Tag Archives: Overmountain Men

April Muster: Carter Mansion Celebration, April 2-3


Saturday, April 2 & Sunday, April 3   

Ramona Invidiato

 

Travel back to the 1780s… The American colonies have declared Independence, but the outcome of this bitter struggle is still in question. Hardy frontiersmen have crossed the mountains in defiance of British law and have carved out homes in the wilderness. Conflict is rising between American Patriots, Loyalists who support the Crown, and native Indians who struggle to retain their way of life. But the people of this time still find cause for celebration and merriment so come out and see it all come together at the oldest frame house in Tennessee.

The Historic John and Landon Carter Mansion, built ca. 1775-1780, boasts beautiful over mantle murals, hand carved moldings and raised panels making it one of the most treasured sites in Tennessee history. The house is the only surviving link to the famed Watauga Association, the democratic government set up by the early settlers in the Watauga Valley. The home’s builder, John Carter, served as a chairman of the Association.

The Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia, Sycamore Shoals’ host living history organization, will be celebrating its seven-year anniversary during this exciting celebration! The Militia will be encamped on the grounds of the Carter Mansion and will present demonstrations of the daily lives of 18th century backwoods settlers. As part of the activities a re-enactment of a small battle between Patriots and Tories will be presented each day.

Local craftsmen and artisans will be on hand throughout the weekend showcasing and demonstration traditional arts and crafts. Other activities throughout the weekend will include Tours of the Carter Mansion: Tennessee’s oldest frame house, Militia Drill, Musket and Rifle demonstrations, Traditional Music, Storytelling, Colonial Military Music by the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums, and much more. Come join us for a weekend of History, Entertainment, and Family Fun!

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Filed under 2011 Militia Activity, 2016 MILITIA ACTIVITY, Carter's Mansion

GLORIOUS OLD CHRISTMAS, JAN 3-4, 2016


OC German door

An Epiphany blessing for the New Year

 

Ed Note: Click on the pictures to see the captions.

This year, Christmas felt like a tropical time with temperatures in the 70’s and, like many of us,  I was hoping against hope that the end of the Christmas season would be a continuation of the warmth that made the daffodils start to pop up. Old Christmas was right on the heels of New Years Day and while it was substantially colder, the weekend turned out sunny and bright.

Old Christmas is one of the most loved events the Militia does each year. As in many countries, Epiphany marks  the close of the Christmas season and we honor the settlers and their holiday traditions. On Friday, one could see everyone who was staging a cabin working on their decorations. Many of us had been spending weeks at home making the baked goods that were going to be the showcases of various tables. Cindy and Harry Jordan did a sterling job creating a French cabin, complete with manger and Buche de Noel.

OC EARL AND FRENCH

Earl Slagle looking in at the french cabin

 

 

 

 

 

Earl Slagle was the lone wolf in the woods, roasting venison for a holiday in the field as a longhunter.

Dan Akerblom brought the pine forests of Banner Elk , NC and festooned the Tavern with green. He and Ethan Wallin recreated Dutch traditions.

OC DAN AND DUTCH TAVERN

Dab Akerblom , Tavern master , decorating in the Dutch manner

The Talbot House looked so veddy English. The Bennetts did a superb job making it so inviting and welcoming.

Tony DeVault created an  Irish Christmas in the cabin nearest the woodshed. It looked very nice, festooned with ivy and greens in all the corners. Probably of all, he recreated the primitive yet beautiful atmosphere of those settlers just starting out.

The hilliblly Hilton was the German cabin and this year, the ol’ widder woman had a boarder. Just like in years gone by, the doors of those who homesteaded were open to any traveler and Travis Souther stayed the weekend to partake of a German Christmas. The loft was inviting and just as it would have been two centuries ago, the widder stayed there with the goods  and the man stayed downstairs and kept the fire. I have to say I had the best night’s sleep I have ever had winter camping in all the years I’ve been doing this.

 

Because it was rather chilly, John and Becky Garrou stayed in the Visitor’s Center where it was more comfortable for her . Near the Christmas tree, they had a beautiful spread of goods for the guests and a fine display of drinks of the period. It was a terrific idea and with their sweet personalities,  a great way for visitors to be introduced to the 18th century at Christmas time.

I noticed that although there was a steady stream of visitors, especially in the afternoons on Saturday and Sunday, we weren’t as bombed as we normally have been in years passed. It was a manageable crowd and I think that, having learned lessons in the past, we managed them better than ever before . After hoisting the colors, there was plenty of time for everyone to circulate, visitate and jollificate.

