Spectators can view what life was like at an 1870s military fort during Fort Stevenson Frontier Military Days June 23-24. The 15th annual event will be held from 1 until 4 p.m. each day at Fort Stevenson State Park, located three miles south of Garrison. June 24 is also Visitor Appreciation Day at Fort Stevenson with free admission into the park.
Members of the Frontier Army of Dakota will set up authentic tents and gear in front of the Guardhouse Interpretive Center during the two-day encampment. A cannon will fire at 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, along with cannon maneuvers starting at 3:15 p.m. each day. Live demonstrations featuring old-time skills like tomahawk throwing, woodcarving, tatting, black powder gun demonstrations and baking will be held each day. On both Saturday and Sunday afternoons, the public will have the opportunity to shoot a black powder rifle, under the supervision of Frontier Army of Dakota members.
A special feature at this year's Frontier Military Days will be a presentation at 2:30 p.m. June 24 by Steve Holmes, Garrison, on military arms of the period.
"Military Life in Dakota," written by Gen. de Trobriand, the first commander at the fort and a firsthand accounts of military life in Dakota Territory, will be on sale.
Frontier Military Days is sponsored by the Fort Stevenson Foundation, a local volunteer organization that spearheaded the reconstruction of the original fort's guardhouse. The guardhouse is used as a visitor center with displays and artifacts about military life.