Thursday, August 5, 2010

Fight For Bushy Run Battlefield!

From its name, the Battle of Bushy Run might seem like small historical potatoes; but it was not. This 1763 encounter between Colonial British troops and American Indian combatants in what was known as Pontiac's Rebellion helped determine future control of the North American continent, as the American Indian forces were defeated by Colonel Henry Bouquet and his men. It is a must-visit site for anyone interested in American Indian or Colonial American history; but only we can determine whether it can still be visited in the future.
Situated in Westmoreland County near Jeannette, Bushy Run has been a National Historic Site since the 1960s, and was a Pennsylvania State Park from the 1920s until 2009. Then it was closed indefinitely due to the state's deepening financial crisis. The state remains the owner, but most of the day-by-day administration of the site and events there (including a popular annual October Historical Hayride) is now in the hands of a devoted volunteer organization called the Bushy Run Battlefield Heritage Society. Among other things, the Society is working on building an endowment fund for the site.
If you live nearby and would like to volunteer, you are likely to be welcomed with open arms. If you live anywhere at all and would like to contribute a few dollars--or many--the same is true.
Even if you just want to find out what's going on in terms of events and what you can visit, check the place out. I believe there is a small charge for tours; but if so the money goes to the excellent cause of site survival.
There are a number of online web sites where you can get information about Bushy Run; but if you are action-oriented, as I hope you are, I would recommend beginning with www. .

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