This undated typescript was probably written for the Perth
Historical and Antiquarian Society, about 1900. It was obviously
used as the major source for the article Back From The
Wars -- What The Soldiers Got, published in the Perth Courier,
December 28, 1916,
Examples of land acreage notations used in this article are:
- W. ½ 18 in 9th. Burgess North = West ½ Lot 18, 9th Concession of
Burgess North Township.
- 12 in 11th. Drummond = Lot 12 in 11th Concession of Drummond
Please see Notes at the bottom for corrections of
some data submitted by Rita Meistrell:
Perth Settlement being formed soon after the termination of the war
with the United States and at a time when a great reduction in the army
took place, a great many discharged soldiers were induced to settle here.
Two thirds of the original population were military men. The privates
settled upon their land but most of the officers built houses in the
village, and tended not a little by the politeness of their manners to
render a residence here desirable.
Canada at this tine was entirely under Military Rule. The office
similar to that held by our Governor General, was held by the General who
was Commander in Chief of all His Majesty's forces in the Province of
Upper Canada, Lower Canada, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, and in the
Islands of Cape Breton, Newfoundland and the Bermudas. All the officials
were officers or commanders of military posts.
Perth Settlement was under a military Superintendent until 1822; after
that date it had Municipal Government. The last Superintendent, D.
Davirne, was universally hated, and he was obliged to leave the
country on account of his dishonesty.
The day that the rations were served to the soldiers who had taken up
land, was a day of high feasting and fighting. The Island used to be
called "Little Dublin" in that day, The officers' mess was held in Mr,
Adamson's hotel, "The Red House" in the upper story which was in
one room. Dinner parties among the officers were numerous and the wine
flowed freely. The best remembered was the one given by Colonel
Powell for the Duke of Richmond, in an old frame house opposite Mr.
McMaster's; this house was torn down about fifteen years ago. The
Duke was a heavy drinker and the day after the dinner party died on his
way to Bytown, the cause of his death being attributed to hydrophobia from
the bite of a tame fox, but people who know said it was from too much
These officers were a pretty peppery lot and several duels were fought,
one between a Doctor and a well known Captain. The Captain was invited to
some entertainment at the Doctor's but his wife was ignored. On the
Captain's mentioning this to the Doctor some hot words ensued, a challenge
given and accepted, and the Doctor was shot in the arm. may mention here
that the Captain gave the Minister who married him a silk hat as a wedding
fee. The minister objected to taking money for performing the ceremony for
any one, saying that it was selling the privileges of the gospel, but he
could accept presents. At a very early date most of the marriages were
performed by Magistrates.
The officers' wives dressed beautifully, and even if they did not go to
the numerous dinners, had quite a gay time socially, and adapted
themselves to their surroundings as only soldiers' wives can. The ladies
would bring their babies, leaving them in one of the dressing-rooms,
when they were down stairs dancing.
Perth and the surrounding settlement is commonly supposed to have been
settled first by Scotchmen, who were followed afterwards by a liberal
sprinkling of English and Irish. Now as a matter of fact, with the
exception of the Scotch Line settlers, who were not discharged soldiers,
about one-half as far as I can judge, of the original settlers were
There were more members of the De Watteville and De Mourons regiments
disbanded here, than of all the others. Of course a great many of them
only stayed a short tine, perhaps a year or two. They were dissatisfied
with farming life and did not like D. Davirne.
These regiments were composed of Swiss, Poles, Belgians, Italians, etc.
They had been taken prisoners by the British in the Napoleon wars, and
enlisted to fight with the British in the war with the United States. They
must also have been promised farms at the close of the war, as the
consideration mentioned in the land grant was "Terms of enlistment." The
Colonel of the De Wattevilles was Lord De Watteville.
I cannot find that any of the officers settled hereabouts, if they did,
they did not stay more than a year. The farms along the Christie Lake road
were taken up mostly by De Watteville men, and a number settled in Burgess
and Montague. They brought their own chaplain. Rev. Able La Mottie,
or LaMott, a Frenchman, who got 800 acres of land. He settled in
Burgess in 1817, and a clump of old plum trees near Adam's Lake in 7 in
7th. mark the site where his house stood. He died in Perth in a log house
where Mrs. Canton's grocery now is.
A few names of those who remained on their land, and whose descendants
live there yet, are:
- Adam (now Adams) Peter, Private, German, served 2
yrs. 100 days, drew his farm 31st August 1816, S.W. ½ 7 in 8th.
