Monday, July 05, 2021

Fort Mackinac

Fort Mackinac was founded during the American Revolution when the British moved their position from what is now Mackinaw City to the island in 1780.

Americans took over in 1796 and then the fort was taken over by the British in the opening moves of the War of 1812, and remained in British hands throughout the war as the Americans were unable to recapture it. 

The fort returned to American hands after the war and then as its strategic significance dwindled became a National Park in 1875 with the still serving soldiers there acting as park rangers.   The post was considered highly desirable by the soldiers posted there and by 1885 had a bathhouse with hot and cold running water and 6 cast iron tubs to keep the soldiers clean and were required to bathe at least once per week. 

Today the Fort with its original buildings is a Michigan State Park, and well worth visiting.

Interpreters in the uniforms of the day are around the fort for visitors to learn about its history, even in the rain.

The fort offers commanding views of the town below.

Excellent exhibits depict the soldier's life at the fort.

From the barracks with three men to a room:

Sergeants tended to get better quarters.

To the Guard House complete with a cell for misbehaving soldiers.

The cell was later improved to an above ground location, and soldiers left graffiti from their stays in the cell on the windows and window sills that remain to this day.

The fort also had some amenities, such as a bar and lunchroom where beer was sold for 5 cents a glass.

It's a nice walk around the fort.

Next up  - Cannons!

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