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"Congress' Own" Topic

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Comments or corrections?

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 7:23 a.m. PST

Has anyone read this book?

Congress's Own: A Canadian Regiment, the Continental Army, and American Union by Holly Mayer


Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 8:00 a.m. PST

No, but I've always wondered about them. It's almost like they were American Hessians, our very own Foreign Legion. That's just an impression, and probably incorrect.
I'd be curious to learn more.
How were they recruited?

Personal logo ColCampbell Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 9:02 a.m. PST

Your link was too general. Do you mean this book -- link

If so, then the description states "Created by the Continental Congress, it drew members from Canada, eleven states, and foreign forces." So far from John's 'American Hessians.'

And no, I do not own it nor have I read it.


Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 10:31 a.m. PST

Well. I just Googled Moses Haven. grin What a guy, according to Wikipedia.
A perpetual thorn in Benedict Arnold's side. Committed numerous atrocities while in Roger's Rangers. Swindler, cheat…. By the way, that's quite an unsavory trio right there.
Sounds like quite an interesting character. I wonder if his regiment was any better behaved.

So, this regiment was recruited "at large", and not on any state establishment, nor any state's responsibility. I wonder how that sat with those who feared standing armies independent of local control.
I guess I'll just have to get the book and find out.

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 10:33 a.m. PST

Well. Not at that price. grin

Blasted Brains22 Sep 2021 10:46 a.m. PST

I believe this was one of the "extra" regiments, one of four if memory serves. A bit different than the "additional" regiments which were, generally, assigned to a state (or states). Again, if memory serves, none of the "extra" regiments were assigned to a state so were all recruited "at large".

I wonder if Mr. Haven will be as well remembered – or ill-rememberd – as Mr. Hazen? ; )

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 11:08 a.m. PST

Too late to correct my spelling.
Autocorrect is once again my downfall.

Personal logo doc mcb Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 12:12 p.m. PST

The Continental leaders had fond hopes of making Canada the 14th state, but the Canadians (still mostly French at that point) had some good reasons to prefer the British. Guy Fawkes (Pope's Day in Boston for the annual rioting) and the inclusion of the Quebec Act in the Intolerables cast a long shadow.

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP22 Sep 2021 1:50 p.m. PST

Your link was too general. Do you mean this book -- link

Yes-well done and thanks.

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP23 Sep 2021 5:43 a.m. PST

The book Moses Hazen and the Canadian Refugees in the American Revolution by Allan Everest is a useful volume on the subject.

Apparently, at least initially, the 2d Canadian Regiment was made up of Canadians who supported the American cause. It was an 'unallotted' unit, in that it was not subject to any state, but to the country as a whole, and to Washington as commander-in-chief in particular. Hazen's position as the commander was akin to the European practice of a proprietory colonel, and the regiment maintained a four-battalion organization.

When the 1st Canadian Regiment was disbanded, the Canadians in the unit went to the 2d Regiment. Interestingly, while having four battalions, the regiment had only one light infantry company.

The regiment was originally recruited from the Richelieu and St Lawrence Valleys and was recruited at large after being reorganized on 1 January 1777.

Moses Hazen himself was a Canadian settler.

Apparently, the regiment was a good, combat-worthy organization, well-led and in 'good order.'

Hazen was eventually promoted to general officers' rank. The regiment was redesignated in January 1781 as the Canadian Regiment and about half of the enlisted men were still Canadians. About half of the officers were also Canadians. 'Foreign' troops were sent to the regiment as replacements.

More information on the regiment, as well as bibliographical references, can be found in Robert Wright's The Continental Army, 317-318.

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