Battle of Saint-Charles
|Battle of Saint-Charles|
|Part of the Rebellions of 1837|
A contemporary watercolour of the Battle of Saint-Charles depicting the rout of Brown's rebels.
|Commanders and leaders|
|George Wetherall||Thomas Storrow Brown|
|Casualties and losses|
|fewer than 56 dead|
On the morning of 25 November 1837, 2 days after Charles Gore's defeat at the Battle of Saint-Denis and the retreat to Sorel the troops of Colonel George Wetherall about 420 regulars (from the 1st and 66th Regiments of Foot), left St-Hilaire and marched on the camp at St-Charles. The camp was at that time defended by some 80 men of the parish of St-Charles and others. As they approached, the soldiers exchanged gunfire with small groups of combatants.
Wetherall deployed his men some distance from the fortifications, then ordered them to charge. The fight was violent and unequal (the defenders by then numbered no more than 60 or 80), caused several deaths, especially among the Patriotes, who could not prevent their barricades being overrun. When the Patriotes were being slaughtered, some retreated, but others stayed back to surrender to the British. Thinking they had won, the British calmly walked up toward the Patriotes, but the Patriotes opened fire upon the British and killed 3 of them. Furious, the British massacred them.
While retracing their steps to Montréal via Chambly, the troops had a skirmish on November 28 (Pointe-Olivier, St-Mathies), but the defeat of the patriotes at St-Charles had potentially given the army complete control of the Richelieu region. At the end of battle the British had only three dead and 18 wounded, whereas the Patriotes had about 56 dead.
- British Crush Opposition at Saint-Charles
- 1837 and My Connection With It, by Thomas Storrow Brown (contains his own account of the battle)
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