On Saturday afternoon, when the crowd was at its best, everyone assembled near the french cabin to watch a presentation by Alan Begley to Jennifer Bowers and Chad Bogart. They were cited by the National Guard for working so hard and diligently in helping to put together the Maneuvers event back in September. it was wonderful to see these individuals honored for their hard work.

The best part of the day for me, personally,  was looking up and seeing Colonel Bob McCroskey. It was marvelous to see him and sit at length and share time.

Sunday, though warmer than Saturday, was very quiet  until later in the afternoon. It was a repetition of Saturday except for the Church service that was conducted by Ronnie Lail who preached a wonderful service. One can saw truthfully that Ronnie packed the church full as there was standing room only in the Talbot House. Everyone decided to save best vittles to share after the public left so towards the end of the day, many of the members went to the Talbot House to share food and company.

We’ve had several Old Christmases where it was a struggle to stay warm, a struggle to cope with the crowds but this one wasn’t one of those events. everyone had fun, enjoyed the public and each other. You could hear music, the sounds of the children, laughter and chatter. It was a tremendous way to close the old season and open the new one for 2016.

 

 

ED NOTE: Thank you so much Retha Reece for taking these outstanding pictures.

OC KENRETHA BETTER

Retha and Ken Reece

Thank you Tammy Markland for getting the pictures of the presentation.

OC TAMMY

Tammy Markland

 

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OVERMOUNTAIN VICTORY TRAIL MARCH, SEPT.25-27


To those who lived in the Eastern Appalachians in the last decades of the 1700’s, the Revolutionary War was a distant drumbeat being fought and stalemated somewhere up north. For these people, it was an echo in the mountains that surrounded their hard scrabble lives. For the most part, though there were others, these early settlers on the frontier were not English, per se,  but came from the large Irish territory, the Ulster Plantation. These Scot-Irish whose ancestors where already displaced once, ignored the Royal Proclamation where George III promised the indigenous peoples that there would be no British subjects settling permanently west of the  Alleghenies and dug out a tenuous  life in the wilderness and lived as they wished.

The call of war sounded closer when the British decided to end the stalemate , invade the Southern colonies thus splitting the colonies and the resistance with the hope of ending the war. They banked on loyalists fighting along side the British soldiers. What they didn’t bank on was the ragtag group, these “mongrels”, “barbarians” , these “Backwater Men” as Major Patrick Furgeson  disparagingly called them, who sometimes appeared in the low countries, who fought like devils with their strange Indian cries, who could fell a deer at 200 yards, who harbored rebels and their families in the depths of the mountains and lived to fight another day. The sound of war was made crashingly real when Furgeson,commissioned by Cornwallis to subdue the rebels on his western flank,  out of frustration, threatened the leaders of this group by saying  If the Rebels “did not desist from their opposition to the British arms,” he would “march his army over the mountains, hang their leaders and lay their country waste with fire and sword.”  This enraged the leaders of these very independent people who mustered over a thousand men and set off on a 330 mile journey in a nine day march which brought defeat to the Tories and death to Furgeson. These men  set off ,not to fight for a nation but to defend their cabins and farms and the mountain life they valued.

Why they fought! (Timothy L. Overman and son)

Why they fought! (Timothy L. Overman and son)

Every year in September, The Washington County Regiment , in conjunction with the OVTA (Overmountain Victory Trail Association) , holds its commemoration of the Overmountain Men’s gathering at Sycamore Shoals. This year it was held on September 25 through 27th. It threatened rain all weekend, so much so that the school day scheduled for Friday was cancelled. The day turned out sunny, however and the historic site hosted the Tennessee State Guard who were on maneuvers at the park. I didn’t stop for a head count but I bet there was a hundred  if there was one, and It was really cool to see them mass together, so erect and so serious. The Watauga Valley Fife and Drum leading the way, the Militia, distaff members and the whole company of Guard participated in crossing the Watauga as the Overmountain Men did 235 years ago. Prior to the crossing, Steve Ricker told the story of the battle of Kings Mountain to a rapt audience and the Reverend Doak, played by George Cobb, gave that rousing sermon which rededicated the men and brought the men’s determination to a fever pitch.

Steve Ricker telling the story to a captivated audience.

Steve Ricker telling the story to a captivated audience.

Interesting perspective of the crossing with Superintendent of the National parks in the south, John Slaughter, in the foreground.

Interesting perspective of the crossing with Superintendent of the National parks in the south, John Slaughter, in the foreground.

The militia, members of the OVTA and the Tennessee National Guard crossing the river

The militia, members of the OVTA and the Tennessee National Guard crossing the river

It speaks for itself!

