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Fort Tyler reenactment coming next week

WEST POINT — Saturday, April 14 will be Fort Tyler weekend in West Point. Soldiers from both the blue and gray will occupy the restored fort to mark the 153rd anniversary of the Battle of West Point.

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT the fort will be open for viewing and activities. From 7:30 to 10 p.m. visitors may experience the fort by candlelight.

According to Joe Thompson, the morning and afternoon activities will include musket drills, musket firing, soldier life demonstrations and tours of the fort. Those attending the evening portion of the commemorative event can experience the fort as it might have been the night before the Easter Sunday 1865 Civil War battle. The switchback path to the fort will be lighted with luminaries to light the path.

According to Rea Clark, president of the Fort Tyler Association, Joe Knight, an attorney from Newnan, and Trace Scalf, a local retired educator, will lead the Armory Guards, who will man the fort once again this year.

“The Guards are a very authentic re-enactment unit, and are giving up their own weekend to help us with ours,” Clark said. “This will be their fourth year at Fort Tyler, and we thank them.”

At 1 pm. on Saturday, a new sign will be unveiled inside the fort near the 32-pounder cannon. As a Girl Scout project, Catherine Slavich has taken on the task of repairing an existing sign.

“Our hope is that this will mark the beginning of the eventual replacement of all the original signs,” Clark adds. “We thank Catherine for her hard work.”

Clark said that this year marks the 20th anniversary of the restored fort.

“The years have taken a toll, requiring a lot of maintenance and repairs. Those needs continue,” Clark said, encouraging continued support by the public through the Fort Tyler Association.