About This Blog
A blog for those wanting to learn more about the 18th Century, Fort Stanwix/Schuyler, the American Revolution, and those who lived through the happenings.
A Loyal Life, or the Story of Polly Johnson
March 10, 2023
Civil wars like the American Revolution can divide families in ways none of them would ever imagine, and lead those who would not normally be considered soldiers to fight battles not for grand causes, but simply to keep their families together. Such is Mary Watts Johnson’s story.
From Bondage to Freedom, or Fighting For Their Independence in a Different Way
February 24, 2023
It is certainly easy to understand why so many enslaved African Americans eagerly fought for the British. In 1775, Lord Dunmore, the last Royal Governor of Virginia, issued a proclamation that promised freedom to the enslaved in Virginia who ran away from their rebel American owners and joined the British forces. This proclamation of course inspired the enslaved in the other southern Colonies to run away as well.
"...that the Garrison may not be without vegetables in their Season."
February 23, 2022
Food insecurity, food scarcity, and healthy meals are hot topics during even the most prosperous of times. In times of COVID, "supply chain issues" that affects our grocery bills.
Love In a Time of War
February 13, 2023
One of the greatest love stories ever told happened right here, at Fort Schuyler/Stanwix! Learn more about the love between Peter and Catherine Gansevoort in the following article.
Love In a Time of War
February 09, 2023
One of the greatest love stories ever told happened right here at Fort Schuyler/Stanwix! Throughout the American Revolution, Colonel Peter Gansevoort (commander of the 3rd NY Regiment at the fort) courted Catherine "Caty" Van Schaick of Albany, NY.
Not Quite Home for the Holidays
November 18, 2022
Life at Fort Stanwix/Schuyler was always difficult and demanding of sacrifice. However, the winter brought conditions and hardships to the men, women, and children garrisoned here that were sometimes worse than an enemy attack. After several years of war, sometimes the holidays that should have brought reasons to celebrate only reminded people of their unbearable living conditions and their separation from loved ones.
For Want of Clean Water
September 27, 2022
National Park Service
The Confused Intelligencer, OR Rumor Has it That's What We're Attacking Them For
November 13, 2022
People in the 18th C were no different than us, and the proverbial "rumor mill" has been in existence for centuries. In the following article, two different rumors with two very different outcomes that affected the fort's garrison are explored in depth.
“did you ever see where I was scalped?...” or the Unfortunate Tale of Captain Gregg
October 11, 2022
Captain James Gregg was stationed at Fort Schuyler [present-day Rome, N.Y.] in the summer of 1777. Accompanied by his faithful dog, and Corporal Samuel Madison, Gregg went out of the fort to go hunting on the morning of June 25, 1777. This decision, against standing orders, would prove infinitely fateful.
Siege 1777: The British Allied Forces
August 04, 2022
As the Revolution came to the Mohawk Valley, New York was shattered as families and communities fought on opposite sides of the conflict. The following article describes the forces that fought on the British side of things and how they became involved.
Siege 1777: The Garrison of Fort Schuyler
August 04, 2022
The American Revolution in New York became complicated as families and communities turned against each other and fighting spilled into the Mohawk Valley. Learn who fought for the American cause during the Siege of 1777 in this article.
Weight of a War, or The "Big Men" of the Continental Army
March 26, 2022
On a tense afternoon in 1783, as Washington and his officers walked through a West Point storehouse, someone lightheartedly suggested that they all weigh themselves on a large scale normally used to weigh sacks of grain. Washington, looking to change his mood, agreed. As a result, we have the following figures...
Dateline: Connecticut, May 1780 OR Mutiny With No Bounty, Part 2
July 28, 2022
Did you know that towards the end of the American Revolution, Mutiny is an act that most people don’t associate with George Washington’s army. But in fact, soldiers from just about every state mutinied sometime during the American Revolution. Morristown, New Jersey has the dubious distinction of being the site of two different mutinies. Two Connecticut Regiments mutinied on May 25, 1780, and the entire Pennsylvania Line mutinied on January 1, 1781, in one of the largest mutin
Dateline: Connecticut, May 1780 OR Mutiny With No Bounty, Part 1
May 11, 2022
Mutiny is an act that most people don’t associate with George Washington’s army. But in fact, soldiers from just about every state mutinied sometime during the American Revolution. Morristown, New Jersey has the dubious distinction of being the site of two different mutinies. Two Connecticut Regiments mutinied on May 25, 1780, and the entire Pennsylvania Line mutinied on January 1, 1781, in one of the largest mutinies of the war.
