Friday, October 31, 2014

Tourism Wins in War of 1812-- Part 3" Battle of Lake Erie Re-enactment

**  Many Port Clinton, Ohio, businesses reported record sales.

**  Kellys Island reported selling 360 sail-away tickets for the tall ship tours.

**  Despite its summer season being shortened by the sequestered federal budget cuts, visitors to the Perry Peace memorial were up 40% over the summer of 2012.

** The tall ships were a big reason for all the tourists.  There were also plenty of land re-enactments and naval re-enactments are very rare.

On October 3, 2013, at 8 p.m. EST, WGTE Toledo PBS will show a half hour documentary on the re-enactment.


Tourism Wins in War of 1812-- Part 2

**  Put-in-Bay sold 7,500 tour tickets.

**  Between 8,000 to 10,000 spectators aboard 2000 boats watched the Battle of Lake Erie re-enactment.  Another 1,450 participated in the event.

**  Port Clinton, Ohio, drew 30,000 visitors.  Another 3,000 paid to board the two tall ships docked there.

**  It was heavily covered in the media, including the New York Times, CNN, NPR and the Washington Post.


Tourism Wins in War of 1812-- Part 1

From the September 27, 2013, Sanduskey (Ohio) Register by Tom Jackson.

Labor Day weekend events, including the September 2nd re-enactment of the Battle of Lake Erie drew huge crowds according to Larry Fletcher, executive director of Lake Erie Shores and Islands in Ottawa County.  "It was like a home run for the area," he said.

**  More than 100,000 people visited the area.

**  On September 1st, Miller Boat Line set a new record for passengers.

**All island (South Bass Island, home of Put-in-Bay), and many mainland marinas were sold out.

**  Hotel bookings were very heavy on the islands and Port Clinton.


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Vermont Governor Martin Crittendon

From Wikipedia.

Martin Crittendon (1763-1840)

I wrote about him in the last post so this is a little more information on him.

U.S. Representative from Vermont 1803-1813 and seventh governor 1813-1815.  he was also an officer in the Vermont militia from 1793-1803.  Replaced his brother-in-law Jonas Galusha as Vermont's governor and was the leader of Vermont during the crucial years of the War of 1812.

As a Representative, he voted against going to war with Britain in 1812.  As the last federalist governor of Vermont, he also opposed the war and at one point ordered Vermont militia to return from Plattsburgh, New York, but his officers refused.

After the American victory at the Battle of Plattsburgh in 1814, he was defeated in his reelection bid in 1815.


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The "Unnecessary" War

During October 1814, Vermont Governor Martin Chittenden, complained that the war is "unnecessary, unwise and hopeless, in all its offensive operations."


Monday, October 27, 2014

Royal Navy Dockyard at Kingston-- Part 6

The Rush-Bagot Agreement in April 1817 limited the number of warships on the Great Lakes between England and the United States to one warship on Lake Ontario, one on Lake Champlain and two on the other Great Lakes.

The Dockyard was then reduced to a skeleton staff and eventually closed in 1837.

The largest warship during the Age of Sail to ever sail on the Great Lakes, the HMS St. Lawrence was decommissioned in 1815 and its hull used for storage for a local brewery.  It later sank in shallow water off Morton Street in Kingston.


Saturday, October 25, 2014

200 Years Ago: McArthur's Raid Begins and Skirmish at Tracy's Landing

OCTOBER 26TH, 1814:  Beginning of McArthur's Raid from Detroit up the Thames Valley to the Grand River Settlement.  This source has it at this date.  The historic places site has it beginning October 22nd.

OCTOBER 27TH, 1814:  Skirmish at Tracy's Landing, Anne Arundel County, Maryland.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Royal Navy Dockyard at Kingston-- Part 5

The dock yard also built three gunboats which carried one long 24-pounder apiece as well as two mortar boats.  On November 29, 1814, the dock yard dispatched material for a 36-gun frigate to be stationed at Penetanguishene and also built transports for the Army.

Captain Hall estimated that by spring he would have completed 20 gunboats, 4 mortar boats and 50 batteaux large enough to carry 50 men.

Shipbuilding continued until March 1815 when word reached Kingston that the Treaty of Ghent had been reached (signed by delegates on December 24, 1814).  Ship construction was immediately halted and some already completed ships were put into ordinary.  Repair work continued as needed.


Royal Navy Dockyard at Point Frederick, Kingston-- Part 4

The HMS St. Lawrence arrived too late to do any actual fighting.  But, its presence did force American commander Commodore Isaac Chauncey to keep his ships safely in Sackets Harbor.  The only time its guns were fired was in practice or salutes.  It still, however, made many cruises on Lake Ontario and was hit by lightning in 1819.

The Kingston Royal Dockyards employed 1,100 workers during the War of 1812.  On May 27, 1814, Captain Robert Hall was put in charge of it.  he improved the yard's buildings and facilities.

The British shipped the frame of one ship to Kingston via the St. Lawrence River.  Workers put together the 32-gun HMS Psyche which was later enlarged to 55 guns by James Yeo.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

200 Years Ago: End of War Negotiations

OCTOBER 21, 1814:  British negotiators at Ghent offer peace on the basis of "uti posseditis," possession of lands at the end of hostilities.

OCTOBER 22, 1814:  Th Treaty of Commerce was signed between the United States and Britain at Ghent, Belgium.

