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The Lincoln and Welland Regiment
Lincoln and Welland Regiment Flag in Afghanistan.jpg
The Lincoln and Welland Regimental colours, Afghanistan Flag and the American Flag in Afghanistan
Active 1777
Country Canada
Allegiance Canada
Type Primary Reserve infantry regiment of the Canadian Forces
Garrison/HQ based in St. Catharines and Welland, Ontario.
Motto(s) Non Nobis Sed Patriæ, "Not for ourselves but for our country".
March The Lincolnshire Poacher
Engagements

Battle of Le Mesnil-Patry; Operation Windsor; Operation Charnwood; Operation Atlantic; Battle of Verrières Ridge; Operation Spring; Operation Totalize; Operation Tractable; Falaise pocket; Operation Astonia; Operation Wellhit; Operation Undergo; Siege of Dunkirk; Battle of the Scheldt; Operation Veritable;

Northern Netherlands; Liberation of Arnhem
Decorations .
Commanders
Ceremonial chief Regimental Colonel-in-Chief is The Countess of Wessex

The Lincoln and Welland Regiment is a Primary Reserve infantry regiment of the Canadian Forces based in St. Catharines and Welland, Ontario.

The Regimental Colonel-in-Chief is The Countess of Wessex and the regimental motto is Non Nobis Sed Patriæ, "Not for ourselves but for our country".

History[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War period[edit | edit source]

The history of the regiment can be traced to the raising of Butler's Rangers on 15 September 1777. Major John Butler, an officer in the Indian Department, was a Loyalist from the Mohawk Valley in New York. After the Battle of Oriskany, he convinced Sir Guy Carleton that a Ranger unit should be raised to fight on the frontiers in conjunction with the Indians. He eventually raised ten companies and some 800 men served in the Rangers. The Corps fought on the frontiers of New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky. On disbandment at Fort Niagara on 24 June 1784, it had ten companies with a strength of 469 all ranks. John Butler, now a prominent leader in Niagara, was appointed Commanding Officer of three battalions of Nassau Militia. Nassau (later Home District) was one of the Districts of Upper Canada, Niagara being only part of the district. By 1791 the battalions had a strength of 835 all ranks.

19th Century[edit | edit source]

With the reorganization of the province into sixteen counties in 1792, Lincoln County (with 20 townships) came into existence. The militia was renamed and the Lincoln Militia, with three battalions came into being, some 849 strong. By 1794, Butler was a full Colonel with four battalions reporting 976 all ranks. Most of the officers and a great many of the NCOs and men had served in the Rangers and had received land grants in Niagara for this service.

By 1808, there were five regiments of Lincoln Militia. 1st Regiment, commanded by Col. Ralfe Clench and Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Kerr, drawn from Niagara, Louth and Grantham townships. 2nd Regiment, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Peter Ball, drawn from Stamford, Thorold and Pelham. 3rd Regiment, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Warren, from Crowland, Willoughby and Bertie. 4th Regiment commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Johnson Butler from Grimsby and Clinton. 5th Regiment commanded by Colonel Peter Hare and Lieutenant-Colonel Andrew Brandt from Ancaster, Barton, Saltfleet, Glanford and Binbrook.

At the outbreak of the War of 1812, flank companies (limited to three officers and 38 men), composed mostly of volunteers, of those regiments took the field in all major engagements from Niagara to Detroit including the battles of Queenston Heights, Lundy's Lane, Stoney Creek and Fort Detroit. The flank companies took the field together with Militias raised by various former officers including Colonel Isaac Swayze and did most of the militia's fighting. In all cases they were a credit to their country. From the regiment's association with Major General Sir Isaac Brock comes the scallop shell on the cap badge. It is taken from the coat of arms of Brock's family on the Isle of Guernsey.

During the rebellion of 1837, units of the Lincoln Militia were called out to quell rebel uprisings in the Niagara Peninsula and the 2nd Lincolns were warned for duty in Toronto. In 1838, the 2nd conducted marches into the Short Hills to subdue rebel activity there. In 1846, Lincoln County was divided and Welland County was formed with three battalions of militia. The militia "regiments" were renamed "battalions".

