We went with the bus along the Niagara River seeing Green Island, Goat Island and Three Sisters Islands. Then we stopped ten minutes at a viewpoint at the George Discovery Center. The view was delightful due to the contrast between the clear blue water and the green-red-rusty leaves of the forest beyond the river.
A fascinating fortress
We continued our journey until the Niagara River spilled into Lake Ontario. In that point, there is a simple, old and charming fortress: Old Fort Niagara. It dates back to the days when the great empires fought for controlling North America. The buildings date from the 18th century and now are used as exhibition spaces.
I spent most of the time in the inner courtyard, walking on the green grass and admiring the lake, which looked as big as an ocean. But I just had that feeling until I noticed some skyscrapers somewhere far, dominated by a sharp and tall tower. It was the city of Toronto in Canada on the other side of the smallest of the Great Lakes.
A landmark in history
I found so many interesting details about this beautiful fortress, that I summarized them here:
- is the oldest continuously occupied military site in North America
- is a historic site and public museum from 1934
- it belongs to three nations: the French established first here în the 17th century. In 1726, they built the fortification, and in 1759, Britain conquered it. În 1796, Britain was forced to return it to the United States. But this wasn’t the end of the story. In 1813, the Brits recaptured the fortress and yield it to the USA for the second time, in 1815. Since then, Old Fort Niagara is a peaceful post.
- extensive conservation works were held here between 1926 and 1934
- various events are organized here, with soldiers, rebels and warriors – for educational purposes
You can read the entire history of the Fort here.