Fort Keyser, New York

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Fort Keyser, New York

FORT KEYSER, NEW YORK. 18 October 1780. Johannes Keyse built a stone house in Stone Arabia in 1750. The house was fortified by local militia in 1776. Colonel John Brown held Fort Paris in Stone Arabia, in New York's Mohawk River Valley, with 130 Massachusetts militia when Sir John Johnson approached. On news of the destruction of Schoharie, 15-17 October, General Robert Van Rensselaer assembled militia and moved up the Mohawk Valley behind Johnson. In obedience to Van Rensselaer's order and with the assurance that Van Rensselaer would arrive in time to strike the enemy's rear, Brown sallied forth to attack a force ten times the size of his own. Near the ruins of Fort Keyser, he was killed with a third of his men; the rest were routed before the promised support arrived. Johnson destroyed Stone Arabia before he was brought to bay at Klock's Field late in the afternoon of 19 October. The building was abandoned after the war and torn down in the 1840s.

SEE ALSO Border Warfare in New York; Brown, John; Klock's Field, New York; Schoharie Valley, New York.

                          revised by Michael Bellesiles