In 1863, the Lincoln and Welland Battalions were reorganized and renamed the 19th Battalion Volunteer Militia (Infantry), Canada with 10 companies, and the 20th Battalion Volunteer Militia (Infantry), Canada with six companies. Both had headquarters in St. Catharines. In May 1866, eight companies of the 19th and 20th Battalions were called out to repel the Fenian invasion of the peninsula. They formed part of Colonel Peacocke's field force. As a result of the Fenian Raids, the 44th "Welland" Battalion of Infantry was raised. It took over companies from both the 19th and 20th Battalions. The 20th was redesignated the 20th "Halton" Battalion, and moved to Milton.

Between 1866 and 1914 there were various name changes and reorganizations. In 1914, the 19th Lincoln Regiment, with headquarters in St. Catharines, had eight companies, as did the 44th Lincoln and Welland Regiment, with headquarters in Niagara Falls. Although not mobilized, the regiments contributed troops to contingents for the North-West Campaign and the Boer War.

First World War[edit | edit source]

A soldier from the 19th Lincoln Regiment on guard at the Toronto Power Generating Station in 1914

During the Great War, the two Regiments contributed over 5,000 men to various Canadian Expeditionary Force battalions, particularly the 81st, 98th and 176th. At the conclusion of the War, the CEF battalions ceased to exist. It was decided to award battle honours which a CEF battalion had won to militia units which had contributed 200 or more men to that battalion. Both the 19th and 44th trained under extreme difficulties between the wars. An example of the little training done is that of the 19th which trained 12 days in 1920, 9 days a year between 1922 and 1927, 12 days a year from 1928 to 1931 and 10 days a year from 1932 to 1936. On 15 December 1936, the two units were reorganized into The Lincoln and Welland Regiment with an establishment of 467 all ranks.

Second World War[edit | edit source]

The day before the Second World War began, the regiment was called out and posted to guard the Welland Ship Canal. It was mobilized in December 1939 and almost 500 men immediately volunteered with Toronto units. In June 1940, the 1st Battalion, Lincoln and Welland Regiment was mobilized for active service. The 2nd Battalion was to remain in reserve. The 1st Battalion arrived in the United Kingdom in July 1943 and on 19 August became a part of the 10th Canadian Infantry Brigade of the 4th Canadian Armoured Division.

At the 6th of June 1944 ("D-Day"), Canadian Troops landed at Juno Beach and suffered heavy losses. By the end of D-Day, 30,000 Canadians had been successfully landed, and the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division had penetrated further into France than any other Allied force. Operation Neptune was a part of the Normandy landings). The regiment formed part of II Canadian Corp's "long left flank" of the Allied advance. For the next nine months, it fought its way through Belgium and the Netherlands into Germany. This was some of the bitterest fighting of the war, consisting largely of clearing built-up areas and canals.

The highest and most distinguished award for valour, the Order of the Bronze Lion was bestowed upon the regiment's Sergeant Wallace Edmond Firlotte.[1]

From Tilly-la-Campagne on 31 July 1944 until Bad Zwischenahn on 1 May 1945, the regiment distinguished itself in many actions. Over 1500 men of the regiment were casualties. Of the original men who enlisted in 1940, only three officers and 22 men were on parade in St. Catharines in 1946 when the 1st Battalion was dismissed.

Postwar[edit | edit source]

A Lincoln and Welland Regiment NCO attached to a rifle company of the affiliated Bermuda Regiment, training in Jamaica, 1996.

In the years since the Second World War, the Regiment has busied itself with the many tasks traditionally entrusted to the Canadian Militia during peace time. Ceremonial parades have been attended and Guards mounted, most notably the visits of HRH The Princess Elizabeth (now HM Queen Elizabeth II) and HRH The Prince Philip to Niagara Falls in 1951 and HM Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother to Niagara-on-the-Lake in 1981.

