Sir John Cox borne
Commissions Colonels Macdonell and Fraser to Raise Two Battalions of
Glengarry "Lads" for Service in Lower Canada.—List of Officers ob "Lancaster
Glengarry Highlanders."—Charlottesburg Regiment Stationed at St. Philippe,
and Lancaster Regiment at Napierville.—Comments of the Montreal "Herald" on
their Appearance on their Return.— General Clitherow Testifies to their
Service and Efficiency.—Temporarily Relieved from Further Service.
The service of the Glengarry
Militia were soon to be required however.
The Commander-in-Chief of the
Forces, Sir John Colborne, on. the 15th January, iS-^8, wrote to Colonel
Donald Greenfield Macdonell as follows:
Montreal, 15th January, 1838.
"My Dear Sir
"Our affairs in Upper Canada
as regards the conduct of the United States Government and people require
that great exertion should be made to place ourselves speedily in a strong
Do you think that you and
Colonel Fraser could raise two battalions of Glengarry lads for five or six
months' general service?
If you are of opinion that
two corps of six hundred men could be formed in a few weeks I authorize you
to proceed in organizing them immediately.
I remain, dear sir,"
Yours very faithfully,
J. Colborne. Colonel
Macdonell, commanding Glengarry Militia.
A similar letter was on the
same day addressed to Col. Fraser. The Lancaster Regiment of Glengarry
Highlanders, raised under the general orders of 8th January, 1838, and in
pursuance of the above letter of Sir John Colborne, was officered as
Major—Alexander Macdonell (Aberchalder).
Donald Macdonell (Buidh),
George Macdonell (Greenfield),
I am unable to give a list of
the officers of the Charlottenburg Regiment, which was commanded by
Lieutenant-Colonel Alexander Fraser. His grandson most kindly placed at my
disposal all the papers connected with the corps, which have been most
carefully preserved, hut unfortunately they do not contain the names of the
officers, nor was Judge Pringle, who, owing to his relation to Colonel
Fraser's family, was in even better position to have procured information
respecting the Regiment, able to procure a list when giving those of other
Regiments of Glengarry and Stormont.
On the 31st January, 1838,
Colonel Gore addressed Colonel Fraser as follows:
Montreal, January 31st, 1838.
Sir,—I am directed by His
Excellency the Lieutenant General Commanding to, inform you, that, from the
reports which have reached him of the preparations of invasion from the
lines that your services may be required, and that if you can march your
Regiment to Montreal, Sir John will immediately have arms served out to you
and you will be quartered in the L'Acadie district.
I have, etc.,
Chas. Gore, Deputy Quarter
To Colonel Fraser,
Commanding First Glengarry
Colonel Fraser's (Charlottenburgh)
Regiment was quartered at St. Philippe, in the County of Laprairie. When
Colonel Macdonell's (Lancaster) Regiment went down I am unable to ascertain.
It was stationed at Napierville, and both remained in Lower Canada during
The Charlottenburg Regiment
returned in March, the Montreal "Herald" of the 20th of that month
remarking, "One Regiment of Glengarry Highlanders, under command of
Lieutenant Colonel Fraser, arrived in town yesterday from St. Philippe, and
created quite a sensation as they marched through our streets to the martial
music of the spirit-stirring bagpipes. They mustered about five hundred
strong, and were generally considered as fine and efficient a body of
volunteers as could be produced in the Province, such men as would ' do or
die' for their Queen and country. They are en route for their homes, after
having displayed their willingness to defend with their lives the glorious
institutions of their Fatherland from the encroachment of internal traitors
or foreign enemies."
Colonel Macdonell's Regiment
remained until May. The "Herald" of the 1st May stated, "This day the
Lancaster Regiment of Glengarry Highlanders, under command of their Colonel.
Donald Greenfield Macdonell, marched into town en route to Upper Canada from
Napierville, where they were quartered since their arrival in this Province
during the winter. They are a fine body of men, and presented a very
military appearance." On the 2nd May they were inspected by the Commanding
Officer of the District of Montreal, who directed the following letter to be
addressed to Colonel Macdonell;
Montreal, May 2nd, 1838.
Sir,—I am directed by the
Major-General commanding the District to request that you will accept and
convey to the officers, noncommissioned officers and privates of the
Lancaster Glengarry Highlanders the expression of his best thanks for the
soidier-like appearance that they presented at the inspection yesterday.
Major General Clitherow directs me to assure you that he will afford him
great pleasure to be enabled to report mort favourably to His Excellency the
Commander of the Forces on the appearance and efficiency of this fine corps,
and he doubts not that should their active services at any future period be
required, the Lancaster Glengarry Highlanders will maintain the high
reputation which they have now so deservedly acquired
I have, &c.,
James John Hamilton, Major
and Major of Brigade.
At the inspection of the
Charlottenburg Regiment by Sir John Colborne and his staff, one of the men,
Lewis Grant, who stood 6 feet 7 inches, carried a brass three-pound
field-piece on his shoulder when the Regiment marched past.
Having returned to Upper
Canada they were disembodied in accordance with the following letter :
Montreal, nth May, 1838.
Sir,—With reference to my
letter addressed to you on the and instant, I have this day received the
direction of the Commander of the Forces to inform you that the large
reinforcements which have arrived at Quebec from England enable His
Excellency to dispense with the services of the corps which you have so
zealously brought forward in time of danger and alarm for the defence of the
Province, which measure becomes the more desirable as, from the advanced
period of the season, many of the men must be anxious to return to theii
homes. His Excellency is therefore pleased to direct that the Lancaster
Glengarry Highlanders under your command shall be disembodied on the 15th
instant, receiving pay, however, to the end of the month.
His Excellency has been
pleased to grant permission for the men of your corps to retain the arms,
etc., which they have in their possession, as well as a certain proportion
of ammunition. (After instructions as to the care to be taken of the arms
and ammunition the letter proceeds:)
The Commander of the Forces
requests that the officers, noncommissioned officers and men of the
Lancaster Glengarry Highlanders will accept his sincere thanks for the
important service which they have rendered, and he is firmly persuaded that
should the Provinces be ever again in danger of revolt or attack from the
lawless banditti from which it has lately been rescued, that they will be
the first to come forward in their defence.
His Excellency also grants
permission to the Loyal Volunteer Corps to retain their clothing, which
must, however, be preserved with the greatest care, as in the event of their
services being required on any future occasion no further supply will take
The officers and men of the
disbanded Loyal Volunteers are to remain upon the list according to the
designation of their respective corps, as unpaid volunteer corps.
I have, etc.,
W. P. Christie, Provincial
A letter similar in effect
was addressed to Colonel Fraser, under date 19th April, the Charlottenburg
Regiment was released from further service.