The Niagara Region in upper Canada has a lot to offer anyone who wants excitement or relaxation. From the rush of Niagara Falls and neighboring attractions to the tranquility of the land beyond, people of different interests are bound to find something that draws them in.
The Niagara Region contains soothing parks that allow rest and reflection. However, what appears peaceful now wasn’t always so. The area has witnessed some of the most ferocious battles in Canadian history.
Ridgeway is a small village in Fort Erie where, on June 2, 1866, an army of Irish-American invaders clashed with Canadian troops. The invasion force, the Fenians, would attack other targets in Canada in the following years to force the United Kingdom to allow the formation of an independent Irish Republic.
The Canadian force was 850 strong while the Fenians numbered upwards of 700 soldiers. The Canadians suffered 28 combat fatalities and saw 22 men later die of wounds. The Fenians saw 2 of their men killed in action.
The Fenians were victorious despite being outnumbered. However, their success was short-lived. British and Canadian reinforcements soon arrived. Their presence inspired most of the Fenians to flee.
- Canada’s first modern battle.
- the first fought only by Canadian troops.
- the last battle fought within the modern boundaries of Ontario against foreign invaders.
The battle site is a National Historic Site. The Canadian Volunteer Monument honors those who died in combat.
The War of 1812 was fought by the United States of America and its allies against the United Kingdom and its Canadian allies. The war spilled over the US./Canada border into the Niagara Region. The Siege of Fort Erie was one of the final battles of the conflict. It lasted from August 4, 1814, until September 21, 1814.
The Americans captured Fort Erie on July 3, 1814. The British and Canadian armies valiantly fought to reclaim the fort but failed.
Facing a brutally cold winter and a lack of supplies, the Americans abandoned the fort, but not before destroying it.
In the end, the United States forces suffered 213 losses out of 2,800 soldiers. The UK/Canada contingent lost 285 soldiers out of 4,800.
Reconstruction on Fort Erie began in 1937. All that was left standing at that time were the walls and two barracks. The fort reopened in 1939, where it’s been a popular destination for lovers of Canadian military history.
The Battle of Chippawa
Another key historical event was the Battle of Chippawa. Founded in 1850, Chippawa was the battleground for American and British troops during the American invasion of the War of 1812. Currently, the site is a National Historic Site of Canada, but then it was a bloody scene.
The American forces won the battle, but at a hefty price. Of their 2,109 engaged soldiers, 60 perished. The British troops were cut by 108. It was the first notable American victory during the war, raising their morale.
After the War of 1812 concluded, Laura Secord, the heroine who warned the British of an upcoming American assault, moved to the area and lived there until her death.
Chippawa is now a quiet place just on the outskirts of the boisterous Niagara Falls area. Residents and visitors can enjoy the calm outdoors and golf courses, a far cry from what the area used to be.
The Battle at Queenston Heights
On October 13, 1812, the United States Army tried to establish itself on the Canadian side of the Niagara River. Had they succeeded, the outcome of the War of 1812 could have been different.
However, the American advance was poorly organized, making them easy prey for the combined British and Canadian armies. They invaded with a force of 3,550 soldiers. Over 1,000 were killed, captured, or wounded. The British/Canadian side numbered 1,300. They suffered 128 losses.
The Battle of Queenston Heights was the first major battle in the War of 1812. It tested the military might of three armies, a sign of things to come as they fought for over 2 years.
Queenston was and remains a small rural section of the Niagara Region. The area was recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada in June 1968. 2 years later, it was absorbed into Niagara-on-the-Lake, another town that saw numerous battles during the War of 1812.
Niagara, ON is full of rich history including the events above and the Battle of Lundy. The Niagara frontier experienced American soldiers, British forces, and many different events that shaped its modern culture. This is just part of the reason it’s such a great place to live! Buying and selling a home is a life-changing decision. The Scarlett Real Estate Group can help make both tasks less of a fight than it normally is.
When you’re ready, please contact us and let us know what we can do for you. Reach out to us for help with your Niagara, ON real estate needs!