On February 7, 1815, what would be known as the last battle on the Chesapeake Bay of the War of 1812 took place off the shores of Dorchester County – The Battle of the Ice Mound.
The British schooner, “Dauntless,” was offshore near James Island (now Taylor’s Island) having sent her crew to raid livestock on nearby farms. Overnight, ice from the Chesapeake Bay pushed the Dauntless into the Little Choptank River, forcing her against ice that was attached to the shore and forming a mound of ice in between the ship and shore.
This winter weather and mound proved advantageous to Private Joseph Stewart, of the 48th Maryland Regiment, and the local militia. Private Stewart and his men were able to make their way across the packed ice and commenced firing on the ship and its 19 crew members (using the mound of ice as cover). After two hours, the “Dauntless” crew surrendered.