During the Blizzard of 1977 in the Niagara Peninsula the Regiment was called out to provide assistance to the civil authority. It rescued over 1500 stranded school children and provided assistance to countless residents during the emergency. For this assistance, the Regiment received a vote of thanks from the House of Commons. More recently, the Regiment has provided volunteers to assist during the 1997 Floods in Manitoba and the 1998 Ice Storm in Eastern Ontario and Quebec.

The year 1994 marked the 200th anniversary of the Regiment and was commemorated in many ways. The Trooping the Colours, presentation of Freedom of the Town of Fort Erie and the dedication of the Regiment's Memorial Garden all served to remind the Regiment and the community of the service and sacrifice of two centuries.

Due to an administrative oversight, two battle honours earned in north-western Germany during the final weeks of the Second World War had not been awarded to the Regiment, but after Royal approval, National Defence Headquarters finally authorized the awards. In October 1995, at the Regiment's annual Church Parade, scrolls commemorating the battles of Küsten Canal and Bad Zwischenahn were presented by members of the Regimental Association.

In 2012, as part of the Diamond Jubilee tour of Canada, Sophie Countess of Wessex presented new regimental colours to the regiment which included the Battle Honour NIAGARA based on the regiment's perpetuation of the Battalion of Incorporated Militia of Upper Canada.[2] The Regiment also perpetuates the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 5th Regiments of the Lincoln Militia as well as "the Coloured Corps" from the War of 1812 thus linking the Regiment to the Battles of Detroit, Queenston Heights and the Niagara campaign.

Battle honours[edit | edit source]

The regiment has 31 battle honours, 16 of which (italicized) are emblazoned on the regimental colours:

War of 1812: Detroit, Queenston, Niagara,[3] Defence of Canada – 1812–1815[4]

First World War: Ypres, 1915, '17, Festubert, 1915, Somme, 1916, Arras, 1917, '18, Hill 70, Amiens, Hindenburg Line, Pursuit to Mons

Second World War: Falaise, Falaise Road, The Laison, Chambois, The Seine, 1944, Moerbrugge, The Scheldt, Breskens Pocket, The Lower Maas, Kapelsche Veer, The Rhineland, The Hochwald, Veen, Twente Canal, Friesoythe, Küsten Canal, Bad Zwischenahn, North-West Europe, 1944–1945

Alliances[edit | edit source]

The regiment is also connected with cadet corps in St. Catharines and Fonthill, and with Robert Land Academy in Wellandport.

The website British Regiments.org reports its lineage as from Butler's Rangers 1777-1784

Music[edit | edit source]

Old Niagara waltzes by Maud Schooley was "dedicated to the 44th Lincoln and Welland Regiment, Canadian Infantry by special permission of Lt. Colonel Cohoe and officers of the Regiment". It was published in Toronto by Canadian-American Music, circa 1905[5]

19th St. Catharines Regiment march was not carried over as this regiment changed from 19th and 20th Battalions of Volunteer Militia (Infantry) Canada to: the 19th Lincoln Regiment (1912); Lincoln Regiment (192) and Lincoln and Welland Regiment (1936). Instead the Regimental march became The Lincolnshire Poacher.[6]

Lincoln and Welland Regimental Museum[edit | edit source]

The Lincoln & Welland Regimental Museum
Location Butler's Barracks in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario Canada
Website [1]

The Lincoln and Welland Regimental Museum, located in Butler's Barracks in Niagara-on-the-Lake, features the history of the Lincoln and Welland Regiment. Exhibits include displays and artifacts from the 18th through the present, and include uniforms, weapons, medals, photographs, regimental band instruments, and other memorabilia. The displays show the regiment's participation in area military engagements in the 18th and 19th centuries, and overseas in World War I, World War II, for peacekeeping and other operations. The Museum is affiliated with: CMA, CHIN, OMMC and Virtual Museum of Canada.

Lineage[edit | edit source]

Lineage
The Lincoln and Welland Regiment 19th Lincoln Regiment
44th Lincoln and Welland Regiment

Order of precedence[edit | edit source]

Preceded by
The Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment
The Lincoln and Welland Regiment Succeeded by
4th Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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