Independence on the Frontier

 

Saturday and Sunday, June 30th & July 1st

 

Step back in time 242 years to a colorful revolutionary world and witness life as it was on the 18th century frontier during a very tumultuous time. In the summer of 1776 colonial leaders met in Philadelphia to draft a document that would forever change the world. As our guest to Fort Watauga, you too can be part of the excitement as news of American Independence reaches the colonial frontier. What did the colonists think about a new nation? Walk among historical characters and hear their varied reactions to the Declaration, from fear of war to the hope of a brighter future.

The Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia, host living history organization at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area, will be encamped in and around Fort Watauga giving visitors a glimpse of life in 1776. A myriad of activities will unfold throughout the weekend such as militia drill and training, artillery firing demonstrations, open hearth cooking, tomahawk throwing and a special reading of the Declaration of Independence.

Get an early start on your Independence celebrations and bring the entire family out for a weekend full of history, patriotism, education, and family fun. The event will run from 10:00 until 4:00 on Saturday, June 30th and 10:00 until 3:00 on Sunday, July 1st. Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park is located at 1651 W. Elk Ave. Elizabethton, TN 37643.

For more information about Sycamore Shoals please contact the park at

423-543-5808

Independence on the Frontier: Schedule of Events

 Saturday, June 30th

10:00 – Raising the Colours: Start the day off with a bang as the militia falls in for inspection and raises the flag with a patriotic ceremony.

11:00 – Artillery Drill and Demonstration: Learn about 18th century artillery as the Militia fires the fort’s cannon.

12:00 – Echoes of Revolution: The Watauga Valley Fifes & Drums perform martial and field music of the Revolutionary War.

1:00 – Reading of the Declaration of Independence: Join in the excitement as the document declaring our freedom from Great Britain is read publicly inside Fort Watauga.

2:00 – Artillery Drill and Demonstration: Learn about 18th century artillery as the Militia fires the Fort’s Cannon.

3:00 – Echoes of Revolution: The Watauga Valley Fifes & Drums perform martial and field music of the Revolutionary War.

3:30 – Militia Drill & Retiring the Colours – The Washington County Militia demonstrates the tactics and firearms used during the Revolutionary War, and then retire the flag for the day.

4:00 – Camps Close to the Public: Join us tomorrow for another exciting day of 18th century living history. 

Sunday, July 1st     

10:00 – Raising the Colours: Start the day off with a bang as the militia falls in for inspection and raises the flag with a patriotic ceremony.

11:00 – Worship Service: Join us for Sunday Service held inside Fort Watauga.

12:00 – Echoes of Revolution: The Watauga Valley Fifes & Drums perform martial and field music of the Revolutionary War.

1:00 – Artillery Drill and Demonstration: Learn about 18th century artillery as the Militia fires the fort’s cannon.

2:00 –  Reading of the Declaration of Independence: Join in the excitement as the document declaring our freedom from Great Britain is read publicly inside Fort Watauga.

3:00 – Militia Drill & Retiring the Colours: The Washington County Militia demonstrates the tactics and firearms used during the Revolutionary War, then lowers the flag for the day.

 

Ongoing Activities Throughout the Weekend Will Include…

Open Hearth Cooking, 18th Century Weaponry, Medicinal Herbs and Plants, Militia and

Frontier Camps, Colonial Era Music, Colonial Games, and Much More!!!

 

 

 

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Scenes of Liberty

An exhibition of original artwork by Mike Hill inspired by the Liberty! outdoor drama

Opening Reception – Saturday, June 16th at 2 pm in the Gathering Place in the Sycamore Shoals Visitors Center. Shows closes Sunday, July 1st.

To commemorate the 40th anniversary of Liberty! The Saga of Sycamore Shoals, local Illustrator, Friends of Sycamore Shoals board member and County Commissioner Mike Hill is releasing “Scenes of Liberty”, a coloring book featuring illustrations inspired by the Liberty! Outdoor Drama.

This 24 page coloring book features Hill’s brush and ink drawings which portray of many of the resident actors and living history re-enactors who provide entertainment and programming at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park, combined with excerpts taken directly from the script of the drama. The illustrations depict the Carter Family’s initial arrival at Watauga, The Transylvania Purchase, The Watauga Compact, Reverend Doak’s powerful Sword of the Lord and Gideon prayer, and the historic march of the Overmountain Men that is credited with turning the tide of the American Revolutionary War. The historical panels are interspersed with illustrations of the Fife and Drum Corps, The Sons of Liberty performers and even Rio, one of the longest running Liberty! Cast members.

