Re: [WarOf1812] A Christmas Eve Long Forgotten
- May I add another Christmas Eve 1814...one spent by those shivering in the
mud of the swamps either before or behind Line Jackson outside New Orleans.
Images of the West Indies regiments poking at ice having never before seen such a
thing. Those still living having spent the previous night in pitched battle in
the pitch dark. The entire Yuletide spent in dread and fear and under fire.
We do remember. We shall remember again in 6 days time, and once again as the
93rd SHRoFLHU reads the roll call of the dead at Chalmette.
In a message dated 24/12/2005 12:16:37 AM, gord.deans@... writes:
> No, not Christmas Eve, 1814 when the Treaty of Ghent was signed ending the93rd SHRoFLHU
> War Of 1812. The British and American representatives sat down the next day
> on December 25, 1814 to a Christmas dinner of beef and plum pudding brought
> especially from England. Toasts were drunk to the health of King George and
> President Madison and the orchestra played "God Save the King" and "Yankee
> No, I was thinking back to Christmas Eve, 1812. Two armies huddled in
> freezing barracks, within windswept forts, facing each other across the bleak,
> grey Niagara River and thinking of those on the opposite riverbank busily
> plotting their death and destruction in the coming spring. It has barely been two
> months since the great Brock fell at Queenston Heights and now the brutal
> Scheaffe is back in unrestrained command.
> The cold and hungry soldiers, wrapped in their blankets, are crowded around
> the fires at each end of their barracks, contemplating their coming Christmas
> dinners. For a few pennies each, they have purchased "raisins, flour, fat
> and beer" to make a pudding and perhaps an apple or two as a treat. No
> oranges, plum puddings or sugar candies for this lot. Across the dark parade
> squares, the Officers' Messes are glowing with dozens of candles and ringing with
> music as the bandsmen play and the stewards carve great roasts and pour
> gallons of brandies, almond sherries and wines. Many great boasts and toasts are
> drunk to.
> But the soldiers only thoughts are - "Will they survive the coming year in
> this desolate land to return to their homes?".
> As I enjoy the peace, blessings and bounties of this Christmas Eve, I will
> be truly mindful and thankful for all of the sacrifices of those who have gone
> before me. Those of us whose passion is living history do so because we do
> May each and everyone of you "on both sides of the river" have a very Merry
> Christmas, a Happy New Year and a Prosperous and Successful 2006.
> Gord Deans,
> Royal Newfoundland Regiment - Bulger's Company,
> On detached service with the Royal Navy,
> In Ordinary on the Upper Thames, Upper Canada
THE Thin Red Line
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