Cooks Mills
Lyons Creek Rd, Welland Ontario Canada, L3B 5N4

This date marks the 200th anniversary of the last battle fought on Canadian soil during the War of 1812. At Cook's Mills there is a monument to the soldiers that fought there and a peace garden. A re-enactment is being planned for the weekend along with a ceremony to the fallen soldiers.

Attempting to deprive the British of their chief source of flour, Izard sent a brigade of about 1,200 men, consisting of the 5th, 14th, 15th and 16th U.S. Infantry with some detachments of riflemen and U.S. Dragoons under Brigadier General Daniel Bissell, to take Cooks Mills on Lyon's Creek in Crowland township. In response, Drummond dispatched about 750 men (the 6th Regiment, the Glengarry Light Infantry and the flank companies of the 104th Regiment, with a 6-pounder gun and a Congreve rocket detachment) under Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Myers to reconnoitre the American force.

On the morning of 19 October, Myers came into contact with the American picket just east of the mills. A half hour fight ensued, but the Americans could not be lured from the cover of the woods. Observing American soldiers moving through the trees on his right, Myers feared his force was being out-manoeuvred. He ordered a retreat, and the Americans promptly pursued his column nearly to their camp at the Lyon's Creek settlement. Returning to Cooks Mills, the Americans destroyed all the grain and flour found in the mill, and the next day they withdrew to their camp at Black Creek.

The battle showed the effects of Izard's well trained troops. Despite this minor victory, it became apparent that Drummond was not going to move from his defences. Izard also heard that British ships dominated Lake Ontario, and any American advance risked being cut off by a landing in its rear. He withdrew to Fort Erie. The British loss of 200 bushels of wheat was offset when several American provision boats crossed the Niagara unaware of Izard's retreat and fell into British hands.

Izard later destroyed Fort Erie and returned to the U.S. side of the river. Drummond moved to the remains of the fort but chose not to rebuild it, and the fighting along the Niagara Frontier came to an end.

The site of the battle was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1921.


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