Category Archives: 1812 and all that

On the eve of the War of 1812, British and American commanders joined in a toast to King and President, then went off to battle one another in a four-year bloodbath that decided the future of Canada. Dramatic sequences reveal lives disrupted by the clash for control of the North American continent. (Photo: Courtesy Niagara Parks)

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1812 – Part 8: The British Retreat and the Death of Tecumseh


Following the loss of the British Fleet at the Battle of Lake Erie it was decided to destroy everything that could be of use to the Americans and retreat up the Detroit River to the Thames Valley. Proctor, the British general, promised Tecumseh that he would fight in the forks of the Thames in Chatham. But outnumbered and with no fortifications they were forced to retreat further inland. A thousand natives fought valiantly but they and 500 British regulars were no match for 3,000 American troops.

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1812 – Part 7: The Battle of Lake Erie


Prior to the War of 1812 navigation between Lake Erie and the Upper Great Lakes was forced to pass through a narrow channel on the lower Detroit River. It was here in 1796 that the British built Fort Malden. During the War, both the British and the Americans were anxious to gain control of Lake Erie. When the American squadron moved into Put-in-Bay in the late summer of 1813, potentially cutting off the supply routes to the forts and their native allies, the British fleet was forced to leave Amherstburg and engage in battle.

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1812 – Part 6: Settlement in South Western Ontario

Inspired by Simcoe’s dream to create a British colony, flamboyant Colonel Tom Talbot obtained a land grant in South Western Ontario and offered new immigrants the opportunity to settle the land. It was a tough but rewarding life clearing the land, planting and harvesting crops, and building roads. As part of the deal, all male members of the family had to join the militia. No problem until war broke out.

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1812 – Part 5: Rebuilding Fort York


After the Battle of York, the Americans destroyed the Fort, the Governor’s House and the Parliament Buildings. They then decided that the town of York (modern day Toronto) was not worth keeping and left town. After the War of 1812 Fort York was rebuilt. See which significant buildings survive and how archaeologists are unearthing Toronto’s past.

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1812 – Part 4: The Battle of York


During the War of 1812 an American squadron attacks York (today’s Toronto) and burns the fort and government buildings. The British retaliate.

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1812 – Part 3 – The Story of Billy Green

 
During the War of 1812, when the Gage family was imprisoned in the basement and their Stoney Creek home taken over by American troops, Billy Green came to the rescue. For information on the controversy that now surrounds the Billy Green story click here

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1812 – Part 2 – The story of Laura Secord

 

Laura’s walk to warn British troops of an American invasion may have contributed in saving Upper Canada from becoming a U.S. State, but it came at a price. The Officer she warned later repaid the debt.

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1812 – Part 1: The War begins

War is announced – but in 1812 civility reigns.  The British officers are entertaining their American counterparts at Fort George and so war will not start until everyone has first finished their dinner.

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