Lieutenant Colonel William Drummond

Born: Date unknown, Keltie, Fifeshire, Scotland
Died: 15 August 1814 at Fort Erie, Upper Canada (Ontario)

I am Lieutenant Colonel William Drummond. My military service began in 1793 and I was a Major when I transferred to the New Brunswick Regiment of Fencible Infantry on 9 November 1809. This regiment became New Brunswick’s 104th Regiment of Foot in 1810. In 1812, I was in charge of the two companies of the 104th in Saint John. After the war began in June 1812, we improved the city’s defences. A blockhouse was built to protect the city from anyone attacking from the west, and it was named Fort Drummond after me. I led the Saint John group to Fredericton in preparation for our march to Canada in February 1813. In Fredericton we joined five other companies (groups of 100 soldiers) and then we all set off for Kingston, Upper Canada (Ontario), starting on 16 February 1813. Once in Upper Canada, I fought in many of the major battles of the War of 1812, including the Battle of Sackets Harbor on 29 May 1813, where I was wounded. In March 1814 I was given command of New Brunswick’s 104th Regiment of Foot – a big honour for me. When the attack on Fort Erie happened on 15 August 1814, I was leading my men to try to get inside the Fort. We were charged with going into the fort and opening the door from the inside. We got all the way into the fort but then something terrible happened. With all the shooting and cannon fire going on, the store of gun powder exploded and blew up the fort. Over 900 men were lost that day and 54 of them were from New Brunswick’s 104th Regiment of Foot.

I knew nothing about this as I had been bayoneted (stabbed with a knife fitted onto the end of a gun) and killed by an American soldier just before the explosion. I had been a very popular commanding officer in the regiment. One officer described me as “everything that could be required in a soldier; brave, generous, open-hearted and good natured…and a first-rate tactician”.

Copyright 2012
A Ginger Design