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From the Collections of the Canadian War Museum

Battleground: Wars on Our Soil, from earliest times to 1885



Photos

Hannah Ingraham

Born in the British colony of New York, Hannah Ingraham was a child during the American Revolution. Growing up in a Loyalist family behind Rebel lines, she endured hardship and harassment by her neighbours. After the war, Hannah and her family fled into exile and helped to build a new Canada.
Courtesy of Faith Ingraham
Courtesy of Faith Ingraham Thomas

Veterans of the War of 1812

From left to right: John Smoke Johnson, Jacob Warner and John Tutlee.Jacob Warner and John Tutlee were two of the Iroquois warriors who encountered Laura Secord as she approached the British camp to warn of the impending invasion by American troops. The Iroquois led her to Lieutenant Fitzgibbon, whose troops mobilized and overcame the Americans.
Library and Archives Canada, C-085127
Library and Archives Canada, C-085127

Fine Day

A Cree war chief, Fine Day defeated a Canadian army at the Battle of Cut Knife Creek in 1885.
Library and Archives Canada, PA 28837
Library and Archives Canada, PA 28837

Batoche Burning

Led by combat veteran Gabriel Dumont, Métis forces employed their traditional tactic of digging rifle pits and waiting to open fire from cover when an enemy approached. But by digging in and remaining on the defensive, the Métis allowed the Canadian militia to advance almost undisturbed to Batoche. Once there, the militia overcame the Métis through superior numbers and firepower.
Library and Archives Canada, C-003464
Library and Archives Canada, C-003464

Pacific Coast Warrior in Rope Armour



Library and Archives Canada, C-016779
Library and Archives Canada, C-016779

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Sketch

A View of the Plunder and Burning of the City of Grymross
Painted by Thomas Davies in 1758

British army officers in the 18th century received instruction in sketching so that they could record military scenes and operations as Thomas Davies has done here. Davies was a British artillery officer whose draughting skills proved useful to the surveyors of the new British territory around Lake Ontario in the early 1760s.
Courtesy of the National Gallery of Canada, 6270
Courtesy of the National Gallery of Canada, 6270

A View of the Taking of Quebec
Engraving based on a painting by Hervey Smith in 1797

This engraving is based on a sketch made by Hervey Smith, an aide-de-camp to General James Wolfe during the siege of Quebec in 1759.The siege, which led to British victory in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, took place during the Seven Years' War. Here, Smith depicts British troops scaling the cliffs that lead to the Plains. Their transport ships lie in the St. Lawrence River just below.
Library and Archives Canada, C-139911

Library and Archives Canada, C-139911

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War Art

A View of the Bishop's House with the Ruins as they appear in going down the Hill from the Upper to the Lower Town (Québec)
Painted by Richard Short in 1761

In 1761, a series of drawings of by Richard Short depicted Québec City as it looked after the successful British siege of 1759. In this example, the ruins symbolize the defeated French, while the relaxed British troops, enjoying time with their families, represent British success.
Library and Archives Canada, C-000350
Library and Archives Canada, C-000350

Joseph Brant, Chief of the Mohawks, 1742-1807
painted by George Romney in 1776

Romney painted his 33- year- old subject in 1776 when Chief Brant visited the artist's London studio. Brant sat for Romney at least twice, on 29 March and 4 April.
Courtesy of the National Gallery of Canada, 8005
Courtesy of the National Gallery of Canada, 8005

Portrait of Major John Norton (Teyoninhokarawen)
Painted by Solomon Williams around 1805 (reproduction)

Mohawk war chief John Norton led the First Peoples forces at Queenston Heights during the War of 1812. Son of a Cherokee father and Scottish mother, Norton was adopted as a nephew by Joseph Brant (Thayendanega), a leading Mohawk chief. The combination of Iroquois and Mohawk clothing worn by Norton in this portrait reflects both his own dual heritage and the ongoing cultural exchange between First Peoples and Europeans. This portrait was painted in England in 1804-1805.
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art CWM 19950096-001
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art CWM 19950096-001

Mort du Marquis de Montcalm
(The Death of Montcalm) Engraved by Juste Chevillet after François-Louis-Joseph Watteau in 1783

This print was published 24 years after the death of French General Louis-Joseph, Marquis de Montcalm in 1759 at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. Here, the artist commemorates the event as heroic, virtuous, and honourable.
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art CWM 19940056-004
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art CWM 19940056-004

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Audio

Voices of the Revolution

Listen to personal accounts by Canadians swept up in the American Revolution.

The Battle of Beaver Dams, 1813

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    Date created: October 27, 2006 | Last updated: October 7, 2009