- Kupper Henry (sometimes Cooper) Private, German,
served 3 yrs. 4 days, got E. ½ 16 in 8th. Burgess North., June 22,
- Muklor (Mackler) John, Private, a Swiss, served 5
yrs. 28 days, got W. ½ 18 in 9th. Burgess North.
- Hoffsmith (Smith) George, Private, unmarried, Swiss,
served 6 yrs. 47 days, got E. ½ 5 in 3rd. Bathurst in 1816.
- Stellar, Andreas, Private, Swiss, drew W. ½ 6 in 3rd.
- Hollinger Jacob, Sergeant, unmarried, served 7 yrs. 21
days, German, got W. ½ l in 6th. Drummond.
- Penet, Louis, Private, unmarried, served 7 yrs. 21 days,
German, got E. ½ 22 in 6th. Bathurst.
- Publow John, Private, unmarried, served 7 yrs. 21 days,
native of Flanders, W. ½ 26 in 7th. Bathurst.
- Dick, Jacob, Private, Swiss, W. ½ 26 in 7th. Bathurst.
- Sioisley, (Ciceley) Jacob, Private, Holland, N.E. ½
18 in 7th. Bathurst.
- Klein, Pierre, Sergeant, married, served 6 yrs. 278 days,
Flanders, got 25 in 6th. Bathurst.
Some of these foreigners married Highland women whom they met when they
were at Fort Henry. One of the D'Wattevilles, a Frenchman, married a woman
who could not speak anything but Gaelic; they must have made a dialect for
themselves. When he was quite an old man he came into a law office in
Perth to sign some papers, he could not tell his wife's name; all the name
he knew was "wife."
- Dr. Alexander Thom, a Scotchman, was granted 800 acres in
Bathurst, Sherbrooke, Elmsley and the farm N.E. ½ 1 in 1st. Drummond.
(Grantville). He had quite a high position, being along with Wm.
Stewart and Hervey Grassitt, Surgeon to the Forces. He
had quite a large pension and was probably about the richest of any of
the officers settled in Perth.
- Of the Royal Artillery there were four companies of
the Fourth Battalion, and one of the
Seventh, serving in Canada, Major General Glasgow
- Moon, James, Gunner, married, served 1 yr. 8 days, Ireland,
drew E. ½ 16 in 1st. Drummond, in 1817.
- Cullen, Richard, married served 16 yrs. 298 days, Ireland,
drew E. ½ 16 in 1st. Drummond in 1817.
- Hogg, David, married, Scotch, 22 in 2nd. Drummond in 1816.
- Kumear [sic -- should be Kinnear], David,
Lieutenant, married, Irish, got 18 in 11th. Drummond in 1820. Lived in
a small stone house between Greenly's corners and the toll gate. Left
about 1828 after a hurricane had taken off the roof of his house, and
otherwise destroyed it. This house was for years afterwards known as
the "haunted house."
- 104th. Regiment. Colonel Martin Hunter.
- Playfair, Andrew W., Lieutenant, married, 2 sons under 12
and 1 daughter under 12, England, drew 22 in 12th. Bathurst, 36 in
10th. Drummond and 21 in 7th. Lansdowne, on June 30, 1817.
- Avery, Joseph, Corporal, Married, Ireland, got E. ½ 14 in
6th. Bathurst, January 30th 1818, authorised to receive land by
Commission of Forces.
- 76th. Regiment. Charles Chowne, Colonel.
- Balderson, John, Sergeant, married, 1 daughter under 12,
served 7 yrs. 73 days, England, drew S.W. ½ in 8th. Drummond.
- Sache, Charles H. 1 son under 12, England, drew 1 in 9th.
and 1 in 10th. Drummond, in 1819.
- 7th. Fulilliers. (Royal)
- Prook[sic], William, Staff Sergeant, married, 1 son under
12, England, got 11 in 9th. Burgess North, formerly held by a
D'Watteville man for 1 year.
- 41st. Regiment.
- Noonan, Dennis, married, 5 children, Ireland, served 10
years, 182 days, got ½ 18 in 3rd. Bathurst.
- DeWitt, Zephaiz, native of Pennsylvania, Private, served 16
yrs. drew 23 in 4th. Bastard.
- 49th. Regiment. Hertfordshire.
- Fraser, Alexander, Captain, married, 29th. Oct. 1816, N. E.
