War of 1812: Battle of York


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Battle of York

Battle of York – April 27, 1813

The Battle of York, which would later be called the Battle of Toronto, was classified as a Pyrrhic American victory. A Pyrrhic victory is a victory that comes at a great cost, such as a large number of casualties or loss of supplies.

American forces under the combined command of Henry Dearborn, Isaac Chauncy and Zebulon Pike landed in York and immediately set out to attack Fort York. The British force of 400 soldiers under the command Roger Sheaffe had no chance to make a stand. Instead, they blew up hundreds of barrels of gunpowder in the fort and set fire to the HMS Isaac Brock (a ship). The explosion killed Zebulon Pike and caused the deaths of many soldiers.

After the battle, American soldiers burned much of York. Although the Americans captured important British supplies meant for use in future battles, York was abandoned five days after the battle.