The Logs and the Fate Outside

The Logs and the Fate OutsideThis is a depiction in miniature of the scene at Fort Necessity that led to Washington’s decision to surrender. It’s a fascinating visual display. You’ll see it in the museum at the historic site.

The walls don’t amount to much. And yet, I suspect for a few hours the men inside those walls held onto them for dear life. Those walls were the only thing between them and a fate they could all too easily imagine. As it turned out, fate could have been worse. There was no massacre, no butchery after the fact. But before the end, while the bullets and balls and arrows were flying, death and injury were everywhere around those walls and the worst fears in the minds of those men were the defining element in their view of the future.

Think about what the walls of Fort Necessity represent. They represent protection, to be sure. If we stay behind them and if they’re strong enough, they will protect us. They also represent something else too. The walls embody an understanding of how the events with where we’re involved will unfold. Wars in Europe had walls. There were rules and customs that tended to accompany those walls. Here in North America—the New World was the term of the European colonizers—the walls meant a different thing. They were a symbol of those far-away rules and customs, but they were also a type of signal as well. They were a signal that rules and customs were there to be observed. Or not.

Interestingly, such walls can be found in ancient North American historic sites that are pre-Columbian. Moundbuilder societies, for instance, often used walls for protection. Reminds me of the cliche “the more things change, the more they….”

What are the walls that you know? I don’t mean the ones that are negative (“you’re putting up a wall now, aren’t you” and so forth). You have them in the Ft. Necessity walls too. You have walls that you regard as protective. You have walls that are heavy with assumptions and beliefs. You have walls that at times seem to be the only thing that stand between you and a dark fate.

I found the walls at Ft. Necessity to be a powerful experience.