Opened from May 1st to October 31st
383 Fort Robertdeau Road
Altoona, PA 16601
Central Pennsylvania's Fort Roberdeau historic site and natural area was once the most dangerous places to live in North America during the American Revolutionary War. To combat the constant danger two types of soldiers resided at Roberdeau's fort -- the militia and the Rangers, those whose job is was to scout the area and stop the Indians that the British sent. It was estimated that there were 60 to 200 soldiers at the fort at any one time.
Fort Roberdeau is located in the Sinking Valley area of Altoona, PA. When you visit the rustic natural area it's hard to imagine the dangers and fear the settlers were feeling in the year 1778. You can't help but wonder, while roaming through the fort what on earth would bring Daniel Roberdeau to such a remote area of Pennsylvania, and what on earth were the soldiers protecting. It was lead!
In 1778, in America, the Revolutionary War was raging. As the British were fighting to suppress their colonists who had, two years earlier, declared independence, the patriots searched for supplies that would help them defeat what was then the strongest army in the world, including lead that was needed for bullets. Since the French and Indian War, the colonists had known there was lead in the Sinking Valley, in Central Pennsylvania. Which is unusual, since there is not a lot of lead sources in this part of the country. After the Declaration of Independence, the lead source had been cut off from the British. The provisional government had to find ways to get all kind of supplies.
Philadelphia merchant Daniel Roberdeau undertook the task of searching for lead and arrived on the Pennsylvania frontier. I this area, colonists settlers faced dander from British raiding parties and American Indians, so to help defend the frontier, Roberdeau constructed a fort to protect the surrounding area, including the minors in his employ, searching for the precious commodity.
The original fort was destroyed over time and the existing fort is a reproduction is believed to be similar in size and location to the original Fort Roberdeau.
Fort Roberdeau celebrates Revolutionary War Days each year to demonstrate those living on the colonial Pennsylvania frontier were no strangers to trouble. Revolutionary War Days are not the only outlet through which the fort's history is celebrated
Season Opens: May 1st to October 31st. Tuesday - Saturday 11:00 am to 5:00 pm Sunday & Monday 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm 383 Fort Roberdeau Road Altoona, PA 16601 Phone: 914-946-0048 For map and directions visit: www.fortroberdeau.org
Admission Price $4.00 for admission & guided tours $5.00 Adults $3.00 Children (4 - 12 yrs.) Free for children under 4 during Revolutionary War Days Parking is free
Taking the Fort Roberdeau Tour
Your first stop is to watch a movie highlighting the history and the area. You tour guide will meet you there and guide you through the fort and explain each building, it's history and what role each building played during the Revolutionary War.
There are hiking trails and picnic areas, along with restrooms. There are no concession stands or restaurants nearby. You should bring some drinks, food and comfortable walking shoes.