24 FOCUS - FEBRARY 2018 hreetimesinourhistory,the U.S. has tried to take over Canada by military means. The first was in 1812 when they burned York (now Toronto) to the ground. In retaliation, the British set fire to Washington. The war was a stalemate but the Americans retreated from Canada. Following Mackenzie’s failed up- rising in 1837 many of his followers fled to the United States where they reorganized themselves and gathered support for their cause in overthrow- ing British control in North America. They called themselves the Patriot Hunters and launched a number of attacks on border settlements from Windsor and Sarnia to Quebec. One of the major battles, the Battle of the Windmill, took place at Prescott, Upper Canada. This four-day bat- tle involved land and sea forces. Ultimately the invaders were again repelled. The last invasion of Canada by American forces is referred to as the Fenian Raids. At the end of the U.S. Civil War, tens of thousands of seasoned veterans were looking for a cause. They found it in support- ing a large number of Irishmen who were intent upon “rescuing British North America from the grasp of the British.” In 1866 they attacked what is now Canada on a number of fronts: Campobello New Brunswick; Hun- tingdon Quebec; Ridgeway Ontario and the Red River Valley in what is now Manitoba. Their failure to capture the British territory in North America was largely because they had not counted on the immense sense of loyalty that existed among the settlers, and the pride that Canadians took in their system of government. In anticipation of attacks from the Americans, local militia groups were organized across Canada. Reach Township (the western section of today’s Municipality of Scugog) was no exception. Prince Albert was the largest community in the township at that time. It was also the centre of so- cial and commercial activity. A local militia group was organized in Prince Albert in 1855. Dan Stone happily showing his latest acquisitions from Scugog’s past; a bugle and three medals earned by Scugog residents from the 1866 Fenian Raids. ...................... Please turn to page 26 Dan Stone, Medaling with History Dan Stone loves local history. That’s one reason he is the chair of the Scugog Heritage Committee. Dan likes to keep a close watch on websites such as eBay and kijiji for Scugog artifacts. A few weeks ago to his astonishment, he noticed that a military medal and bugle from Prince Albert in the 1860s was up for sale. These are artifacts from the Fenian Raids of 1866. T PHOTOS BY PAUL ARCULUS