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Pike's Cantonment Archaeological Dig
The neophyte archaeologists excavated a temporary structure that was most likely used to house officers during the War of 1812. Producer J. Scott Parker met up with some of the team just before the dig was closed for the season.
In the summer of 1812, a large army of American soldiers were sent to Northern New York to conduct operations against Canada. After a half-hearted campaign in the fall, which barely made it over the border, the American army settled in for winter quarters. General Dearborn left for Greenbush near Albany. The Ninth, Eleventh, Twenty-First and Twenty-Fifth US infantry regiments left for Burlington,VT. This left the Sixth, Fifteenth and Sixteenth regiments in Plattsburgh, NY under the command of Colonel Zebulon Pike.
The troops left in Plattsburgh, NY had to build there own shelters, sleeping on the frozen ground until their huts were completed after Christmas. The army had shortages of supplies and Colonel Pike complained about the poor quality of what was available. Due to disease and exposure, approximately 200 men of the 2000 that initially inhabited the Cantonment died. Even today, the exact location of where these soldiers were buried is unknown.
Additionally, during this period the army was responsible for keeping the North Country secure, which included attempting to interrupt and stop the rampant smuggling that was occurring along the Canadian Border. The smuggling had become so bad, that Colonel Pike was obligated to print the Articles of War in the local paper, and patrols were dispatched to deal with the situation.
In memory of the brave men that served our community during this troubling time, we invite the public to join us on Saturday, December 15 and Sunday, December 16 for the Pike's Cantonment Campout on the grounds of the Battle of Plattsburgh Association located on Washington Rd, at the former Air Force Base. We also would like to encourage any re-enactors to join the campout.
War of 1812 Museum (Operated by the Battle of Plattsburgh Association)
200th Anniversary of Pike's Cantonment Celebration
Schedule of Events:
Saturday December 15th
10 am Re-enactment camp opens;
10:45 am First Formation;
11 am -11:30 am Skirmish;
12 pm Wreath Laying at Old Post Cemetery (the resting place of 1812 Unknown Soldiers);
12:30pm-12:55pm Reception for visitors and participants of the Wreath Laying;
1 pm to 3 pm Lecture - Dr. Timothy Abel and Keith Herkalo will speak on the history of Pike's Cantonment and the current Archeological Dig;
4 pm Camp Closes, Evening Gun & Museum Closes.
Sunday December 16th
10 am Re-enactment camp opens;
11:45 am First formation;
12 pm Skirmish;
3 pm Camp Closes and Afternoon Gun;
4 pm Museum Closes.
*Children's activities will be provided inside the museum throughout the day: Making a Soldier's Journal, Coloring a Period Flag, trying on Period Clothing, and a Scavenger Hunt!
Hours of Operation Wednesday-Saturday 10am - 3pm Check events schedule for holiday hours and special events. Admission Free general admission. Donations welcome. Prearranged, guided, group tours are $3/person.