June 06, 2012

The War of 1812 in CanLit

For the next two years, many organizations on both sides of the border will be commemorating the bicentennial of the War of 1812, which lasted from 1812 to 1814.  A variety of events on both sides of the border will keep any student of history intrigued for months to come.  A small sampling of activities include:
Great sites for events include:
To provide some context for these activities and background information about events and individuals involved in the War of 1812, this book list should provide enough resources to introduce young readers to the "Forgotten War."


Laura: A Childhood Tale of Laura Secord
by Maxine Trottier
Illustrated by Karen Reczuch
North Winds Press
28 pp.
Ages 4-8

Laura Secord: A Story of Courage
by Janet Lunn
Illustrated by Maxwell Newhouse
32 pages
Ages 7-10

Laura Secord’s Brave Walk
by Connie Brummel Crook
Illustrated by June Lawson
Second Story Press
24 pp.
Ages 8-10


Acts of Courage: Laura Secord and the War of 1812
by Connie Brummel Crook
Pajama Press
261 pp.
Ages 10-14
Based on the true story of Laura Ingersoll Secord who undertook a dangerous journey to warn the British of an attack by the Americans.

Billy Green Saves the Day
by Ben Guyatt
157 pp.
When the War of 1812 breaks out, eighteen-year-old Billy Green takes it upon himself to warn the British of the massive American forces camped at Stoney Creek, the last stronghold of the British in Upper Canada.

The Bully Boys
by Eric Walters
227 pp.
Ages 9-13
Tom Roberts looks after the family farm while his father fights for the British army during the War of 1812.

A Call to Battle: War of 1812, Alexander MacKay, Upper Canada, 1812 (I Am Canada series)
by Gillian Chan
Scholastic Canada
200 pp.
Ages 10-14
Release date: September 01, 2012
Jealous when his father and older brother go off to fight the Americans attacking Niagara, thirteen-year-old Sandy sneaks away to Lundy's Lane to join the militia.  But, Sandy could not have imagined the brutality of war from which his father had tried to protect him.  And now, Sandy must find the means to survive.

Fire Ship
by Marianne Brandis
Porcupine's Quill
119 pp.
Ages 9-12
Describes the 1813 devastation of York by the Americans, from the point of view of Dan, a boy who has recently emigrated from the United States.

Jeremy's War 1812
by John Ibbotson
Kids Can Press
208 pp.
Ages 9-13
(Originally published in 1991 as 1812: Jeremy and the General)
Fifteen-year-old Jeremy joins the British army in 1812 and becomes the batsman (personal servant) to General Isaac Brock, fighting for his life and country through the War of 1812.

Legend of the Paymaster's Gold
by Jo Shawyer
136 pp.
Ages 10-14
Two hundred years after the War of 1812, twins Sam and Eadie learn that an army paymaster had mislaid a chest of gold during a skirmish near their new home in London, Ontario.  With a little help from a neighbour and other locals, the two's sleuthing educates them about the War of 1812.

The Loxleys and the War of 1812: Graphic Novel
by Alan Grant
Illustrated by Claude St. Aubin, Lovern Kindzierski and Todd Klein
Renegade Arts Entertainment
175 pp.
Ages 10+
The Loxley family is living on the Niagara Peninsula when the War of 1812 is declared, tearing the family apart. See the book trailer here.

The Other Elizabeth
by Karleen Bradford
Gage Publishing
160 pp.
Ages 10-13
After slipping into the past during a school visit to a historical site, Elizabeth wishes she'd paid better attention in class, particularly to the details regarding the Battle at Crysler's Farm during the War of 1812. 

A River Apart
by Robert Sutherland
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
184 pp.
Ages 10-13
When the War of 1812 separates friends, Jamie Shaw in Canada and siblings Jared and Leah Jackson across the St. Lawrence River in America, they fear that their choices to defend their homes and families could lead to even more tragedies.

Son of the Hounds
by Robert Sutherland
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
128 pp.
Ages 10-15
After Jimmy and his father are taken from their Niagara Peninsula farm by the Americans in 1813, he escapes, determined to fight them whatever way he can, including acting as a spy and a messenger for the famous Band of Bloody Boys.

Under a Shooting Star (Circle of Silver Chronicles)
by Maxine Trottier
Stoddart Kids/Fitzhenry & Whiteside
212 pp.
Ages 12-14
En route to delivering Kate and Anne Kimmerling to their home in America via Lake Erie, British-Oneidan Edward MacNeil's simple task becomes more complicated when a storm shipwrecks them on an island in the midst of conflict during the War of 1812. 

Whispers of War: The 1812 Diary of Susanna Merritt (Dear Canada series)
by Kit Pearson
Scholastic Canada
220 pp.
Ages 10-12
The story of the Merritt family's experiences on the Niagara Peninsula during the War of 1812.


Laura Secord (Remarkable Canadians series)
by Jennifer House
24 pp.

Ages 9-11

Laura Secord, Heroine of the War of 1812 (A Quest Biography Book)
by Peggy Dymond Leavey
224 pp.
May 2012

To Stand and Fight Together: Richard Pierpoint and the Coloured Corps of Upper Canada (A Canadians at War Book)
by Steve Pitt
144 pp.

Tecumseh: Shooting Star, Crouching Panther
by Jim Poling Sr.
192 pp.

Canada Under Attack (A Canadians at War Book)
by Jennifer Crump
216 pp.

Captain Fitz: FitzGibbon, Green Tiger of the War of 1812 (A Canadians at War Book)
by Enid Mallory
208 pp.

The Battles of the War of 1812: An Omnibus
by Pierre Berton
Fifth House/Fitzhenry & Whiteside
317 pp.
Ages 11-15
Originally published by McClelland & Stewart as separate titles in Pierre Berton's History for Young Canadians: The Battles of the War of 1812 including The Capture of Detroit, 1991; The Death of Isaac Brock, 1991; Revenge of the Tribes, 1991; Canada Under Siege, 1991; The Battle of Lake Erie, 1994; The Death of Tecumseh, 1994; and Attack on Montreal, 1995.

Canada on Fire: The War of 1812 (A Canadians at War Book) 
by Jennifer Crump
208 pp.

(occasionally available at libraries or at used book stores)
General Brock and Niagara Falls
by Samuel Hopkins Adams
Random House

The Good Soldier: The Story of Isaac Brock
by D. J. Goodspeed
Illustrated by Jack Ferguson
156 pp.

Laura's Choice: The Story of Laura Secord
by Connie Brummel Crook
Windflower Communications

by Gregory Sass
Porcupine's Quill
95 pp.
Ages 11-13

The Rowboat War, On the Great Lakes 1812-1814
by Fred Swayze
Illustrated by Paul Liberovsky
128 pp.

The Soldier's Son
by Terry Leeder
64 pp.

The Story of the War of 1812
by Colonel Red Reeder
Illustrated by Frederick T. Chapman
Duell, Sloan & Pearce

Treason at York
by John F. Hayes
Illustrated by Fred J. Finley
Copp Clark
314 pp.

Read and learn why author and great Canadian Pierre Berton wrote, in Flames Across the Border: 1813-1814 (Anchor Canada, 2001), that. . .

History gave the conflict short shrift; and yet for all its bunglings and idiocies, it helped determine the shape and nature of Canada.

• The War of 1812 •

n.b. Teachers and anyone who would like a pdf of this posting can download one here at scribd.

1 comment:

  1. What a great list! Thanks for putting it on scribd, that's going to be very helpful.