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Vermont and the War of 1812

Commerce, Embargo and Smuggling

Secondary sources are listed first, followed by primary sources.

SECONDARY SOURCES

Alcock, Donald G. "The best defence is...smuggling? Vermonters during the War of 1812." Canadian Review of American Studies 25 (1995) 73-92.
Call number: Bailey/Howe Periodicals. Online access available to UVM affiliates and walk-ins.

Muller, H. Nicholas III. "Smuggling into Canada: How the Champlain Valley Defied Jefferson's Embargo." Vermont History 38 (1970): 5-21.
Muller's articles provide a good look at commerce and smuggling in the Champlain Valley from 1807 to 1815.
Call number: F46 .V55 (Special Collections)

Muller, H. Nicholas III. “A ‘Traitorous and Diabolical Traffic’: The Commerce of the Champlain-Richelieu Corridor during the War of 1812. Vermont History 44 (1976): 78-96.
Muller's articles provide a good look at commerce and smuggling in the Champlain Valley from 1807 to 1815.
Call number: F46 .V55 (Special Collections)

"Smuggling in 1813-1814; A Personal Reminiscence." Vermont History 38 (1970): 22-26.
Call number: F46 .V55 (Special Collections)

Stout, Neil R. “Excerpts from John Howe's Smuggler's Journal.” Vermont History 40 (1972): 262-270.
Call number: F46 .V55 (Special Collections)

PRIMARY SOURCES

Guy Catlin Papers.
The collection includes documents related to commerce on Lake Champlain 1808-1814.
Call number: Manuscripts (Special Collections)

Dean, Cyrus B. The Trial of Cyrus B. Dean, for the murder of Jonathan Ormsby and Asa Marsh. Burlington: printed by Samuel Mills, 1808.
Account of the Black Snake affair, in which three U.S. Customs officials were shot to death by Vermont smugglers.
Call number: HV6534 .B8 D4 (Special Collections, closed stacks).
Online access available to UVM affiliates and walk-ins.

Nathan Haswell Papers.
The collection includes correspondence, cargo manifests, expense accounts, and other papers relating to trade with Canada on Lake Champlain while Haswell was U.S. Customs Inspector for the Port of Burlington, Vt. (1806-09). Many of the items deal with smuggling on Lake Champlain and enforcement of Jefferson's Embargo. Papers from August-September 1808 pertain to the Black Snake smuggling case.
Paper finding aid available in Special Collections.
Call number: Manuscripts (Special Collections)

Haswell, Nathan. Memorandum on the Black Snake Affair, 1808.
Includes handwritten announcement of rewards for apprehension of smugglers Samuel Mott, William Nokes, Capt. Pease, and Slocum Clark (the announcement was published in the Vermont Centinel, August 5, 1808) and notes about Haswell's involvement in the Black Snake affair.
Call number: Vermont manuscript files (Special Collections)

Samuel Holley, in the Peake Family Papers.
A captain in the U.S. Eleventh Infantry Regiment, Champlain District, Holley’s papers consist of muster rolls for the company he raised in Champlain, New York to patrol for smugglers.
Finding aid
Call number: Manuscripts (Special Collections)

Manuscript map of the fort at Isle aux Noix, October 5, 1812, drawn by a British army deserter.
Call number: Special Collections Maps 612.812

Newspapers: Green Mountain Farmer (Bennington), Vermont Centinel (Burlington), Vermont Journal (Windsor), and the Washingtonian (Windsor)
Weekly newspapers
provide excellent coverage of the Embargo, the economy, political battles, and the war.
Call number: Online access available to UVM aaffiliates and walk-ins through America's Historical Newspapers. (Under "Place of Publication," select Vermont).

Parker, Wilmond W. "Letters of the War of 1812 in the Champlain Valley." Vermont Quarterly 12 (1944): 104-113.
Includes letters written to David H. Sumner of Hartland, VT about the impact of the Embargo on sales of Vermont products.
Call number: F46.V55 (Special Collections)

Reward for Smugglers

A reward for smugglers who killed officers trying to stop their boat, the Black Snake, was announced in the Vermont Centinel, August 5, 1808.