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May
31

Declaration of War – announced in Winchester VA

By
When:
August 17, 2019 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-17T14:00:00-04:00
2019-08-17T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Fort Loudoun
419 N Loudoun St
Winchester, VA 22601
USA

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Compiled by Jim Moyer first in 2018, last updated 8/15/2019

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Some pictures from this event:

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Presidents Day 2019

Colonel George Washington

wrote a detailed choreography

of musket volleys

and cannon fire for  his men.

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They were to march

the streets of Winchester VA,

reading out loud

the King’s official

Declaration of War on France.

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August  17, 2019, Saturday 2pm to 4pm

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The re-enactor group, The Virginia Regiment George Mercer Company, will be marching a different route than Colonel George Washington detailed.

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Presidents Day 2019. Long before the whole idea of a “President” or a New Nation, we were citizens of the British Empire and Colonel George Washington made this town of Winchester VA the place for his headquarter fort as the last resistance to the French and their Indian allies.

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The Virginia Regiment

George Mercer Company

will march

from Fort Loudoun

419 N Loudoun Street

in Winchester VA

 

to

George Washington Office Museum,

which sits on the

corner of Braddock and Cork Streets.

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Several  historical sites along the march will be noted.

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The Declaration of War will be read.

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The History of this Moment


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Photo of Virginia Blues meeting General Braddock at the 275th Anniversary of Fairfax County Virginia, celebrated 17 June 2017.

16 August 1756,

3 companies

of  the

Virginia Regiment

marched

the streets

of Winchester Va

reading out loud

the Declaration of War against France.

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See Orders.

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Unofficial war started

with Jumonville

and Fort Necessity in 1754.

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War amplified

with the 1755 Braddock Expedition.

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War came to this area in Spring 1756.

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Official Declaration of War by the King?

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Not until May 17, 1756.

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When did Winchester VA know?

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Not until August 16, 1756.

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Declaration of War – announced in Winchester VA

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Real war already started in 1754, but its official declaration came in 1756.

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Mercer Co of the VA Regiment superimposed on a sketch by Jim Moyer to show the huges trees of the forest in the terrain the men had to travel

 

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Sunday, August 15, 1756

Colonel George Washington

orders a

public announcement

of the Declaration of War

to his men

at Fort Loudoun

Winchester VA

after finding out

from Lt Gov Dinwiddie:

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As His Majestys declaration of War against the French King will be proclaimed to-morrow, the Soldiers will be excused from work—and are ordered to appear in the most decent and neat manner; and to be ready to attend at the Long-roll.

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Source:

https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/02-03-02-0311

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DATES OF DECLARING WAR

AND WHEN WHO KNEW


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King George II, was King of Great Britain and Ireland, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover) and a prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire from 11 June 1727 (O.S.) until his death in 1760.

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May 17, 1756

King George II announces official Declaration of War against France.

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May 18, 1756,

The very next day

Fort Loudoun construction began !

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Colonel George Washington writes Lt Col Adam Stephen that construction of Fort Loudoun began. 

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 French and Indian War Foundation

observes this event

as Fort Loudoun Day every year.

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Admiral Bying approaches Minorca on 19 May 1756, resulting in his court martial convening 28 December 1756 and finally to his execution 14 March 1757

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June 6, 1756

France officially declares war on Great Britain.

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August 7, 1756

Lt Gov Dinwiddie

publicly proclaiming war

on this date.

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This is part of the letter confirming that date of 7 August 1756:

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…War was proclaim’d here

the 7th

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. . . a Copy to be proclaimed

at the head of

Your Companies, &

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to be sent to

Fort Cumberland &

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in case of miscarriage

I send You a printed Copy

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August 16, 1756

Winchester VA citizens learn of this official Declaration of War

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At end of this Page are listed all the Start and End dates of this war.

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DETAILS OF

Parade,

Volleys of Muskets,

Volley of artillery

IN WINCHESTER VA


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This event occurred in Winchester VA

Monday 16 August 1756.

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Mercer’s Co of the Virginia Regiment observes Presidents Day at Fort Loudoun 19 February 2018. . . . Click on photo to enlarge.

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“On Sunday [15 August 1756]

Colonel Washington 

having received his

Majesty’s

Declaration of War

against the French King,

 

with the Governor’s Commands

 

to proclaim it

in the most solemn Manner,

 

he ordered the

three Companies of the 

Virginia Regiment

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[Mercer Co,

Peachey Co,

Colonel Washington was also Captain of his own Company]

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at this Place,

[Fort Loudoun Winchester VA]

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to appear

under Arms

of the grand Parade at

three o’Clock,

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on the Evening

of the next Day 

[Monday 16 August 1756];

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“..attended by the

principal Gentlemen of this Town,

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they marched in regular Order

to Fort Loudoun,

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where the Soldiery

being properly drawn up,

 

the Declaration was read aloud;

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His Majesty’s,

and many other

loyal Healths were drank.

