About Wasaga under Siege
Lt. Miller Worsley of the British Royal Navy was in a tight situation and he knew it. From his position at the mouth of the Nottawasaga River looking out onto Georgian Bay, he could see the sails of three warships approaching. They were not flying the British Union Jack, but the Stars and Stripes of the infant republic to the south. It was August 13th, 1814 and Great Britain had been at war with the United States for two years. From the narrow strip of land on which Worsley lay, the Nottawasaga River curved behind him running almost parallel to the lakeshore for about four miles, a piece of waterfront, which to future generations would become a popular tourist destination. But now it was war and Worley’s main concern was the schooner Nancy which sat anchored in the river behind him, her masts concealed by the trees. She was his to command along with 21 seamen of the Royal Navy, 23 Indians and 9 French Canadian Voyageurs. This was Nottawasaga Landing an important British supply post. It was guarded only by one crudely built blockhouse on the inland side of the river and was the only means of defense which stood between the Americans and the Nancy, if she was to be discovered. The American ships Niagara, Tigress and Scorpion, under the command of Captain A. Sinclair had sailed to the mouth of the Nottawasaga River and dropped anchor. They believed the Nancy whom they were seeking, was still on route from Fort Michilimackinac. Perhaps the Nancy and her crew would escape the Americans after all...
Wasaga under Siege “A War of 1812 Experience” is an annual living history festival commemorating a War of 1812 battle between Americans, British and First Nations which resulted in an American victory with the sinking of the British schooner Nancy. This historic event eventually led to the modern day creation of Nancy Island Historic Site located in present day Wasaga Beach, Ontario. This three day heritage festival managed and operated entirely by volunteers’ features authentic War of 1812 tactics, historical battles, marine assault landings, artillery, and much more. A professional public address announcer narrates each battle event as a series of fictional and historical battle scenarios are presented to the public. The Grand Encampment at Nancy Island Historic Site features over 300 re-enactors opening their living history encampments to the public along with 19th century merchants, artisans, demonstrators, entertainers, live period musical entertainment and much more. Wasaga under Siege “A War of 1812 Experience” allows the local community the opportunity to come together and commemorate its rich local history and in turn creates long-lasting sustainable community bonds through the promotion and preservation of local history.