“Canada’s victory in the War of 1812 was a pivotal point in the development of our great country,” said Prime Minister Harper. “During that war, the French, English and Aboriginal peoples took up arms together to achieve a common objective, to resist the American invasion. The ties our ancestors forged laid the foundations of a truly pan-Canadian identity and made our Confederation possible, a country of great diversity with two national languages.”
In commemoration of the War of 1812, the Prime Minister announced the awarding of Battle Honours that will commemorate the contribution of regiments who participated in successful engagements in the defence of Canada during the War of 1812.
While in Saint-Paul-de-l'Île-aux-Noix, The Prime Minister announced that first, the Theatre Honour “DEFENCE OF CANADA – 1812-1815 – DÉFENSE DU CANADA”, will be awarded to current regiments of the Canadian Army in Ontario, Quebec, and Atlantic Canada that perpetuate or commemorate 1812 units that participated in a successful engagement against an armed enemy during the war.
In keeping with Canada’s policy of military perpetuation adopted after the First World War, this honour will be able to be placed on the Colours of the regiment to honour the soldiers who are key part of Canadian history. This honour, which recognizes the deeds and sacrifices made by these soldiers, will allow the current unit to act as the safe-keeper of their heritage.
To further recognize the participation of units in battles that were particularly pivotal for the defence of Canada, those regiments linked to six decisive engagements of the War of 1812 will also be able to place these very specific, new Canadianbattle honours on their regimental colours. These battles are: Niagara, Queenston, Maumee, Châteauguay and Crysler’s Farm and, as previously announced, Detroit.
The regiments of the Canadian Army that are being recognized through these honours are:
On the occasion of the dedication of the monument to Major General Sir Isaac Brock at Queenston Heights in 1853, William Hamilton Merritt, who had served as a young militia Lieutenant at that battle, requested of his audience that the importance of that sacrifice not be lost on the rising generation.
It is in that same spirit that the Government of Canada has honoured regiments of the Canadian Army that are linked to the War of 1812. These proud regiments will now carry on this illustrious history with pride and dedication for the generations to come.