Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [WarOf1812] Re: Wysoons, The answer!

Expand Messages
  • Richard Feltoe
    Jason, I was able to get into my files and maps and have the following details you can pass on to your enquirer. Wysoon s or more properly Wyshoun s or
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 2, 2006
    • 0 Attachment
      Jason,
      I was able to get into my files and maps and have the following details you can pass on to your enquirer. Wysoon's or more properly Wyshoun's or Wisehousen's as it is otherwise referred to in various maps and letters, is the triangular point of land formed at the confluence of the Chippawa River and Lyon's Creek just upstream of the Chippawa bridge. I'll try to put up a map and some images of the location in the pictures section of this group, but my system seems to have a problem logging into the pictures system.

      Up until July 1814, this location was entirely ignored and unimportant, but with the invasion of the Americans at Fort Erie in July 1814 there were only two distinct engagements during that season's campaign during which the Royal Marine Artillery could have been engaged with the enemy at that location. The first was after the American victory at the battle of Chippawa when the British were thrown entirely onto the defensive on the north bank of the Chippawa River. According to my research, the story goes like this and is excerpted from my manuscript for the upcoming book on the War on the Niagara.

      "... although victorious at the Battle of Chippawa, General Brown's troops were left with the recognition that this success had only been reached at a cost of a substantial number of casualties from the force that had trained for so long that spring. Nor were there any equivalent troops that could take their place. In addition, having successfully regained the far bank of the Chippawa, the British now blocked the only road available to reach the mouth of the Niagara and the expected rendezvous with Chauncey's fleet on July 10. As his troops evacuated the wounded and prisoners across the Niagara River and buried the dead of both sides in long common graves upon the field of battle, General Brown decided to explore the possibility of outflanking the British defences by crossing the Chippawa River further upstream. To this end, scouts brought back reports that there was a small trail that could be widened to allow formations of troops to reach a point where a pontoon bridge could be constructed at the junction of Lyon's Creek and the Chippawa River (Wyshoun's) . After having made a personal inspection the following morning, General Brown ordered the bringing up of boats to use as the support for the pontoon bridge and the demolition of the Ussher's barn and homestead to provide construction materials for the bridge's roadbed. He also detached teams of men to widen the narrow trail to the projected crossing point and by that evening was informed that the passage was now suitable for use.



      On the morning of July 8, General Brown used Winfield Scott's depleted First Brigade as a screen along the bank of the Chippawa, with orders to keep the attention of the British focused on the prospect of a direct assault; while he sent Ripley's (Second) and Porter's (Third) Brigades to construct the necessary bridge across to the north bank and attack the British from the rear. Contrary to Brown's understanding, however, the route to Lyon's Creek was still far from being properly cleared and the advancing columns were slowed in their march as more engineering work was required to create a passable road for the artillery and wagons carrying the timber and boats. Furthermore, once at the intended crossing point, the Americans found that their roadwork had alerted the British piquets and that General Riall had despatched a force of regulars (Colonel Pearson with the flank companies of the 1st (Royal Scots)) and three 6-pounder guns to contest the crossing.

      Unwilling to see his troops suffer the casualties that would inevitably result if he attempted to build a bridge while under fire, Ripley held his position while sending a report back to Brown. In response, an angry General Brown came forward and personally took over command from Ripley, ordering the troops forward while using his superior firepower in artillery to bombard the far shore. Despite taking casualties, the bridge was pushed to the midpoint of the river when a report arrived that the British appeared to be abandoning their defences at Chippawa and the troops on the northern bank were seen moving off. This report being confirmed, the construction of the pontoon bridge was abandoned and the column retraced its steps to rendezvous with Scott's forces at the main bridge crossing at the mouth of the Chippawa..."



      Note: there is no direct reference to the Royal Marine Artillery here but it's not impossible for the rockets to have been involved, as they would be particularly valuable for lobbing onto the bridging crews.





      The second engagement occurred in October, after the British had abandoned their seige of Fort Erie and were once again thrown on the defensive at the Chippawa River against the combined forces of Brown and Izard.



      "... the American Army finally reached the Chippawa south bank on October 15, but disconcerted at the strength of the defences thrown up by the British, made no attack. Instead, the respective artillery forces engaged in a few hours of cannonfire before the American army retired to Street's Creek and established itself on the same campsite originally occupied by Brown's army at the outset of the campaign in July.



      As a countermeasure to these series of movements, Drummond had maintained a close watch on both Izard's force and any potential landing point on the north shore of Lake Erie. By October 10, he undertook to redeploy his troops so as to be able to react to several possible routes of American attack. He also ordered the construction of a blockhouse at the junction of Lyons Creek with the Chippawa River to prevent the Americans using that position to construct a bridge and outflank his defence lines (as they had nearly succeeded in doing in July). Notified of the advance of Izard and his army from Fort Erie by his Indian scouts on October 12, Drummond maintained contact with the American advance forces and withdrew his own advance troops to an earthwork constructed at the south end of the Chippawa bridge. Here he awaited the arrival of the Americans on the following day and was pleased to see them balk at the sight of his defences.



