I got word this week that the annual reenactment of the Battle of Fort Mims will be held later this month at the old fort site at Tensaw, down in Baldwin County.
This year’s reenactment, which will be held on Sat., Aug. 24, and Sun., Aug. 25, will be the 33rd annual reenactment of the famous battle that occurred there on Aug. 30, 1813.
The old fort site will open to visitors each day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with reenactments to be held at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. The 11 p.m. reenactment will be a reenactment of the Battle of Burn Corn, and the 2 p.m. reenactment will be a reenactment of the Battle of Fort Mims. An opening ceremony will also be held on Saturday at 9 a.m.
In addition to the reenactments, they’ll also have living history displays complete with old weapons and clothes. Traditional Creek Indian games will also be played, and a variety of speakers will make presentations on the history of the fort. Artifacts will also be on display, and a variety of craft demonstrations will be made, including arrowheads, wool spinning, blacksmithing, quilting, period music, basketry, pottery, watercolors, skinning, archery, flint-napping and woodworking.
If you’ve never been to the reenactment at Fort Mims, I highly recommend that you check it out, especially if you have young children with an interest in Alabama history. Most kids find history boring, but there’s nothing boring about the reenactment at Fort Mims. It’s action-packed, complete with mock gunfire and hand-to-hand combat.
I’ve been to the reenactment numerous times and the first time that I took my kids down there, I explained to them that what they were about to see wasn’t real, that the people in reenactment were only pretending. I thought it best to have that talk with them beforehand because the reenactment is so realistic that I wanted the kids to know ahead of time that it wasn’t real.
As many of you know, the Battle of Fort Mims, also known as the Massacre of Fort Mims, occurred not long after the Battle of Burnt Creek, which occurred in July 1813 not far from present-day Brewton. Americans ambushed the Indians at the Battle of Burn Corn Creek, and the Indians retaliated by attacking Fort Mims a short time later. When it was all said and done, an estimated 617 people were killed or captured during the massacre at Fort Mims.
If you’ve never been to the old fort site, don’t worry because it’s easy to get to. To get there from Evergreen, take Interstate Highway 65 south to the Stockton Exit, and then take State Highway 59 north 12 miles out of Stockton to County Road 80. From there, turn left on CR 80, travel three miles and follow the signs to where the reenactment will be held on Fort Mims Road.
Organizers are offering on-site parking, and you can also park off-site and then take a shuttle to the fort. The shuttle is scheduled to run each day from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Concessions will be sold from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.
More information about the event can be found at www.fortmims.org or by calling the North Baldwin Chamber of Commerce at 251-937-5665 or the Fort Mims Restoration Association at 251-533-9024.