It speaks for itself

After the crossing the Overmountain Men , followed by Representatives of the First Tennessee Regiment (War of 1812) and then the whole contingent of the Tennessee State Guard assembled in the ampitheater for a short program. It brought home that there has been a continuum of volunteer service protecting communities here and wherever they are needed for the last 235 years and that these last are the inheritors of a grand tradition. One member of the Guard  sang the most beautiful rendition of the national anthem I’ve ever heard and there were speeches. Then three guardsmen were singled out for recognition for excellence.

Scott Smith who lives in Church Hill, TN, was one of the three who received an award of excellence.

Scott Smith who lives in Church Hill, TN, was one of the three who received an award of excellence.

The Guard, the OVTA and the National Park Service all had display stations at the visitors’ center and they stayed all weekend, providing the public with information and answering questions.

Saturday was another one of those days, threatening rain which never came. There was good traffic throughout the weekend where people came and saw various displays of 18th century living. one of the more interesting ones , I though, was Ken and Retha Reece’s display of trekking equipment and how one made pemmicin to take on trips. There were militia drills throughout the day and the crowd pleasing cannon demonstration in the latter part of the afternoon.

Fine tradition of service over time

Fine tradition of service over time

After the public left for the day, many of the members went to the burial site of Mary Patton who provided the excellent black powder for the Overmountain Men. She was remembered in a moving ceremony culimnating in a military salute and the pouring of black powder on her grave.

Sunday was less fast paced and more relaxed. Under cloudy skies, George Cobb preached the sermon explaining the references to the sword of Gideon and Macedonia. The park was lightly attended which was just as well as the militia got together for the first time, and actually was able to socialize.

My breakfast buddies and I having biscuits and apple butter or molasses Sunday morning.

My breakfast buddies and I having biscuits and apple butter or molasses Sunday morning.

I think the members were gathering their reserves to see the changing of officers in the afternoon. At 3 :30, Colonel Bob McCroskey stepped down as Colonel of the Militia and passed the baton to now Colonel Chadwick Bogart. It was very moving to hear Bob enumerate the accomplishments of the regiment over his six-year tenure, listen to his reasons for stepping down and read Chad’s commission to him and all assembled. Chad had tears in his eyes and he accepted the commission and praised Bob for his service, His first command , though, was to the distaff members as he bellowed ” you WILL Wear modesty cloths at ALL TIMES”. The verdict? Yep, he has what it takes as every woman looked down at her chest to see that her cloth was put on correctly.

It was a busy weekend, full of fun and emotion as the Washington Co. Regiment of North Carolina Militia, the OVTA and the TN State Guard met together to commemorate one of the most important events in the Up Country of North Carolina.

Pam Eddy and Lisa Bennett pouring black powder of Mary Patton's grave

Pam Eddy and Lisa Bennett pouring black powder of Mary Patton’s grave

Salute at Mary Patton's grave

Salute at Mary Patton’s grave

Colonel McCroskey presenting the new colonel with his commission

Colonel McCroskey presenting the new colonel with his commission

Colonel Bogart accepting his commission, praising the militia and the willingness of its members to do whatever it takes to further the goals of the historic site and do it with willingness and humor.

Colonel Bogart accepting his commission, praising the militia and the willingness of its members to do whatever it takes to further the goals of the historic site and do it with willingness and humor

George Cobb showing Pam Eddy and myself the reference about Macedonia in Acts from the New Testament crafted by James Moore.

George Cobb explaining to Pam Eddy and myself the reference about Macedonia in Acts. The Bible in my hands is  the New Testament crafted by James Moore.

The passing of the baton.

The passing of the baton.

Colonel McCroskey explaining to the crowd that he felt the Militia needed a constant presence from a Militia leader and that his health prevented him from being with the group especially in inclement conditions.

Colonel McCroskey explaining to the crowd that he felt the Militia needed a constant presence from a Militia leader and that his health prevented him from being with the group especially in inclement conditions.

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Filed under 2015 MILITIA ACTIVITY, Sycamore Shoals Historical Site

MAJOR BOGART SPEAKS: SEPTEMBER MUSTER AND SCHOOL DAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2015


ED NOTE: The September muster is September 26-27. The school day and TN State Guard program is Friday, Sept. 25.

Good Afternoon Everyone,

The September Muster and School Day is fast approaching.

The School day will be Friday, September 25th from 9:00 until 1:00.

I need to know if anyone is willing to operate a station during the school visit. We need 9 stations. The rotations will be 15 minutes each. There will be a break for lunch. The OVTA will be lending a hand this year as well.

