METROPOLIS, IL – The 44th Annual Fort Massac Encampment 2017 was a great success once again at Fort Massac State Park in beautiful Metropolis, IL.
Period reenactors representing American, French, British and Native Americans from the 18th Century came to Fort Massac from all over the US and as far as Canada. They all came with period clothing, tools, weapons and makeshift homes that transformed the park into a wondrous old-time village.
The village provided food, entertainment and hands on history lessons taught by re-enactors. The mock battles were held in the valley that included the French and Indian War and The American Revolution.
You could see fire shooting out of the muskets after the commanding officers yelled, ‘FIRE.’ The cannons were earth shaking and created billows of smoke that hid the soldiers from the enemies crosshairs for a short time, enough time to reload maybe.
All this excitement came to end around 4:30 Sunday afternoon with a Military Retreat Closing Ceremony. It started to rain a bit before and during the Ceremony but everything went as planned.
The only thing the rain seemed to hindered was the canon fire. For example, the canon next to the Rogers Clark statue was limited to one shot instead of its scheduled two.
This particular canon featured on the page was fired by the Rock Ridge Militia Artillery. I wanted to thank Jay and the rest of the members for their hospitality and allowing me to get up close for the shots.
CANNON FIRE MUSIC VIDEO Fort Massac
When the cannon fired, it literally shook the ground. Our bodies were pounded by the percussion of the enormous blast. The combining shock wave in concert with the flash made my knees buckle a bit. It was awesome! Soon after the smell of gunpowder filled the air; it had sweetness to it.
The members of the Rock Ridge Militia Artillery group do not take firing their cannons lightly. Quit the opposite, I have never seen such discipline. They have fixed protocols that are followed in military fashion ensuring everyone’s safety.
They all have individual jobs. One places the pound bag of gun powder in the canon. Another one packs the gun powder. Another soldier lights the fuse and so on.
It takes a team to fire these canons just right and the Rock Ridge Militia Artillery did not disappoint; It was spectacular.
I’m older and did not have this on my bucket list but I should have. If you have a bucket list, you may want to add this to your list of things to do. You won’t be disappointed.
Saturday, Oct. 21 10:00 am: Posting of Colours at Old Fort Area 10:30 am: 42nd Royal Highlanders Bagpipe Band at main event arena 10:30 am – 4 pm: Storytellers, Puppet Show & Magic Show, at children’s area by museum 11:00 am – 3 pm: Music of 18th Century by various entertainers 11:30 am: Voyageurs canoe landing at riverfront 12:30 p.m.: Children’s activities at main event area 1:00 pm: Fashion Show at small stage 3:00 pm: Mock Battle and Military Tactical Demonstration, 5:00 pm: Military Retreat Closing Ceremony at Forts
Sunday, Oct. 22 9:00 am: Church Service 10:00 am: Posting of Colours at forts 10:30 am: 42nd Royal Highlanders Bagpipe Band at parade grounds 10:30 am – 4 pm: Storytellers, Face Painting and Magic Show at children’s area by museum 11:00 am – 3 pm: Music of 18th Century performed by various entertainers 11:30 am: Voyageurs canoe landing at riverfront 12:30 p.m.: Children’s activities at main event area 1:00 pm: Fashion Show, at small stage 3:00 pm: Mock Battle and Military Tactical Demonstration, at battlefield 4:30 pm: Military Retreat Closing Ceremony at old fort area Parking and shuttle service will be offered in the open field area next to the park’s Trout Pond on 5th Street across from Sonic.
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