78th Fraser Highlanders at the Battle of Ste-Foy

Sergeant Major Simon Farnell Morisset, 78th Fraser Highlanders

The 78th Fraser Highlanders went to war this weekend.  It was the second time that the Fraser Highlanders participated at the Battle of Ste-Foy re-enactment, an event that occurs every two years at the burnt remains of a church at the corner of Chemin Ste-Foy and Rue de l’eglise, and the first re-enactment for most of the soldiers of the Frasers’ Elite Drill Squad.
    Despite an unfavourable weather forecast (as 18th century muskets cannot operate in the rain), the weather was lenient enough to allow the fierce battles between the British forces defending the ruins and the French forces advancing to re-capture Quebec in summer 1760.  Though the French won the battle, the British managed to fall back and defend Quebec City until the end of the war.
    Re-enactors from all over eastern Canada and the northeastern United States were present, many of them camping out through the rain in 18th century wedge tents – truly historical down to the last chilly detail.  Those not fighting (such as women and children) also prepared food, mended wounds, and repaired equipment in the same historical context as their combatant counterparts.  For the local 78th Fraser Highlanders, this was an excellent opportunity to showcase the results of their year-long training program, fresh uniforms, and new weapons.
    The many re-enactment groups present all had their own items and skills to show off as well.  Of particular interest was the 4-pound field cannon of the Cannoniers Bombardiers, a local re-enactment group, which shook the very ground and rattled the windows of nearby businesses every time it fired.  Throughout the minor skirmishes as well as major battles of the day, the trusty Highlanders’ bagpipes could also be heard off and on the battlefield.
    The unfortunate weather conditions kept most crowds at home, but those curious souls who did show up also had a chance to visit both the British and French camps, to meet with local Canadien militia, French soldiers, natives, English regulars, Scottish highlanders, and British colonial rangers as they went about their regular camp activities.
    Should such activities interest you, the 78th Fraser Highlanders are recruiting.  Regular training sessions begin next fall.  Contact Sergeant-Major Farnell at [email protected] or by phone at 418-951-7090 should you be interested in an experience like no other.