The United States, Great Britain, and British North America from the Revolution to the Establishment of Peace after the War of 1812

By A. L. Burt | Go to book overview
Save to active project

CHAPTER V
THE DISPUTED ST. CROIX

THE international dispute over what was the St. Croix River, defined by the peace treaty as the eastern boundary of the United States, began on this side of the Atlantic before the treaty was signed on the other. It was precipitated by one who knew the country as few knew it and who had a unique interest in it. He was John Allan, a Scot who had grown up in Nova Scotia to be such a good New Englander that he early ran off to join the Revolution and then bent all his energies to stirring up the red men, New England, and the Continental Congress against the British in his old province. Getting little response beyond words of encouragement, a colonel's commission, and a congressional appointment as superintendent of Indians, he undertook almost singlehanded to use the red men to tear away from Nova Scotia the St. John Valley and the north shore of the Bay of Fundy. Having failed to win this larger territory during the war, he was eager to gain as much of it as the peace terms seemed to allow, and his quick eye soon caught an opportunity.

On August 11, 1783, Allan wrote his first epistle to the people of St. Andrews warning them that they were settling on the American side of the new international border. His challenge rested on the Massachusetts belief that the St. Croix was the river then, and still, known as the Magaguadavic, which falls into Passamaquoddy Bay on the east side; whereas the town of St. Andrews was being founded on the assumption that the St. Croix was the stream then commonly called the Schoodic, emptying into Passamaquoddy Bay on its upper west side, if indeed it was not the Cobscook, which flows into the bay of the same name far down the western side of Passamaquoddy Bay.

Behind the international dispute which thus began lay a dormant inter- colonial dispute of pre-Revolutionary days. It arose at the end of the Seven Years' War, when the St. Croix was first named as the boundary of Nova Scotia in a royal commission to a governor of that province. In 1764. Governor Bernard of Massachusetts, the adjoining colony, sent a surveyor named John Mitchel1 to survey Passamaquoddy Bay and to determine the position of the dividing river. He reported that the Indians identified the Magaguadavic as the St. Croix, but he also observed that

____________________
1
This was the way he spelled his name. Because it was commonly printed " Mitchell," a confusion arose in the nineteenth century, when the surveyor was erroneously identified as John Mitchell, the cartographer who prepared the map of 1755 for the British Board of Trade.

-71-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The United States, Great Britain, and British North America from the Revolution to the Establishment of Peace after the War of 1812
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 450

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?