I had been to the Fortress of Louisbourg many times as a child and leading up to the summer of 2008. That summer, I made plans to visit the fortress like I did every summer but decided to plan my visit around a special event that was taking place that year; The Grand Encampment. I wasn’t expecting the crowd that was already making its way to the fortress grounds when I arrived that day. Tens of thousands of people gathered at the fortress grounds and took their place behind the marked areas to watch the reenactment of a battle that occurred centuries before. Once the event got underway, I forgot that I was watching a recreation of an event and felt like I was actually there. The smell of gunpowder and the sounds of cannon fire and people shouting orders seemed so real and really gave spectators the chance to see what it must have been like when it actually happened. That battle recreation was followed by ceremonial cannon firings and 18th century fireworks. And yes, they did have fireworks in the 18th century and they provide quite the show!