Jason Hawes, How Dare You…

So today at work I received a text message that read “last night on an interview Jason Hawes claimed that TAPS is the reason Fort Mifflin is still open.”  I can’t begin to explain how much this pissed me off, it is no secret I used to be a ghost hunter and Fort Mifflin has always been one of my favorite places to visit, attend and even work events when they are held there.

Now for those who do not know what Fort Mifflin is, here is the brief history of the location found on their website http://fortmifflin.us

“Located on the scenic Delaware River, Fort Mifflin was originally built by the British in 1771. It is the site of the largest bombardment the North American continent has ever witnessed. In 1777, during the American Revolution, a valiant five-week battle took place when the British Navy attacked Fort Mifflin on Mud Island. The British had the garrison of approximately 400 Continental soldiers surrounded from three sides. Attempting to open the supply line for the British Army already in the Rebel capital of Philadelphia, the British shot over 10,000 cannonballs at the Fort, causing the garrison to eventually evacuate. Over 150 Continental soldiers died as a result of the battle and led Thomas Paine to write: “The garrison , with scarce anything to cover them but their bravery, survived in the midst of the mud, shot & shells, and were obliged to give up more to the powers of time & gunpowder than to military superiority.” This allowed General Washington and the Continental Army to repair to their winter quarters in a place called the Valley Forge. Too late in the season for British General Howe to chase them, the garrison at Fort Mifflin thus extended the war and allowed the American army time to regroup until the spring of 1778.

Forever after that known as the “Valiant Defender of the Delaware”, Fort Mifflin was reconstructed in 1798 as one of the coastal defenses of the era. An active military post until the Korean War, this made the Fort one of the longest continually used military posts in the nation up until that time. The Fort has played many roles in the security of our Nation in its 235 years of existence; garrisoned in the War of 1812, a Confederate prison during the Civil War and a munitions depot in World Wars I & II.

The Fort is home to 14 restored historic structures constructed from 1778 to 1875, including an Enlisted Barracks, Officer’s Quarters, Blacksmith Shop and the casemates (or as the students like to call them, the dungeons.) The Fort is situated on the beautiful banks of the Delaware River, where you can eat a picnic lunch and watch the abundant fauna and flora or investigate the ancient moat, which is home to all sorts of aquatic life. Our fully stocked Gift Shop located inside the Fort offers authentic reproduction Revolutionary and Civil War items, as well as a tremendous selection of books and art work.

The Fort also offers a wide variety of programming throughout the year. You’ll find some era in history for you, your family or a friends liking. Our numerous annual events, such as Civil War Garrison days, 4th of July Freedom Blast and the Annual Siege of Fort Mifflin are sure to please everyone. We also allow groups to rent the Fort for parties and company functions; have a kid’s birthday party or your next meeting in our conference room, we even have a full-service kitchen. Thousands of school students visit each year and participate in our education and interpretive programs, tours, weapons demonstrations and their favorite, the firing of our cannon.
Fort Mifflin is one of the most unique historic sites in the country and it’s just outside downtown Philadelphia. So why not become a member and join the fun and excitement at the “Fort That Saved America.

 One of my best friends and co-host on Strange Frequencies Radio Robyn McKinney has put many hours, blood, sweat and tears into saving this location, along with numerous other individuals I can’t begin to name.  People, who have never asked for accolade or recognition, have done more to save this amazing location then Jason Hawes or TAPS ever has.  Before I go on to make it sound like I am taking something on word of mouth, I downloaded this interview and this is exactly what Hawes said:

 Jason Hawes:  “Fort Mifflin, we did multiple events for them that we were able to give them enough money to keep the place open, so that people and investigators were able to go there and spend time and check out this location, this place wouldn’t be open if we hadn’t done that.   “ 

 Radio Host: “That’s right, I believe the TAPS home team recently did a fund raising event there at Fort Mifflin, is that correct?”

 Jason Hawes: “Yes, absolutely.”

 Excuse me, a TAPS home team charity event?  No it was a Para event which was again held by Robyn McKinney.  TAPS home team participated in the event but they were invited to come, it wasn’t their event.  The Radio host should really get her facts straight, before commenting on things that are incorrect, same with Jason Hawes. 

I do know something that Jason Hawes may not know.  It is the public’s right to know how much money was donated to a charity.  So for instance in 2008 you sold out an event at Fort Mifflin, which was over 150 people, tickets were $250 a piece so ticket sales alone $37,500, this doesn’t include the killing that was made off of merchandise.  For a man who claims to be the reason for keeping Fort Mifflin open, you sure didn’t donate that much, a mere $4,000.  Now I can’t speak for Fort Mifflin, I am sure they are very grateful for that donation, but as far as you being the ones who kept the Fort alive and open…not so much.     Para donated 4x ($16,000) as much in 2 events then what TAPS did in a 2 day event, that’s a fact.  And I am please to say none of them are arrogant enough to preach about it on a radio show.  It isn’t and has never been about reward and praise, charity to the Fort and their community is rewarding enough. 

 Jason Hawes not only are you a very arrogant person you are also very ignorant and highly insulting to the many people and/or groups that have donated their precious time and all their earnings to help the cause.  It’s very easy to give a dollar if you get to keep 2, you should know a little about that.

 There is so much more I want to say, but I had to write it so fast here at work.  Thank you to all the people who have helped keep Fort Mifflin open, especially to Robyn McKinney and PARA.  Remember the Fort isnt off life support like Jason Hawes makes it sound and the only reason it is still open is because of the numerous donations many people have made, not just TAPS.  So please Help save the Fort that helped save America, by donating anything to link above.

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