As for tailoring, I'm not going to quit my day job; my stitching efforts were pretty feeble. The meticulous efforts to use the correct stitches on the uniforms worn at Fort Ticonderoga are part of a commitment to detail that the staff takes to get it right. Next year, when the fort returns to the 1770s, they'll be back to making British uniforms; until then it's all about the French.
Finally, we made our way to the boathouse where workers are building a new bateau for use on the lake. These flat-bottomed boats are the type used in the 18th century, and are very stable. I was able to saw a bit on one of the rockers, or ribs, that will give the vessel stability and structure. It was a very therapeutic craft (and the freshly cut wood smelled terrific).
Making French military shoes couldn't have been easy. It's almost unbelievable to hear about all the pieces involved, the complicated stitching and the wooden pegs that hold it all together, and the physical toil. I would lose my eyesight and have backaches before long. Still, I love the setting of the shoemaker. It's something I haven't seen anywhere else.
We learned how to direct Mick and Mack, the red devons that pull the heavy loads. They're very gentle and are great with the public, not even flinching when the cannons fire, yet they also seem to have their very individual personalities. They appear quite content to pull with the yoke and know the value of working together.
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