Please let me know if you can provide a station and what you would like to present.

This is going to be a very busy and hectic day as the kids will be leaving around 1:00 – the River Crossing is at 2:00 (100 TN state guardsmen will be crossing with the OVTA) – then, the TN state guard march-in and presentation will follow the crossing.

This brings me to another point. For the TN State Guard “March-In” they want a timeline represented in the parade. We will be representing Rev. War Militia and 1812 period. I need to know how many of you are willing to participate in this and which era you wish to represent. Remember, this is directly following the crossing on Friday the 25th, so I’m guessing it will be around 3:00 pm at the park amphitheater.

A lot to process I know, but it will be a day to remember I’m sure… for many reasons J

Let me know what you can do. Anything you can provide will be greatly appreciated, as always.

I remain your most obedient servant,

Maj. Bogart

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OVERMOUNTAIN VICTORY TRAIL CELEBRATION (SCHEDULE BELOW) THIS WEEKEND!


Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area Presents:

The Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration

Saturday and Sunday, September 22 and 23

The Overmountain Victory Trail River Crossing

Tuesday, September 25

It was the year 1780.

The tide of the Revolution had turned against the colonists. The British, forced out of New England, gained new allies in the divided South and won victory after victory in a bloody civil war. Charleston had fallen, and American forces had crumbled at the battle of Camden.

But then the impossible occurred…

The frontiersmen of the western mountains began a long march, gathering an army along the way, from the highlands of Virginia to the hills of South Carolina. There, at a place called King’s Mountain, they destroyed an army and opened the way for the final American victory at Yorktown.

The route they took to from Virginia to South Carolina, we now know as the Overmountain Victory Trail. Come celebrate with us as we recreate the muster of the Overmountain Men, which occurred here at Sycamore Shoals over two hundred years ago…

SATURDAY AND SUNDAY, SEPT.   22 and 23                               OVERMOUNTAIN VICTORY TRAIL CELEBRATION

TUESDAY, SEPT  25                                        OVERMOUNTAIN VICTORY TRAIL CROSSING

On September 25, 1780, the Overmountain Men gathered at Sycamore Shoals on their march to victory at King’s Mountain. Members of the Overmountain Victory Trail Association have recreated this historic journey since 1975, following the same route and timetable as their legendary forebears. Marchers will cross the Watauga River at the Sycamore Shoals, as the frontiersmen would have done 232 years ago.

Approximate time of crossing the river is 2:00 pm

MILITIA MUSTER SCHEDULE: SEPTEMBER 22 – 23, 2012

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22nd

10:00 – Militia Inspection & Raising the ColorsWitness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms. Hear the roar of muskets and rifles as the flag is hoisted for the day.

11:00 – Artillery Demonstration – Join members of the Washington County Militia for a look at firing an 18th century cannon!

12:00 – Trail Talk – Join historic interpreter Chad Bogart for a guided walk along the park trail as he recounts the story of the Overmountain Men and their historic gathering at Sycamore Shoals.

1:00 – Life on the Homefront – Join Miss Ramona for a look at the woman’s role on the 18th century frontier. See what

sewing project she’s working on today.

2:00 – Artillery Demonstration – Join members of the Washington County Militia for a look at firing an 18th century cannon!

3:00 – Militia Drill – View the Washington County Militia as they drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier.

4:30 – Camps Close to the Public – Join us tomorrow for another exciting day of life on the colonial frontier!

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 23rd

10:00 – Militia Inspection & Raising the Colors – Witness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms, and hear the roar of muskets and rifles as the flag is hoisted for the day.

11:00 – Worship Service – Feel free to join the militia for Sunday morning service held in the courtyard of Fort Watauga.

12:00 – Echoes of Revolution – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

1:00 – Artillery Demonstration – Join members of the Washington County Militia for a look at firing an 18th century cannon!

2:00 – Ladies Tea and Sunday Social – Join the ladies of the settlement for a delightful afternoon tea and catch up on all the “news” of the day. Hopefully the ladies will permit the gentlemen to attend as well!

3:00 – Camps Close – Thank you for joining us for a great day of frontier living history. Join us next time!

ONGOING ACTIVITIES FOR BOTH DAYS INCLUDE:

Open Hearth Cooking – Flintlock Musket & Rifle Demonstrations – Tavern Life – Militia Drill

Colonial Music – 18th Century Camp Life 

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September Muster: Overmountain Victory Trail


Overmountain Men’s March

 

 

To the Washington County Militia,

 

The Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration is fast approaching. Our muster will be on September 22 and 23. Please let me know if you would like to do a special program or presentation during the weekend so I can get it on the schedule.

