Re: RESPONSE: [WarOf1812] Was Alfred at the Battle of Detroit? NO.
- Hi Gord,
I think you had mentioned you thought sailing a larger craft around
Long Point would take days?
At best this would be a morning sail (approx 5 hrs) under optimum
conditions, so don't discount the larger vessel on this account.
However, if this "ship" did make this excursion, why not tow the boats
And if a rendezvous, why not on the near side towards Detroit?
(Alexander MacIntosh's logs are extant)
Might be worthwhile to research what ships were at Fort Erie during
this time period.
The "Queen Charlotte" and the "Hunter" are noted in the Detroit
expedition. If either one (most likely the Hunter) was at the Long
Point debarkation, either could handle shipping a horse.
Just some thoughts.
"Gordon Deans" <gord.deans@s...> wrote:
> a good point well taken. I this case a number of popular authors (not serious academic historians) have made this claim (without references). I depend heavily upon my library for an accurate reflection of history. I need to identify those authors who are less reliable to avoid repeating their errors to the public and to question their other claims more rigorously.
> Inference is a dangerous and powerful tool of investigation, especially 200 years after the fact. However, with enough first-hand primary sources, I would seriously consider it over some of our famous 19th century authors writing only 20 - 50 years after the fact.
> Numerous first-hand accounts of Brock's journey from Long Point (Port Dover) to Amherstburg agree that there were 10 boats (no larger sailing ship mentioned) to transport 300 soldiers and that they dragged the boats across the neck of Long Point from Long Point Bay to Lake Erie. Other secondary sources claim that there also was a larger sailing ship (some even naming the Nancy) in the flotilla. If this is true then it would have been an amazing engineering feat for 300 men to drag an 80-foot vessel with an 8-foot hold across 300 yards of marsh and 200 yards of sand dunes in less than a day (without anyone present noting the feat it in their diaries).
> If Alfred was at the Battle of Detroit, that would lend credence to the claims of a larger sailing ship being involved (such as the Nancy). The other possibility is that Alfred was ridden to Amherstburg in time for Brock to attack Detroit. If so, why wouldn't Brock be the rider in order to get there ahead of the boats and begin planning the battle?
> I agree that even the first-hand primary sources are innocently coloured by differing personal perspectives and memories of the same event.
> It is uncanny the way the minor details of the first-hand accounts of the journey from Port Dover to Amherstburg correlate and reflect the realities of today. The experience today would almost be identical.
> It is in the details that we find explanations and understanding of the past - how did they do it? - why did they do it?
> All I want to achieve is a definitive account and understanding of Brock's trip from York to Amherstburg. The brilliance of the trip was a major contributing factor in the success at Detroit and it should not be cluttered with misleading facts.
> I am only hoping that the discussion will bring me more sources to research from our academic and historian members of the group.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Craig Williams
> To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
> Sent: Friday, October 28, 2005 7:04 PM
> Subject: Re: SUCCESS: [WarOf1812] Was Alfred at the Battle of Detroit? NO.
> Dear Gord,
> To refute "certain sloppy authors" based on what is not mentioned by
> an individual, is a slippery slope in itself is it not? It is the
> bane of all historians, closure.
> It would be like assuming that the 49th didn't wear redcoats at
> Queenston Heights because no one mentioned it in their memoirs.
> I think you may have more of a point with your research that Brock
> was traveling in smaller boats in bad weather. Not conducive to
> transporting horses.
> It is unfortunately one of those details that people at the time
> could easily slough off because certain things are assumed.
> Like, who would bother reporting that when I arrived at Ft. Niagara
> this year I drove my Aerostar...really, who cares,(except me!).
> When people wrote about Brock at Queenston they were likely noting
> details through their grief
> and making much of all details, so mentioning Alfred would make sense.
> Just a thought.
> Craig Williams
> > Thank you Murray. The exact reference I needed to refute the
> > Alfred claims from certain sloppy authors. Brock met with Norton
> > at Brantford on his way from Burlington Heights to Port Dover.
> > Norton knew Brock and would have known of Alfred. The fact that
> > his personal first-hand account does not name Alfred as being the
> > horse at Detroit strongly suggests that the horse was locally
> > acquired or brought from Amherstburg and crossed over with the guns.
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]