Friday, September 28, 2007

Final stats

Yes, we completed the Common Man Tour - 300 miles of history at the Rogers Island Visitors Center in Fort Edward on September 21st, 2007. An all-new Powerpoint program about what we found on our trip was very well received by another packed house. Thanks to all who supported us on this wonderful adventure.

We thought you might enjoy some stats about the tour overall:
We conducted at least 8 formal programs on the French and Indian War - The Basics, to more than 250 attendees.
We conducted dozens of one-on-one discussions with groups or individuals all along our travels.
We passed through 10 canalway locks, and traveled on two major rivers, two lakes and several bays and tributaries in our travels.
And it was made possible only through the work and generosity of more than 50 support people. Altogether they logged more than 5000 miles on their vehicles during the tour.
What's next? Keep posted as we decide in the next couple of weeks.

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Finale

Okay, those of you who have been following this Blog know that we have explored the Hudson River, the Champlain Canal, Lake Champlain, Lake George, the St. Lawrence River, South Bay and the LaChute River over the past three months. So what did we find; and even better, What did we learn over our trek of nearly 300 miles of history?
Find out at our final scheduled presentation this Friday night, September 21st. A brand new Powerpoint presentation will document our travels, interspersed by personal accounts of the events and people we encountered along the way.
Please join us at the Rogers Island Visitors Center in Fort Edward, NY at 7 pm on Friday night, September 21st, 2007.
Thanks for tuning in and we hope to see you at Rogers Island.
Photo above by Ann West at the Siege of Fort William Henry on September 15th,2007.

Thank you, Waddington!

So I did my presentation at Waddington and I saw someone bring out refreshments. I announced that there was food, a perfect ending to my presentation.
Then i was presented with this cake. Alicia Murphy and her cohorts had conspired to give me an early birthday tribute. True Northern Hospitality.
Can't understand though what the 60 means. I think I'm only 39!
Thanks to Alicia and her Waddington team!

Waddington presentation

It was September 6th when 24 people showed up for our French and Indian War lecture. We're not exactly sure, but we think that is the majority of the population of Waddington, NY. lol
And here is a photo to prove it.
But please go to the next entry to see what Northern Hospitality really means.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Fort La Presentation

This lighthouse marks the point at which the Oswegatchie River enters the St. Lawrence River at what is now Ogdensburg. That peninsula is where the original French trading post, settlement and fort known as Fort La Presentation once stood. That location is steeped in French and Indian War history and steps are underway to rebuild the fort at that location.

Near collision?

Dateline - September 5, 2007 - St. Lawrence River, somewhere between Jacques Cartier State Park and Ogdensburg.
We snapped this photo of two large ships passing in the channel. They actually passed with plenty of room to spare, but it doesn't look like it in this photo. And, we have no idea why it came out in Sepia mode. But it IS a real pic from that day.
Thought you might enjoy it.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Back to the St. Lawrence River

This week we are headed back to the St. Lawrence River to finish up our journeys there from Jacques Cartier State Park to the old Fort La Presentation property at Ogdensburg.
Please join our host and re-enactor Tim Cryderman and me as we do a joint presentation on the French and Indian War - The Basics at the Ogdensburg Library on September 5 at 7 pm. Actually, you might see several re-enactors that night if all goes well. (They'll be the ones dressed like they probably aren't from O'burg.)

Tim will also try to join me once again the next night on the 6th at 7 pm in Waddington as we do the same presentation at St. Mary's Parish Hall. Alicia Murphy will be our hostess that evening. She is the Common Man books representative for the 1000 Islands area.

And, yes, our T.I. hiking, biking, etc books will be available for sale and signing at both locations.

South Bay - Lake Champlain

Just slightly Northwest of Whitehall is the South Bay of Lake Champlain. Perhaps more of an impediment to land travel than an important waterway, it was still a waterway used in both summer and winter for transportation during the French and Indian war. Sooooo, naturally, we had to explore it and we did so today September 2, 2007. There are notations in the history books about Roger's Rangers traveling in this area. Although only a few miles long, it is a beautiful shallow bay. We followed it into the long, narrow segment of Lake Champlain and on down to Whitehall where we locked through Lock 12 of the Champlain Canal back to one of out vehicles. It was a beautiful day to explore!

Guns of Fort Ticonderoga

As we paddled down the narrow LaChute River, the flags of Fort Ticonderoga came into view above the trees. As we got closer, we could actually hear the sounds of a bugle, and then the firing of muskets and cannon. Now, we intellectually knew that Fort Ti was not firing on us in 2007, but it did give us the feeling of what someone might feel who was exiting the LaChute river and coming under the guns of Fort Ticonderoga in th late 1750's. (And that's why we are on this trip.) We ventured out in Lake Champlain, knowing full well that the guns of Ti could have easily reached our boat back then. After a few pictures, we retreated back up the LaChute River to the safety of Ticonderoga, having suffered no battle damage from the Guns at Ti!

The LaChute River

The LaChute River drains the waters of Lake George into Lake Champlain at Fort Ticonderoga. However its two miles of waterfalls and rapids required vessels, men and supplies to make a 1.4 mile overland portage to get below the last set of waterfalls. Then it was a clear river for an additional 2 miles down to Lake Champlain. So, naturally, we had to canoe it all the way to Lake Champlain as a part of the Common Man Tour since it was a French and Indian War waterway between the two lakes. We did so on August 31st.