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Vermont and the War of 1812

This guide idenitifies resources about Vermont and the War of 1812.

Primary Sources

Aikens, Asa. War of 1812 Letters.
Seven letters addressed to Captain Asa Aikin (Aikens) of Windsor, Vermont.  Topics include recruitment, desertion, and the treatment of General Alexander Macomb.
Call number: Vermont manuscript files (Special Collections)

Brattleborough Reporter. Reporter office: Brattleborough, Saturday Sept. 17, 1814; glorious news ... glorious naval victory: "we have met the enemy and they are ours" ... [Brattleboro, Vt. : s.n., 1814].
Broadside announces Macdonough's victory on the Lake Champlain at the Battle of Plattsburgh Bay.
Call number: E355.2 .B72 1814 (Special Collections, small broadsides)

Colonel Isaac Clark Papers.
Clark (1742-1822) of Castleton, Vermont, led the Vermont troops during the War of 1812. The Colonel Isaac Clark Papers consist primarily of personal and military correspondence from 1812 to 1821. Clark's letters relate to troop activity in the Champlain Valley, while his son Isaac Jr.'s letters provide some details of recruiting efforts and troop life in the northern outposts. The papers also contain materials pertaining to political issues before and during the War of 1812.
Finding aid
Call number: Manuscripts (Special Collections)

Henley, Robert. Log of the United States Sloop of War Surprise (Eagle) on Lake Champlain, Sun., Aug 21, 1814 to Thurs., Sept. 29, 1814.
Photocopy. Washington (D.C.) : National Archives General Reference Branch Record Group 45.
Call number: E356.P7 H46 1814a (Special Collections)

Macdonough, Thomas. Ledger.
Brief entries relating to building the U.S. fleet at Vergennes and the Battle of Lake Champlain as well as miscellaneous naval matters 1812-1814.
Call number: Small bound manuscripts (Special Collections)

Macdonough, Thomas. Letter to Colonel Elisha Jenkins, March 20, 1814.
Macdonough requests sails for a Lake Champlain sloop.
Call number: Vermont manuscript files (Special Collections)

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 affiliates and walk-ins through America's Historical Newspapers.

Horace Sawyer Papers.
Letters and comments concerning Sawyer’s naval career as a midshipman. Sawyer was captured by the British near Isle aux Noix in 1813. His papers include a military commission signed by James Madison; on the back, Sawyer recounted his experiences as a prisoner.
Paper finding aid available in Special Collections.
Call number: Manuscripts (Special Collections)

Secondary Sources

Ansley, Norman. The Brief Battle at Fort Cassin, Vermont (May 14, 1814). Severna Park, Md.: Forensic Research, Inc., 2003.
Call number: E356.C37 A57 2003 (Special Collections)

Ansley, Norman. Vergennes, Vermont and the War of 1812. Severna Park, Md.: Brooke Keefer Limited Editions, 1999.
Includes an afterword about the archaeological legacy of the War of 1812.
Call number: QUARTO E356.P7 A57 1999 (Special Collections)

Bellico, Russell P. Sails and Steam in the Mountains: A Maritime and Military History of Lake George and Lake Champlain. Fleishmanns, N.Y.: Purple Mountain Press, 2001.
See Chapter 9, “War of 1812: Plattsburgh Bay,” which includes a section on archaeological studies.
Call number: F127.G3 B48 2001 (Howe 2nd floor, Special Collections)

Bird, Harrison. Navies in the Mountains: The Battles on the Waters of Lake Champlain and Lake George 1609-1814. New York: Oxford University Press, 1962.
Good source for details on the Battle of Plattsburgh.
Call number: E182. B5 (Howe 2nd floor, Special Collections)

Clark, Byron. A List of Pensioners of the War of 1812. Burlington, VT, Research Publication Company, 1904.
“With an Appendix containing names of Volunteers for the defence of Plattsburgh from Vermont towns, a description of the battle from contemporaneous sources, the official statement of losses...”
Call number: E359.4 .C62 (Special Collections)

Crisman, Kevin J. The Eagle: An American Brig on Lake Champlain during the War of 1812. Shelburne, Vt.: New England Press, 1987.
Good background account about naval activity on the lake during the war. Detailed account of an underwater archaeological study of a submerged American warship.
Call number: E356 .P7 C75 1987 (Special Collections)

Everest, Alan S. The War of 1812 in the Champlain Valley. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1981.
Concentrates on the New York side of the lake, but discusses Vermont's role inthe war as well.
Call number: E355.1 .C48 E92 (Special Collections)

Hamilton, Edward P. “The Battle of Plattsburgh.” Vermont History 31 (1963): 94-105.
Call number: F46 .V55 (Special Collections)

Lewis, Dennis. British Naval Activity on Lake Champlain during the War of 1812. Plattsburgh, N.Y: Clinton County Historical Association, 1994.
Call number: E355.1 .C48 L49 1994 (Special Collections)

Lossing, Benson J. The Pictorial Field-Book of the War of 1812. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1868.
Detailed study includes numerous illustrations and maps.
Call number: E354 .L87 (Special Collections)

New York (State). Plattsburgh Centenary Commission. The Battle of Plattsburgh, What Historians Say About It. Albany, N. Y., J. B. Lyon Company, 1914.
Call number: E356 .P7 N56 (Special Collections)

Shipwrecks: War of 1812 Wrecks. Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.
Describes the fate of the Lake Champlain naval squadron and summarizes archaeological investigations of four wrecks. Includes a bibliography.