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47293200th Commemoration of the Battle of Nottawasaga Bay & Wasaga under Siege - August 14th-17th, 2014 - Update

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  • David Brunelle
    Mar 31, 2014
    • 0 Attachment
      Wasaga under Siege 2014 & the 200th Commemoration of Battle of Nottawasaga

      and the Sinking of HMS Nancy August 14th-17th/2014

      Hi Everyone,

      Just wanted to bring everyone up to speed on the activities/events we are
      working on for the 12th annual Wasaga under Siege taking place from August
      14th - 17th at Nancy Island Historic Site in Wasaga Beach, Ontario, Canada.
      Not only we will be celebrating the 12th annual Wasaga under Siege event but
      we will also be commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of
      Nottawasaga Bay and the sinking and destruction of HMS Nancy.

      * Expanded Four Day Event - August 14th to the 17th/2014 - This year
      Wasaga under Siege will be expanded to a four day event to include Thursday,
      August 14th which is 200 years to the day of the battle of an American
      Victory and the destruction and sinking of the HMS Nancy. All official
      commemorative activities are planned for this day and will take place
      between 10:00am and 1:00pm. During this time admission to Nancy Island
      Historic Site will be free to the public.
      * Early Set-Up - Nancy Island Grand Encampment - The Grand Encampment
      will be will be open for everyone to set-up as of 10:00am, Monday, August
      11th. This will allow any participants and re-enactors to set-up early and
      enjoy other local attractions in the Wasaga Beach area before the official
      events begin. Also this will allow those who attended the bicentennial
      event at Fort Erie to travel directly to Nancy Island on the Monday and not
      have to travel back and forth.
      * Expanded Grand Encampment - The Grand Encampment this year will also
      be expanded to include the Nancy Island parking lot to allow for displays,
      exhibits, period merchants, activities and the expected increase in
      participants and re-enactors to the event. Registration, merchants,
      artisans and event programming and activities including musket and cannon
      demonstrations will be located in the parking lot area. The entire parking
      lot area will be fenced off with admissions being located at the front
      parking lot entrance which will also provide security and access control.
      * Commemorative Coin - An official commemorative coin is being minted
      for this bicentennial event and all participants taking part in the event
      will receive one as a token of our appreciation. There will only be 1000
      coins minted and each will be individually numbered with a database of who
      received what number.
      * Merchants & Artisans - Those attending as merchants, artisans or
      demonstrators this year will have a choice to either set-up on the island or
      set-up in the Nancy Island parking lot area. The Nancy Island parking lot
      area is not paved and is a dirt and sand lot with the exception of a paved
      roundabout that will become a pedestrian path with all the tents and
      activities facing into it. If you are arriving to set-up Wednesday or
      before and planning to setup on the island you will be able to drive your
      vehicle onto the island. From Thursday on, anyone wishing to set-up on the
      island will have to use the carry-alls. If you are planning to set-up in
      the Nancy Island parking lot set-up should not be an issue unless events and
      activities dictate otherwise. If you are planning to attend as a merchant,
      artisan or demonstrator if you could indicate your preference to be on the
      island or in the Nancy Island parking lot it would be greatly appreciated.
      * U.S. Brig Niagara - We are presently working with the Town of
      Collingwood and other partners to have the U.S. Brig Niagara participate in
      Wasaga under Siege 2014. The Niagara was one of the original ships that was
      directly responsible for the destruction and sinking of HMS Nancy. If
      successful the Niagara will participate in both Friday & Saturday evening
      battles and during the day will offer deck tours for the public while
      berthed in Collingwood. Negotiations are ongoing and will keep everyone

      . Unknown Soldier Grave Marker Dedication - As part of August 14th
      commemoration ceremonies a Veteran of the War of 1812 plaque will be placed
      at the site of the Unknown Soldier on Nancy Island to represent all those
      Unknown War of 1812 veterans who survived the War and went on to help
      develop this great country or ours.

