1814 : U.S. Attacks Mackinac Island

August 4, 2018 all-day

After losing Fort Mackinaw to the British during the War of 1812, American forces decided to make a landing in the northwest bay of Mackinac Island and make a lodgment from which to annoy and starve out the British.

The United States invaded Mackinac Island August 4, 1814. The battle was fought on Michael Dousman’s farm, in a field, westward of the road leading from the Fort to British Landing. The Americans were unsuccessful. Fifteen U.S. soldiers were killed and fifty more were wounded. Major Holmes, second-in-command of the attacking force, was one of the men killed. Holmes was a Virginian and had been a friend of Thomas Jefferson. When the United States finally regained control of the island under the terms of the Treaty of Ghent, the name of Fort George was changed to Fort Holmes. The United States has held Mackinac Island ever since.

For more information see Mackinac Island: Historic Frontier, Vacation Resort, Timeless Wonderland by Pamela and Thomas M. Piljac.

Sources :

Michigan Historical Calendar, courtesy of the Clarke Historical Library at Central Michigan University.

Louise Knott Ahern, “How America lost – and regained – Mackinac Island in the War of 1812”, Lansing State Journal, July 30, 2014.

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