Lords of the Lake:
The Naval War on Lake Ontario, 1812–1814

Robert Malcomson

Of all the struggles that took place along the border between the United States and the British provinces of Canada during the War of 1812, the one that lasted the longest was the crucial battle for control of Lake ­Ontario. Because the armies on both sides depended on it for transportation and supply, control of the lake was a key element in American invasion attempts and the defensive actions of the British. Lords of the Lake tells the story of the contest from the days of the incompetent Provincial Marine to the launch of the 104-gun ship St.Lawrence, larger than Nelson’s Victory.

Robert Malcomson’s absorbing narrative is readable, vivid, yet impeccable in its scholarship. As one reviewer said, “Here is history both detailed and dramatic.” Winner of the John Lyman Prize of the North American Association for Ocean History.

Robert Malcomson’s books Lords of the Lake: The Naval War on Lake Ontario, 1812-1814; Warships of the Great Lakes: 1754-1834; and Capital in Flames: The American Attack on York, 1813 all won the John Lyman Book Award for Canadian maritime or naval history. With his brother, he co-wrote HMS Detroit: The Battle for Lake Erie. To the great sorrow of his family, friends and historians of the War of 1812, Robert Malcomson died in 2009.