      . Miller Worsley Expedition - Calling all Naval Boats and Crews! - We
      are in the planning stages of putting together an historic small boats and
      small schooner sailing expedition along the shores of Southern Georgian Bay
      that will being in Meaford, ON, on Monday, August 11th and arrive at Nancy
      Island Historic Site the Thursday, August 14th . The trip will include port
      stops and overnight stays in Meaford, Thornbury and Collingwood with some
      historical programming taking place in each participating port community.
      We are currently working with community partners in each port to provide
      logistical support in the form of dockage, camping accommodations, food and
      other logistical support needed. We are still in the planning and
      confirmation stages for this voyage and if you and your crew are interested
      in participating in this historic sailing opportunity please contact Tom
      Hurlbut at <mailto:hurlbut8646@...> hurlbut8646@...

      . Voyageur River Run - Edenvale, ON (Glengarry Landing) to the mouth
      of the Nottawasaga River (Nancy Island Historic Site) - 25 - 30 km River
      Run. Friday, August 15th - 9:00am to 1:00pm - Edenvale to Jacks Lake.
      Saturday, August 16th - 9:00am to 1:00pm - Jacks Lake to Nancy Island. The
      Upper Nottawasaga River is basically the same way it looked like in 1814 and
      is a great opportunity for those hearty voyageurs to experience the
      environment and hardships fur traders would have experienced firsthand on
      this historical fur trade route. This river excursion will not be a
      leisurely float down the river as all participants will be expected to pull
      their paddle weight, potentially cut paths through fallen trees and log jams
      and getting your feet wet as low fast running water may dictate guiding the
      boat by hand and feet. We are looking for voyageur canoes and crews to take
      part in this great event. If you or your group is interested in
      participating please Ed Maxwell at <mailto:ed.maxwell@...>

      . Fireworks & 3D/Light Projection - As part of the 200th commemoration
      ceremonies we are planning to host a large fireworks presentation that will
      be launched from the middle of the Nottawasaga River just off Nancy Island.
      We are also working on light and 3D projections that would illuminate the
      Theatre and Museum during the evening over the four days.

      . Expanded Musical Entertainment Venue - We are planning to expand our
      period music and entertainment stage to 3 days offering great music during
      the day for everyone to enjoy. Booked groups and performers to date
      include: Hardtackers, Zoom Daddys, Drums 1812, Caber Toss, Backroads. More
      groups will be added as they are confirmed. Also the ever so popular
      Hospitality tent will be open both Friday and Saturday evenings for all
      participants, volunteers and sponsors to attend.

      . Captured U.S. "Prize of War" - The original ship bell from either
      the USS Tigress or USS Scorpion will be on hand as we are hoping to ring the
      bell to officially open the ceremonies on Thursday, August 14th. This ships
      bell would have been rung 200 years ago to the day as American sailors and
      soldiers prepared for battle against the crew, Natives and voyageurs
      defending HMS Nancy.

      . There are many more things that we are working on to make this event
      a memorable one and look forward to hosting as many re-enactors and
      participants as we can. We are still in the process of updating the website
      however the registration page for the 2014 event is open and ready to go and
      we encourage you all to register ASAP!

      . If you are planning to attend on-line registration is open at:
      <http://www.wasagaundesiege1812.com> www.wasagaundesiege1812.com

      . I want to let everyone know that Wasaga under Siege 2014 will be my
      12th year and last year that I will be coordinating this event. With that I
      am looking to host the best one yet and being the 200th will be an event to
      be part of and remember! I am proud to have managed and coordinated this
      event over the past dozen years and could not have done it without my groups
      support, the Town of Wasaga Beach, Wasaga Beach Provincial Park, The Friends
      of Nancy Island and of course all the re-enactors and participates that have
      made this all possible.

      Contact Information: David J. Brunelle (705) 716-7124 or
      <mailto:wasagaundersiege@...> wasagaundersiege@...

