An official Path Through History Site! Old Fort Niagara has dominated the entrance to the Niagara River since 1726. In American hands since 1796, Fort Niagara was recaptured by the British in 1813, and then ceded to the US a second time in 1815 at the end of the War of 1812. Today, visitors can discover an amazing collection of military architecture, including the oldest building in the Great Lakes region: the "French Castle." The fort is a New York State and National Historic Landmark and hosts several reenactments each year.