½ 16 in 2nd. Drummond, served 4 yrs.
- Royal Navy.
- In 1813 there were two headquarters for Royal Navy, one on Lake
Ontario, Commodore, Sir James Lucas, and apparently the one on
Lake Champlain was smaller, as it had only a Captain, Daniel
Pring, in charge.
- Consitt, Thomas, Lieutenant, married 7 children, England,
drew N.E. ½ 21 in 1st. Bathurst, in 1817. Drew other lots going to
Lansdowne, but exchanged them for lots in Burgess. He fought on
Nelson's ship at the Battle of the Nile.
- Bell, Christopher James, Lieutenant, Block 4 in Lot 27 in
2nd. Drummond, in 1822. Lost one of his legs in battle of Plattsburg.
- 89th. Regiment. (2nd. Battalion.) In 1813 the Earl
of Lindsay was Colonel.
- Budd, Moses, Private, England, drew N.E. ½ 1 in 5th.
Drummond, in 1816, on his second return to settlement when he
performed his settlement duties.
- Swan, Samuel, Private, England, unmarried, April 1816, got
19 in 2nd. Bathurst.
- 103rd. Regiment. Colonel Hon. Sir G.L. Cole, in
- Graham, Henry, Lieutenant, married, Ireland, drew 600
acres. Was afterwards taken into the Senate.
- Powell, James H., Major, married, 3 children, Ireland, drew
1000 acres around Perth in 1818. Father of Sheriff Powell.
- Young, James, Sergeant, married, 3 children, Scotland, N.
E. ½ 24 in 8th. Bathurst.
- 57th. Regiment.
- Herbert, Samuel, England, served 5 yrs. 183 days, got 11 in
- Naval Artillery.
- Tysick, Joseph, married, England, 2 children, served 4 yrs.
Got N.E. ½ 8 in 5th. Bathurst, in 1817, which had been formerly
granted to one of Glengarry Fencibles.
- 3rd. Royal Guards.
- Wrathall, Lupton, Private, married, 3 children, served 18
yrs. 92 days, England, N.E. ½ 13 in 5th. Drummond, in 1817.
- 90th. Regiment. (Perthshire)
- Maitland, James, Sergeant, Scotland, married, drew land in
Montague in 1815 and 1817.
- 6th. Regiment.
- Leaver, Peter, Private, served 7 yrs. 107 days, England,
unmarried, got 25 in 4th. Bathurst, in 1816.
- 9th. Regiment.
- Fidler, Samuel, Private, England, served 7 yrs. 4 days, got
24 in 4th. Bathurst, in 1816.
- 81st. Regiment.
- Griffith, Evan, Private, unmarried, served 12 years. Wales,
S. W. ½ 12 in 2nd Drummond, in 1816.
- 68th. Regiment. (Durham)
- Kirkham, Thomas, Private, married, England, served 7 yrs. 3
days, got N. E. ½ 15 in 2nd. Bathurst, July 1819.
- 11th. Regiment. (Devon)
- Mason, John Monk, Ensign, married, Ireland, drew 200 acres
in 1819 in Bathurst and Burgess.
- York Chasseurs.
- Leonard, Thomas, Sergeant, married, 3 children, Spain, 12
in 10th. Bathurst.
- 17th. Regiment.
- Echlin, Thomas, Private, Ireland, located in Bathurst.
- 19th. Light Dragoons.
- Truelove, John, Private, served 10 yrs. England, Bathurst.
- Field Train.
- Naughte, William, Conductor of Stores, England, established
first bake-shop in Town, where Ferrier's shop now stands.
- Royal New Foundland Fencibles.
Lelievre, Tito, Captain, 7 children got 800 acres.
- 4th. Royal Veteran Battalion.
- Gould, Matthew, Ensign, 6 children, England, 7th. in 8th.
Drummond in 1816, among other land.
The Glengarry Fencibles, the Glengarry
Regiment, Canadian Fencibles and New Brunswick
Fencibles were Regiments raised in Canada. The chief officers were
sent from the Old Country, but other officers were residents of Canada.
The Canadian Fencibles were almost entirely made up of
- Glengarry Fencibles.
- McNiece, James, Sergeant, unmarried, served 9 yrs. 185 days
Ireland, W, ½ 10 in 9th. Drummond in 1816.
- Morris, Thomas, Corporal, served 7 yrs. 28 days, England,
N.E. ½ 11 in 4th. Bathurst.
