Revolutionary-Era Militia Encampment at Historical Society’s Denison House

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On Saturday and Sunday, August 26 and 27, 2017, the Luzerne County Historical Society’s Nathan Denison House will host a Revolutionary War-era militia encampment by the 24th Connecticut Militia Regiment, Inc., from 10 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at 35 Denison Street in Forty Fort, PA.  Admission to the encampment is $5 for LCHS members and $3 for LCHS member children; $7 for non-member adults and $5 for non-member children.  Tours of the house will be available during the encampment event and are included in the event fee.

The 24th Connecticut Militia Regiment, Inc., is a living history organization.  Its objective is to educate and encourage interest in the Revolutionary War period of American history through the accurate portrayal of Revolutionary-era soldiers and common people of the Wyoming Valley.  Visitors to the encampment will see demonstrations by Regiment members portraying both soldiers and civilians known as camp followers.  Camp followers travelled with the Regiment and supported the soldiers with their skills and trades, such as cooking, tailoring, and carpentry. 

The 24th Connecticut Regiment of Militia was originally established by the Connecticut Legislature in May 1775.  The Continental Congress established two independent companies of the regiment in August 1776.  Nathan Denison (1740-1809) held the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and was promoted to Colonel in 1777 when the two independent companies left the Wyoming Valley to join General Washington at Morristown, New Jersey.  Over the course of the next two years, the regiment fought in battles at Millstone, Bound Brook, Germantown, Brandywine, Fort Mifflin and White Marsh.  After spending a harsh winter at Valley Forge, the companies fought at the Battle of Monmouth.  They were released in 1778 to return to the Wyoming Valley, but arrived too late to be of help at the Battle of Wyoming on July 3, 1778.  The Regiment was then sent on the Hartley Expedition in September 1778 and were with General Sullivan’s march into the Finger Lakes region of New York during the summer of 1779.  

Nathan Denison was one of the first forty shareholders in the Susquehanna Company to settle five new towns in the Wyoming Valley in February 1769.  Denison became a popular leader of the pioneer settlers from Connecticut.  He served as a Justice of the Peace and colonel of the local militia.

The Denison House is open for tours on Sundays through September 24, 2017, from 1 to 4 p.m.  Admission is free for LCHS members; $5 for non-member adults and $3 for non-member children.  Tours are provided by volunteers from the Denison Advocates.  For more information, email info@luzernehistory.org or call 570-823-6244.

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