USA HISTORY YOU'VE PROBABLY NEVER KNOWN
GOING THROUGH this fascinating "Canada - A People's History" is
teaching me some history I had never studied, hence had no idea
about. You may find this to be the case with this part of
Canada/USA history I'll now relate, as it was from the diaries of
men who took part in it.
By 1775 the Province of Quebec had come to an agreement with
Britain. As that Province was founded by the French, they would
retain their language, their laws, their culture, and their Roman
Catholic religion, and have peace. In return they would honor the
and give acknowledgement to Britain and her king. So all was
going nicely in Quebec. Not so in the 13 British colonies to the
south - there it was unrest - rebellion against Britain. Thomas
Walker was a man who hated British rule - be becomes a militant
republican - he seeds sedition and invites Quebec to join the
revolution against Britain. His writings showing that Quebec can
either be their friend or their enemy. Indeed some do join the
The Roman Catholic church is the strongest to speak out in Quebec
about NOT joining the USA rebels, for she knows the USA
Protestant rebels would never accept the Roman Catholic religion.
But still we know that many in Quebec did pray for the USA rebels
April 1775 - Lexington, Massachusetts, the shots ring out -
Britain and the American English are at war - it is revolution!
George Washington wants Quebec so Britain cannot have a spring-
board from there to fly at the 13 colonies. Further more, he
wants all of Canada.
Canadians have uncertain loyalties. But most in Quebec want no
part of a war, that they see as a family fight between
Englishmen. The people in general will not take up arms.
Governor Carlton faces reality - he must defend a Province with
only a small force of British red-coats. He knows he has little
Summer 1775. Washington sends TWO armies to invade Quebec. One
force of 1,000 men up the river from New York to Montreal, led by
Montgomery. The second army, to be the real surprise attack,
1,200 men up through the wilds of Maine, to Quebec city.
Benedict Arnold will lead that army. He's done business in Quebec
and Thomas Walker was once his partner. He does not know the
wilds of Maine, even the Indians would not go that route. Walker
has already told Arnold that Quebec is ripe for the picking.
Arnold is 6 weeks away from Quebec city - Montgomery has started
his invasion on Quebec Province. He is taking it bit by bit. By
middle September he is on the door-step of Montreal. The British
Fort is the only wall left. Arnold surrounds it - cuts off its
supply routes - they bring up the siege guns. All there is in the
Fort is a few hundred British red-coats and a handful of militia.
There are 80 women and children in the Fort. They hold out for 7
weeks. During the last night the American English pound the Fort
with assault guns for 8 hours. By morning the Fort knows it is
the end. On November 3rd the Fort surrenders with honor. Montreal
is now defenceless. Montgomery's army takes Montreal without a
fight. Governor Carlton escapes at the last minute to Quebec
city. He finds out he will have to defend it, not from one army,
but from two armies.
But Arnold's army, coming through Maine is a WRECK! George
Washington's map was 15 years old and was short by 200 miles to
Quebec city. Nearly all of Arnold's boats have been destroyed -
food and supplies swept away in freezing water of the rivers.
Survivors had to resort to eating their candles and shaving
cream, even the leather from their shoes and boots. They are weak
- when they get to look across at Quebec city they are less than
700 men, from the 1,200 that started the journey.
Arnold still wants a fight. On November 15th he marches his men
to the outside of the city and cries out he wants a fight. He
writes about it in an ultimatum - Carlton burns it without
reading it. But he knows Montgomery is also coming from Montreal.
He admits in his writing he does not give much hope in saving
Quebec city from the American English.
Quebec city faces its 4th siege in its history. But on the Plains
of Abraham, Montgomery and Arnold have their own problems - they
know that half of their army are to be released by January 1st as
their enlistment term expires. Time is running out.
A deserter tells Carlton that they will be attacked one night
when it is snowing or stormy. For a week the weather is clear. On
New Years Eve the weather turns. The plan - take lower Quebec
city first, then rush the Fortress.
Montgomery leads about 300 at 2 a.m. - all that stands in his way
are 30 militia and a few seamen. The Canadians are outnumbered 10
to 1. But they have an advantage - in the blinding snow-storm
Montgomery does not see them! The Canadians fire one single
volley - Montgomery and most of his officers are shot dead. The
rest of the American English flee back to their camp!
Arnold knows nothing as to what has happened to Montgomery and
his men. He leads a force of about 700, attacking the other side
of Quebec city. They face a blistering gun-fire-storm from atop
the city walls. Arnold is shot in the leg. His men fight their
way to where they were supposed to meet Montgomery and his army,
but there is no one there to meet them.
Carlton knows the situation for the American English - he sends
his militia around to the back of Arnold's army to cut off their
retreat. Arnold's men wait, but in waiting they loose the battle!
Arnold writes that the Canadians had better fire power and
equipment for such a tight space. Arnold has to surrender! 400
American English surrender - 80 are dead - the snow is so deep
many bodies will not be found until Spring time.
Now all of then Canada unites - the Fortress at Quebec city held!
When Spring came so did many more British troops.
The American English invasion of Canada, that started nearly a
year previous, was over - it had failed!! The Governor's Ball
that year celebrated a great victory, over the American English.
But before the USA revolution was over, Canada was again to face
an invasion by Americans - not her armies, but her refugees!
The British loyalists would be driven out of the New England
States by those who had formed a new nation ..... ah but that's
for another lesson of history.
Interesting history indeed. The American English tried again in
1812-1814 to take what is called lower Canada (look at the
boundary line of Canada and the USA from the Great Lakes) - and
failed once more!!
An army that defeated the greatest military force on earth, that
was to form the mighty United States of America, could not defeat
the army of the British in Canada. Why? Oh, so simple when you
know WHO the people of the British Commonwealth and the USA are -
the people of Joseph - the people of the tribes of Ephraim and
Manasseh from the peoples of the House of Israel. God had already
decided the boundary lines for those people as they would inherit
the best parts of the wealth of the world in the last days. It
was not in the books for the American Manassehites to have what
we today call lower Canada.
What a shame so much blood had to be spilled between brother
peoples in inheriting those lands. But such is history.
Ah ..... you didn't know that little bit of North American
history, well you now know the rest of the story as Paul Harvey
would say. Remember to tell your children or grand-children,
after all the Britain Commonwealth and the USA are indeed
Keith Hunt (March 2010)