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Department of Communications/
News Bureau
22 Davis Hall, 10 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 0288
Phone: 401-874-2116 Fax: 401-874-7872

Historic Enactment of Washington's 1756 Ride
to be presented Feb. 24

Narragansett, RI -- February 17, 2000 -- To celebrate this George Washington's place in our nation's history, Friends of Oceanography at the URI Graduate School of Oceanography and the Washington Trust Bank will stage an enactment of Colonel George Washington's 1756 ride which took him from Virginia to Boston via Newport. The event is part of the celebration of Washington Trust's 200th anniversary of their founding in 1800.

Free and open to the public, the enactment will be held on Thursday, February 24, at 11 a.m. on the URI Bay Campus where Washington crossed Narragansett Bay from South Ferry Landing aboard the Narragansett Ferries which serviced the area in the mid-1750s. The enactment, produced by Tempus Fugit of Wakefield, will feature riders from Lame Acres Stables, a rehabilitation center for large animals; representatives from the Rhode Island militia in traditional "white hunting frocks"; and docents in colonial dress from Smith's Castle-Cocumscussoc in North Kingstown. The event takes place two days after the traditional celebration of Washington's birthday on February 22.

"Friends of Oceanography is pleased to be a part of this presentation," said the organization's executive director Paula Staples. "South Ferry is a historic part of Narragansett and the residents of the town and the state have reason to be proud of its history."

The ride of 1756 followed the defeat of General Edward Braddock at Fort-Duquesne during the French and Indian War. Colonel Washington was by Braddock's side when the army was ambushed and defeated on July 9, 1755. The Encyclopedia Britannica explains that because Washington helped bring the troops back, he was repaid by being appointed commander of all the Virginia troops. Finding that a Maryland captain who held a royal commission would not obey him, he rode north in February 1756 to Boston to have the question settled by the commander in chief in America, Governor William Shirley.

Following the enactment will be a program in URI's Corless Auditorium on the Bay Campus. The program will feature traditional colonial refreshments by Carpenter's Mill Jonnycakes and a short talk by URI theater student and accomplished actor Anthony Luciano who will read from Colonel Washington's letters "relating the rigors of Lord Braddock's defeat in the woods of Pennsylvania" on July 9, 1755.

For information or directions call Friends of Oceanography at (401) 874-6602.

For More Information: Lisa Cugini, 401-874-6642


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