On Saturday, May 21st and Sunday, May 22nd, Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park will host nearly 200 living history re-enactors for the annual Siege of Fort Watauga. Colonial, British, and Native re-enactors will converge at the re-created Fort Watauga at Sycamore Shoals to relive the days when America’s first frontier was the land beyond the blue ridge.
The Siege of Fort Watauga is a live retelling of the Cherokee attack brought on the settlers of the Watauga valley in the summer of 1776. At Sycamore Shoals, Fort Watauga offered protection to nearly 200 settlers during a two-week siege led by Cherokee War Chief, Old Abram, and 300 warriors.
Sycamore Shoals will once again be the scene of war during the Siege of Fort Watauga. The event lasts from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday, May 21st and 10:00 am to 3:00 pm on Sunday, May 22nd. Step back in time as you visit the fort, militia camps, British encampment, and Native camp. Be immersed in 18th century frontier life as you witness daily aspects of colonial culture. See the clash of two cultures as the attack on fort Watauga is recreated both days at 1:00 pm. Also, attend our auction of 18th century reproductions on Saturday.
This year we are excited to welcome author, journalist, composer, and film producer Nadia Dean as our guest speaker. On Saturday, May 21st at 11:00 am Dean will be speaking about, and previewing her film Cameron.
“Alexander Cameron–married to a Cherokee—soon finds himself in conflict with southern colonists who are in rebellion against the king. The Cherokees are likewise forced into divided loyalties between the British and colonial rebels. Nadia has at last given a voice to Cameron and the Cherokee warrior Dragging Canoe” (Ila Hatter, Appalachian author).
The film is based on Nadia Dean’s latest book A Demand of Blood – The Cherokee War of 1776. The books are available in the Sycamore Shoals Gift Store, and there will be an opportunity to have your book signed by the author.
Also during the event take advantage of colonial merchants selling period wares in “Sutler’s Row”. There will be several vendors offering a myriad of 18th century reproduction items for the colonial enthusiast or the primitive decorator. Vendors this year include “Johnson & Moffet” specializing in hand crafted wooden items and herbal remedies, Trader Bob offering tanned animal pelts and hides, Ft. Vause Outfitters specializing in finished leather goods, and several other vendors offering everything from 18th century reproduction clothing, weaponry, and original antiques, to replica housewares and military accouterments.
Several Revolutionary War living history units will be in attendance and will make the 18th century come to life during the weekend. Units include the 1st Maryland based in Hendersonville, NC, Musgrove’s Mill Militia and the South Carolina Rangers based in upstate South Carolina, and two British units; the 42nd Light Infantry and the North Carolina Highland Regiment. The host unit is the Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia based at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park. Numerous individuals also participate in the event portraying many 18th century walks of life including Cherokee Natives, Backcountry Hunters, Farmers, Housewives, African Slaves, Commoners and Gentry.
For more information on this and other exciting events at Sycamore Shoals please contact the park at 423-543-5808 or visit the park’s website at www.sycamoreshoalstn.org. Bring the entire family and see how your ancestors played a crucial role in our region’s history and in the formation of our nation. Hear the rattle of muskets, smell the campfire smoke, and see the 18th century come to life at the Siege of Fort Watauga. This event is sponsored by The Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia and Friends of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area.
Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park, 1651 W. Elk Ave. Elizabethton, TN 37643