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Success to his Majesty’s Arms,

and a total Extirpation

of the French out of America,

 

under a triple Discharge of the Artillery,

and three Rounds of Musquetry,

 

with loud Acclamations of the People.

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Mercer Co of the Virginia Regiment at Fort Edwards Foundation in Capon Bridge WV OCTOBER 28, 2017 . . . Click on photo to enlarge.

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After this

they moved

in regular Order

round the Town,

 

proclaimed it

at the Cross Streets,

 

and being returned

to the grand Parade,

 

it was again read,

and the Men

 

dismissed by

Colonel Washington.”

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The letter went on

to say

 

that expresses

were then sent

to Fort Cumberland

and “all our other Garrisons”

 

with instructions

for the proclamation

at the head of the troops.”

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SOURCE OF ABOVE:

Description 0f Parade

Virginia Gazette (Williamsburg),

27 Aug. 1756 reported from an

“Extract of a Letter

from Winchester,

dated August 17, 1756”:

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https://founders.archives.gov/?q=Date%3A1756-08-15&s=1111311111&r=3#GEWN-02-03-02-0312-fn-0001-ptr

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Proclamation of War

read to the citizens of Winchester VA


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Founders Online Footnote:

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Dinwiddie wrote GW on 19 Aug. 1756 that he had sent him a copy of his proclamation of war made at Williamsburg on 7 August.

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GW’s Proclamation may have been derived from Dinwiddie’s, which has not been found.

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George Washington

announces this

to Winchester Virginia

citizen and soldier

on

Monday, 16 August 2018

sometime after 3pm:

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Mercer Co of the Virginia Regiment superimposed on the backup the red ensign flag. We do not know if a flag flew at Fort Loudoun Winchester VA. But if a flag did fly, there is dispute on which flag, the Red Ensign, the full Union Jack, or because this was a colonial fort and not a King;s Royal fort that maybe after all, no flag flew.

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You see, Gentlemen Soldiers,

that it hath pleased

our most gracious Sovereign

to declare War in Form

against the French King

and

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(for divers good Causes, but more particularly for their ambitious Usurpations and Encroachments on his American Dominions)

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to pronounce all the

said French Kings Subjects

and Vassals,

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to be Enemies to his Crown and Dignity,

and hath willed and required

all his Subjects and People,

and in a more especial Manner

commanded his

Captain General of his Forces,

his Governors,

and all other his Commanders and Officers,

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to do and execute all Acts of Hostility

in the Prosecution

of this just and honorable War;

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Mercer Co of the Virginia Regiment standing where the north wall of Fort Loudoun would have been. This picture is from this group observing Presidents Day 19 February 2018 at Fort Loudoun Winchester VA

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and though our utmost Endeavours

can contribute but little

to the Advancement of his Majesty’s Honor,

and the Interest of his Governments,

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yet, let us shew our willing Obedience

to the best of Kings,

and by a strict Attachment

to his royal Commands,

demonstrate the Love and Loyalty

we bear to his sacred Person;

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let us by Rules of unerring Bravery

strive to merit his royal Favor,

and a better Establishment

as a Reward for our Services.

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Source:

https://founders.archives.gov/?q=Date%3A1756-08-15&s=1111311111&r=3

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START of the

Seven Year War


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The actual war spanned a longer period.

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28 May 1754 — Usually the Jummonville incident is the unofficial start date

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Declaration of War dates:

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17 May 1756 Britain declares war on France, almost a year after the Braddock Defeat

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9 June 1756 France declares official war on Britain

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August 15, 1756 Washington in Winchester VA gets word of declaration

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4 January 1762 Britain declares war on Spain

18 January 1762 Spain declares war back on Britain

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ENDING of the

French and Indian War


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Treaties ending the war on these dates:

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22 May 1762 — Peace of Hamburg between Prussia, Mecklenburg and Sweden.

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10 February 1763 —  Treaty of Paris signed by  Great BritainFrance and Spain, with Portugal

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15 February 1763 — The Treaty of Hubertusburg (Frieden von Hubertusburg) signed by PrussiaAustriaSaxony

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This is the war this phrase began:

The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire

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George Macartney wrote in 1773, in the wake of the territorial expansion that followed Britain’s victory in the Seven Years’ War, of “this vast empire on which the sun never sets, and whose bounds nature has not yet ascertained.”.

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Source: Macartney, George (1773). An Account of Ireland in 1773 by a Late Chief Secretary of that Kingdom. p. 55.; cited in Kenny, Kevin (2006). Ireland and the British Empire. Oxford University Press. p. 72,fn.22. ISBN 0-19-925184-3.

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This war was the last war Native American nations had France as an ally.

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