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Battle of Crysler's Farm

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  • Battle of Crysler's Farm

    Oh boy !! I love this one.

    Nov. 11 -- the day Canadians repelled an American invasion
    Historians regret so few are aware that Canada was saved by 800 men 190 years ago

    Randy Boswell
    The Ottawa Citizen

    Wednesday, November 12, 2003

    The Battle of Crysler's Farm was fought on land that now lies at the bottom of the St.
    Lawrence Seaway.

    Two leading authorities on Canada's military history say citizens pausing this week to
    honour the veterans of 20th-century wars should also spare a thought for thousands of
    much older soldiers fading away even faster from our collective memory.

    The day Canada honours the sacrifices of the First and Second World War and Korea is
    also the anniversary of a battle that saved the country from an American invasion during
    the War of 1812. And as the First World War slips from living memory into pure history,
    how Canadians have marked the other Nov. 11 from our military heritage -- the 1813
    Battle of Crysler's Farm -- offers a sobering glimpse of the future of remembrance.

    "That battle spelled the end of the most serious American attempt to conquer Canada
    during the War of 1812," says Donald Graves, a military historian whose 1999 book Field
    of Glory is the definitive account of the fight at John and Nancy Crysler's farm near
    Cornwall. "The date, of course, is coincidental. But we tend to think about the poppy as
    being from 1918 on. Actually, a lot of soldiers have died over the centuries to preserve
    this country."

    The Battle of Crysler's Farm, fought exactly 190 years ago yesterday on the north shore
    of the St. Lawrence River between Kingston and Montreal, resulted in a crucial and
    resounding victory over 4,000 Americans by an Anglo-Canadian force of just 800. The
    defeat halted a planned American assault on Montreal, by far the largest and most
    important city in British North America at the time.

    Notably, the winning side included French- and English-Canadian militiamen who fought
    alongside Mohawk warriors and professional British soldiers under the direction of Lt.-Col.
    Joseph Morrison.

    The triumph of the underdog thanks to those key alliances -- French and English, mother
    country and colony, white man and First Nation -- makes the battle "particularly
    significant in terms of the mythology of Canada," says Mr. Graves.

    Despite being the site of a true turning point in Canadian history, the Crysler's Farm
    battlefield -- along with the graves of hundreds of soldiers from both sides of the fight --
    was flooded during the creation of the St. Lawrence Seaway in 1958. A small historical
    exhibit and a hill-top obelisk commemorating the battle stand near the site today, a
    tourism sidebar to a popular pioneer village built nearby.

    The destruction of the battlefield, Mr. Graves lamented in his book, has made it "difficult,
    if not impossible, to stand on that mound and get any sense of the ground as it was in

    But in 1913, decades before the inundation and just months before the start of the First
    World War, thousands gathered at the original Crysler's Farm to celebrate the centennial
    of Canada's great victory.

    The armistice that ended the First World War on Nov. 11, 1918, led to an annual
    ceremony celebrating victory and mourning the dead. The event has come to include
    remembrance of those who served in the Second World War and Korean War, but soldiers
    from earlier battles -- including the South African conflict of 1899-1902 -- are typically
    not recognized.

    By contrast, the U.S. Memorial Day holiday that originated after the Civil War was later
    broadened to honour soldiers from all wars throughout American history.

    "I think it's important that we remember, on a day like this, all those who have either
    served or died in service to the country. And that includes those that occurred even
    before we became a country," says Joe Geurts, director of the Canadian War Museum.

    "I certainly think back to all of the events prior to and into the 18th and 19th centuries.
    We should be conscious of those. We need to recognize that military events and
    activities have shaped the country."
    Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

  • #2
    "When I am abroad I always make it a rule never to criticize or attack the Government of my country. I make up for lost time when I am at home."

    Winston Churchill


    • #3

      Every dog has its day. :P


      • #4
        i learned something new today, today was not a wasted day.:thumb:


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