World on Fire, or the Mystery of the Fall of Fort Schuyler 1781
April 30, 2022
Fort Schuyler, or as most people call it Fort Stanwix, is famous for the Patriots successful 21-day defense of the fort against a combined force of British, Hessian, Tories and Indians. But, almost no one knows about the fall of the fort 1781. What happened in 1781 to cause the fall of the fort? Read the story, hear the evidence, and you decide who or what was responsible.
A Letter That is More Than What it Seems, or The Small Piquet Fort at Oneida
April 14, 2022
At one point in history, there were plans for more forts to be built in the vicinity of the Oneida Carry and its inhabitants. This includes one promised by the Marquis de La Fayette to the Oneida Nation.
Did a Bear Visit the Fort Last Night?, or Historic Wildlife on the Oneida Carry
April 07, 2022
What types of animal species were found in the historic location of Fort Stanwix National Monument, and what can be scene today? Read the following article to find out!
Working with Complicated Allies or The Indians and French on the Oneida Carry, 1756
March 20, 2022
While the goals of Indians and whites working as allies were compatible overall, there was often a point where they would diverge, sometimes only marginally, sometimes quite radically. This was particularly true when larger combined operations took place.
Spotlight: Women of the Army
February 25, 2022
A great many women took part in the Revolutionary War. The two main reasons women usually followed their husbands into the army was the occupation and/or destruction of their home areas by the British, or they simply would not be able to provide for themselves and their families with their husband gone. Learn more about their trials, tribulations, and victories in the following post.
"Troops Not Paid..."
February 23, 2022
Have you ever had to pinch pennies to survive? Have you ever done it while fighting? Soldiers in the Continental Army nearly always went short or without supplies. On top of that, they often had to go without real pay as well. What would you do if you were in their shoes?
Freedom Denied? Enslaved Soldiers During the Revolution
February 01, 2022
African Americans had an extensive role in the American Revolution, which until more recent times has tended to be glossed over, or intentionally forgotten. This is particularly true concerning those African Americans who chose to fight for the British. For the United States Army, it would be the first and last time it was fully integrated until the 1950’s.
"...many men froze to death..."
February 05, 2022
Late in the war effort George Washington had hoped a winter attack on the enemy would push the Continental Army to victory. In February of 1783, Marinus Willett of Fort Stanwix/Schuyler fame led this ill-fated attack against the British garrison at Oswego, NY.
There are only two things I can't stand in this world: People who are intolerant of other people's cultures, and party poopers
January 05, 2022
Warren Johnson was the brother of prominent Mohawk Valley resident Sir John Johnson. In 1760, Warren traveled through the valley for the first time to visit with his brother. It was a trip that he didn't seem to enjoy much; his random musings mainly directed at the Dutch. There are many obvious personal biases which Johnson flavors his observations with we must strip away. Once we do, however, we are still left with some unique insights into the 18th century Dutch culture.
Recommendations for Christmas & New Year's Boxes
December 09, 2021
Just what is a "Christmas Box" and where can you get yours? Read below to learn more about where the tradition of winter gift giving came from.
“...and half naked...”
August 07, 2021
How were the soldiers at Fort Schuyler dressed during the American Revolution? Read the following article to learn more!
The Northern Campaign of 1777
August 04, 2021
From the beginning of the American Revolution, the British had understood the importance of gaining control of the Lake Champlain-Lake George-Hudson River water route to effectively cut off the colonies north of New York from those to the south. Almost all the troubles leading to the war had originated from New England, and the British hoped that if they could put down the rebellion there, the rest of the colonies might consider abandoning the war.
The Samuel Geake Conspiracy
July 22, 2021
Throughout the Revolution, the British attempted to destroy Continental forces by sending British agents or disaffected American prisoners amongst them urging them to desert or mutiny. Most of these plots failed because the British did not understand that just because the troops were upset with their lot as soldiers, it didn’t necessarily mean they had given up on the cause of Independence.
The Declaration of Independence: What Were They Thinking?
June 30, 2021
What is a "grievance" and what did the 27 of them listed in the Declaration of Independence mean to those in the 13 Colonies supporting separation from Great Britain? Explore this in this month's Fort Stanwix Blog.
My Father, The Hero
June 20, 2021
Is your father your hero? Many men of the Revolution were considered heroes in their old age. But to their sons and daughters they were just “dad.”
The Early Rebellion in New York
June 14, 2021
Among early historians researching New York during the American Revolution, the lack of numerous large scale public radical acts against British authority helped forge the reputation of it having been a largely Loyalist colony. If one looks closer however, this reputation is undeserved. It was in fact a very radical public act that brought about a change in how pre-war opposition to England would be handled by “rebel” leaders in New York.
Last updated: April 26, 2022