NINETY SIX , SC - Ninety Six National Historic Site will offer a glimpse of the tumultuous days of the 18th century Cherokee War during the weekend of February 2-3, the 253rd anniversary of the first attack on Fort Ninety Six. Reenactors portraying soldiers and Indian warriors will demonstrate camp life at this free park program from 9 am – 4 pm on Saturday and from 10 am – 3 pm on Sunday.
Join living history interpreters from Fort Dobbs, NC, who will portray Middleton’s Regiment and the Corps of Indians at the Stockade Fort. These provincial soldiers and Cherokee warriors will present musket firing demonstrations at 11 am and 2 pm both days. Ongoing demonstrations of 18th century military and American Indian camp life will occur throughout the weekend.
The Cherokee had been British allies when the French and Indian War started in 1754 but tensions arose which quickly spiraled into war. As a result, Fort Ninety Six was quickly erected around Robert Gouedy’s trading post and barn.
The attacks spread across the backcountry causing terror amongst the settlers who sought safety and protection at Ninety Six. As a prime center of refuge, Cherokee warriors favored Fort Ninety Six as a target during the early months of 1760. At this time, settlers deferred to the British government for authority and protection. Another 20 years passed before the American Revolution broke out.
On February 3, 1760, approximately 30 Cherokee attacked Fort Ninety Six which was defended by 45 settlers and African American slaves. The assault lasted for two hours and the Cherokee retreated with two dead. One month later, on March 3, the Cherokee attacked Fort Ninety Six again.
This time, the Cherokee contingent numbered over 200 and began a continuous fire lasting 36 hours until the Indians withdrew. The settlers sustained only superficial wounds but discovered six Indians dead outside the fort. It wasn’t just Fort Ninety Six that the Cherokee targeted. Additional military outposts such as Fort Prince George, Fort Loudoun, and Fort Dobbs also engaged with the Cherokee.
Ninety Six National Historic Site is administered by the National Park Service. The park is located two miles south of Ninety Six on SC Highway 248. In case of inclement weather the program will be cancelled and not rescheduled. Contact the park for details at (864) 543-4068 or visit the park’s website at www.nps.gov/nisi.