      Short Historical Description of Event and significance to the War of 1812:

      During one of the ship's supply trips to the Nottawasaga, in July of 1814,
      an American force left Detroit, intending to recover Fort Mackinac. Their
      frontal assault was defeated in the
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Mackinac_Island> Battle of Mackinac
      Island. However, they had learned of the location of the Nancy from a
      prisoner, and three of their vessels proceeded to Nottawasaga Bay.

      At the Nottawasaga, Lieutenant
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller_Worsley> Miller Worsley of the
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Navy> Royal Navy had succeeded Poyntz
      and taken command of the Nancy, which was about to sail to Mackinac with 300
      barrels of flour, bacon and other rations. He was warned of the American
      presence and had the Nancy towed two miles up the river, where he hastily
      built a blockhouse armed with three guns (presumably dismounted from the
      schooner). His force consisted of 21 sailors, 23 Indians and 9
      French-Canadian voyageurs.

      On August 14, Captain <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Sinclair> Arthur
      Sinclair led three American ships (
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Niagara_(1813)> Niagara,
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Scorpion_(1813)> Scorpion and
      dlink=1> Tigress) into Nottawasaga Bay. The Americans believed that the
      Nancy was still out on the lake and heading back to the Nottawasaga, and
      intended to wait in ambush for her in the bay. However, Sinclair landed some
      of his troops to make an encampment on the spit of land between the river
      and the lake shore, and some wood-cutting parties discovered the schooner's
      hiding place.

      The next day, three companies of American regular infantry supported by a
      5.5-inch mortar and the guns of Sinclair's ships attacked Worsley's
      position. Worsley, faced with overwhelming odds, determined to
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scuttling> scuttle the Nancy to prevent her
      being captured by the enemy, with her valuable stores, but before Worsley's
      plans to destroy the ship could be completed, the ship was hit by an
      American <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mortar_shell> mortar shell that set
      her on fire. Her crew escaped, but the Nancy sank.

      After the action, the gunboats Scorpion and Tigress were left to guard the
      river to prevent canoes and <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bateau> bateaux
      from getting supplies to Fort Mackinac. Eventually the river mouth was
      blocked with felled trees, and the two gunboats proceeded along the north
      shore in the hope of intercepting fur-laden canoes on the lake. Worsley and
      his men removed the obstructions and reached Mackinac on August 31 after
      paddling and rowing for 360 miles. They subsequently surprised and captured
      both American gunboats in the
      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Engagement_on_Lake_Huron> Engagement on Lake

      Short description of planned activities:

      2014 will not only mark the 12th year that Wasaga under Siege has been
      entertaining and promoting heritage in the Wasaga Beach area but it will
      also mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Nottawasaga Bay and the
      burning and destruction of HMS Nancy. Nancy Island will come to life once
      again with the roar of cannon and musket fire, as we commemorate the 200th
      anniversary of the only War of 1812 battle to take place in the Southern
      Georgian Bay region. Over 500 re-enactors will be taking part echoing
      history through the streets and waters of the Town of Wasaga Beach, Wasaga
      Beach Provincial Park and Nancy Island Historic Site.

      Wasaga Under Siege "A War of 1812 Experience" will feature authentic War of
      1812 tactics, battles, historic vessels and more. The expanded Grand
      Encampment at Nancy Island Historic Site will feature re-enactors opening
      their living history encampments to the public, along with 19th century
      merchants, artisans, period cooking, musket and cannon demonstrations,
      surgeons' tent, fireworks, commemoration ceremonies, musical entertainment
      and more. All battle events will take place at various Wasaga Beach
      Provincial Park and Town of Wasaga Beach locations. For more information
      about Wasaga Under Siege visit: <http://www.wasagaundersiege1812.com>

      Number of Participants Expected: 500+

      David J. Brunelle, OCT

      Business Administrator

      Historic Military Establishment of Upper Canada

      Royal Newfoundland Regiment - Bulger's Company

      <http://www.hmeuc.com/> Historic Military Establishment of Upper Canada

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