The Princess Louise Fusiliers
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|The Princess Louise Fusiliers (PLF)|
|Active||1867 - present|
|Type||Primary Reserve infantry regiment|
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Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, this infantry regiment traces its local roots as a Halifax unit of Militia back to June 18, 1749 when Sir Edward Cornwallis formed a local Militia under his own command during Father Le Loutre's War. Ten companies were formed at the Grand Parade in the city and were made a collective battalion.
As an officially constituted unit of Canada, The Princess Louise Fusiliers were authorized in 1867. During the unit's history, it has undergone several name changes. On November 5, 1869, the regiment was named the 66th The Halifax Battalion of Infantry. Originally consisting of six companies, it later gained two more.
Ten years later, on November 14, 1879, the regiment was once again renamed, this time to the 66th Battalion "Princess Louise" Fusiliers, named for Princess Louise, wife of the Marquess of Lorne, Governor General at the time. It was shortly after this point in which the regiment received its first battle honour, when they helped suppress the Northwest Rebellion of 1885. Soldiers of the unit served in North West Canada with the Halifax Provisional Battalion. Fourteen years later, in 1899, the regiment provided some of its soldiers to a company raised in Nova Scotia for the 2nd (Special Service) Battalion of The Royal Canadian Regiment, which was raised for service in South Africa during the Second Boer War. May 8, 1900 brought about another name change, this time to 66th Regiment "Princess Louise" Fusiliers, and in October 1901 the regiment received new colours from the Duke of Cornwall and York (later King George V) during his visit to Canada. The new colours were subscribed for by the ladies of Halifax in honour of their battalion.
During the First World War the 66th Regiment provided soldiers to the locally raised battalions of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF). At the end of the war, as a result of the Otter Commission headed by General William Otter, the regiment perpetuated the 64th Canadian Infantry Battalion of the CEF. As a result of the unit's contributions of soldiers and this perpetuation, the regiment holds five battle honours of the First World War. In May 1915 the regiment was renamed to its current name, the Princess Louise Fusiliers.
The onset of World War II saw more action for the Fusiliers, when they were sent to Italy as part of the 5th Canadian Armoured Division. The regiment fielded two machine gun companies, the 11th Independent MG Coy. in support of the 11th Infantry Brigade, and the 12th Independent MG Coy. in support of the 12th Infantry Brigade. In British and Commonwealth armoured divisions of that period, independent MG coys. consisted of a HQ platoon, plus one platoon operating Browning .50 cal. heavy MGs and a second platoon operating 107mm heavy mortars; they were heavy direct-fire support units.
In February 1945 the 5th Armoured was transferred from Italy to Belgium, and these two companies participated in the liberation of the Netherlands from late March to the German surrender. During the conflict, the regiment received nine more battle honours, bringing their total count to 16.
Following WWII, the PLF converted back to a light infantry unit. Their most recent battle honour, received in 1999 following a lengthy struggle by unit officers to discover the necessary supporting documents, was for the unit's actions at Arnhem in 1945.
In Afghanistan, on Easter Sunday, April 8, 2007, Master Corporal Chris Stannix was killed along with five other Canadian soldiers when their vehicle was hit by an explosive device. Corporal Shaun Fevens was injured in the explosion and transported to a military hospital in Germany.
The PLF performed a ceremonial Trooping the Colours at Citadel Hill in Halifax Nova Scotia on 23 April 2009. Inspecting the parade was His Royal Highness Duke of York Prince Andrew, The Colonel in Chief of the Princess Louise Fusiliers, with a large crowd in attendance.
The Princess Louise Fusiliers have received 17 battle honours since the unit's inception in 1869. They are:
- North-West Canada, 1885 (see Halifax Provisional Battalion)
- South Africa, 1899-1900 (see South African War Memorial (Halifax)).
World War One
- Somme, 1916
- Ypres, 1917
- Amiens, 1917
- Arras, 1917
- Hill 70, 1917
World War Two
- Liri Valley
- Melfa Crossing, 1944
- Italy, 1944-1945
- Gothic Line, 1944
- Lamone Crossing
- Delfzijl Pocket
- North-West Europe, 1945
- Arnhem 1945
- United Kingdom - The Royal Irish Regiment (27th (Inniskilling), 83rd, 87th and Ulster Defence Regiment)
|Halifax Armoury 2667 North Park Street,||1895-99 (completed)||National Historic Sites of Canada; Classified - 1991 Register of the Government of Canada Heritage Buildings||north central Halifax Regional Municipality||
- The Canadian Crown and the Canadian Forces
- Military history of Nova Scotia
- List of armouries in Canada
- Military history of Canada
- History of the Canadian Army
- Canadian Forces
- "The Royal tour" The Times (London). Monday, 21 October 1901. (36591), p. 3.
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Order of precedence
Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal
|The Princess Louise Fusiliers||Succeeded by
The Royal New Brunswick Regiment