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Site will be hosting an exhibition of Hill’s Liberty-inspired original brush and ink drawings, along with hand-colored mechanical reproductions and large scale hand-embellished Giclee reproductions on canvas of the artwork from the coloring book opening on June 16 and running through July 1. A release party for the coloring book and reception for the artist will be held on July 16 at 2 pm at the Sycamore Shoals State Historic Site. All original and reproduction artwork will be available for purchase with proceeds to benefit the Friends of Sycamore Shoals, the organization that produces the Liberty drama each year. Mike Hill will be autographing copies of the coloring book as well as custom-signing off on any works purchased at the event.

For more details, contact Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park at 423-543-5808

 

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40th season of Liberty! to open Thursday, July 12th!

 

Thursday, July 12th opens the 40th annual production of the State of Tennessee’s official outdoor drama, recreating the events of the early pioneers who settled in this region. Here, near Elizabethton, TN, the “first free and independent government was organized on this continent”, leading to the Transylvania Purchase (the largest private real estate transaction in the history of the United States), the Cherokee siege of Fort Watauga, and culminates in the Battle of Kings Mountain, long recognized as the decisive turning point in winning the Revolutionary War.

During this exciting retelling of our regions’ history, the Fort Watauga amphitheater comes to life with the sights and sounds of the late 18th century on the colonial frontier. Nationally significant events that helped to shape the future of our nation before, during, and after the American Revolution are presented in an engaging and entertaining fashion.

Liberty! is set in front of the full-scale replica of Fort Watauga and tells the stories of these important days of American history as well as demonstrating the lives of pioneers in a frontier settlement. Moreover, it gives faces to the names we see on many of our street signs and other local area designations. For example, we meet John Sevier, who went on to become the first Governor of Tennessee. We are also introduced to John Carter, and his son Landon, both of whom are reflected in the full name of the Carter Mansion, the oldest frame house in Tennessee. It is preserved by the Park and the associated Friends of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park.

The amazing strength and skills of the local pioneer women are far from neglected in the drama. Another character is Mary Patton, who learned the art of manufacturing gun powder from her father. Her assistance was crucial in the defense of the settlement during the siege. Moreover, she supplied the Overmountain Men with a minimum of 500 pounds of gunpowder for their foray into North Carolina.

We also encounter Catherine “Bonnie Kate” Sherrill, a lively lass who was caught outside the fort during the siege attack, and was rescued by Sevier, whom she later married. While Tiptonville was the original name of Elizabethton, as part of the State of Franklin, it was later renamed for Landon’s wife, Elizabeth MacLin Carter, who also appears in the drama.

Enhanced sound and stage effects during Liberty! is accomplished through the use of professional lighting and sound, a well-maintained amphitheater, as well as an all-volunteer cast of nearly 100 local actors in speaking and non-speaking roles.  The cast of Liberty! invites you to join us to relive the historic events, challenges, joys and heartaches of those who first made the Watauga settlement their home.

Liberty runs Thursdays-Saturdays, July 12 – 14, 19 – 21, and 26 – 28, 2018 in the Fort Watauga Amphitheater at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park in Elizabethton, TN. And, all of this is provided to local residents and area visitors at a very reasonable price.

General admission tickets range from Free for Children 5 and under; to $6.00 for Students 6 to 17 years; $11.00 for Seniors 55 and up; and $14.00 for Adults. Members of Friends of Sycamore Shoals may attend the drama any night for a reduced adult/senior admission price of $7.00.

Tickets can also be purchased online at http://www.TheLibertyDrama.com or at the door.

First Night tickets to the opening show on Thursday, July 12th are only $9 for adults and seniors. This year, our 1st Responders Night is celebrated on opening night. All 1st Responders and a guest will be admitted for Free on Thursday, July 12th.

Veterans Night is on Thursday, July 19th, where Veterans are formally thanked for their service during the show, and also with free admission for themselves and a guest.

Please consider becoming a member of Friends of Sycamore Shoals who helps to support the Liberty! as well as a host of other educational park activities that take place throughout the year.

Don’t be one of the many who say “I’ve heard about it, but never gone.” And, if you’ve seen it, you’re most welcome to come again. Each year we present new script changes that are sure to keep you on the edge of your seats!

Support your local history, educators and preservationists; come learn about our regions history in a fun and entertaining context.   We’ll see you at the Old Fields!

Additional Information:

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park

1651 W. Elk Avenue

Elizabethton, TN 37643

423-543-5808

 

www.sycamoreshoalstn.org

www.tnstateparks.com/parks/about/sycamore-shoals

http://www.facebook.com/LibertyTheSaga/

http://www.facebook.com/FriendsOfSycamoreShoalsStateHistoricArea/

www.facebook.com/sycamoreshoals

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