British Approach to Hampton
Following the British defeat at Craney Island on 22 June 1813, Adm. Sir John B. Warren sought revenge and ordered Adm. Sir George Cockburn and Gen. Sir Sidney Beckwith to attack Hampton. This port town was defended by Maj. Stapleton Crutchfield 436 militiamen and a 7-gun water battery. During the evening of 24 June Beckwith 2,400 men landed near here at Indian Creek. The next day, Beckwith troops engaged Crutchfield command on the road to Hampton. Capt. Servant company of riflemen slowed the British advance until Beckwith could use artillery to force Servant withdrawal. Hampton was then open to British occupation.
The War of 1812
Impressment of Americans into British service and the violation of American ships were among the causes of America War of 1812 with the British, which lasted until 1815. Beginning in 1813, Virginians suffered from a British naval blockade of the Chesapeake Bay and from British troops plundering the countryside by the Bay and along the James, Rappahannock, and Potomac rivers. The Virginia militia deflected a British attempt to take Norfolk in 1813, and engaged British forces throughout the war. By the end of the war, more than 2000 enslaved African Americans in Virginia had gained their freedom aboard British ships.