POINT PLEASANT —Fort Randolph is both a tourist destination and a home for living history in Point Pleasant.
Though the fort’s season officially kicks off with this weekend’s 13th Annual Siege at Fort Randolph re-enactment, there are several upcoming events planned at the facility in the coming months.
This year the fort will host summer seminars on historical topics of interest including: June 11, a seminar on leather hunting pouches and Domestic Uses for Native Herbs/Plants; July 9 a seminar on knife making and a seminar on 18th Century Breads and Spreads (this includes bread making and tasting); Sept. 10, a seminar on Blanket Coat/Mittens and a seminar on Ladies’ Winter Accessories.
These seminars do require small fees and registration, with forms available at this weekend’s siege re-enactment and also online at https://sites.google.com/site/fortrandolphpointpleasant/home.
Other upcoming events are: Oct. 28-30, Harvest Fest and All Hallows Eve Encampment at Fort Randolph; Dec. 3, Fort Randolph’s Christmas on the Frontier.
As for this weekend’s events, the re-enactment of the annual Siege of Fort Randolph, is Saturday, May 21 with Fort Randolph and Indian Village opening at 9 a.m. that day. There will be life skills demonstrations until noon, a flag-raising at 10 a.m. and magistrate court at 12:30 p.m.
The Siege of Fort Randolph outdoor drama will begin at 2 p.m. with an admission fee of $3, while children under 6 can attend for free.
Running the Gauntlet is at 3 p.m., an auction of items donated by the re-enactors will occur at 4 p.m. Gates will close at 5 p.m.
This Sunday, the gates will open at 9 a.m. and a church service will be held at 10 a.m. at the fort. The Brigade of the American Revolution will be at the fort on Sunday. The Brigade is a living history association dedicated to recreating the life and times of the common soldier of the American War for Independence, 1775-1783. Members represent elements of all the armies then involved: Continental, Militia, British, Loyalist, German, French, Spanish and Native American forces plus civilian men, women and children. Gates close at 2 p.m. on Sunday
The weekend revolves around a military siege intended to begin the return of land back to the Shawnee Nation, and the circumstances leading to it. The main event features the re-enactment of Chief Cornstalk’s fateful visit to Fort Randolph in the fall of 1777, and the subsequent siege placed upon the fort in 1778 in which a war party of more than 200 Shawnee warriors formed a line stretching from the Ohio to the Kanawha Rivers.
Re-enactors from both near and far were already gathered at the fort on Friday, welcoming visitors and school children. Organizers say this will be a “fun-filled weekend” allowing visitors to explore the reasons behind the skirmish at the fort and learn more about local history.
For more information please visit: http://www.fortrandolph.org/index_files/siege.htm or contact Craig Hesson at (304) 675-7933, or [email protected] The Mason County Convention and Visitors Bureau at (304) 675- 6788 or http://www.masoncountytourism.org/index.html is also available to provide information about the siege and fort.
Reach Beth Sergent at [email protected] or on Twitter @BSergentWrites.