Hear the boom!  Smell the smoke!  Head to Butts Hill Fort in Portsmouth on Sunday, October 17th, and join Revolutionary War soldiers in the field.

The re-enactors of the 54th Regiment of Foot will be hosting a living history event in the Fort.  Bring the family to see an encampment of the 54th Regiment, a British regiment involved in the occupation of Aquidneck Island and the Battle of Rhode Island, as well as other Revolutionary War units.  Besides seeing how soldiers of the era lived in the field, there will be weapon demonstrations. The participating units will also hold unit drills on the same parade field used by local militia as well as Continental Army, British, and French troops between 1776 and 1783.  

Seth Chiaro, the Sergeant Major of the 54th Regiment, commented: “Our objective is to educate the public.  This is an opportunity for families to see how soldiers from both sides of the Revolution lived and to appreciate this historic fort, now being restored. Butts Hill Fort plays an important role in Aquidneck Island and Rhode Island history.”  

Besides the 54th Regiment, other units attending include the 74th Regiment of Foot and American units, the Kingston Reds ( The Kingston Reds | Facebook), which fought in the Battle of Rhode Island, and the 5th Connecticut Regiment.  The United Train of Artillery (utartillery.org ) will provide cannon demonstrations with step-by-step instructions on how cannons were operated.  Infantry units will hold unit drills with musket demonstrations throughout the day.  Steve Salisbury, a sutler (a person who followed the army to sell provisions to the soldiers) will be on hand for all your 18th century needs.

The event will start promptly at 10:00 am and will run to 3:00 pm.  Butts Hill Fort is located behind Portsmouth High School (120 Education Lane in Portsmouth, RI).  Parking is behind the tennis courts.  Admission is free, but all donations will be gratefully accepted, and all donations will be used to continue the restoration of Butts Hill Fort.  For more information, email SgtMaj Chiaro at seth.chiaro@gmail.com.

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Ryan Belmore has been the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp since 2012. He also currently works for Mountain News, where he serves as Senior Editor - North America for OnTheSnow. He previously worked for the New England Patriots and American Cancer Society. He currently serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).