 

We are planning on doing the evening lantern light tours that Saturday evening. Please let me know if you are interested in being a part of that.

 

Also, we will be doing our school day with West Side Elementary on Monday, September 24th. Please let me know ASAP if you would be willing to present a station during the school day.

 

Take Care,

 

Major Bogart

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THE OVERMOUNTAIN VICTORY TRAIL CELEBRATION AND RIVER CROSSING, SEPT. 24-25


Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area Presents:

The Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration
Saturday and Sunday, September 24 and 25
The Overmountain Victory Trail River Crossing
Sunday, September 25
It was the year 1780.

The tide of the Revolution had turned against the colonists.  The British, forced out of New England, gained new allies in the divided South and won victory after victory in a bloody civil war.  Charleston had fallen, and American forces had crumbled at the battle of Camden.

But then the impossible occurred…
The frontiersmen of the western mountains began a long march, gathering an army along the way, from the highlands of Virginia to the hills of South Carolina.  There, at a place called King’s Mountain, they destroyed an army and opened the way for the final American victory at Yorktown.

The route they took to from Virginia to South Carolina, we now know as the Overmountain Victory Trail.  Come celebrate with us as we recreate the muster of the Overmountain Men, which occurred here at Sycamore Shoals over two hundred years ago…

 

Saturday and Sunday, September 24 and 25

The Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration
On September 25th 1780, a host of frontiersmen gathered at the Sycamore Shoals of the Watauga.  Their mission was to form an army and launch an attack against a British-led force that had threatened their lands and homes.  Re-enactors in period clothing will be on hand throughout the weekend to share stories of the excitement and danger of that tumultuous time.

 

Sunday, September 25

The Overmountain Victory Trail Crossing
On September 25, 1780, the Overmountain Men gathered at Sycamore Shoals on their march to victory at King’s Mountain.  Members of the Overmountain Victory Trail Association have recreated this historic journey since 1975, following the same route and timetable as their legendary forebears.  Marchers will cross the Watauga River at the Sycamore Shoals, as the frontiersmen would have done 231 years ago.

Approximate time of crossing the river is 1:30 – 2:00 pm

 

The public is welcome to visit re-enactor camps and walk the grounds on Sunday morning; however, the Visitors Center will not open until 1:00pm on Sunday.

 

 

MILITIA MUSTER SCHEDULE:      SEPTEMBER 24 – 25, 2011

 

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24th

 

10:00 – Militia Inspection & Raising the Colors – Witness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms. Hear the roar of muskets and rifles as the flag is hoisted for the day.

 

11:00 – Echoes of Revolution – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

 

12:00 – Trail Talk – Join historic interpreter Chad Bogart for a guided walk along the park trail as he recounts the story of the Overmountain Men and their historic gathering at Sycamore Shoals.

 

1:00 – Life on the Homefront – Join Miss Ramona for a look at the woman’s role on the 18th century frontier and the task of processing sheep’s wool.

 

2:00 – Artillery Demonstration – Join members of the Washington County Militia for a look at firing an 18th century cannon!

 

3:00 – Militia Drill – View the Washington County Militia as they drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier.

 

4:30 – Camps Close to the Public – Join us tomorrow for another exciting day of life on the colonial frontier!

 

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25th

 

10:00 – Militia Inspection & Raising the Colors – Witness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms, and hear the roar of muskets and rifles as the flag is hoisted for the day.

 

11:00 – Worship Service – Feel free to join the militia for Sunday morning service held in the courtyard of Fort Watauga. In the event of inclement weather services will be held inside the Talbot House.

 

12:00 – Echoes of Revolution – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

 

Approximately 2:00 – Overmountain Victory Trail River Crossing – Members of the Overmountain Victory Trail Association recreate the historic crossing of the Watauga River at Sycamore Shoals, as the frontiersmen did 231 years ago.

 

3:3 0 – Camps Close – Thank you for joining us for a great day of frontier living history. Join us next time!

 

 

ONGOING ACTIVITIES FOR BOTH DAYS INCLUDE:

 

Open Hearth Cooking – Flintlock Musket & Rifle Demonstrations – Tavern Life – Militia Drill

Colonial Music – 18th Century Camp Life

 

Sponsored by the Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia

and the Friends of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area

 

 

For more information, contact

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area

1651 West Elk Ave

Elizabethton, TN 37643

(423) 543-5808
www.tnstateparks.com/SycamoreShoals/

http://www.sycamoreshoalstn.org

 

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Filed under 2011 Militia Activity, Information of Jennifer