Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R) Update
Report from the W3R Committee (1 November 2001)
1.The W3R is a congressionally mandated study as a project of the 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution. We would like the W3R ready for heritage tourists and re-enactors to trace the route from Rhode Island to Virginia to celebrate the 225th Anniversary of the Battle of Yorktown in October 2006.
2.H.R.4794 was signed by President Bill Clinton on November 9, 2000, and became Public Law No: 106-473: The Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Heritage Act of 2000. First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton designated the W3R a Millennium Trail in November as well.
3.The National Park Service (NPS) committed $50,000 to the study of the W3R in FY2001. NPS has requested funds for the subsequent years of the study to assess the historical significance of the route and its integrity and to consider a full range of Federal and non-Federal alternatives to commemorate the route such as a National Historic Trail or National Scenic Byway, for example. Estimated costs for consulting fees through 2004 will probably reach $275,000. The NPS has named the consulting team, Goody, Clancy & Associates of Boston, with Christine Cousineau as the project manager and Dr. Robert Selig as an historical consultant. NPS has appointed Mr. Brian Aviles as the Project Manager.
4.The NPS is responsible for the trail study and is accepting input from all interested parties. As a consequence, the Steering Committee of the W3R Committee met informally with Larry Gall and Project Manager Aviles of the NPS and the consultants at the headquarters of the National Maritime Historical Society at Peekskill, NY, on 28 September 2001 to discuss the objectives and process for the NPS study.
5.The W3R Committee is working to develop a partnership with the Council of American Revolutionary Sites. The Steering Committee met with the President of CARS at Morristown, New Jersey, on 10 August 2001.
6.The NSDAR and SAR have formed W3R Committees. Association Hermione La Fayette in France is behind the W3R and is constructing a frigate Hermione.
7.Committees exist in all nine states along the W3R.
   a.Under the leadership of Colonel Serge Gabriel, with significant contributions from Hans dePold, Bob Selig, and the state Historical Commission, Connecticut has completed historical studies of the W3R and the movement of Lauzunís Legion, archeological surveys, initiatives in Lebanon, and the purchase of the Rose Farm in Bolton. U.S. Congressman John Larson and State Representative Pam Sawyer made extraordinary contributions to the state and national efforts. A guidebook En Avant is nearing completion.
   b.New York: New York continues to follow the pattern of Connecticut. Dr. Robert Selig finished the historical study of the W3R in New York, and Public Archeology Survey Team, Inc. has completed Phase Ióbackground research and tentative site locations--of the archeological survey. The Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area has funded a pilot project with the Odell House, Rochambeauís headquarters in Philipsburg, and the mapping of the nine-state and New Yorkís routes. The Florence Gould Foundation has supported all three projects with grants as well. Lower Hudson Conference is planning to apply for a grant to fund the guidebook.
   c.Rhode Island: Rhode Island is forming a committee under the leadership of the President of the Heritage Harbor Museum, the Honorable Robert J. McKenna. An initial project will be the renewal of the French Army Memorial overlooking the Newport Harbor. The Hope Foundation has contributed a seed grant for a W3R study in Rhode Island.
   d.Delaware: Ralph Nelson of the Delaware Committee (SAR) reports that he has identified funding for a W3R study in Delaware.
   e.New Jersey: Richard Simon, John Vilven, and the Morristown National Historic Site have identified the sites and route for the passage through NJ. The NPS is working on developing a Crossroads National Heritage Area in NJ that will include the W3R.
   f.Pennsylvania: CARS has agreed to lead the W3R effort in PA and plans to meet soon with the Pennsylvania Museum and Historical Commission.
   g.Maryland: The Maryland Historical Trust with the support of the SAR is leading the effort in MD.
   h.District of Columbia: Robert Reyes with the help of an intern is developing an inventory of resources report for Maryland and Georgetown-Washington, DC.
   i.Virginia and Massachusetts: NPS plans to help in both of these states through the Yorktown Battlefield and the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Area. The SAR is onboard in Virginia as well.

Some Reference Webpage Links:
Council of American Revolutionary Sites webpage
explains the organization and goals of CARS.
Hermione Project webpage.
explains the current rebuilding of the frigate that brought Lafayette to American in 1780. The project is taking place in Rochefort, France, and includes the goal to sail the ship to the US as part of celebrating the 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution.
National Park Service's website Lighting Freedom's Flame
explains the NPS's programs to celebrate the 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution.