Like Brockville directly to the west (and countless other "founded 1784" towns), Prescott was established by United Empire Loyalists soon after the American Revolution (1776-1783) to house the King's loyal subjects. The town's location on the St. Lawrence River at a narrows directly opposite Ogdensburg, New York, made it strategically important in the War of 1812 as the river was a key supply line. A US attack on Gananoque from Sackets Harbor on September 21, 1812 led to retaliation in which Prescott's 1812-era Fort Wellington attacked Ogdensburg on February 22, 1813.
A second Fort Wellington was built on the same site in 1838 as a response to an unsuccessful domestic rebellion.
Before the Seaway opened in 1958 to bypass rapids downriver at Long Sault, Great Lakes vessels would unload grains and cargo in Prescott-Ogdensburg for onward shipment by rail to Atlantic seaports. Rail lines were also constructed from the region to Ottawa to provide that city with access to river cargo; the Prescott-Ottawa line is now gone (except for a few fragments within Ottawa) but Brockville-Smiths Falls-Ottawa remains in use for passenger service to Toronto.
- By car
- From Montréal and Toronto, Prescott is on the Windsor-Quebec corridor as Highway 401 exit 714 (Edward Street)
- From Ottawa, take Highway 416 southbound to the 401 (exit 721). Prescott-Ogdensburg is the first town upriver from the international bridge.
- From Watertown (New York), take NY 37 to Ogdensburg, then cross the bridge to Johnstown (401 exit 721). Prescott is 7 km (4.5 mi) upriver.
- By rail
- The train no longer stops in Prescott; the town's limestone 1856 Grand Trunk wayside station now houses the local historic society. VIA Rail service is available to Brockville from Montréal, Toronto and Ottawa; Montréal-Toronto buses also stop in Brockville.
- By boat
- 1 Sandra Lawn Harbour and Marina, 191 Water Street, ☎ . Rotary Lighthouse with souvenir shop, outdoor amphitheatre with free summer Sunday concerts beginning at 7PM in July and 6:30PM in August, 148-slip seasonal boat harbour, playground and picnic area.
- By airplane
- The closest major airport is Ottawa Uplands (YOW IATA), about forty minutes north by motorcar. There's a small airport in Ogdensburg (OGS IATA) with a few flights a day to Albany; another alternative is Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL IATA).
- AJ's Taxi, 222 King W., ☎ .
- Prescott Taxi, 152 King W., ☎ .
- 1 Fort Wellington NHS, 370 Vankoughnet St, Prescott K0E 1T0 (at Hwy 2 / King St. E.), ☎ , fax: . 10AM-5PM May-Oct, closed Tue+Wed except Canada Day-Labour Day. $3.90/person.
- 2 Forwarders Museum, 201 Water St., ☎ . Late May-early Sep: daily 11AM-4PM. Three-storey structure built by Captain William Gilkison in 1810 at the height of the forwarding trade on the St. Lawrence River, when material carried downriver by boat was offloaded on land to skirt the nearby rapids. The building was used as an American Consul, a law office and a coin laundry before being taken over by the Grenville Historical Society in 1970; it now houses the municipal visitor centre. By donation.
- 3 Battle of the Windmill NHS, Windmill Road (Follow King St E. (Hwy 2) 2km east from Fort Wellington, turn to waterfront on Windmill Road), ☎ . $1.90/person.
- Kelly's Beach, West end of town near Centennial Park.
- 1 Prescott Golf Club, 900 Boundary Street, ☎ . 18-hole semi-private course at east end of town, established 1939. "Greens" casual restaurant (kitchen/bar) +1 613-925-3908.
- St. Lawrence Shakespeare Festival, 206 King Street W., ☎ . $27/person, $20 Wed matinée.
- Prescott Loyalist Days, Fort Wellington and in downtown Prescott. Annual weekend local festival, mid-August. Fireworks, horse-drawn wagons, games, entertainment, historic re-enactments. $2/person.
- Prescott Farmers' Market every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at the Clock Tower
- Bridgeview Restaurant, 2801 Highway 2, ☎ . M-F 5:30AM-9PM, Sa Su 6:30AM-9PM.
- Dragon Garden Restaurant, 354 King Street W., ☎ . Daily 10AM-10PM. Chinese
- Nick´s Restaurant, 107 Churchill Road E., ☎ . M Tu 10AM-9PM, W-Sa 9AM-9PM, Su 9AM-7PM. Greek.
- Papa Larry´s Restaurant, 178 King Street E., ☎ . Pizza.
- Piccolo Café, 178 King Street W., ☎ . M-Sa 8AM-4PM. Coffee shop.
- Tim's Fish & Chips, 286 King Street W., ☎ . Sa-Th 11AM-8PM, F 11AM-9PM. Take out.
- Wok House Restaurant, 238 King Street W., ☎ . Daily 10AM-10PM. Cantonese and Canadian
- Boomer´s Sports Bar & Restaurant, 186 King Street W., ☎ . Daily 11AM-2AM (reduced hours Sunday and Monday). Live bands, karaoke, big screen TV.
- O'Heaphy's Irish Pub, 101 King Street W., ☎ . Su-Th 11AM-11PM, F Sa 11AM-1AM. Dine on an outdoor patio.
- 1 Red George Public House, 197 Water St., ☎ . British-style pub in basement of circa 1830 stone building on waterfront, next to Forwarder's Museum.
- 1 Colonel's Inn, 408 East St., ☎ . B&B guest house in 1830s stone manor near Fort Wellington.
- Dewar's Inn on the River, Hwy 2, 2 km west of Prescott, ☎ , fax: . No pets, no kids under 12. Riverside motel and cottages. +1-877-4DEWARS
- 2 Prescott Public Library, 360 Dibble St. W., ☎ . M-Th 1PM-8PM, F 1PM-5PM. Eight public-use computers, scan/fax/print/copy, reading room, used books for sale.
|Routes through Prescott-Ogdensburg|
|Kingston ← Brockville ←||W E||→ Morrisburg → Montreal|
|Ottawa ← Kemptville ←||N S||→ NY → Ogdensburg → Utica|
|Watertown ← Morristown ←||SW E||→ Massena → Malone|