Historic march re-enactors come to South Dundas

In the winter of 1813, Upper Canada was facing a deadly threat.

American armies were poised on the border, preparing to invade as soon as the first hint of spring appeared. For the fledging country of Canada to survive, every soldier, every militia man the British could muster, was desperately needed to bolster defences along the vulnerable St. Lawrence river.

In February of 1813, the New Brunswick 104th Regiment of Foot responded to the call. 

To make it to Upper Canada in time to thwart the expected spring invasion, the Regiment marched more than 1,100 kilometres from Fredericton, New Brunswick, to Kingston, Ontario.

Throughout Eastern Ontario, dedicated marchers recreating the historic journey on foot of the New Brunswick 104th Regiment, have been welcomed as they follow the  Regiment’s original route under many of the same conditions. 

 Sunday, April 7, 2013, the 104th Regiment of Foot marchers will pass by Upper Canada Village, pausing briefly around 4 p.m. for a photo, with the Crysler’s Farm memorial in the background. They will then proceed to the Morrisburg Legion, branch #48, for a reception, at approximately 5 p.m. 

Renowned historian Donald E. Graves, and Michael Berk, co-chair of the Spencerville Mill’s Heritage Fair and the St. Lawrence War of 1812 Bicentennial Alliance staffer (who is personally marching the final 220 kilometres of the journey), are expected to attend the Morrisburg reception.

The public is invited to come out and welcome the marchers as they recreate the route taken by the 104th Regiment of Foot,  passing through South Dundas, with stops at branch #48 on April 7, and again, briefly, at branch #370, the Iroquois Legion, around noon, on Monday, April 8.

Modern Canadian military regiments have taken part in the re-enactment of the historic march since its departure. The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada, the 4th Battalion of the Royal 22e Régiment, and the Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders are represented.

The SD&G Highlanders will take the march through Ontario, passing through Morrisburg and Iroquois, meeting up en route with the Brockville Rifles and the Princess of Wales’ Own Regiment.

The concluding ceremonies of the great march will be held at Point Frederick, the Royal Military College, in Kingston, on April 12. 

On April 7, 2013, South Dundas has the opportunity to celebrate the bicentennial of that heroic and dangerous march, and to honour the men who made it.

For additional information contact info@celebrate1812.ca or visit www.celebrate1812.ca/104thMarch 

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