Thursday, October 2, 2008

Ft. Boonesborough and Old Fort Harrod

A blog entry in three parts.

Part 1: Boonesborough
Last Saturday we went to Fort Boonesborough State Park because there was a reenactment of the Siege of 1778. They have a reconstruction of the fort. It isn’t at the actual location where the original was, but it looks pretty good where it is. I met someone who told me about gun cleaning and making spoons out of horns. First you take any horn, then you wet it. Soak it for a while, and it will be very soft. Cut it into a spoon shape. Put two spoons together over the cutout. When it dries, take it apart and you have a spoon made of horn. I bought a comb made out of horn. Inside the Fort we met a blacksmith. Then we explored, and I saw different cabins and rooms. There was a display in each one.
The reenactment started with everyone playing outside the fort. Someone ran up and shouted, “Indians!” and ran in the fort, and everyone followed her. The frontiersmen got their guns and went to their posts. Then the Indian chief Blackfish called for Daniel Boone. They talked and talked. Then Daniel Boone and the other settlers talked, and they didn’t want to surrender. The settlers thought they had a peace treaty, but when they shook hands, the Indians tried to grab them. Luckily they all ran inside the fort. After that started, the siege began. They used a small wooden cannon just like Squire Boone had made. Some Indians and frontiersmen were overweight, and the battle wasn’t really realistic. Here is a quote from Merkin: “The Indians didn’t need to wear loin cloths because their fopas would have covered up everything.” During the retreat one of the Indians got shot and his blue underwear showed. And the last one to retreat mooned the fort.
Later on we returned for a night battle. This was not based on actual happenings. They called it a “generic night battle.” They were all out playing, and a man said there were Indians in the area, and then everyone ran in except the man who warned them got shut out and so did a woman. The Indians came and scalped them. (No one actually got scalped at Boonesborough.) At night I could see the orange blare of the shots. That was very, very neat.

Part 2: Camping Out
We got some fire wood and matches. The first pack of matches didn’t work. So we tried the second pack: it worked. We got the campfire blazing. When it looked like there was no more wood, I got some leaves and the fire went blazing.

Part 3: Harrodsburg
Sunday morning I burned my finger on a hot rock that was in the campfire ashes. Then we went to Harrodsburg to Old Fort Harrod StatePark.
Old Fort Harrod used to stand where the parking lot is for the reconstructed fort. The only person demonstrating was a blacksmith. They had some goats in the center of Fort Harrod. The buildings that they had reconstructed were quite accurate of the time period: They were completely wooden. George Rogers Clark had a headquarters in the fort. (Earlier, if you remember, I went to Vincennes where George Rogers Clark took over British territory for the United States.) The weekend was weird and fun.

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