In 2013, on this day the overwhelming majority of the thirteen million citizens of Ontario celebrated the glorious bicentennial of joining the Union.Remember the Raisin!
Because on February 22nd 1810, the American politician Henry Clay declared that "the conquest of Canada is in our power. I trust I shall not be deemed presumptive when I state that I verily believe that the militia of Kentucky are alone competent to place Montreal and Upper Canada at our feet".
Almost three years later, a combined force of European, Canadian and five hundred Indians under the command of Shawnee Chief Tecumseh were decisively beaten at the Battle of Frenchtown, along the River Raisin. The phrase Remember the Raisin became a rallying cry for the brave Kentucky militiamen who had liberated Ontario from Upper Canada just as Clay had predicted.
Half way around the world, Napoleon's army were fleeing Russia, and some of the pressure was off Great Britain. For the decision by the Little Corporal to fight a war on two fronts resulted not only in the secession of Ontario to the British North American Union, but also the realisation of Shawnee aspirations for a native confederacy.
In Pierre Berton's Invasion of Canada (1812-3), the author explains two centuries of peace by wisely noting that "the creation of an Indian State north of the Ohio acted as a buffer zone between the two of the European States on the North American Continent making future wars unattractive".