McDowell's Mill Fort in Markes, Pennsylvania, 1753-1840

McDowell's Mill Fort in Markes, Pennsylvania, 1753-1840
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  • Item #: 9781620064115

French and Indian War to the Establishment of a New Nation

Bakker painstakingly reconstructs McDowell's Mill Fort using information in the Pennsylvania State Archives’ Colonial Records, Minutes of the Assembly, colonial tax records, surveys, regional histories and more, often through the voices of those living in the region. The Governor of Pennsylvania stockaded the pre-existing mill and named it a Chief Fort to hold the Penn colony’s supplies for British General Braddock’s campaign against the French in the Pittsburgh area. A road was constructed from that site west. When that campaign failed, the settlers were left defenseless as British troops retreated, and they were forced to organize themselves into militia to form a line of defense for the western part of the colony along the Appalachian Mountains.

The fort stood through the burning of farms and fields, assaults by western Indian bands led by French officers; Pontiac’s warriors during his rebellion; regional starvation and distress; the Black Boys' assault on nearby British Fort Loudon, long before events at Boston; and the Revolutionary War with a number of men who had served at the fort enlisted as officers in the Continental Army through the entire length of that war, including the miller who became a Lieutenant/surgeon recorded at places like the Valley Forge encampment. The fort was razed in 1840 and only state markers remain.

Bakker helps the reader see the growing pressure in Pennsylvania as colonists interacted with their seemingly indifferent pacifistic Quaker Assembly; sister colonies who fought for Pennsylvania land; British Parliament as they levied taxes to recover losses incurred from their fight with the French; dissatisfied Native American tribes forced to submit to land deals brokered by a confederation in which they had no voice; and African slaves worked long hours under bondage to help colonists prosper. It is a story of perseverance and passion as people struggled to achieve the American dream through seemingly insurmountable odds.


Pamela A. Bakker is a lover of history. She is a published author of books, articles, and historical poetry. She has also written curriculums, short stories and music. Her books include: Eyes on the Sporting Scene, 1870–1930: Will and June Rankin, New York’s Sportswriting Brothers (McFarland Publishers, 2013); The 104th Field Artillery Regiment of the New York National Guard, 1916–1919 (McFarland Publishers, 2014); and McDowell’s Mill Fort in Markes, Pennsylvania, 1953–1840: French and Indian War to the Establishment of a New Nation (Sunbury Press, Inc., 2020)

Some of her articles include: “The Rankin Brothers: Will and June,” Nineteenth Century Notes, 19th Century Committee of the Society for American Baseball Research, summer 2013, 1–3; “Franklin County, Pennsylvania Abolitionist, Andrew Nerva Rankin, Esq.” in Schiwek, Beate A., Ed., Franklin County Historical Society-Kittochtinny Journal, Vol. XXIII, the 150th Anniversary Civil War Issue (Chambersburg: Heritage Books, 2011); and “Mike Moynahan (1856–April 19, 1899), hard-hitting shortstop,” in The 1883 Philadelphia Athletics (Society for American Baseball Research, 2020).

by Pamela Bakker
Trade paperback - 6 x 9 x .8
330 Pages
HISTORY / United States / State & Local / Middle Atlantic
HISTORY / United States / Colonial Period
HISTORY / United States / Revolutionary Period
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Price $19.95
Availability In-Stock

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