NIAGARA FALLS – The Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) and Chippawa Branch 396 of the Royal Canadian Legion will be conducting its annual memorial ceremony in honour of all those who served during the Battle of Chippawa.
The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., at the Battle of Chippawa Monument, with NPC chairwoman Janice Thomson providing opening remarks followed by a special presentation by NPC Historian, Sherman Zavitz.
Fought on July 5, 1814, the Battle of Chippawa was the opening engagement of the Niagara campaign, the longest and bloodiest military operation of the War of 1812.
A memorial service is held on July 5 each year to commemorate those who fell in service of their nation – this pivotal battle cost the lives of about 200 American, British, Canadian and native warriors allied to both sides, most of whom are thought to be buried at the site.
The Battle marked the first time American regulars faced British regulars in a stand-up military action fought in the open and many historians cite Chippawa as the birthplace of the modern American army.
A focal point of the Battlefield Park is the memorial cairn, dedicated to the memory of the regiments and First Nations warriors who fought in this battle.
The cairn is also meant to commemorate and celebrate the peace that has prevailed between Canada and the United States since that time.
The monument is constructed of dolomite limestone donated by Fort Niagara (Youngstown, NY), another key site in the War of 1812.
NPC acquired the site of the Battle of Chippawa in 1995 and has preserved 121 hectares of this last remaining War of 1812 battlefield. Located on the Niagara Parkway, south of the Village of Chippawa, interpretive panels along the self-guided walking tour help visitors to understand the events of this important battle.