Our time in the Adirondacks was drawing to a close so on Tuesday we traveled to nearby Ticonderoga where Bill was ecstatic to visit the newly opened Star Trek: The Original Series Set Tour. The sets, under license by CBS Consumer Products, recreated the sets of the Starship Enterprise as they were laid out at Desilu Studios Stage 9 in Hollywood. Visitors are transported back to 1966. Bill is a huge Star Trek fan and loved touring this set. He didn’t know that Lucille Ball was instrumental in getting Star Trek on the air when she agreed to film the series at Desilu Studios.
Next we went to Fort Ticonderoga which played an important role both in the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War. It was originally built by the French in 1755 and called Fort Carillon. Located a the southern end of Lake Champlain, it was captured by the British in 1759 and named Ticonderoga, an Iroquois name meaning “it is at the junction of two waterways”. In 1775 Ethan Allen and his Green Mountain Boys along with Benedict Arnold took the fort from the British in a surprise attack during the Revolutionary War. This was the first victory of the Revolutionary War. The cannons from the fort were taken to Boston and helped persuade the British to evacuate Boston in 1777.
The British abandoned the fort in 1781 and it was looted for stone, metal and wood by settlers looking for material to build homes. In 1785 the fort’s lands became the property of New York state who then donated the property to Columbia and Union colleges in 1803. In 1820 the fort was sold to William Ferris Pell who first used the property for a summer home. When more and more tourists came to the Adirondacks, he converted his home to a hotel. In 1909 the Pell family restored the fort and opened it to the public. The fort is now maintained by the Fort Ticonderoga Association, a not for profit organization.
We enjoyed touring the fort, soaking up the historical significance of the events which took place here. It was somewhat disappointing to discover the original fort was wooden, not the stone structure of today. We asked about this and it was explained that the fort was in such poor shape that only the stone foundation remained, leading the Pell family to mistakenly believe that the entire fort was stone. It was also pointed out that a member of the Pell family was related to a stone mason so they were able to get stonework done easily and cheaply.
As part of our admission we were given access to Mount Defiance, an 853 foot high hill on the New York side of Lake Champlain. In the 1777 Siege of Fort Ticonderoga, the British army placed artillery on Mount Defiance, causing the Americans to withdraw without a fight. The Americans had mistakenly thought the hill to be inaccessible and never fortified it.
World War II Navy aircraft carriers were named after Revolutionary War victories: Lexington, Ticonderoga, Saratoga and Yorktown.
On the way home we stopped to find a geocache. The short hike led us to a peaceful little waterfall. We love it when geocaching takes us to such beautiful places we wouldn’t otherwise find.
We enjoyed our time in the Adirondacks. We were glad to see Labor Day end and with it all the summer tourists. The campground is now quiet and peaceful once again. Ahhhhhh!
Next stop:. Seneca Falls, New York