Erik Nitsche (Swiss, 1908 - 1998) "Fort York/Ontario" Signed lower right. Original Mixed Media painting on Illustration Board.
Provenance: Collection of James A. Helzer (1946-2008), Founder of Unicover Corporation.
This painting was originally published on the Fleetwood First Day Cover for the Canada 34c Fort York stamp issued June 28, 1985.
Canada's historic Fort York, located near present day Toronto, was the site of several important battles during the War of 1812. On the morning of April 27, 1813, the soldiers at the garrison and the townspeople of York were startled to see the sails of fifteen American warships in the harbor. The British forces at the fort were outnumbered three to one by the Americans and a furious battle was fought. During one part of the action, the powder magazine at the fort accidentally exploded, killing many men on both sides. Indeed, the large numberof British and American casualties made this one of the bloodiest battles in the War of 1812. Despite stiff resistance, the Americans were able to capture the fort and town, thereby gaining many badly needed supplies. The American forces returned to Fort York several months later and landed unopposed. However, the British soldiers had anticipated the Americans' return and hid many military supplies before the American forces could seize them. After the second American raid, Fort York was rebuilt and fortified to withstand direct attacks. However, no more battles were fought during the War of 1812. During the American Civil War, however, a heavy seven-gun battery was placed along the south wall of the fort to ward against fighting along the U.S./Canada border. Today, Fort York is maintained as a living museum and recreates for visitors the sights and sounds of a nineteenth century British garrison.
Image Size: 14 x 12 in.
Overall Size: 20 x 15 in.
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