Battle of the Cedars
Battle of the Cedars National Historic Site of Canada
Bataille des Cèdres
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Battle of the Cedars National Historic Site of Canada is located at Les Cèdres, 52 km south-west of Montreal, Quebec, on the banks of the St. Lawrence River. There are no visible remains of the battle, during which British and Canadian forces defeated American forces that held a post at Les Cèdres, on the 19th - 20th of May, 1776, and also defeated the American reinforcements on the 21st of May, 1776. A Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada plaque was erected in 1980 to commemorate the battle site. Surrounded by a small fence, the cairn stands in a small grassed plot at the edge of the Chemin du Fleuve surrounded by farmland and trees. Official recognition refers to the site at the time of designation.
The Battle of the Cedars was designated as a national historic site of Canada in 1923. It is designated because:
— in 1776, during the American Revolutionary War, a small detachment of the 8th Regiment of Foot (King’s Liverpool), aided by Aboriginal forces, attacked the American outpost built to protect the western flank of Montréal. After a brief siege, the defenders capitulated.
In 1776, during the Revolutionary War (1775-1783), American soldiers invaded Canada and occupied the city of Montreal. To protect their western flank from British attacks the Americans established a small outpost at Les Cèdres, Quebec. The Battle of the Cedars occurred when British forces advanced from the Niagara region encountered this American outpost. British Captain George Forster, commanding a detachment of the 8th Regiment, was supported by Cayugas, Senecas and Mississaugas under Captain Guillaume de Lorimier. During the battle the Forster’s forces were reinforced by 30 Canadians led by Captain J.B. Testard de Montigny.
Captain Forster’s force attacked the American outpost and after a short siege the Americans surrendered. American reinforcements that arrived the next day also surrendered when they encountered Captain Forster’s force. Though victorious in the Battle of the Cedars Captain Forster did not have the resources to advance to Montreal which remained under American occupation until June of 1776.
Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, May 1923, October 1980, March 2012.
Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
— its location near the banks of the St. Lawrence River, approximately 52 km from the City of Montréal;
— its open, agricultural setting surrounded by trees and fields;
— the integrity of any surviving or as yet unidentified archaeological remains which may be found within the site of the Battle of the Cedars in their original placement and extent;
— viewscapes to the St. Lawrence River and across the battlefield.
Government of Canada
Historic Sites and Monuments Act
National Historic Site of Canada
1776/05/19 to 1776/05/21
Theme - Category and Type
- Governing Canada
- Military and Defence
Function - Category and Type
- Battle Site
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Indigenous Affairs and Cultural Heritage Directorate Documentation Centre 3rd Floor, room 366 30 Victoria Street Gatineau, Québec J8X 0B3
Cross-Reference to Collection