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Situated in Oswego County, the New York city of Oswego is also its county seat. In 1615, Samuel de Champlain was the first European to set foot on the land that is now Oswego. It is named in for the Indian word os-we-go, which means "pouring out place". In 1772, the British established a trading post in the area, and three years later followed it up with the first fort, Fort Oswego on the site where Fort Ontario now sits. That fort was named the Fort of Six Nations. Two other forts, Fort George and and Fort Fort Ontario, were situated within the current city limits. Its nickname is "The Port City of Central New York" due to its strategic location at the mouth of the Oswego River on the southeastern shore of Lake Ontario, which caused it to be the object of numerous battles over the years. The first Fort Ontario was razed during the Battle of Fort Oswego in the French and Indian War. The British abandoned for Oswego during the Revolutionary War, and the Americans razed it in 1778. The British soldiers returned in 1782, occupying Fort Ontario until 1786, thirteen years after the end of the war. And during the War of 1812, America held the garrison at Fort Oswego, but it was taken by the British as a strategic move. During World War II, interned Jewish refugees were held there, and in 1946, it was used to house veterans and their families. It is now a museum.

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