The aroostook war. The Aroostook War — Forgotten History 2022-10-09
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The Aroostook War, also known as the "Pork and Beans War," was a boundary dispute between the United States and British North America (present-day Canada) in the late 1830s. The dispute arose over the boundary between the two countries in the region of Aroostook County, Maine, which was an area rich in timber and valuable for its strategic location.
At the time, the boundary between the United States and British North America was not clearly defined, and both sides claimed ownership of the disputed territory. The United States claimed the boundary was the St. Croix River, while the British claimed it was the Madawaska River. This disagreement led to tensions between the two countries and the deployment of military forces to the region.
The dispute began in 1838, when British and American lumberjacks began to clash in the disputed territory. The situation escalated when the governor of Maine, Edward Kent, sent state militia to the area to protect American interests. The British responded by sending their own troops to the region, and the two sides began to fortify their positions.
The conflict was eventually resolved through diplomacy, with both sides agreeing to a temporary armistice and the appointment of a commission to settle the boundary dispute. The commission, which was made up of representatives from both the United States and British North America, met in the summer of 1839 and eventually agreed on a boundary line that largely followed the St. Croix River. This settlement ended the Aroostook War without any shots being fired.
The Aroostook War was a significant event in the history of the United States and Canada, as it was one of the first major border disputes between the two countries. It also demonstrated the importance of diplomacy in resolving disputes and the need for clear and well-defined boundaries between nations. Overall, the Aroostook War was a minor conflict that had the potential to escalate into a much larger and more dangerous conflict, but was ultimately resolved peacefully through negotiation and diplomacy.
The Aroostook War
Andrews Herald of May 19th promised a report of the trail in their next paper and recommends to its American readers to suspend their opinions on the subject until the whole merits of the case are known to them. He became the most influential member of the survey by arguing that the Schoodic was the St. The United States offered to ask Maine to accept the Saint John River as the boundary, which the British rejected. The walls were built from cedar timbers, some 19 inches square, on a shale rock foundation. Neither side was quite happy.
No results found for this meaning. John River to the North while the British wanted it to be the Penobscot River that was further South, the compromise was the St. The episode has been viewed by historians with a good deal of merriment. On January 10, 1831 the King proposed a compromise along a boundary that is quite similar to the actual border that exists today. This was a strategic communication line for British colonies in Canada as it was the only direct road between them and the outside world, and was also the only available route during the winter when the St.
A complex story of friction, greed, land grabs, and rivalry, this border dispute which nearly resulted in war was eventually settled by the Ashburton-Webster Treaty of 1842 and told by Campbell in The Aroostook War of 1839. At some point, General Winfield Scott was sent to the area with the power to negotiate a settlement. During 1826-1830, provincial timber interests also settled the west bank of the Saint John river and its tributaries, and British families built homes in Woodstock, Tobique, and Grand Falls, New Brunswick. In 1776 the American colonies declared their independence and the British had to go farther North into what is now Canada. American settlement of Maine still part of Massachusetts was sparse so there were no complaints of the British settlements in the disputed territory. At around midnight between 15-18 lumbermen armed with rifles and bayonets entered the house and arrested the five Americans staying there.
They sent their case to King William of the Netherlands who could not exactly be called the best man for the job. The two-story blockhouse measured 23. A little-known episode in North America's history, the 1839 Aroostook War was an undeclared war with no actual fighting. In 1913, James L. The problem was solved in 1826 when Maine, Massachusetts, and New Brunswick all agreed to stop selling permits for the territory. The posse moved into the Aroostook region and did not see any action for the first few days, only finding some abandoned logging equipment.
Fearing a negotiated border would negatively affect their claim for the disputed territory, Maine occupied the Aroostook River valley in early 1839, British regulars, New Brunswick militia, and Maine militia were then deployed in the dead of winter, as the kindling was laid for a third major Anglo-American conflagration. Please report examples to be edited or not to be displayed. . Meanwhile, British interest was primarily military: preserving an overland supply route from Halifax, though the St. Army, and had worked on keeping peace along the U. The Federal government accepted this explanation and requested that the prisoners be released. The Maine people will make it for you, fast and hot enough; I know them.
Maine Joins the Fight On March 5, 1820 Maine split from Massachusetts and became a state, making the disputed territory mostly their problem and they wanted control of it. A much larger event broke out in November and December of 1837 when both upper and lower Canada erupted in rebellion. British Colonial authorities subsequently arrested Baker, fined him £25, and held him in jail until he paid his fine. As a concession by the British the U. The first major settlers were Americans who had come to the region for the timber and good soil, but the British realized they could not be trusted in the case of another war with the U. The fort was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1969 and declared a National Historic Landmark in 1973.
This time he threatened the British by telling them that Maine would just send someone else to do it, but with a force sufficient in protecting and supporting them. Lawrence watershed to Great Britain. This was technically true since there was no formal agreement and the status quo clause in the Treaty of Ghent was never clearly defined. John River, giving the British not just the disputed territory but additional land as well. More military forts and outposts were built to help repel any invasion from the United States, though this never occurred. In 1825 Maine once again sent land agents to check on the territory and were again angered to find that residents were cutting illegal timber, at least in their eyes.
McIntire believed he had done his job and planned on dispersing the posse, only retaining those he would need to move the timber they had seized. In 1794 the Jay Treaty was signed which remedied several problems between the United States and Britain. Maine also sent two land agents into the area to perform a census and to confirm land grants that had been given to settlers. A new land agent was appointed and he was sent to reinforce the original posse with a force of between 400-500 men. His name is indissolubly interwoven with the boundary controversy. Rude or colloquial translations are usually marked in red or orange.
Instead of replying to the letter Governor Dunlap declared that Maine had been invaded and ordered the militia to mobilize for the defense of the state. Both American and New Brunswick Terming the Americans "political prisoners," Sir John Harvey sent correspondence to Washington, DC, that he lacked the authority to act on the arrests without instructions from London, which he awaited. Both sides were armed. Soon, the civil posse garrison was replaced by U. John River while the British believed that the Penobscot watershed was the boundary.
Unsurprisingly the British countered that it was the westernmost river, the Schoodic. Those in North America realized that many of their soldiers would likely be recalled to Europe to fight, and began making improvements that would help local militias defend the Grand Communications Route should a war with America break out while the regulars were away. The men attempted to form up in private but word soon got out and New Brunswick dispatched messengers to recall lumbermen in the area. It was not long before they were on the offensive and pushed into the states, reaching Washington and burning down the Whitehouse while also conquering territory in Massachusetts Maine and declaring that the Penobscot River was their new boundary. The Americans were quickly defeated and their deaths angered many throughout Maine. Augusta, ME: Kennebec Journal Print.