A Signal Victory: The Lake Erie Campaign, 1812-1813

Front Cover
Naval Institute Press, Mar 1, 2000 - Fiction - 264 pages
1 Review
The Battle of Lake Erie on 10 September 1813 is considered by many to be the most important naval confrontation of the War of 1812. Made famous by the American fleet commander Oliver Hazard Perry's comment, "We have met the enemy and they are ours," the battle marked the U.S. Navy's first successful fleet action and was one of the rare occasions when the Royal Navy surrendered an entire squadron. This book draws on British, Canadian, and American documents to offer a totally impartial analysis of all sides of the struggle to control the lake. New diagrams of the battle are included that reflect the authors' modification of traditional positions of various vessels. The book also evaluates the strategic background and tactical conduct of the British and the Americans and the command leadership exercised by Perry and his British opponent, Commander Robert H. Barclay. Not since James Fenimore Cooper's 1843 book on the subject has the battle been examined in such detail, and not since Alfred Thayer Mahan's 1905 study of the war has there been such a significant reinterpretation of the engagement. First published in hardcover in 1997, the book is the winner of the North American Society for Oceanic History's John Lyman Book Award.

What people are saying - Write a review

Review: A Signal Victory: The Lake Erie Campaign, 1812-1813

User Review  - Darrel Martin - Goodreads

Ever wonder about the second war with Britain? Here is a very in-depth account of the war of 1812. A must read for anyone fascinated with US history. Read full review


Preparing for the 1813 Campaign
Building and Manning the Fleets
Preliminaries to Combat
The Battle of Lake Erie
British Squadron Armament
Glossary of Nautical Terms
Bibliographic Essay

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2000)

David Curtis Skaggs is a well-known authority on the War of 1812. He is professor emeritus of history at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. A retired colonel in the Army Reserves, Skaggs has written and edited numerous books including A Signal Victory: The Lake Erie Campaign, 1812 1813 and coedited with William Jeffrey Welsh War on the Great Lakes: Essays Commemorating the 175th Anniversary of the Battle of Lake Erie (The Kent State University Press, 1991).

Altoff is the chief park ranger and historian at Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial in South Bass Island, Ohio.

Bibliographic information