Historian to Portray Cherokee Leader at Fort Necessity National Battlefield

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Date: August 16, 2010
Contact: Brian Reedy, 724-329-5512

FARMINGTON – Historical researcher Doug Wood will present Turning The Tide Of War: Outacite Ostenaco and the Cherokee-British Alliance during the French & Indian War Friday, August 27, 2010 700 p.m. Fort Necessity Visitor Center            

Ostenaco, a prominent Cherokee leader, led warrior gangs out of Forts Loudoun (Winchester, VA), Pearsall (Romney, WV), and Cumberland (MD) in 1757. At 7 pm on Friday, August 27, 2010, at Fort Necessity National Battlefield, Ostenaco (portrayed by Doug Wood) will tell the compelling story of his exploits on behalf of his British brothers and sisters. His familiarity with the plants, animals, mountains, water courses, war paths, warrior tactics, and cultures of the region draws listeners in to these historic episodes. The presentation style will provide opportunities for listeners to ask questions of both Ostenaco the war leader and Doug Wood the historical researcher. Following the 45 minute dramatic presentation there will be a short break, followed by a 45 minute illustrated program highlighting the Cherokee-British alliance during the French & Indian War.            

Our nation is currently commemorating the 250th anniversary of the French & Indian War. This period of our region’s history was marked by military and diplomatic struggles among two European superpowers, two North American Indian superpowers, and several other native nations to gain or maintain control over the Ohio River region. This period of history, unfamiliar to many by Americans, was an important formative period for ideas of representative government that led to the American Revolution, and the formation of the United States of America.            

Even among 18th century historians, certain aspects of the French & Indian War are poorly understood. One such aspect is the involvement of southern American Indian nations in the war. From 1756 through 1758, the Cherokees dedicated themselves diplomatically and militarily to the war effort on behalf of their allies, the British. Hundreds of Cherokee warriors defended the frontiers of Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, and carried out offensive campaigns deep into the heart of enemy territory. 253 years ago, American Indian warriors turned the tide of war against the French operating out of Fort Duquesne and other Ohio country forts. Successes in 1757 and the spring and summer of 1758 led to the capitulation of Duquesne in November of 1758.            

This program is sponsored by the Friends of Fort Necessity. It is free and open to the public. For more information on this and other programs at Fort Necessity, please call (724) 329-5512 or visit the park’s web site at www.nps.gov/fone.

Last updated: March 31, 2012

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