UPPER CANADIAN REBELLION, 1837–38 221
guarded, however, by a well organized force of militia, with the addition of six companies of regulars, and seven pieces of artillery. A force of regulars and militia, with a 9-pounder, advanced over the ice to Fighting Island, and tried to intercept the "Patriots" before they could beat a retreat. They were unsuccessful in this, as the invaders rapidly retired to the American shore, from which neutral ground they fired upon the Canadians, who had been ordered not to violate American territory. On the island were captured a field-piece, muskets, rifles, pistols, swords, and ammunition.
About the same time the "Patriots" on Pelee Island were attacked by Colonel Maitland with two guns, six companies of regulars and militia, and the Sandwich and St. Thomas Cavalry. An attempt was made here also to force the "Patriots" to fight, and with somewhat better success. Driven back into the woods, they fought there for some time, but finally managed to escape to the American shore, carrying about forty wounded in sleighs. A number were killed on both sides. The following day Colonel Prince had the satisfaction of capturing Sutherland and his aide-de-camp on the ice.
The summer of 1838 was spent by the "Patriots" in sporadic raids across the frontier, generally trivial in character, and effective only in so far as they kept the militia constantly on the qui vive. On the 19th of May, that picturesque pirate "Bill" Johnston, who styled him-self Commander-in-Chief of the Naval Forces and Flotilla of the "Patriot" Army, surprised the steamboat Sir Robert Peel among the Thousand Islands, turned the passengers and crew adrift, and burnt the vessel.
There remains one incident in the campaign of 1838 to chronicle, before the curtain goes down finally on the Rebellion in Upper Canada. On the 12th of November, a strong body of "Patriots" embarked at Oswego and Sackett's Harbour, with the object of attacking Prescott. Checked here, they crossed to Ogdensburg, and the following day managed to effect a landing at Windmill