Happy New Year Niagara - January 1, 1814

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Happy New Year Niagara - January 1, 1814

Post by pud » Thu Dec 27, 2007 8:27 pm

By January of 1814 the village of Niagara was in a terrible state as a result of constantly being the focus of battle and troop movement but also as a result of the American enemy abusing it, its residents, and a majority of the houses, barns and sheds that comprised of the village. General Drummond was so moved by the village's predicament that he assisted a local charity organization, monetarily, in rebuilding it. The following letter from General Drummond dated at Queenston, 1st January, 1814, describes it best:

Source: Documentary History of the Campaign on the Niagara Frontier in 1814 (Part II). Fort Erie; Edited for the Lundy's Lane Historical Society (Welland, Printed at the Tribune Office), date/year unknown. Captain E. Cruikshank. P.p. 322-323.

"SIR,-When shortly after my being appointed to the command of this Province, when visiting the Niagara Frontier, I was shocked beyond measure at beholding the desolation that had been spread over the once flourishing village of Niagara by an atrocious and sacrilegious enemy. Every feeling of just resentment was exerted against a Government that could sanction such an act so unprovoked and inhuman, and when I reflected that the innocent and unfortunate inhabitants were driven from their houses to undergo all the severities of a most inclement winter, retributive justice demanded of me a speedy retaliation on the opposite shore of America, and you are not unacquainted with the results of my determination.

As the principal sharer in the immense stores that have been captured in the important fortress of Niagara, I beg leave, Sir, to subscribe my portion of the prize money towards relieving the distresses of those persons who inhabited the late village of Niagara as well as the Frontier in its vicinity, and I place every reliance on the benevolent and patriotic exertions of yourself and other gentlemen, members of the Loyal and Patriotic Society of Upper Canada, for discovering such of them as stand in the most immediate need of assistance, in order that it may with as little delay as possible be administered to them, after the distribution of prize money shall have been made.”

“The treasurer then laid before the board a letter which he had received from Lieutenant-Colonel Foster, enclosing the sum of two hundred pounds, provincial currency, being the amount of the annual subscription of His Honor Lieutenant-General Drummond, and one hundred and sixty pounds of like currency, being his proportion of the first division of the Niagara prize money, the whole of which he has been pleased to dedicate to the service of the institution.”

“KINGSTON, 4th December, 1814.
SIR,-I have received the truly gratifying commands of Lieutenant-General Drummond to remit to you the accompanying sum of three hundred and sixty pounds, Halifax currency, which His Honor requests that you will have the goodness to place to the credit of the Loyal and Patriotic Fund of Upper Canada, two hundred pounds thereof being the amount of His Honor's annual subscription, and one hundred and sixty that of his proportion of the first dividend of the Niagara prize money.

The Lieutenant-General regrets that this latter sum should have fallen so very far short of his expectations, but he trusts the next dividend will afford him a share better worth the acceptance of the society, for the truly laudable and benevolent purposes of so patriotic and charitable an institution.

I have the honor to be, Sir,
Your most obedient, humble servant,
C. Foster,
Military Secretary."

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