The Adirondacks: An Enduring History of Courage and Triumph
Beyond the breathtaking vistas and exhilarating mountain air, the Adirondacks hold the key to a world of historical wonder. Around each corner visitors can discover hallowed battle grounds that witnessed fearless acts of heroism, explore museums that belie their rustic surroundings with impressive displays of Adirondack architecture, medicine and industry, escape to historic mansions and indulge in the comforts of elegant Victorian living.
The Adirondacks were originally claimed by two Indian nations, the Iroquois and the Algonquins. Neither group ever settled in the region, but the two nations fought over the Lake George - Lake Champlain water route through the Adirondacks. This route was the easiest route through the Adirondacks and was therefore a valuable resource.
Dating back to the 1700's the Adirondacks were a destination, with Lake George and Lake Champlain providing ideal conditions for settlements, and later for military posts. Opportunities aboun d to see examples of the evolution of Adirondack architecture, of both the real McCoy and reproduction varieties at places like the Adirondack and Horicon Museum.
The last 250 years in the Adirondacks have produced a bounty of historic intrigue. Like the infinite hikes within the Park, the history here is accessible - walk the trails, ride the trains and visit the places written about in text books and novels alike.
The Frontline in the Blue Line
The French and Indian War, which raged from the late 1750's into the early 1760's, produced the single largest pre-Civil War land battle in American history. Fort Carillon, later called Fort Ticonderoga, the setting of this legendary battle, offers historical reenactments depicting with expert accuracy every detail of the battle, from uniforms and weapons to staging and military strategy. The Lake George Battlefield Park and Fort George State Park can be walked: Interpretive signage chronicles the bloody battles and the race to cure smallpox that transpired on these famous sites.
2007 marked the 250th Anniversary of events from the seven-year French and Indian War. Regional events will continue through 2010. This year marks the 250th anniversary of the surrender of Fort William Henry in Lake George and the resulting and much debated massacre that occurred when the British retreated from French and Indian forces.
Prior events noted the anniversaries of the Battle of Lake George and the building of the forts, Fort Ticonderoga (Carillon) and Fort William Henry.