Laughlintown and Ligonier in 1812

On July 15th and 16th from 10 am to 4 pm step back in time on the historic grounds of Compass Inn Museum as Ligonier Valley Historical Society presents its July Living History Weekend with the Ship’s Company. Interact with the men and women of Ship’s Company, a reenactment unit that portrays the naval contractor system used to supply the US Navy during the War of 1812, highlighting the roles of early American businesswomen and men, tailors, seamstresses, sailmakers, brewers, millers, and others who lived during the early 1800s.

Ship’s Company’s is a reenactment group based out of Baltimore and Washington D.C. that dedicates itself to interpreting the history of the United States Navy from its early inception during the Revolutionary War to the Civil War. Its focus on the War of 1812 is what brings them to Compass Inn Museum. A time when civilian naval agents were commissioned by President Monroe to garner enough supplies and men to ensure the Navy was well stocked and able to protect our shores from outside forces like the well-established British Royal Navy.

The goal of this living history event is to provide a unique and fascinating view of the past by bringing to life the civilian agents, tradesmen, laborers, and sailors of the US Navy during its early years and the War of 1812. Demonstrations and hands-on activities throughout the day punctuate the daily routine of the sailors and focus on what civilian agents were doing when they traveled to towns like Laughlintown.

“We are thrilled to bring back the Ship’s Company to Compass Inn Museum as they provide an interesting and diverse look at life during the War of 1812. Visitors can watch and learn through interactive demonstrations and how sailors trained in the use of their cutlasses during boarding actions. Experience a ship’s cannon firing and help with daily chores like mending sails and making sea biscuits and sea pies as well as have a conversation with a civilian naval agent,” said Theresa Gay Rohall, Executive Director of Ligonier Valley Historical Society. 

The Living History Weekend also includes tours of the historic Compass Inn and outbuildings, as well as cooking, blacksmithing demonstrations, and children’s activities at no extra charge. General admission is $14 for adults, $12 for seniors (62+), $10 for youth (6-18), and free for children 5 & younger. Tickets can be purchased on-site on the day of the event.