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152   MILITARY HISTORY OF CANADA

being thus menaced by water and by land, hastily fled to Fort George. The British pressed after them, captured several boats, and obtained possession of a great part of their supplies and baggage. Through the success at Stoney Creek and the arrival of Yeo's fleet with provisions, arms, ammunition, and reinforcements, the situation in the western peninsula was more hopeful towards the close of June than it had been since the capture of Fort George.

The American army was now concentrated between Queenston and Newark, all their troops on the Canadian side having been withdrawn from the Upper Niagara after the reverse at Stoney Creek. But British irregular forces, especially the Indian bands, again became very active, worrying the Americans, keeping their outposts in a constant state of alarm, and killing or capturing the unwary. General Boyd, at this time the only American general officer in the district, was roused by the complaints of his forces to attempt something to check these raids. A British detachment under Major De Haren was at Twelve Mile Creek, ten miles from Fort George, the site of the present St. Catharines, while Lieutenant FitzGibbon was stationed at the stone-built homestead of one De Ceu, a mile and a half beyond Beaver Dams and about eighteen miles from the American headquarters, with forty-seven men of the 49th. Lieut.-Col. Bisshopp, in command of these advanced posts, was at the site of the present village of Jordan, about seven miles from both De Haren and FitzGibbon.

With Dearborn's permission, Boyd decided to strike simultaneously at FitzGibbon and De Haren and to ensure secrecy the few males left between Newark and St. David's were arrested and brought to the American camp. This precautionary measure made the people suspicious, and when an American patrol visited the home of James Secord, a United Empire Loyalist, a chance boast revealed the intention to attack FitzGibbon's force at De Ceu's. Secord had been crippled at the battle of Queenston


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