The King's Soldiers

The Dispatch Of Royal Troops

A Regiment for Canada

It was Canada, however, that received "the lion's share" of the benefits from this new policy. In the summer of 1665, an entire regiment (1,000 men in 20 companies) landed in Quebec. The Carignan-Salières Regiment, which would achieve an almost legendary status in Canada, had arrived.

This regiment derived its name from Colonel Thomas-François de Savoie, Prince of Carignan, who raised it in 1644 in Piedmont in northern Italy. During the following decade, the recruiting for the regiment was done in France, and the Piedmontese character of the corps gradually ebbed away. The Treaty of the Pyrenees, signed by France and Spain in 1659, resulted in a reduction in the number of regiments in the army. Instead of being disbanded, Carignan's unit was merged with another, and on May 31 of that year, the Prince of Carignan was politely advised that, in his absence, the command had been turned over "to a person of great capacity and experience ... Sieur de Salières ... colonel of an infantry regiment that is now incorporated into yours." 41 The Salières Regiment had first been raised in 1630.