Ticonderoga Fort Ticonderoga’s 2013 Author Series continues on Sunday, July 21, with Thomas A. Chambers, author of Memories of War: Visiting Battlegrounds and Bonefields in the Early American Republic. The program takes place at 11:30 am in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center and is followed by a book signing in the Museum Store at 12:30 pm. The program is included in the cost of admission and takes place during the Fort’s “Montcalm’s Cross” battle re-enactment event weekend. Members of the Friends of Fort Ticonderoga and Ticonderoga Ambassador Pass holders are admitted at no cost.
“The soldiers make tent pins out of the shin and thigh bones of Abercrombie’s men.” So remarked American officer Anthony Wayne in July 1776 at Ticonderoga, as his ragtag force tried to hold the once-great fortress against an expected British invasion. The 1758 battle left hundreds of dead bodies on the field, and Wayne’s men occupied the same ground. That juxtaposition of past and current wars caused Americans to give meaning to their past, but also to forget it. During the Revolution the Battle of Carillon served as an object lesson in British arrogance, intransigence and disregard for Americans, while decades later visitors to Ticonderoga recalled only hazy details of the “Old French War.” The key to the continent had been reduced to a scenic destination for tourists.
Thomas Chambers is Associate Professor of History at Niagara University. He is also the author of Drinking the Waters: Creating an American Leisure Class at Nineteenth Century Mineral Springs. During his college days, Tom worked as an interpreter at Fort Ticonderoga.
For additional information about this series and other programs, visit the Fort Ticonderoga website at www.fort-ticonderoga.org