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Fort Pitt Blockhouse celebrates 250th anniversary

| Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
Blockhouse 250 coordinator Joanne Ostergaard, guest of honor Julie Nixon Eisenhower and Ft. Pitt Society president Liz Wheatley pose during a VIP reception at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.
John Altdorfer
Blockhouse 250 coordinator Joanne Ostergaard, guest of honor Julie Nixon Eisenhower and Ft. Pitt Society president Liz Wheatley pose during a VIP reception at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.
Allie Withrow and her mother Mary Kennedy Withrow pose during dinner at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.
John Altdorfer
Allie Withrow and her mother Mary Kennedy Withrow pose during dinner at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.
Marilyn Shimp, former Ft. Pitt Blockhouse president, poses with her husband, Al, and daughter, Mary, during dinner at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.
John Altdorfer
Marilyn Shimp, former Ft. Pitt Blockhouse president, poses with her husband, Al, and daughter, Mary, during dinner at the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh during the Block House 250 Gala, presented by the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County. Sept. 11, 2014.

In the late 1800s, a group of prominent women rallied together to form the Pittsburgh Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Their first priority was to preserve our city's oldest historic building.

“I am just so proud of what DAR did to save that blockhouse,” said Betsy Teti of the only surviving building of the British Fort Pitt. “And when women couldn't vote!”

On Sept. 11, more than 125 guests raised a glass with the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the Fort Pitt Blockhouse.

The evening included remarks from keynote speaker Julie Nixon Eisenhower, daughter of former President Richard Nixon. “It's a symbol of the American frontier spirit and an example of how we became the nation we became,” she said.

Guests included Fort Pitt Society prexy Elizabeth Wheatley, Joanne Ostergaard, Donna Paszek, Arlene Stiehler, Maureen Mahoney Hill, James Halttunen, Nancy Kennedy and Paul Kennedy.

Kate Benz is the social columnist for Trib Total Media and can be reached at kbenz@tribweb.com, 412-380-8515 or via Twitter @KateBenzTRIB.

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