During the summer of 1812, the British managed to maintain their position along the Niagara frontier. However, the Americans were preparing a significant offensive for the upcoming campaign season in spring 1813. The British urgently required reinforcements, which would usually arrive by sea via the St. Lawrence River to Quebec City. Unfortunately, the route was closed due to ice and wouldn’t open until April, making it too late for the campaign season. Consequently, the decision was made to dispatch the 104th New Brunswick Regiment from Fredericton, New Brunswick, to Kingston, Ontario, as the land war in the Maritimes was relatively calm. The regiment, comprising 554 men divided into companies of 100, embarked on the arduous journey to Kingston during one of the harshest, snowiest winters on record.
The 104th New Brunswick Regiment set out from Fredericton on February 16, 1813, and reached Kingston on April 12th. This remarkable march is often underappreciated in military history, despite being comparable to some of the greatest marches ever undertaken. It undoubtedly stands as one of the most significant accomplishments during the War of 1812.
The 104th New Brunswick Regiment is recognized by a plaque in Carleton & York Regiment Memorial Park, located next to the Armory on Carleton Street in Fredericton.
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