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Park invites visitors to 'Come and take it!"

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POSTED: November 10, 2010 12:46 p.m.
Next Saturday, Fort Morris State Historic Site will offer its visitors the opportunity to step back in time and witness a significant moment in American history.
To commemorate the 232nd anniversary of the British demand to surrender Fort Morris, the park is hosting its annual “Come and take it!” Revolutionary War encampment from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 20.
On Nov. 25, 1778, during the American Revolution, British Lt. Col. Lewis V. Fuser demanded the surrender of Fort Morris. American Col. John McIntosh offered a reply that would become legendary: “Sir, we would rather perish in vigorous defense than accept your proposal. We are fighting the battles of America and therefore disdain to remain neutral until its fate is determined. As to surrendering the fort, receive this laconic reply, come and take it!”
Local historian and former Liberty County Historical Society President Margie Love said that Fuser did not attack Fort Morris at that point, but he did four months later when McIntosh was no longer the commander.
To acknowledge his gallantry, the Georgia Legislature later presented McIntosh with a sword with the words “come and take it” inscribed on it, according to Love.
In remembrance of the battle, Fort Morris will have soldier talks, musket drills, cannon demonstrations, domestic skills, colonial crafts like weaving and spinning.  
In keeping with the theme, tunes like “Yankee Doodle,” “Britannia” and “World Turned Upside Down” will play throughout the day, said site manager Arthur Edgar Jr.
The event, sponsored by the city of Flemington and Friends of Fort Morris, will begin with a wreath laying ceremony by the Sons of the American Revolution to commemorate the battle and those who served. At 1:30 p.m., there will be a tactical skirmish between opposing forces followed by a portrayal of the correspondence between the Patriot and British officers.
Guests are also invited to bring picnics, Edgar said. He expects between 100-200 park visitors to attend the event, which will be run by about 30 volunteers.
The event is free. Fort Morris is seven miles east of I-95, exit 76. Follow the brown Liberty Trail signs.
For more information, call 884-5999 or go to www.georgiastateparks.org and click Fort Morris.
 

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