The Royal Navy and British Army supported by Canadian regulars, Canadian militia, and First Peoples warriors, successfully defended Canada against repeated invasions.
The British Army provided a body of disciplined professionals that could stand in the line of battle, as well as specialist gunners, engineers, medical personnel, and staff officers.
The Battle of Queenston Heights, 13 October 1812
Print by John David Kelly, 1896 Library and Archives Canada, 1954-153-1
The Royal Navy
The Royal Navy secured the sea lanes that carried supplies to the colonies while, in the interior, its warships fought for control of the Great Lakes and Lake Champlain.
Colonial regulars, drawn from Britain and British subjects in the colonies, formed a vital part of the effort to repel American invasions of Canada.
Civilians Under Arms
Canadian civilians went to war in the militia and aboard privateers.
Military General Service Medal, 1793–1814 with Bar: Crysler’s Farm, Joseph Plamondon, Canadian Militia
Tilston Memorial Collection of Canadian Military Medals CWM 19750150-001
First Peoples Warriors
First Peoples served in the War of 1812 as independent allies of the Crown.
Caught up in War
Most Canadians were not directly affected by the war. For those who were, it could be a devastating experience.