March 29, 2010

Patriot Attack on Kingston Falters

On the evening of February 21, 1838, Patriot General Rensselaer Van Rensselaer tried to rally his army and march 6.5 kilometers (4 miles) from Clayton, NY, across the ice-covered St. Lawrence River to Hickory Island. The island, just inside the Canadian border, was to be the first step in the Patriot invasion of Upper Canada.

March 22, 2010

Van Rensselaer Spoils Bill Johnston's Plans

Five weeks after Bill Johnston held a council of war in Buffalo with William Lyon Mackenzie, Donald McLeod, Rensselaer Van Rensselaer, and Daniel Heustis, his preparations for the invasion of Canada at Kingston were ready. He had the weapons, the men, and their provisions. They were unstoppable, or so he and others thought.

March 16, 2010

Bill Johnston Builds an Army

While General Donald McLeod headed off to invade Windsor, the other Patriot leaders traveled by coach to upstate New York to carry out their Eagle Tavern battle plan. William Lyon Mackenzie, Rensselaer Van Rensselaer, and Daniel Heustis stopped in Watertown. Bill Johnston continued on to Clayton. Together, they began to build an army of invasion with stunning ease.

March 1, 2010

Bill Johnston: 5. Planning the Downfall of Canada Over a Few Beers

The first six weeks of the Patriot War hadn't gone very well. William Lyon Mackenzie's troops abandoned Navy Island and General Henry Handy gave up trying to attack western Upper Canada. It appeared to outside observers that the Patriot War and threats to Canada had evaporated. But appearances can be misleading. Bill Johnston was spoiling for a fight.