Author S. Thomas Bailey will be signing copies of his Gauntlet Runner series at the Crown Point State Historic Site this weekend as part of the annual French and Indian War encampment.
The sounds of musket fire and scenes from days gone by will serve as the backdrop to a book signing this weekend at the Crown Point State Historic Site.
Author S. Thomas Bailey will be signing and talking about the first three books in his, “Gauntlet Runner Series,” at the former Fort St. Frederic in Crown Point from 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 9-10, as part of the annual French and Indian War Encampment.
The book series is a fictional account of a family’s trials and adventures woven into historical accounts from the French and Indian War.
“These are the first three of seven books that will make up the series,” Bailey said. “The next book will be released in late August. There is one book for each year of the French and Indian War and the final book will pull into the start of the American Revolution, which makes the books a great example of how the two wars are linked together.”
Bailey has visited the area several times in doing research both for the book and as a general fan of history, with his maternal heritage linked to the Mi’kmag Native Americans and surveyor James Cook, who began his career mapping out the St. Lawrence River system during the French and Indian War.
“I have always wanted to do a signing or event in the area,” Bailey said. “I love the Ticonderoga and Crown Point area. You get the chance to see the layout of the land in this historic area and you can still get a feeling of what it was like back when these events were taking place.”
The series has opened with the first three books: “The Gauntlet Runner,” “Shades of Death,” and “Forest Sentinels.” Bailey said the fourth in the series will feature events at Fort William Henry.
Guests to the encampment will be able to see, hear, walk among and interact with the many volunteers who will spend the weekend portraying various people of Crown Point’s past. Visitors will want to bring a camera. “Sutlers” (vendors) will show and sell their replica 18th century wares all weekend.
Crown Point offers a unique backdrop for this lively event, both geographically and historically. Before the 1730s, Woodland Indians camped on the peninsula. In 1734, the French military built an impressive stronghold here, Fort St. Frédéric, with its tall limestone tower and even a fortified and wind-powered grist mill. A quarter-century later, when the British arrived in 1759, they added an even larger fort complex at Crown Point. The limestone ruins of both the French-built fort and of the earthen walls and stone barracks of the British fort, located on a point of land that juts into Lake Champlain, still offer an inspiring location that has remained largely unchanged since a devastating fire burned the British fort in 1773, only two years before the start of the War for American Independence.
The ruins are among the few remaining examples of pre-Revolutionary military construction in the United States and both fort ruins have been individually designated as “National Historic Land-marks” by the U.S. Department of the Interior, in recognition of their international importance.
For more information on the Gauntlet Runner book series, visit the website thegauntletrunner1754.com.
For information on the encampment, the event the public may contact the site at 597-4666 or visit the agency’s web site atnysparks.com.