- McDonnell, Angus, Private, married, Upper Canada, got 12 in
11th. Drummond, in 1817.
- Canadian Fencibles, Infantry.
- De Lisle, Benjamin T, Lieutenant, Lower Canadian. 12 in 16
Beckwith, 2 in 4th. Drummond, S. W. ½ 4 in 5th. Leeds, 1817.
- Freer, Noah, Lieutenant, afterwards became President of the
Bank of British North America, 20 in 11th. Drummond
1816, N.E. ½ 20 in 4th. Sherbrooke 1820, 28 & 29 in 5th. Elmsley,
- Legary Joseph, Private, served 7 yrs 153 days, Lower
Canadian, draw 27 in 10th. Bathurst, 1816.
- Taylor, Josias, Captain, married, 2 sons under 12, England,
4 lots in Drummond.
- Grenier, Louis, Private, Lower Canadian, served 7 yrs. 175
days. In 1816 got N. E. ½ 18 in 10th. Elmsley North.
- Marshall, William, Captain, unmarried, Scotland. Drew in
1816, 670 acres, drew the lot now occupied by J. A. McLaren,
Esq., owned by Captain Leslie. Afterwards took charge of land
office in Lanark, and located Dalhousie settlers.
- Matheson, William, (Bill of all trades) Sergeant,
unmarried, served 9 yrs. 229 days. Born in United States. S. W. ½ 19
in 1st. Drummond, 1816.
- New Brunswick Fencibles.
- Fraser, Alexander, Lieutenant, married, 1 daughter under
12, Scotland, in 1816 got 7 in 10th. and 1818, W. ½ 6 in 1st.
- Glengarry Light Infantry, Fencible Regiment.
- McMillan, Alexander, Captain, unmarried Scotland, got 1025
- Adamson, John, Sergeant, married, Scotland, in 1817 got 25
acres in Town.
- Blair, William, Lieutenant, married, Scotland, got 23 in
- Leslie, Anthony, Lieutenant.
- Horrax (Horricks) William, served 9 yrs. 62 days,
England, got E. ½ 12 in 9th. Drummond, in 1816.
- McNamee, Patrick, married, one child, served 9 yrs. 106
days, Ireland, got land in Burgess.
- Matheson, Roderick, Lieutenant, was also Paymaster, got 825
- Paymaster - Anthony Leslie.
- Ensign - William Blair.
- Quarter Master - John Watson.
- Quigley, James, Sergeant, married, Ireland, served 3 yrs. 8
days, in 1816 got S.W. ½ 24 in 2nd. Burgess.
Numbers of these officers served in the Militia the time of the
Rebellion of 1837, and they were well fitted to train the troops, and they
got their ranks as officers raised.
SHORT HISTORIES OF SOME OF THE REGIMENTS
This Regiment returned from Nova Scotia October 20th. 1842. It served
in Ireland during the Rebellion in 1798, including the battle of
Ballynamuck on September 8th against the French. Was present at the
capture of the Cape of Good Hope in 1806. Proceeded from thence to South
America, and was present at the battle previous to the surrender of Buenos
Ayres, and at two engagements before its re-capture by the Spaniards. Was
present at the Peninsular War from 1808 to 1814, and during that time
served in the following engagements: Badajoz, Toulouse, Corunna, Passage
of the Douro and many of minor importance.
In 1793 the slaves of the Island of Granada, assisted by the French
from Guadeloupe, having revolted and murdered the Governor and upwards of
40 of the principal inhabitants, this Regiment was employed in quelling
the Insurrection. In January 1797, it was sent to the expedition against
Trinidad, and was present at the destruction of the Spanish ships of war,
and at the surrender of the Island. In 1799 it proceeded with the
expedition against the Dutch Settlement of Surinam, and was present at the
surrender of the Colony. It was also present in 1801, at the conquest of
the Danish and Swedish Islands of St. Croix, St. Thomas, St. Martins and
This Company served in Holland in 1794 and 95 and afterwards went with
an expedition to Egypt. In 1801 it was present at the surrender of Cairo
Served in Lord Howe's action in 1794, at the blockage of Malta and
surrender of Valletta. In 1800 proceeded with Sir Ralph
Abercromby's expedition to Egypt, and was present with the army in
Spain and Portugal in 1810 and 1811.
Served throughout the whole of the Peninsular War. Was present in
battles of Corunna, Passage of the Douro, Torres Wedras and many others.
