The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Kingston Gazette (Kingston, ON), Aug. 10, 1813

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p.1 Kingston, August 5th - (The following account of the Enemy's late visit to York, is Published by Authority.)

At eleven o'clock on Saturday morning, the 31st ult. the Enemy's Fleet, consisting of 12 sail, were seen standing for the harbor - about half past three the Pike, the Madison and Oneida came to anchor in the offing - the Schooners continuing to pass up the harbor with their sweeps - about 4 o'clock three of them came too abreast of the town, and the remainder near the Garrison, and immediately afterwards several boats full of troops landed at the Garrison, and proceeded from thence to the town, of which they took possession.

They then opened the Gaol, liberating the prisoners, & taking three Soldiers confined for felony. They then went to the Hospitals and paroled the few men that could not be removed. They next entered the Stores of Major Allan and Mr. St. George, and seized the contents, consisting chiefly of Flour, the same being private property. Between 11 and 12 o'clock on Saturday night, the three Schooners which had anchored abreast of the town towed out, and it was supposed that the fleet would have sailed immediately - but information having been given by some traitors, whose names it is hoped will be discovered, that valuable Stores had been sent up the River Don, the Schooners went up the harbor on Sunday morning, the troops were again landed, and 3 armed boats proceeded up the Don in search of the Stores. In consequence however, of the very meritorious exertions of a few young men, amongst whom were two by the name of Platter, everything was conveyed away, and the boats sunk before the Enemy reached the place. Two or three boats containing trifling articles, which had been hid in the marsh, were discovered and taken, but in their main object the Enemy was completely disappointed. - As soon as the armed boats had returned, the troops went on board, and by sunset both Sailors and Soldiers had evacuated the town, the Barracks, Wood Yard, and Store Houses on Gibraltar Point, having been first set on fire by them, and at daylight on the following morning the Enemy's fleet sailed.

The troops which were landed were acting as Marines, and appeared to be all they had on board the fleet, and did not exceed 240 men. They were under the command of Commodore Chauncey and Lt. Col. Scott, an unexchanged prisoner of war on his parole, both of whom landed with the troops. The town upon the arrival of the enemy was totally defenceless, the Militia were still on parole, and the principal Gentlemen had retired from an apprehension of being treated with the same severity used towards several of the inhabitants near Fort George, who had been made prisoners and sent to the United States. Lt. Col. Battersby with the troops under his command, had upon the first appearance of the enemy's fleet off York on the 29th, proceeded from thence with his guns to Burlington Heights, where he had joined Major Maule, and concentrated his force on the following Evening. The enemy had during the course of the day landed from the fleet 300 men near Brant's house, with an intention of storming the Heights, which they hoped to carry, but finding Major Maule well prepared to receive them, and being informed of Lieut. Col. Battersby's march, they reembarked and stood away for York.

The plunder obtained by the enemy upon this predatory expedition has been indeed trifling, and the loss has altogether fallen upon individuals, the Public Stores of every description having been removed; and the only prisoners made by them being confined felons and invalids in Hospital. - We are sorry to be obliged to observe that there is too much reason to believe that the Enemy was furnished with exact information respecting the movements of our troops, and of the state of York and of the position at Burlington Heights from traitors amongst ourselves, from men too who are holding Public Situations in the Country, and whose names we trust, when correctly known, will lead to their conviction and punishment, and hold them up to the Just detestation of every loyal subject of his Majesty.

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Aug. 10, 1813
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Rick Neilson
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Kingston Gazette (Kingston, ON), Aug. 10, 1813