History comes alive at Chippawa battle site


By Alison Langley, Niagara Falls Review

Thursday, July 5, 2012 8:14:52 EDT PM


History came alive in Chippawa on Thursday night.

The Niagara Parks Commission and the Chippawa Royal Canadian Legion Br. 396 honoured those who served at the Battle of Chippawa with a ceremony at the Niagara Parkway site.

The 7 p.m. memorial included a presentation by city historian Sherman Zavitz as well as musket demonstrations.

The Battle of Chippawa, fought on July 5, 1814, was the opening engagement of the Niagara campaign of 1814, the longest and bloodiest military operation of the War of 1812.

The battle took place on the fields of a farm near the banks of the Niagara River.

It began when a British, Canadian and aboriginal force of about 2,000 men attacked an invading American army of about 3,500 men.

The fighting started in the morning and lasted until the early evening. When it was over, the attackers were defeated.

The battle claimed the lives of 200 American, British, Canadian and native warriors, most of whom are thought to be buried at the battle site.

It marked the first time American regulars faced British regulars in a military action fought in the open. Many historians say the battle was the birthplace of the modern U.S. army.

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