• By: Marie Waine

Evoking Memories on Parliament Hill: The War of 1812

The War of 1812 Monument on Parliament Hill was inaugurated this November by the Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, and Toronto artist Adrienne Alison to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.

“This new landmark on Parliament Hill will forever remind us of the courage and bravery of those who served and successfully defended their land in the fight for Canada more than 200 years ago. As we approach Canada’s 150th anniversary in 2017, let us continue to connect to our past and celebrate the stories, the events and the people that make Canada the strong, proud and free country it is today,” said Glover.

Seven bronze figures make up the monument symbolizing courage and bravery. It stands on Parliament Hill to bring Canada together to recognize those who defended their country and ensured the establishment of a strong and independent Canada.

Artist Alison created each figure to represent key combatants that came together to defeat the American Invasion: Métis fighter firing a cannon; a woman bandaging the arm of a member of Lieutenant-Colonel Charles de Salaberry’s storied Voltigeurs Regiment; a Royal Navy sailor pulling a rope; a First Nations warrior pointing to the distance; a Canadian militiaman raising his arm in triumph; and a member of a British Army unit, specifically the Royal Newfoundland Regiment, firing a musket.

Alison won the national design competition for the War of 1812 Monument in June 2013. The monument represents over 1,600 names of early Canadians, including over 130 names of First Nations warriors, who lost their lives in the War of 1812.

“I hope Canadians will be very proud of this sculpture. To me, the War of 1812 Monument symbolizes the incredible contribution of diverse Canadians and our ability to work together to achieve remarkable outcomes,” said Alison.