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Edinburgh 1745 - the fight of the Jakobites against the English An event years ago in Fort Erie, Canada - Travel guide, tourism
When I came from Germany to Canada I lived in Fort Erie and I loved it there. A little town with friendly people, restaurants, a small shopping mall and great events. Those were never properly advertised but despite that I always was surprised to meet there some visitors from overseas.
Today Fort Erie has its own agency who does all the advertising but most of the events and little things which I loved so much are gone.
I showed many of those in my German travel guide because I know what visitors from Europe want to see and to do when they come to our province.
North Americans love it to bring history back. This includes also historical events from their ancestors.
As I see it many of these events are not planned and performed to make money. The participants have fun doing them and all the props are being paid out of their own pockets as well as the traveling expenses. Certainly not a cheap hobby. To sell some souvenirs may help to lower the financial burden.
Just look at all the historical costumes, the uniforms, the weapons, music instruments, kitchen utensils and so on.
Unfortunately most of these great events were very poorly advertised at this time and I was always happy to see that at least a few visitors from overseas showed up - just because they were lucky as I learned.
On May 21. and 22. 2005 I enjoyed together with a little German boy and his dad the battle of the Jakobites against the English at Edinburgh. Charles Edward Stuart or Bonnie Prince Charlie how he was also called defeated in this battle the English army.
A painting which shows the battle at Culloden in 1746. This time the Jakobites lost against the "Red Coats".
The camp in which the combatants were getting ready for the battle at "Old Fort Erie".
I do not want to describe here all the details which caused all the blood shedding. I am not a history buff and I could never say who war right and who was wrong. Check the Internet or go to a library to get information.
I had a good time with Scots, Irishmen and English people.
Only one thing: the Jakobites should not be mistaken with the French Jakobins. The Jakobites were follower of the Stuart's who lived in exile in France but had many supporters in the Highland clans.
AS i said at Edinburgh the Jakobites defeated the English, but on year later at Culloden they were slaughtered by the English under the command of the Duke of Cumberland.
Today the Scots can vote for their independence and it is up the them which way they go.
England which still has dreams of being an empire and to become independent of the European union is not exactly the most qualified teacher and I think a separation would be a big loss for both sides.
Europe needs to be united without having an out of hand administration. Ever country can contribute to create prosperity in all member countries as well as more military strength and a stronger voice in politics.
Today all the combatants are having a good time at Old Fort Erie without any real fights
I enjoyed to stroll though both camps and talking to the volunteers.
I would have liked to share lunch for a contribution - but obviously the bylaws did not allow that
Activities everywhere! Playing music, singing old songs, cooking, cleaning and checking weapons, demonstrating long forgotten trades and naturally talking to friends even when they were from the other party.
A few of the participants must have been already in their eighties. Obviously they still did not mind to sleep in a tent.
Whenever you are lucky to visit such an event please visit the actors and talk to them. That is at least half of the fun and you are even learning something about history. I was almost attempted to join such a group.
Nobody wanted to go with an empty stomach in the battle
Where are the English?
But I think a soldier using a modern walker would not be appropriate for an historical event.
An embarrassment would not be fun for me!
I know that we also have this kind of events in Europe and they always attract a crowd. I wish our so called experts for tourism would learn from Europe and pass some advise to the local business what can be done not only to attract people but also to keep them for a wile in the town. I offered all related suggestions for free as a volunteer. I will not waste my time any longer.
Much better than rap!
Even children played good music
The two ladies were paying music and singing without any audience except me. I watched them and listened to their presentation of old songs unknown to me.
I thanked them and I think they were pleased that I had enjoyed their performance.
Unfortunately I could not make a video with my first digital camera.
Kids would not be kids if some of them would not be encouraged by all the weapons, the exercises and the military music to use wooden swords to play fights, but not violent ones. None of them got hurt.
One little group did not participate in those fights. They wandered around and played their music on different places. Most of the view visitors were impressed and enjoyed this little unforgettable performances.
An excellent example for what you can achieve when you take good care of your children.
As I already said live in the common camp of both parties was very peaceful. Everybody was friendly and patient to answer my questions.
I was almost feeling like a time traveler because many things looked and sounded almost like from the past. Even the tents looked antique. Some of them were very small and certainly not used by the elderly people.
I was told that all participants were staying in this camp. Many came even from the USA.
Nobody complained when I took pictures
I spent hours and discovered always something new to see and to take pictures. I only missed a good lunch. I did not want to waste money in the little restaurant - I wanted something authentic - but not necessarily haggis.
I recommended in my German Internet travel guide to check for similar events to experience also our culture without a good knowledge of English.
That was confirmed by several visitors from Europe. It is important to show example of past events to attract people!
A copy of the yellow pages will not do the job!
We must make them to explore our province and its hidden treasures. Sitting all day long in the car on highways is not the way to enjoy our country.
Time was running fast and I had to go slowly to the Old Fort because I did not want to miss anything of the battle between the rebelling Scots and the English.
The last dance?
The end of the dance
Ready for the battle
The English soldiers (Red Coats) are taking position ...
to fight the Scots
Naturally they retaliate!
Ready for an attack - not everybody who wears a kilt is a man!
I searched and found a good place in the fort which would have given me an excellent chance to watch the fights very close. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to stay there for safety reasons. It did not help that I explained that I survived some really bad bomb raids during WWII as well a threads by hedgehopper's.
After I had explained why I needed a good spot I was guided to one which would allow me to see most of the fights without getting hurt. I had a new camera with a good zoom but not very suitable for videos.
Most of the combatants were fighting in marching or standing positions. I don't know who made these rules.
Luckily the used muskets were not very accurate but if the used soft lead bullets hit a body they were flattened and caused terrible wounds.
The Scots kept fighting bravely and finally won this battle
During the original battle naturally also cannons and mortars were used. The canon balls were made out of solid iron and not filled with any explosives. If a target was hit soldiers were killed or injured by flying fragments.
Explosions of canon balls which are shown in movies are an invention of the film makers.
However, the also used mortars used hollow bullets filled with powder and some goodies and a detonator.
I was really surprised when I suddenly heard a child talking in German. It was a little boy asking his dad questions. He was about five years old.
He was really happy that his parents leaned somehow about this event so he came with his dad.
I asked the Chinese lady - also a visitor to Canada - and she also confirmed that such events are real attractions.
For me it is not understandable that we do not learn to market such events much better, provide some support for all the involved volunteers and show the local business how the can make money by participating.
I was shocked when I visited the new welcome center at the fort. It does not have any flair and the offered food is like something which does not make me to dine here. Only the washrooms are to recommend.
A little visitor from Germany
A visitor from China
Once upon a time Fort Erie was host to many exciting events such as "Edinburgh 1745", the battle of the Jakobites against the English.
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