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Sutter’s Fort Event Highlights How Emigrants Came to California

Sutter’s Fort latest Hands on History relives emigrants’ journey west…and east, south, and north as they look at how people traveled here by land and by sea.

On Saturday, Feb. 18, visitors will have the opportunity to step back in time to the 1840s to understand the two different ways emigrants originally came to California. The fort is the perfect place to examine this since it was once home to sailors who “jumped ship”, trappers who became overland trail guides because of the failing fur trade, wagon train parties looking for a new life, and soldiers who served in the Mexican-American War and whose services were terminated in California – 3,000 miles from their homes in the east.

Fort guests will hear the amazing tales of adventure and survival these nomads experienced on the journeys and enjoy participating in daily activities of the different skills and trades they used in their new California home.

A few of the special hands-on activities awaiting Fort visitors include helping to pack a wagon while making choices about what to bring along for their journey of a lifetime, determining latitude with a sailing sextant, hoisting a laden barrel, weaving rope, learning simple knots, creating maps with available resources, joining the Navy and receiving pay in Stonington Bank $2 bills, and even marching around the Fort with the NY Volunteer fife and drum corps. And, of course, popular demonstrations of black powder weaponry in action will take place including the crowd-favorite firing of Sutter’s cannon.

Visitors will also get to see the fort’s completely restored walls, gates, and blacksmith shop.

The Hands on History: By Land & By Sea event will run from 10am-5pm on Saturday. Admission to Sutter’s Fort SHP costs $7 per adult (18 and older), $5 per youth (ages 6 to 17) and is free for children 5 and under.  For more information, call 916-445-4422 or visit suttersfort.org.

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About the author

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack has 25+ years of media and public relations experience.  Her work experience includes News10 (ABC) as Promotion Manager from 1989-1998 (where she developed and launched “Coats for Kids’ Sake,” a winter coat drive that lasted 20+ years plus coordinated Oprah Winfrey’s first ever visit to Sacramento) and Fleishman-Hillard as Vice President from 1998-2005 (where she led the wildly successful statewide “California Grown” program and also produced the five-minute video that played on the Jumbotron on Opening Day at Pac Bell Park). In 2007, she launched T-Rock Communications and currently handles a wide range of marketing activities for a number of top-notch organizations.

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