Battle Of York (Toronto) Alex Philpot Steven Dooley
When • The battle of York was fought on April 27th of 1813.
Who • The battle was fought by the British Empire against the United States. The commander of the British forces was Roger Hale Sheaffe and he commanded 300 regulars, 300 militia,100 Indians. The commander of the Americans was Zebulon Pike,Isaac Chauncey and Henry Dearborn and they commanded 1700 men and 14 armed vessels.
Where • The battle took place at York, which is present day Toronto.
What • There were many impacts the battle had on the world both locally and over seas. Locally many acts of arson and looting by American troops provoked the burning of Washington by British troops. The most significant effects of the capture of York were probably felt on Lake Erie, since the capture of the ordnance and supplies destined for the British squadron there contributed eventually to their defeat in the Battle of Lake Erie. Back in England Shaffer was severely criticized, both for his conduct generally and during the fighting at York.
Why • On June 18, 1812, American President James Madison declared war on Great Britain. Lacking naval power, the Americans tried to take Upper and Lower Canada. The Canadian Governor General, Georges Prevost had few means to defend the colonies; nor could he rely on the loyalty of their inhabitants, which was far from assured. Nevertheless, the British had good officers, such as Major Isaac Brock. They could also count on an Native alliance led by Tecumseh, who was seeking to create a grand alliance of Native Nations. Certain individuals stood out in this conflict, such as Isaac Brock and Laura Secord for the English side and Charles-Michel de Salaberry for the French. This war created a number of symbols and had a profound impact on all parties. Some writers attribute the British victory of 1812 to the efficiency of the militia and to the union of French and English against a common enemy. A union which still exists today. It also enabled Canada to affirm the loyalty of its inhabitants to Great Britain. For the Americans, it was a second American Revolution. The real losers in this conflict were the Native peoples, who lost their independence as a result of American expansion.
How • The Americans wanted to invade Canada, but felt that Kingston was too strong to be as their first target, so they decided to attack York as it was part of the principle British supply line from Quebec to the various armies of the west. The Americans amassed 1700 troops and attacked.
Aftermath • "We may consider the upper province as conquered,“ ~ John Armstrong, US Secretary of war. • For the citizens of York, nothing will ever be the same. Gone forever the easy camaraderie between Loyalists and recently arrived Americans of republican sympathies. Anyone who remained neutral during the invasion will ever after be regarded with suspicion. • The American raid on York will prove particularly costly for the British because the Americans have captured the supplies and armament meant for the Lake Erie fleet