French and Indian War Tour
Join us as we travel across New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland to explore the rich history and archaeology of the French and Indian War. This epic struggle involving Native Americans, the English and French Empires, and Colonial forces was one of the first global conflicts and a defining moment in American history. On our journey we will meet with historians, archaeologists and Native Peoples at a variety of archaeological sites, museums, and interpretive centers.
View the schedule below.
Sunday, September 17
Join us in Buffalo, New York for a welcoming reception and a kick-off lecture by noted archaeologist, Dr. Charles Vandrei.
Monday, September 18
We’ll start our tour in the Niagara Frontier. Our first visit will be to scenic Fort Niagara. Standing on a bluff above Lake Ontario, Fort Niagara has dominated the entrance to the Niagara River since 1726. Then we’ll briefly visit the American side of Niagara Falls before driving along the shores of Lake Erie as we make our way south toward Pittsburgh where we will be staying for the night.
Tuesday, September 19
In the morning we’ll visit the former site of Fort Pitt, which occupied the strategic spot at the Forks of the Ohio River and played a pivotal role in the French and Indian War. From there, we’ll head east to visit Fort Ligonier. We’ll round out the day by following George Washington’s 1754 movements in the western frontier at the National Historic Battlefield of Fort Necessity. We’ll tour the reconstructed fort as well as the museum’s collections before heading to the mountain city of Cumberland, Maryland for the night.
Wednesday, September 20
Our day will begin with a drive eastward to the reconstructed Fort Frederick that guarded the Cumberland Valley and Potomac River from Native American raiding parties. Then we’ll work our way north to Harrisburg, PA, to visit the Pennsylvania State Museum. The museum has exhibits and collections including artifacts from excavations at several French and Indian War sites. From Harrisburg, we will continue northeast to Scranton where we will spend the night.
Thursday, September 21
We’ll begin traveling back to New York to explore its major role in the War. Our first stop will be at the Iroquois Museum to help gain a critically important Native American perspective on the conflict. After lunch, we will continue north to Roger’s Island at Fort Edward which was the site of the largest British military complex during the French and Indian War. The complex included Fort Edward, the Royal Blockhouse (a Conservancy Preserve) and Rogers Island. We will then travel north to the picturesque village of Lake George where we will spend the night near its many historic attractions.
Friday, September 22
We’ll visit Crown Point which contains impressive ruins of French and British forts on Lake Champlain. After spending the morning touring the site, we’ll travel to Fort Ticonderoga which was originally built by the French in 1756. The Fort Ticonderoga Association preserves 2,000 acres of battlefields and historic sites around the fort and interprets life at the fort through costumed guides, historic demonstrations and exhibits. We’ll then begin our journey west, stopping in Johnstown, New York for the night.
Saturday, September 23
We’ll begin the day with our final fort visit to the magnificent reconstruction of Fort Stanwix, an 18th century fort used during the French and Indian and the Revolutionary Wars. Then we’ll tour the 17th century Seneca site of Ganondagan to learn more about native lifeways and the Haudenosaunee/Six Nations material culture. We’ll tour a full-size replica of a Seneca Bark Longhouse and explore the recently constructed Seneca Art and Culture Center. We will return to Buffalo to conclude the tour.
Sunday, September 24
Participants depart for home.
Cost includes first-class hotel accommodations based on double occupancy (single supplement is $395), lunches, happy hours, expert Conservancy and special guides, admittance fees, tips, tours, orientations, background reading, and surface travel via air-conditioned bus with restroom.
Not included are meals other than lunches and travel to and from Buffalo.