News Releases

May 20, 2010

Champlain Region State Historic Sites Open May 29

ADDISON, Vt. – The Vermont state historic sites of Chimney Point in Addison, Mount Independence in Orwell, and the Hubbardton Battlefield in Hubbardton will open for the 2010 season on Saturday, May 29, at 9:30 a.m.

Chimney Point, in Addison and on the shores Lake Champlain, is one of the earliest, mostly intensely settled, and most strategic sites on the lake, and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Exhibits and programs in the 1785 brick tavern building present the story of the three early cultures in the area —Native American, French colonial, and early American.

“A special exhibit in the ballroom showcases the exciting archaeological work at the Chimney Point State Historic Site for the Lake Champlain Bridge and temporary ferry projects,” said Elsa Gilbertson, Regional Historic Site Administrator with the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation.

The demolition of the Champlain Bridge has allowed archeologists to examine the area of proposed construction further, where the foundation of what may be a small French fort dating back to 1731 was uncovered.

“The porch is the ideal vantage point to enjoy spectacular lake views that haven’t been seen since before the 1928 opening of the Champlain Bridge and to witness history in the making with the construction of the new bridge,” Gilbertson said. Visitors can enjoy a ferry ride and see the site from the water. These are once in a lifetime opportunities!”

The exhibits include evidence of 8,000 years of Native American activity, the French fort and settlement, early English occupation, the 1790s Moses Bradley redware pottery, and tavern times.

Event highlights include programs on the archaeology on June 24th and September 2nd, both at 7:00 p.m.; the annual evening social on August 5th; and the 15th annual Northeast Open Atlatl Championship weekend, September 17 to 19.

The atlatl weekend is part of the larger Festival of Nations with the Crown Point, New York State Historic Site. Chimney Point is open Memorial Day, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission is $3.00 for adults and free for children under 15.

Orwell’s Mount Independence, a National Historic Landmark that was named after the Declaration of Independence, was built on Lake Champlain in 1776-77 to protect the American colonies against British invasion from the north.

“The museum’s exhibits include a talking hologram sculpture and exciting Revolutionary War artifacts from the site, including two huge logs from the Great Bridge and a cannon recovered from Lake Champlain,” Gilbertson said.

In addition, six miles of scenic walking and hiking trails wind past archaeological sites, and this year the site has been recognized as a 2010 Editors’ Choice in Yankee Magazine’s Travel Guide to New England as the “best hike through history.”

The season begins on Saturday, May 29, at 8:00 a.m. with the favorite annual Early Bird Nature Walk, led by bird expert Suzanne Wetmore. Other special events include nature and history programs and the annual Soldiers Atop the Mount encampment on July 24 and 25.

Mount Independence is 6 miles south of the Fort Ticonderoga ferry. The site is open daily, 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission is $5.00 for adults and free for children under 15.

The Hubbardton Battlefield State Historic Site is the location of Vermont’s only Revolutionary War battle. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it is considered one of the best preserved battlefields in America, retaining most of its original setting.

“At noon on May 31st there will be a Memorial Day commemoration,” Gilbertson said. “The annual living history weekend, with the battle reenactment, is July 10 and 11, with many other nature and history programs and hikes throughout the season.”

The site is open Thursdays through Sundays and Monday holidays, including Memorial Day, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission is $2.00 for adults and free for children under 15.

All sites have scenic grounds for walking and picnics, and specialty museum shops with many books and other items. For directions, more information about these sites, or to receive a calendar of events, please call 802-759-2412 or visit the state-owned historic sites online at www.HistoricVermont.org/sites or on Facebook.

Source: Division for Historic Preservation
Last Updated at: May 20, 2010 16:07:01