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Fort Wellington National Historic Site, Prescott

Categories: Historic Sites, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.7/5 based on 75+ reviews on the web
Fort Wellington National Historic Site is a historic military fortification located on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River at Prescott, Ontario. It was originally built in 1813 on land owned by Major Edward Jessup, a prominent Loyalist from Connecticut who founded Prescott in 1784.ConstructionFort Wellington was commissioned by the British government during the War of 1812 to protect the head of the Gallop Rapids in the St. Lawrence River. Prior to the creation of the St. Lawrence Seaway in the 1950s, a series of rapids ran downriver from Prescott to Montreal. Shipping of freight and passengers on regular lake ships was impossible through these rapids, and so freight and passengers who travelled downriver to Prescott from Kingston would be "forwarded" to smaller bateaux which could travel through the rapids. Likewise, freight travelling upriver from Montreal would be unloaded from smaller bateaux and loaded onto larger lake ships for carriage upriver. At the time, the Rideau Canal had not been constructed and the colony's road network was primitive. The only means of shipping heavy cargo and passengers into the Great Lakes from the lower St. Lawrence was by way of Prescott.Since Prescott is located only a mile from the town of Ogdensburg, New York, it was especially vulnerable to military action by the United States Army. As a communications hub upon which the rest of the colony of Upper Canada relied, the town had to be defended.
For travelers who use our international travel planner, Prescott holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the Fort Wellington National Historic Site and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
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  • Remains of a gunboat in the center of reception and information relevant to this topic. Good setting the context (war of 1812 in the region). Tour the blockhouse. No guided tour but one guide per floor (in costume time). Good reconstruction of places and the surroundings of the blockhouse. Interesting info about the lives of the soldiers and their families (incredible, crowding). Although I've seen them all, it is the most complete tour of blockhouse I've seen along the St. Lawrence. Bilingual written info, some bilingual guides. Less than $4 per person, not far from the highway. Website for activities, days and hours of operation (variables or closed depending on the season).
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  • We walked from our B&B - The Colonel's Inn to the Fort. There were few people there as it was past Labour Day - and everything seems to shut down after that! However, there were plenty of costumed gui...  read more »
  • Very interesting stop on our way to Montreal! The guides are very friendly and familiar with their institution! The replenishment is excellent!
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  • My son attended Fort Kids this summer, which was available every Tuesday with a different theme and various activities during the day. I think this was his favourite summer activity. He is already looking forward to signing up next year. Thank you to all the amazing staff participating in this program.
  • Very nice visit which is not expensive and those who have the cultural past will come free of charge. If you speak french they will try to accommodate you. The staff is very friendly. In the fort staff is in period costume and you can visit the fort from bottom to top. It looks small from the outset, but by reading all the signs you can easily stay there 2 hours.
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