Private Joseph Seré (Cyr)

Born: Date Unknown, Near Ste. Anne’s Point (Fredericton), New Brunswick
Died: Unknown

I am Private Joseph Seré or Cyr. I am an Acadian from New Brunswick. The British had difficulty with our French names which is why my name is misspelled in my official documents. I joined the New Brunswick Regiment of Fencible Infantry on 5 October 1805. This regiment became New Brunswick’s 104th Regiment of Foot in 1810. When our regiment was ordered to Kingston, Upper Canada (Ontario), I was one of close to 600 men who marched up the frozen St. John River. We walked about 27 kilometres each day. We would get up very early and have breakfast. Breakfast was one biscuit, about the size of a cookie and a bit of salt pork. We would walk until 2:00 or 3:00pm and then we would make camp for the night. We slept outside a lot as there were no places to stay. On night we slept outdoors we would build huts. We would walk off the frozen river and near the woods. We made the hut by digging down into the snow with our snowshoes. After that we went into the woods and cut down whole trees to make the roof of the hut. I was already so tired from all that walking on snowshoes and then had to build a place to sleep! We squeezed as many as we could into each hut and huddled around the fire. I would wrap my blanket around me for some extra warmth, but the blankets were thin and did not help much. We did not eat lunch, so I was happy to eat dinner, which was another biscuit and some more salted pork. After dinner we all fell asleep, huddled together to try to stay warm. After the war ended, I was discharged on 24 May 1817 when the regiment was disbanded (the army closed down the regiment because the war was over and they no longer needed as many soldiers). There is no record of what happened to me after this.

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A Ginger Design