Join Fort Ticonderoga for a two-day battle re-enactment highlighting the climactic summer of 1777 as the Fort’s American garrison was outflanked by a British invasion force descending from Canada. The event takes place Saturday and Sunday, July 23 and 24, 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Admission to this re-enactment event is included in a Fort Ticonderoga’s general admission ticket. To learn more about the event and the full event schedule visit http://www.fortticonderoga.org/events/fort-events/defiance-independence-re-enactment/detail or call 518-585-2821.
The Surprising American Retreat:
Highlighted programming featured throughout the weekend brings to life the surprising American retreat and British capture of Fort Ticonderoga in early July 1777. Experience the fog of war and smoky haze of battle as the American and British armies maneuver across Fort Ticonderoga’s historic landscape at 1 pm each day. This two-day battle re-enactment will dramatically show how General Arthur St. Clair’s decision to evacuate Ticonderoga set the stage for British General John Burgoyne’s advance towards Albany.
A Defining Story Brought to Life:
“Guests will witness the intensity of battle as American soldiers retreat back from their entrenched camp under the penetrating British drive to capture the fortifications,” said Beth Hill, Fort Ticonderoga’s President and CEO. “They will discover the diverse forces that comprised this campaign and meet with soldiers of the two armies including the Royal Artillery, the Rear Guard, and the Continental Artillery. Sunday’s Battle will force the American army to retreat to their boats onto Lake Champlain as the British capture Ticonderoga.”
“This living history event and battle recreation will re-enact a careful chess game between the British Army and an entrenched Continental Army at Ticonderoga,” said Stuart Lilie, Fort Ticonderoga Senior Director of Interpretation. “Reprieved from a siege in 1776 by the onset of winter, Fort Ticonderoga and Mount Independence faced General John Burgoyne’s northern army of British, Loyalist, and German soldiers in July 1777. General St. Clair’s rearguard of Massachusetts and New Hampshire regulars and militia put up a vigorous defense, skirmishing in the hills and valleys around Ticonderoga. Artillery batteries built into the old French Lines seemed to keep the British army at by. Concealed by forest cover on the back slope of Mount Defiance, British cannon were dragged to the summit. By July 6, 1777, British cannon high up on Mount Defiance, aimed at the pontoon bridge between the two Forts of Ticonderoga and Independence, forced the withdrawal of General St. Clair’s rearguard into the Hampshire Grants (Vermont).”
Where a Goat Can Go, A Man Can Go!
Saturday evening at 6:30 pm a gun crew from the Royal Artillery will haul their cannon to the summit of Mount Defiance, aiming at the Fort located below. Guests can witness the incredible feat and discover the details of this decisive stroke and witness a cannon demonstration in the evening light of the beautiful summit. Advanced tickets are required for this event and must be purchased at Fort Ticonderoga or call 518-585-2821.
Other Highlighted Programs:
Chocolate was not only a wonderful treat, but also a key source of nutrition for the American troops at Fort Ticonderoga. Throughout the early history of America, chocolate was enjoyed by the colonists as a beverage. This chocolate was extraordinary, as it was flavored with seasonings and spices that were available to the chocolate makers. Stop by the AMERICAN HERITAGE® Chocolate tent and learn how chocolate was prepared in the 18th century and sample a taste of chocolate as it would have be enjoyed 200 years ago!
This special event is funded in part by a grant from Mars Chocolate North America, along with additional support from AMTRAK and Pepsi.
Fort Ticonderoga offers more than one hundred exciting and unique events and programs this season! Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821.