Battle of Eccles Hill National Historic Site of Canada
Battle of Eccles Hill
Bataille d'Eccles Hill
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Battle of Eccles Hill National Historic Site of Canada is located on a hill near the Canada–United States border between Vermont and Quebec, close to Frelighsburg, Quebec. It overlooks the battlefield where the Battle of Eccles Hill took place in 1870. The field, over 3,000 square metres, is surrounded by a fence on three sides and by a road on the fourth, and includes a three-pound canon, remnants of the confrontation and a commemorative granite monument dating back to 1902. The official recognition refers to the plot bound by the fence.
The Battle of Eccles Hill was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1923 because:
- the Canadian volunteers and home guards here repulsed the Fenian invaders on the 25th May, 1870.
The historical value of the site lies in its association with the events of the Battle of Eccles Hill. In 1870 the Fenians crossed the Canada-United States border at the top of Eccles Hill and came up against Canadian home guards and volunteers. This confrontation was initiated by a group of Irish patriots exiled to the United States to start a revolutionary movement for Ireland’s independence. They wanted to weaken England by attacking Canada, which proved to be a failure.
The site and the granite monument commemorating the event are located relatively close to the battlefield and the Canadian positions, but the battle took place just south of the Canada–United States border.
Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, 1922; 2009; Plaque Text, 1922 and 1980.
Key elements contributing to the heritage value of the site are:
- its location on a hill overlooking the battlefield, near the Canadian strategic positions, close to Frelighsburg, Quebec;
- its setting in a rural area enhanced by lasting landmarks, including farmland and barns;
- its natural aspect marked by trees and rock formations, which fit in with the surrounding rural environment;
- the definition of the site’s boundaries by a fence;
- the three-pound canon, taken from the Fenians;
- the commemorative monument of the Battle of Eccles Hill in the shape of a large granite block mounted on a granite base and stonework resting on a pile of rocks, an initiative of the Missisquoi Historical Society and the Department of National Defence;
- the viewscapes from the monument across the rolling farmland.
Government of Canada
Historic Sites and Monuments Act
National Historic Site of Canada
1870/05/25 to 1870/05/25
1902/01/01 to 1902/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Governing Canada
- Military and Defence
Function - Category and Type
- Commemorative Monument
- Battle Site
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection