Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fort Snelling

Minnesota does a fantastic job of making history come alive for both young children and grown-up children. The most recent of my Summer Adventure series is Fort Snelling, established in 1819 to protect the fur trade and show an American presence in Dakota lands. It was later the site for military training from the Civil War to WW II.
Entering the gate, we were greeted by this commander of the fort. All the presenters in the fort are in period costume and maintain their character throughout the day. This gentlemen was later our leader for marching and charging.
This round house is the oldest standing structure in Minnesota. It served as a watchtower and was most probably designed for a "last stand," if needed. The thin windows for looking out and shooting are around the entire tower, so the soldiers could shoot outside the fort, as well as inside.
This view from the top of the tower gives a good over-all view of the fort.

This shows the view a soldier would have from inside the tower. You can just barely see the bridge over the Mississippi River.
We arrived at the fort in time for Children's Games (each half hour they have a different activity for the visitors). This kind lady was patient enough to give the girls a feel for walking on stilts. I can remember how Jessie and Megan loved these at the museum in Grand Island. John went home and made us several pairs for all the kids to enjoy.
This picture was taken in the upstairs of the home of Col. and Mrs. Snelling's house. I don't know if they had any children, but I can picture them looking out this window toward the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers.
Another activity was musket firing--quite impressive, but noisy!
Following that, was an opportunity for all visitors to line up, learn to march, then charge with their muskets (raised arms) toward the cowards who didn't join the charge. These are my little soldiers listening to their orders. There is not a picture of the charge because I decided I'd rather march than be fired upon.

We had a wonderful visit to the fort and our only regret was we ran out of time, but that left us wanting to come again. And this picture, as always, is a reminder of all the many brave men and women who have served to protect our country down through the years. Thank you.
And, lest you think all my time with my little girls is spent teaching them history lessons, here's a picture of them having fun at County Market, one of our close grocery stores. As we pulled up, Bri said, "Grandma, do you have any money left? They have a little merry-go-round here."
Have a good day!

6 comments:

Reputation@Stake said...

I've been to Minnesota at least five times, so I'm surprised that I hadn't heard of this fort. (But I'm quite an expert at missing things.) So thanks for posting so many pictures of the place.

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