Meet The War of 1812 Militia Veteran

by  The Sheffield Museum of Rural Life (Canada)

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The longstanding legend that Upper Canada was saved from the American invasions of 1812 by its popular militia has failed to stand up to modern historical investigation. Militia duty was in fact avoided by most citizens of Upper Canada at all costs.

While many Upper Canadians did not care whether their government was British or American, a significant number were loyal British subjects who would have felt strongly about fighting the invasions.

In this session, students and teachers will interview a loyal militia veteran, who will discuss the war, daily life ca. 1812, and his views regarding the issues of that era.

The militia veteran is prepared to discuss:
-The hostile situation following the American Revolution and leading up to the War of 1812
-Causes of the War of 1812
-The militia of Upper Canada
-The American Invasion
-Life in Upper Canada during the war
-Britain's handling of the war and the peace treaty
-the aftermath of the War of 1812

For this session, students and teachers will interview Jacob Sipes, who really existed and fought in the War of 1812. Jacob Sipes was born on the frontier of New York and was living in Pennsylvania when the American Revolution started. He served in the famous Loyalist regiment, Butler's Rangers, and was resettled as a pioneer farmer in Upper Canada after the war. He and 2 of his sons served in the 2nd Regiment of York Militia during the war of 1812.

Jacob Sipes will have on hand various artifacts, including a British musket and farm tools. If desired by the teacher, the presenter may also teach the students a simple period dance, with live fiddle music.

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About This Program


By Request: $150.00
By Request Premium: $125.00


60 minutes

Target Audience

Education: Grade(s) 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Adult LearnersPublic Library: Library Patrons

Minimum participants:

no minimum

Maximum participants:

There is no maximum, but for optimum interactivity, we suggest no more than 40 students.

Primary Disciplines

Performing Arts, Social Studies/History

Program Delivery Mode

Videoconference – Webcam/desktop (Zoom, Google Meet, Cisco WebEx, GoToMeeting, Microsoft Teams, etc...)

Booking Information

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Receive this program and 9 more for one low price when you purchase the CILC Virtual Expeditions package. Learn more

For more information contact CILC at (507) 388-3672

Provider's Cancellation Policy

We are willing to make every effort possible to re-schedule when necessary, but sessions canceled with less than 24 hours notice will be billed in full, unless there are severe circumstances, such as illness, weather, and school closure.

About This Provider

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The Sheffield Museum of Rural Life (Canada)

Sheffield, Ontario

The Sheffield Museum of Rural Life preserves, studies, and teaches broad elements of rural heritage, with a specific focus on the history of the village of Sheffield, Ontario, and a wider focus on the medieval European background of North American rural culture.

Marty Pullin

Program Details


1. The presentations begins with the veteran introducing himself and briefly outlining his experiences during the War of 1812.
2. Students and teachers are invited to interview the 1812 veteran, asking any questions they wish.
3. If desired by the teacher, the presenter will teach the students a period dance, and will then play live music on the fiddle for them while they dance.
4. Students will have the opportunity to sing along with a patriotic Canadian song composed during the War of 1812
5. The remaining time is for final questions.


The participant will:
-interview a character from the past
-investigate militia life and participation in the War of 1812
-participate in a traditional dance
-observe the technology used by pioneer farmers
-develop a deeper understanding of the War of 1812

Standards Alignment

National Standards


NSS-USH.5-12.4 ERA 4: EXPANSION AND REFORM (1801-1861)
Understands United States territorial expansion between 1801 and 1861, and how it affected relations with external powers and Native Americans

State Standards

Canada - Ontario
History: Grade 7 – British North America

– outline the reasons for the early settlement
of English Canada (e.g., as an outcome of
the American Revolution);
– explain key characteristics of life in English
Canada from a variety of perspectives
(e.g., family life, economic and social life,
the growth and development of early institutions,
transportation, relationships with
First Nation peoples and French settlers);
– describe the major causes and personalities
of the War of 1812;
– describe the impact of the War of 1812 on
the development of Canada (e.g., defencerelated
construction, as in Fort Henry and
the Rideau Canal; the movement of the
capital to Bytown [Ottawa]; the emergence
of national pride; the building of roads
such as Kingston Road and Yonge Street;
the shipping industry in the Maritimes);
– identify the achievements and contributions