Going in the Right Direction.  --Brock-Perry

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

200 Years Ago: McArthur's Raid Into Upper Canada, Last Major Battle Fought on Canadian Soil

OCTOBER 22, 1814:  American Brigadier General Duncan McArthur set out from Detroit, Michigan territory, with a force of Ohio and Kentucky militia and First Nations allies to raid communities in southwestern Upper Canada, a no-man's land following the British defeats at the Battles of Lake Erie and the Thames in the fall of 1813.

Rumored to be planning an attack on Burlington Heights, a major British base on lake Ontario, the marauders destroyed private property such as mills during their march.  Hampered by rainy weather and swollen rivers, McArthur's force assaulted the settlement of Malcom's Mills..  The town's defenders, Oxford and Norfolk County militia, were scattered by McArthur's troops, who returned to Detroit following the incident.

This was the last battle fought on Canadian soil during the war.


200 Years Ago: Battle of Cook's Mills, Upper Canada

OCTOBER 19, 1814:  After ending the unsuccessful siege of Fort Erie, British Lieutenant-General and Lieutenant Governor Gordon Drummond withdrew his forces to a position to protect Chippawa Creek.  U.S, Major General George Izzard followed Drummond, but did not attack the British defenses.

Learning of a supply of wheat at Cook's Mills, Izzard sent a force under Brigadier General Daniel Bissell to Lyon's Creek where he clashed with a smaller British detachment commanded by Lt.Col. Christopher Myers.  The larger American force drove the British back and burned the mills.

Outnumbered, General Drummond refused to be drawn into a major battle.  This was the final confrontation on the Niagara River frontier during the War of 1812.

An End to One Area of Conflict.  --Brock-Perry

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Royal Navy Dockyard at Point Frederick, Kingston-- Part 3: HMS St. Lawrence

A problem facing Yeo was getting supplies, equipment and reinforcements as they all had to come down the St. Lawrence River where they were exposed to American attack.

He had permission to build a large warship, but greatly increased its size until it became a ship-of-the-line, the HMS St. Lawrence.  Construction on it began April 12, 1814 and it became designated as a first rate ship-of-the-line since it mounted 100 guns and was crewed by 800 men.

Thousands of trees were needed.  Some 5,750 for the hull alone.  Pine and spruce were used for the masts and spars.  Then, there was need for a vast amount of sails and rope for rigging.

It cost $500,000 and was launched September 10, 1814, with a crew of 1837.


Royal Navy Dockyard at Point Frederick, Kingston-- Part 2

Continued from October 14th.

The dockyard was not attacked much by the Americans and never captured.

During the War of 1812, especially in 1814, there was a huge shipbuilding war going on between the Americans and British.  That involved Kingston and the British Naval Dockyard there and the Americans at Sackets Harbor, New York.  Whoever got the most and biggest ships out on Lake Ontario, thereby controlled the lake.

British Commodore James Lucas Yeo arrived in Kingston on May 15, 1813, and became commander of the Great Lakes Fleet.  He wanted to continue British domination of sea power but faced a problem in that his ships mostly had shorter range carronades to use against the American long guns.

In sea battles, Americans would try to keep the distance great between them and the British ships as far as they could in order to maintain their superior firepower.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Battle in Illinois: Rock Island Rapids

A fated American expedition was sent up the Mississippi River to destroy a village and crops at Saukenuk, in present day northwest Illinois.
The expedition was attacked by over 1000 warriors and forced to retreat.


Saturday, October 18, 2014

200 Years Ago: Upper Canada and Maryland

OCTOBER 19TH, 1814:  Fighting at Cook's Mills-Lyons Creek in Upper Canada.

Also British raid at Castle Haven, Dorchester County, Maryland.


New England Thinking of Secession?

OCTOBER 18TH, 1814:  The Massachusetts General Court calls for a convention of New England states whose livelihood depends on British trade to coordinate a regional grievance against the federal government.  From December 15 to January 5, delegates from some of the New England states met in Hartford, Connecticut to discuss grievances against Washington, D.C. and to provide alternative solutions to talk of secession from New England radicals.

And, yet, 46 years later, New England was against secession of the the Southern states.


Friday, October 17, 2014

200 Years Ago: Treasury Secretary Dallas Calls on Congress for a National Bank

OCTOBER 17TH, 1814:  Treasury Secretary Alexander Dallas calls for Congress to establish a national bank to finance the war and to increase taxes ti help pay for it.

The Senate passed the bill on December 9, 1814.


Gen. Izard's Cut Off

OCTOBER 16TH, 1814:  General George Izard wrote a letter to Armstrong expressing his concerns about being cut off from supplies and reinforcements now that the British control Lake Ontario after the launch of the HMS St. Lawrence.  he is also afraid that Yeo's control of the lake might enable larger forces to be brought against him.

At this point, Izard is seriously considering withdrawing from Fort Erie.


Launched of the Steam Frigate USS Fulton (Demologos)

OCTOBER 16, 1814,  Launch of the frigate USS Fulton the First, in New York.  Originally named Demologos, but renamed the Fulton after Robert Fulton's death on February 24, 1815.

Robert Fulton was commissioned to apply his engineering skills and expertise to the defense of that place an New Yorkers believed their harbor was inadequately protected.  He designed a 150-foot long steam frigate/floating fort and Congress authorized its construction in March 1814 at a cost of $320,000.