medal code j2331

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A SUBERB AND RARE CANADIAN VOLTIGEURS BATTLE OF CHATEAUGUAY MILITARY GENERAL SERVICE 1793 MEDAL. A LIGHT INFANTRY REGIMENT THE VOLTIGEURS WERE ONE OF THE FEW REGULAR ARMY UNITS RAISED DURING THE 1812 WAR, FIGHTING WITH DISTINCTION THROUGHOUT THE WAR. THE BATTLE OF CHATEAUGUAY ITSELF IS FAMED FOR BEEN THE BIGGEST BATTLE FOUGHT BY ONLY CANADIAN UNITS IN DEFENCE OF THEIR COUNTRY

MILITARY GENERAL SERVICE 1793, CLASP, CHATEAUGUAY ‘S. JULIEN. CANADN. MILITIA’

At the Battle of the Chateauguay on the 26th October 1813 a Canadian force of approximately 1500 men, consisting of Canadian Voltigeurs, Canadian Fencibles, Militia and Indians, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Charles Michel de Salaberry of the Canadian Voltigeurs, halted a force of 5,700 American troops led by Major General Wade Hampton.

Although only part of both forces were engaged at the Battle of the Chateauguay, this battle, along with the battle of Crystler’s Farm, which was fought two weeks later, were the two battles which caused the Americans to abandon the Saint Lawrence Campaign and the advance on Montréal in the autumn of 1813. The Battle of the Chateauguay is celebrated as a purely Canadian victory, fought by Canadian units in defence of their Country. This as opposed to the battle of Crystler’s Farm, in which a large percentage of the force consisted of British troops.

See the following link for a good description of the battle: http://www.warof1812.ca/chatgy.htm

THE MEDAL AND THE ROLL

Simon Julien is not in Mullen’s published roll from 1990, though the entry on the roll for the Joseph Julien notes a medal for ‘S. Julien’ is known. However Simon Julien is on the original handwritten secondary roll of claimants produced by the Adjutant Generals Office, Toronto on 10th April 1850. Here he is listed along with a large number of other applicants. Simon Julien is shown as applying for the Chateauguay clasp as a private in the Canadian Voltigeurs (copy roll with medal). Many of the men on this second roll are noted on the published roll; some in different units but others are not; a couple of examples of other Voltigeurs not on the roll are Pte Guillaume Belanger, Sgt Germain Belisk and also Pte Charles Labelle, the latter is shown on initial application rolls as a Sgt in the Canadian Chasseurs! No doubt at some point the MGS roll will be updated and corrections such as these made as they are not unique by any means.

There is also absolutely no question that Simon Julien and Joseph Julien are different soldiers; copies of the original 1st application rolls from November 1848 show Joseph Julian entitled to the clasp Chateauguay (copy roll page included) and as above, Simon Julien was a later application. Joseph Julien is also noted in the original muster roll of casualties of the Canadian Voltigeurs; wounded Odelltown, July 1814.

At this point, there is no way of being sure who’s company Simon Julien was in at the battle of Chateauguay. Indeed you cannot be 100% positive about the vast majority of Canadian Voltigeurs because a large chunk of the musters are missing or been misplaced in the Canadian Archives. All we have is the musters up until July 1812 and from September 1814 and a list of casualties, leaving two years missing, during which most of battles they were involved were fought. Simon Julien is not in the musters for the surviving period, so he either only served during the missing 2 year period or just as likely served in an additional unit at some point. However to confirm the latter would require a search of musters of every unit; a daunting task!

Regardless of the above both medal, unit and clasp are confirmed to the most important battle fought in Canada by Canadian alone.

Condition NEF, lovely patina. A fine medal to one of the most sought after Canadian units.

Code J2331         Price £