By Richard Arthur Preston
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Extra info for Defence of the Undefended Border: Planning for War in North America, 1867-1939
111 The reports had probably been released in an attempt to frighten Canadians into making military preparations; but they had an opposite effect in some quarters since they made clear that much of the west would not be defended at all, and that the heart of the upper province would be occupied or would become a battleground where delaying actions would be fought. Jervois probably expected that a war with the United States would be won on the Atlantic. He had recommended fortifications for West Indies bases; but it was not within his terms of reference to discuss the strategy of an offensive at sea.
92 But Fenwick Williams noted that it was the west that had voted for the Militia Bill and that that part also paid most of the taxes. 94 The British had in fact kept troops in the west partly as an encouragement to secure the passage of a Militia Bill. When the second bill became law it was felt that they could be withdrawn. Concentration of the British garrison was partially carried out in 1864 as a consequence 30 The Defence of the Undefended Border of the reduction of the garrison when a part of the reinforcements of 1862, the Guards battalions, was sent home.
Furthermore, the whole question of fortification was in a state of flux because of the development of new weapons. Finally, the scattering of defences piecemeal, which meant they could be mopped up by an enemy at will, was strategically unsound. -Col. W. F. D. 104 In his first report Jervois argued that, since they were building temporary defence works on the coast, the Americans must be expecting war soon. It took him only a few days to decide that, as command of the Great Lakes could not be maintained, Canada was not defensible west of Montreal.
Defence of the Undefended Border: Planning for War in North America, 1867-1939 by Richard Arthur Preston