Barracks tours march along with fort festival

By Tom Vogt, Columbian science, military & history reporter

Published:

 

Schedule for Fort Events

All activities on the parade ground, including the Soldiers’ Bivouac and the vintage base ball match are free, but admission to enter the fort’s reconstructed stockade is

$3 per adult or $5 per family.

SATURDAY

10 a.m. — Camps open to the public.

11:30 a.m. — Mountain howitzer firing demonstration and “A Century in Transition: The 19th century evolution of firearms in Vancouver.”

12:30 p.m. — 1st Oregon drill and musket firing demonstration.

1 p.m. — A Race to the North: The Nez Perce War.

2 p.m. —Vancouver Barracks tour.

3 p.m. — Fox Company: WWII G.I. camp life.

5-6 p.m. — Period games (west of the bandstand).

5 p.m. — Camps close.

5:30 p.m. — Whiskey Flats Band pre-game concert.

6 p.m. — Mountain howitzer firing; vintage 1860s base ball.

SUNDAY

10 a.m. — Camps open to the public.

11:30 a.m. — Mountain howitzer firing demonstration and “A Century in Transition: The 19th century evolution of firearms in Vancouver.”

12:30 p.m. — Fox Company: WWII G.I. camp life.

1 p.m. — A Race to the North: The Nez Perce War.

1:30 p.m. — Vancouver Barracks tour.

2 p.m. — 7th Infantry: WWII camp life.

3 p.m. — 1st Oregon drill and musket firing demonstration

3:30 p.m. — Camps close.

Video

Vintage Baseball

The ninth season of vintage baseball happened Saturday at the Parade Grounds of the Fort Vancouver Historic Site.

The ninth season of vintage baseball happened Saturday at the Parade Grounds of the Fort Vancouver Historic Site.

The 160th anniversary of the establishment of the U.S. Army post in Vancouver will be commemorated this weekend with events that include tours of the Vancouver Barracks site.

While living history events will continue to be part of the annual Soldiers’ Bivouac, officials at the Fort Vancouver National Site have added tours of Vancouver Barracks to the Saturday and Sunday schedules.

“People are very interested in the history of the site,” said Kimm Fox-Middleton, supervisory park ranger.

It’s a result of increasing visibility, with federal officials preparing to transfer the Vancouver Barracks to the National Park Service. Earlier this month, park officials decided to offer tours as part of the Fourth of July celebration at Fort Vancouver.

“It was wildly successful,” Fox-Middleton said. “We had more than 100 people show up for the first tour, and we had to get a second ranger for the group. The second tour had more than 60 people.

“That’s why we did this” weekend barracks tour schedule, she said.

In other elements of the Soldiers’ Bivouac, living-history re-enactors will portray different soldiers and units from the site’s 160 years of Army history. They will represent the soldiers stationed at Vancouver Barracks and how they were part of the Army’s role in the Northwest.

Re-enactors will host open camps throughout the day on Saturday and Sunday, and several scheduled programs will also be available to the public.

Saturday will feature the annual 1860s “Vintage Base Ball Match” on the parade ground at 6 p.m. The game will be played by 1860s rules, with wooden bats and without gloves. Prior to the game, the Whiskey Flats Band will play period music and re-enactors will invite children to play period kids’ games.

The Grant House Restaurant will have Vintage Base Ball picnic baskets available for sale. The Fort Vancouver Reserve Trust will have souvenirs available, including books, baseballs and team shirts.