Lake Erie Region
US 19 in Waterford
Fort LeBoeuf (modern Waterford, Pennsylvania) guarded the southern end of the portage road between Lake Erie and French Creek, which ran to the Allegheny River. It served as a French trading post and garrison until 1759, when the fall of Fort Niagara forced the French to abandon the Ohio Country. The British occupied the site until June 1763, when Ohio Indians angered by the British failure to withdraw from their homelands overwhelmed the garrison there during Pontiac's Rebellion.
The most famous encounter at Fort LeBoeuf took place between Virginia militia officer George Washington and the French commander of the post, Jacques Legardeur de Saint-Pierre, in December 1753. Washington delivered a message from the governor of Virginia, ordering the French to remove themselves from British land, but the French officer politely declined. He sent Washington trudging home through the snow and ice, but not before the young Virginian had taken the opportunity to record a description of the post, in case the British might need to remove the French by force.
The French destroyed this post when they retreated from the Ohio Valley in 1759, but the British rebuilt it a year later. It fell to Indians during Pontiac's Rebellion in June 1763.
Louis M. Waddell and Bruce D. Bomberger, The French and Indian War in Pennsylvania: Fortification and Struggle During the War for Empire (Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission), 1996.