A special ceremony to dedicate the new Battle of La Belle Famille historic marker and honor former Old Fort Niagara executive director Brian Leigh Dunnigan will be held on Sunday, July 24, at 2:00 p.m., at the corner of Lockport and Main Streets in Youngstown. The public is invited to attend the event, which is sponsored by Old Fort Niagara, the Niagara County Historian’s Office, Town of Porter Historical Society, William G. Pomeroy Foundation, and Youngstown Heritage Tours and Tourism Committee.
July 24, 2016, will mark 257 years since the Battle of La Belle Famille was fought in what is Youngstown today. This brief and bloody battle occurred during the French and Indian War and helped the British capture Fort Niagara from the French during the 19-day siege. Old Fort Niagara recreates this battle annually during its French and Indian War Encampment.
Until recently, an historical marker cited the battle’s location about one mile south of Lockport Street on River Road. Through extensive research, historians determined that this location was inaccurate and that, instead, the battle happened near the blinking traffic light in the village, where the new historic plaque will be located.
Brian Leigh Dunnigan, former Executive Director of the Old Fort Niagara Association from 1979-1996, was instrumental in researching the Battle of La Belle Famille and worked toward correcting the marker’s mistaken location. For this and his many contributions to the Association, and his lifelong commitment to historical scholarship and education, Old Fort Niagara will honor him at the ceremony.
Old Fort Niagara’s upcoming events include:
Now through August 12 DAILY SUMMER PROGRAM Featuring American Revolution Era at the Fort
July 9-Oct. 10 (12pm-3pm) Lighthouse Open to the Public
Sat., July 23 PERFORMANCE Plymouth Fife and Drum Corps
Sun., July 31 PERFORMANCE Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
Sat. & Sun., Aug. 13-14 RE-ENACTMENT Soldiers of the American Revolution
Sat. & Sun., Sep. 3-4 RE-ENACTMENT War of 1812 Encampment
Old Fort Niagara (www.oldfortniagara.org) is located in Fort Niagara State Park in Youngstown, N.Y., which is 14 miles north of Niagara Falls via the Robert Moses Parkway North. The fort is open daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. in July and August. Admissions end 30 minutes before closing. Old Fort Niagara is a Registered National Historic Landmark and New York State Historic Site operated by the Old Fort Niagara Association (a not-for-profit organization) in cooperation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.