Also served in engagement of 1815.
7th. Royal Fusiliers.
Accompanied the expedition to the West Indies, and was present at
capture of Demarara, Berbice and the Essequibo in 1796. In 1799 proceeded
to Holland and was present in several engagements. From thence went to the
Baltic, and in 1807 was present at the capture of the Danish Fleet and the
surrender of Copenhagen, and in 1809 was present in several engagements.
Joined the forces against New Orleans and was present at the assault of
the lines before that peace. Went with army to Belgium in 1815 and was
present at the capture of Paris.
3rd. Royal Guards.
Served in Ireland during the Rebellion of 1798, and up to the year 1816
was present in several minor engagements.
This Regiment served in the first American war from 1777 until its
termination in 1783. Was present also at the capture of Forts Montgomery
and Clinton. Returned to Europe in 1793 and saw much active service during
those stirring times.
Served at the siege of Copenhagen in 1807, and in the expedition to
Sweden in 1808. Subsequently went to Portugal, Spain, and was present at
the battle of Corunna. Joined expedition to Walchesren and siege of
Flushing, in 1809, and was present in the Peninsular War.
NB: Statement #1-
re: DeWatteville and DeMeuron
Regiments - "These regiments were composed of Swiss, Poles, Belgians,
Italians, etc. They had been taken prisoners by the British in the
Napoleon wars, and enlisted to fight with the British in the war with
the United States. "
Correction #1 - The DeMeuron Regiment was
originally formed in 1781 in service of the Dutch East India Company.
The DeWatteville Regiment was formed in 1801 by the British and was
composed of Swiss mercenary soldiers to fight against Napolean in the
Mediterranean. Prisoners captured in 1806, 1809, and 1810 were given the
choice to volunteer in the regiment to fight Napolean rather than remain
From DeWatteville Regimental history:
course of the Months August & September, 318 Swiss Germans &
Poles from the Deserters & Prisoners made at Maida, volunteered into
the Regiment de Wattville and were regularly enisted by special
1809 "On the 19th August, 92 Germans from the Prisoners of War made
at Ishia and Procila, volunteered in the Regiment and were regularly
enlisted by Special Orders from Lt General Sir John Stuart."
The regiment set sail from Spain for Canada in April 1813. They
then were deployed to fight the United States. In 1816 both regiments
were disbanded. Soldiers were given the choice of land or passage back
Sources for Correction
quotes from the regimental history, I extracted from
Microfilm reel MG13-WO25 B-5513 (Library and Archives of Canada).
Also from that history:
"On April 5, 1813 the whole regiment
embarked at Cadiz and sailed for America on the 6th. The convoy arrived
and anchored in Halifax harbour on the 18th May, sailed from Halifax on
the 22nd and arrived at Quebec on the 6th June. The Regiment were on the
same day removed from the transports on board small vessels and sailed
for Montreal where they arrived on the 15th they landed and were
quartered in the town. On the 16th the Regiment received the order to
proceed to Kingston, by divisions, each of two companies. The first
division marched on the 17th. In the first days of July, 10 companies of
the regiment were quartered at Kingston and two companies under command
of Colonel May at Prescot."
DeMeuron regiment info:
1812 - Red River Redcoats/Lord Selkirk
Jacob, Sergeant, unmarried, served 7 yrs. 21 days, German, got W. ½ l in
Correction #2- Jacob Hollinger was married and had
one son when he arrived with the regiment. He later had 8 more children
in Canada. He was Swiss. He served in the DeWatteville Regiment from May
1, 1801 to June 2, 1816 - a period of 15 years and 32 days. As a
sergeant he received 200 acres of land : 100 acres - Lot 1, Conc 6 in
Drummond and 100 acres - Lot 28 Conc 5 in Oxford Twp (Grenville
Transactions of land grants (taken from
Lanark Co rootsweb site)
Ref: National Archives of Canada
D8-27 Vol Reel C-4651
263.Jacob Hollinger, Srg, de Watteville, 1
adult male and 1 adult female, 1 male under 12 and 1 female under 12,
years of service 15-32 country Switzerland, located June 29, 1816,
Drummond, C6 W1 and July 31, 1817, Oxford 5, R28, SDP. NOTE: On page 37,
written sideways on the page is the following NOTE: Rachel, daughter of
Jacob Hollinger, de Watteville Reg., born Jan? 27,