      Prevented from attacking directly across the Chippawa, Izard detached scouts upstream to locate crossing points that would allow him to cross and outflank the British positions. However, Drummond anticipated this probe and effectively blocked the Americans at every point. Unable to continue as he had planned, Izard initially attempted to entice the British into open battle by commencing an artillery bombardment of the defences lining the Chippawa Creek, which only resulted in some extended bouts of counter-battery fire between the two units, effectively divided by the wide and swift-flowing tributary of the Niagara. The following day (October 16th) Izard received word that Chauncey and his entire fleet had quit the lake for the season and had retired on Sackets Harbor, with no intention of emerging again that year. This finally gave Yeo the control of the lake and consequently Izard fully expected Drummond to receive substantial reinforcements within days, instead of weeks.

      Convinced that any further attempts to continue the campaign as had originally been intended would result in failure and possible disaster, Izard made a final attempt to outflank the Chippawa line by sending a strong force six miles inland from the Niagara to Cook's Mills on Lyon's Creek..."



      Here again, no direct mention is made of the rocket detachment being used as part of the artillery fire across the Chippawa River on the 15th. However, as in July, their lobbing trajectory would be of particular value in reaching targets protected from direct fire by the trees and underbrush and at a range not viable for effective musket fire. In addition, if the references are listed chronologically, then the Wyshoun's action for July would come between Oswego and Fort Erie, while this action would fit the timeline.



      I hope this fits the bill.

      Regards

      Richard Feltoe

























      ----- Original Message -----
      From: bdemajor1812
      To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, September 02, 2006 8:31 AM
      Subject: [WarOf1812] Re: Wysoons, Upper Canada?


      BTW.the man's name was William LEE. I suspect he was familiar with
      Rockets. The person asking supplied the additional information that,
      after the war, he became "Sgt. Lab Asst." in the Laboratory, making
      rockets.

      Granted it is possible any familiarity he had with those infernal
      machines is post-Lundy's, or he may have missed that battle for some
      reason, or that engagement just wasn't listed for some beaucratic
      reason.
      JE

      --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "LCpl_rm" <LCpl_RM@...> wrote:
      >
      > The man had to be attached to Capt Parry's RMA Company belonging to
      the 2nd Battalion. Must not have been in the Rocket section or the
      records might have mentioned Lundy's Lane also....





      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Kevin Windsor
      Actually there is a direct reference to them not being there. That is the morning returns from Ft Niagara from July 8th that has them all there minus one
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 2, 2006
      • 0 Attachment
        Actually there is a direct reference to them not being there. That is the
        morning returns from Ft Niagara from July 8th that has them all there minus
        one sergeant. They stay there until they cross over with Morrison and fight
        at Lundy's Lane.



        Kevin



        _____

        * On the morning of July 8,

        Note: there is no direct reference to the Royal Marine Artillery here but
        it's not impossible for the rockets to have been involved, as they would be
        particularly valuable for lobbing onto the bridging crews.





        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • bdemajor1812
        Thank you both. Great stuff, Richard, on a part of the War of 1812 that even many experts have failed to explore. Or at least write about in detail. I ll
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 3, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          Thank you both. Great stuff, Richard, on a part of the War of 1812
          that even many "experts" have failed to explore. Or at least write
          about in detail. I'll stick the info in the the appropriate files.

          At least now I know that I wasn't completely crazy thinking "Wysoons"
          sounded familiar. I had thought it might be one of those engagemnts
          after the raising of the Siege. However, neither a cursory look
          through what I had on the period, nor a glance at any maps I had
          provided anything. (OTOH, I may have been looking right at it and
          didn't see it.)

          I've passed your findings along to G.W.

          Thanks, again.
          Jason
        • bdemajor1812
          Well, G.W. was most impressed. Richard, he d like to post the information on a British Medal Forum. I thought it would be okay, but figured I should get your
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 4, 2006
          • 0 Attachment
            Well, G.W. was most impressed.

            Richard, he'd like to post the information on a British Medal Forum.
            I thought it would be okay, but figured I should get your okay forst.
            Due credit being given, of course.

            Jason
          • Richard Feltoe
            Jason, That s no problem at all. What s even nicer is that thanks to Kevin s positive allocation of the rocketeers at Niagara for the event on the 8th of July,
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 4, 2006
            • 0 Attachment
              Jason,
              That's no problem at all. What's even nicer is that thanks to Kevin's positive allocation of the rocketeers at Niagara for the event on the 8th of July, it eliminates them from the initial event. This makes it inevitable that the only action that could be referred to is the one in October!! It's nice to know that even a negative answer can be a positive addition to our researches.
              Regards
              Richard
              PS I'd be interested in getting hold of the web address for the site the gentleman will be posting on to see what kind of discussion it raises..


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Kevin Windsor
              I was doing a little more looking and the RMA doesn t show back at Ft Niagara until November. KW _____ From: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
              Message 6 of 6 , Sep 4, 2006
              • 0 Attachment
                I was doing a little more looking and the RMA doesn't show back at Ft
                Niagara until November.



                KW



                _____

                From: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com [mailto:WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                Of Richard Feltoe



                Jason,
                That's no problem at all. What's even nicer is that thanks to Kevin's
                positive allocation of the rocketeers at Niagara for the event on the 8th of
                July, it eliminates them from the initial event. This makes it inevitable
                that the only action that could be referred to is the one in October!! It's
                nice to know that even a negative answer can be a positive addition to our
                researches.
                Regards
                Richard
                PS I'd be interested in getting hold of the web address for the site the
                gentleman will be posting on to see what kind of discussion it raises..





                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.