to be offered to the public in 2018.

This year’s Fellows are:

Theresa Ball, a graduate student in Museology and Library/Information Science at the University of Washington. Originally from Maine, Teri received her undergraduate degree at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and plans to pursue a career in curation and exhibit design with archives, special collections, and historic sites.

Anna Faherty, pursuing a dual degree at Simmons College in Archives and History. Her academic interests include American and European history of the mid- to late nineteenth century, labor history, and immigration history.

Elizabeth Beaudoin Gouin recently graduated with her master’s in art history from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. A native of New Hampshire, she has worked at the Norman Rockwell Museum, the Londonderry (Vermont) Arts and Historical Society, and the Enfield Shaker Museum.

Kathryn Kaslow is working on her master’s in Public History at the University of South Carolina. She earned her undergraduate degree at Messiah College and plans to work in interpretation and education at museums or historic sites.

The Edward W. Pell Graduate Fellowship program was launched in 2015. Eight previous fellows came from Connecticut College, New York University, North Carolina State University, Stony Brook University, Texas State University (two students), the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and Western Michigan University.

The Edward W. Pell Graduate Fellowships at Fort Ticonderoga are made possible with the support from the Edward W. Pell Education Endowment at Fort Ticonderoga, the Mars Education Center Endowment, and several generous individual donors.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo: Photo Credit: Fort Ticonderoga. This year’s Fellows will help lay the ground work for exhibitions, programs, and educational initiatives to be offered to the public in 2018.

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French Artillery Reforms Focus of Fort Fever Series Program April 9th

Fort Ticonderoga’s “Fort Fever Series” concludes on Sunday, April 9th, at 2:00 p.m. with “Gribeauval’s Guns: French Artillery Reforms from Montcalm to Napoleon” presented by Curator Matthew Keagle. The cost is $10 per person and can be purchased at the gate; Fort Ticonderoga Members and Ambassador Pass Holders are admitted free of cost. The program will take place in the Mars Education Center.

This Fort Fever presentation will take participants on a tour using the rare examples in Fort Ticonderoga’s collections of reforms of the French artillery in the wake of the French and Indian War, one of the most important technological and tactical developments in artillery during the 18th century.

“Fort Ticonderoga’s world class collection of artillery stretches beyond the story of Ticonderoga alone, connecting us to important historical events and movements across the world,” said Matthew Keagle, Curator at Fort Ticonderoga. “French cannon in particular, illustrate the immense technological and political shifts occurring in France after Fort Ticonderoga, later named Carillon, had fallen to the English.”

Matthew Keagle is the Curator of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum and holds degrees from Cornell University, the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, and the Bard Graduate Center. He has researched and spoken widely on topics related to the material culture of the military in the long 18th century in the US, Canada, and Europe.

Additional programs taking place at Fort Ticonderoga early this spring include a Clothing and Accoutrement Workshop offered April 8 & 9. Fort Ticonderoga presents the Sixth Annual Garden & Landscape Symposium on April 8th (pre-registration required). You can learn more about all of these programs by visiting www.fortticonderoga.org.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo:Gribeauval’s Guns: French Artillery Reforms from Montcalm to Napoleon “will be the topic of the next Fort Fever Series program on Sunday, April 9, 2017, at 2:00 P.M. given by Curator of Fort Ticonderoga, Matthew Keagle. Admission is $10; free for Members of Fort Ticonderoga and Ambassador Pass Holders.

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North Country History Day is More than “a Day”

By Director of Education, Rich Strum.

Earlier this month, 59 students from across northern New York participated in North Country History Day held here at Fort Ticonderoga. Students placing first and second in their categories will advance to represent the region at New York State History Day in Cooperstown on April 24th.

Students were engaged and passionate about their projects—and passionate about history. I spoke with students who simply bubbled over with enthusiasm as they discussed their projects and the history behind them. This year’s theme was “Taking a Stand in History” and a brief sampling of topics chosen by students included: “The Twentieth Maine and the Stand that Saved the Union,” “Rosa Parks,” and “Taking a Stand for Women’s Suffrage: Lucy Burns, Alice Paul, and Carrie Chapman Catt.”

Thirty-three of these students will advance to represent the North Country at New York State History Day. These students have the opportunity to review the comments from the judges and make changes to their projects before the state contest.

Engaging students and creating a life-long love of learning is the goal of school programs here at Ticonderoga! We are expecting thousands of students to visit Fort Ticonderoga this spring. We have several school groups participating in our “Artificer’s Apprentice” program this March and April and thousands more are coming in May and June. They will be able to watch as soldiers prepare their noon meal, visit the Historic Trades Shop to see the making of clothing and shoes, and explore the exhibits in the Museum.

Many students will take part in the “To Act as One United Body” program while at Fort Ticonderoga. In this immersive program, students form a platoon and learn about the training of soldiers at Ticonderoga in the weeks following the outbreak of the American Revolution in the spring and early summer of 1775. Students learn teamwork skills as they experience aspects of the lives of soldiers.

For some schools, their spring visit to Ticonderoga comes after a visit to their school by a member of our outreach team. Our staff has visited over 30 schools on both sides of Lake Champlain this winter and spring, bringing reproduction clothing and objects to help illustrate the lives of the soldiers who journeyed to Ticonderoga in the late spring of 1775. These programs have helped illuminate the story of Ticonderoga while at the same time using language arts, geography, and math skills to help students grasp the enormity of the task of feeding and supplying an army in the northern wilderness.

We encourage a passion for history in not just young people, but all our visitors. Our staff is passionate, our visitors are passionate, and I hope you are passionate about Ticonderoga, the stories it has to tell, and all it can teach us about not just history, but life.

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Witness the French Military Campaign to Capture Lake George on 260th Anniversary

Join Fort Ticonderoga for a one-day living history event Saturday, March 25th to witness how French soldiers, Canadians, and Native warriors prepare for an attack on Fort William Henry on March 16, 1757. From wool leggings and moccasins to snowshoes and toboggans, explore traditional tools and supplies that were vital to winter survival on the frontier of New France. Discover France’s military situation and their strategy against the British as they entered 1757 with outnumbered troops and isolated by a blockade. How could they possibly overcome such odds?

“This living history event will highlight the story of the people who provided the groundwork and material to take Fort William Henry during a vicious winter attack in 1757,” said Beth Hill, President and CEO of Fort Ticonderoga. “Our commitment to bring the dramatic and real story of our past to life through unforgettable programs, such as this event, is an opportunity to share with our visitors the importance of this place in the Atlantic world in the 18th century.”

Highlighted programs including tours, living history demonstrations, historic trades, weapons demonstrations, and fife and drum corps performances throughout the day transform Ticonderoga into the year 1757 and bring this dramatic story to life when the British and French Empires were vying over this strategic region in North America.

Weapons demonstrations go beyond loading and firing to explore how weapons designed for European warfare served in winter raids in America. Tour through the Fort Ticonderoga of today and see what materials were used to construct strong fortified walls. Join museum staff for a presentation that examines the rich story of regiments of French soldiers who built and defended Carillon, later named Ticonderoga. Listen to the stirring tunes that directed the soldiers’ day and eased long bitter winter campaigns during Fife and Drum Corps performances.

Admission to the event is $10 for the general public and free to Fort Ticonderoga Members, Ambassador Pass holders, and children age four and under. For the full event schedule, visit http://www.fortticonderoga.org/events/fort-events/four-divisions-formed-at-fort-carillon-rigaud-s-attack-of-fort-william-henry/detail.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo: Credit: Fort Ticonderoga. The Four Divisions Formed at Fort Carillon Living History Event will take place on March 25th at Fort Ticonderoga.

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