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War of 1812 Reenactment: Battle of Queenston Heights, October 2012
The Battle of Queenston Heights was the first major battle of the War of 1812, situated just a few miles north of Niagara Falls. Preliminary plans provide a framework for 1812 military reenactors for the October 12-13, 2012 event.
Organizers from both the United States and Canada have met to discuss the best ways to reenact this pivotal battle which took place on October 13, 1812. Americans invaded Canada from Lewiston, New York, on the Lower Niagara River and took temporary control of Queenston Heights in Queenston, Ontario.
"This is a work in progress, so while things can always change, we know the Canadians and Americans are on the same page and we can continue to build on that framework," said volunteer Lee Simonson, President of the Historical Association of Lewiston, one of the event organizers.
"This event will be held to commemorate the battle and to celebrate the lasting peace between the two countries. As such, we want to include both period and modern elements that visitors will find educational, spectacular and entertaining,"
The framework includes these provisions:
2) Events will begin Friday, October 12, 2012, on the American side. American soldier and militia reenactors will demonstrate to the public how the Americans were preparing for the invasion. American reenactment units will drill and practice shoot on Lewiston's main street, which will be closed to traffic. At twilight, a 45-minute artillery bombardment of Canada will commence using cannons, supplemented by sound effects from fireworks. "1812 cannon units are few and far between, so we're inviting putting out a special call for artillery reenactment units who can participate,"
2) The swift currents of the Niagara River can be very treacherous in October and both sides have agreed to drop plans for an reenacted invasion.
3) On Saturday morning, October 13, 2013, the action will shift to the Canadian side of the border with a re-enactment of the Americans taking the high ground, and the British counter-assault which claimed the life of British General Isaac Brock. Canadian re-enactors will claim victory when the Americans are pinned against the Niagara gorge and have no hope of getting re-enforcements or escape.
"Reenactor invitations and guidelines haven't been prepared yet, but wanted to let all interested parties to know they can reserve Oct. 12-13, 2012, for the Lewiston, NY-Queenston, Ontario event," said Simonson.
Reenactors are reminded that if they wish to participate on both sides of the border, they must have all proper documentation and current passports. There is a bridge that connects Lewiston, NY, and Queenston, Ontario called the Lewiston-Queenston bridge. Customs and border security personnel are stationed on both sides of the bridge and all re-enactors and visitors will be required to pass customary inspections before entering either country.
Reenactment units interested in getting on the list to be contacted for more details as plans develop are welcomed to call the Lewiston Museum at 716-754-4214.
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The Historical Association of Lewiston, Inc., preserves and promotes Lewiston, New York's rich heritage. It's website is: http://www.historiclewiston.org