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On July 17, 1812, British Captain Charles Roberts, 306 soldiers, and 700 Native Americans, confronted a small garrison of 60 American soldiers under the command of Porter Hanks. Hanks quickly realized he was badly outnumbered, and agreed to surrender Fort Mackinac, located on an island in between Lake Huron and Lake Michigan, with no bloodshed. Parks was charged with cowardice for surrendering without a fight, although he was killed in the Siege of Detroit awaiting court martial. The British took over the fort and renamed it Fort George.
The Americans Attempt to Win Back the Fort
Two years later, in 1814, American forces attempted to regain the fort. In part of a larger plan to gain control over the Great Lakes and destroy the fur-trade alliance between the British and Native Americans. American forces under the command of Andrew Forbes attacked the fort. The attack, however, was unsuccessful as the British had built a stockade at the highest point on the island. The British would ultimately control the fort until after the war.