The Pig War: The Most Perfect War in History

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History Press, 2009 - History - 223 pages
With a plot to grace any comic opera, the 1859-72 'Pig War' broke out when an American living on a quietly disputed small island in the Gulf of Georgia shot a British pig he found rooting up his garden produce. The authorities on nearby Vancouver Island and the military leadership of the adjacent Washington Territory both felt they had good reasons to escalate a trivial incident into a full-blown war between the United States and Great Britain. Soon, American soldiers found themselves looking down the barrels of the Royal Navy cannon. Whilst both the British and the Americans continued to threaten and bluster, Royal Marines and US soldiers settled down on the island to a round of social events, including sports days, combined dinners and even summer balls. Despite the outbreak of the American Civil War, and British intervention on the Confederate side, the hot-heads were restrained and, eventually, it was decided that the problem should become one of the earliest examples of international arbitration. The German Kaiser was brought in and - from the British point of view - came to the wrong decision. Set against the framework of US attempts to gain control of the whole North American continent, The Pig War is a highly readable account of a little-known episode in Anglo-American history.

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The Island Settles Down
Attempt to Take Canada

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About the author (2009)

E. C. Coleman is the author of The 1766 Navy List, The Royal Navy and Polar Exploration, Scraps: The Wit of the Victorians, and The Travels of Sir John Mandeville.

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