Rogers' Rangers reenactment at Point au Fer

POINT AU FER - More than 150 reenactors will be heading to the Northern Tier this summer to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the Battle of Point au Fer - the first reenactment ever held in the area.

During the rededication ceremony held at Point au Fer last May, in which unnamed soldiers were given recognition for the battle fought at the site during the Revolutionary War, it came to light a milestone anniversary was fast approaching.

John Zurlo, a committee member of the reenactment, to be held June 5-6, explained Calvin Castine, owner of Hometown Cable, had been studying up on Point au Fer and realized June 5-6 was the 250th anniversary of Rogers' Rangers - colonial militia who fought for the British - confrontation on Point au Fer.

Robert Rogers, a colonial farmer recruited by the British during the French and Indian War, was the organizer of Rogers' Rangers.

"He was a phenomenal man," Zurlo explained of Rogers. "[He became] acclimated to backwoods and he actually is considered the originator of the Green Beret."

Joe Heath, another committee member of the reenactment, added the Green Berets practiced guerrilla warfare.

"All of a sudden his opponents didn't have a head," Zurlo explained. "It was like Rambo ... They were tough, they could walk through swamps. They could walk 12, 15 miles a day."

The significance of the battle in 1760 was Rogers, along with his Rangers, went up against a large body of French forces. After a three-hour battle in which Rogers defended his position, the French were forced to scatter into the swamp, opening a passage for the invasion and capture of Montreal in September of that year.

During the reenactment, which will be held at 1 p.m. each day, other events will be offered such as demonstrations and activities depicting life of the 18th century.

"It's history and education about our area people should be aware of," Heath said. "I just think it's going to be a great thing for families that weekend."

Editor's Note: The committee putting together the reenactment are still planning some of the specifics of the weekend. Stay tuned to the North Countryman for periodic updates.

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