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On September 9th and 10th, Herkimer Home State Historic Site will continue the 2023 season with the “Return to the Mohawk” living history event. The event will include historic demonstrations, battle reenactments, guest speakers, and a taste of what life was like in the Mohawk Valley during the American Revolution. Demonstrations on Saturday take place between 9:30 am and 4 pm and on Sunday between 9:30 am and 2 pm and will include topics such as 18th-century trade and transportation, blacksmithing, colonial toys and games, laundry, and the daily life and accouterments of the American soldier during the Revolution.
On Saturday, at 10 am and 1 pm, and Sunday at 1 pm, our living historians will provide large-scale tactical demonstrations depicting the “Raid on Herkimer Flatts” and “The Ambush,” a recreation of the Battle of Oriskany, in which General Herkimer was mortally wounded. These demonstrations will offer visitors the ability to experience the sights and sounds of the American Revolution as it played out in the Mohawk Valley. Programming will include Perry Ground, storyteller, cultural educator, and Turtle Clan member of the Onondaga Nation of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy, who will present “Stories from the People of the Longhouse” at 11:30 am and “Changes to the Longhouse” at 3 pm on Saturday, September 9th. On Sunday, September 10th, Vic DiSanto will present a program about David Williams, one of the militiamen who captured major John Andre and foiled Benedict Arnold’s plan to turn over West Point and George Washington to the British. In addition, there will be various historic vendors selling their wares on-site throughout the weekend event.
Herkimer Home State Historic Site is the Georgian-style mansion that was the home to courageous Revolutionary War hero General Nicholas Herkimer. He completed the construction of his mansion in about 1764, and he assured his place in history in 1777 at the Battle of Oriskany. In August 1777, while the British were attacking Fort Stanwix, Brigadier General Nicholas Herkimer assembled 800 militiamen, supported by 60 allied Oneida warriors, and marched to aid against the siege. Upon hearing of Herkimer’s advance, British and Loyalist troops under Sir John Johnson and Col. John Butler and Indian forces led by Mohawk Joseph Brant set a trap in a boggy ravine west of Oriskany Creek. Although seriously wounded in the leg, Herkimer kept command during the fierce combat. After the battle, Herkimer was carried home, where he died ten days later.
Visitors to Herkimer Home today will marvel at the grandness of this Georgian-style mansion that once stood on the colonial frontier. The unspoiled landscape, including the Herkimer family burial ground, is remarkably unchanged from that of the 18th century. The site is open daily from sunrise until sunset. The Visitor Center is open, and house tours are available Wednesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and on Monday holidays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Herkimer Home State Historic Site is located at 200 State Route 169, Little Falls, just off the NYS Thruway Exit 29a—call (315) 823-0398 for more information.
New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees 180 state parks and 35 historic sites, which are visited by 60 million people annually. For more information on any of these recreation areas, call 518-474-0456 or visit www.nysparks.com, connect on Facebook, or follow on Twitter.