The Fenian Raids 1866 – 70

Canada GSM with Fenian Bars
Canadian General Service Medal and miniature with 1866 clasp. (Author’s collection)

Introduction

Just over fifty years had passed since British Canada had successfully fought off an invasion and defeated the American armed forces during the War of 1812.  Since the end of the war, following the Treaty of Ghent in 1814, the two countries had enjoyed a period of mutual trade and peace; albeit an uneasy peace.  In the mid 1800s Canadian newspapers carried stories of the Underground Railroad, a clandestine series of safe houses stretching from the United States to Canada with the purpose of providing slaves a means of reaching freedom in Canada.  Also of interest to the Canadians was news of the American Civil War that had started in 1861, nearly tearing the United States apart, until the end of hostilities in 1865. Continue reading “The Fenian Raids 1866 – 70”