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Weapons

Type: Document

This section illustrates a selection of firearms and bladed weapons used by British and Canadian military units during the 18th and 19th centuries.

Site: National Defence

Compagnies franches de la Marine (Warships)

Type: Document

The names of troops raised by the French Ministry of Marine often confuse people. There were separate units of Compagnies franches de la Marine to serve aboard warships. These troops had nothing to do with the Compagnies franches found in Canada.

Site: National Defence

The Lee-Enfield .303 Mark I Rifle - Weapons used by Canadians in the South African War

Type: Document

A new rifling system was developed at the Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield, consisting of five deep grooves that could withstand the intense heat generated by the cordite. The result was the .303 Lee-Enfield Mark I rifle, introduced to the Canadian Army in 1896.

Site: Canadian War Museum

Major Arthur L. ("Gat") Howard (1846-1901) - South African War

Type: Document

Major Arthur L. (Gat) Howard accepted the position of machine gun officer in the 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles (later called the Royal Canadian Dragoons). Instead of returning home from the South African War with his unit in December 1900, Howard organized the Canadian Scouts and took command of the unit.

Site: Canadian War Museum

Infantry Tactics Transformed

Type: Document

The new infantry weapons developed in the 1850s and 1860s changed the way battles were fought. Attacking an opponent whose infantry was armed with modern weapons became a very bloody affair.

Site: National Defence

2nd Regiment, Canadian Mounted Rifles, in the South African War

Type: Document

The Canadian Department of Militia and Defence would equip and train the new regiment for South Africa, and the British would pay its costs. When the unit finally sailed from Canada in January 1902, it was a six-squadron regiment of 901 officers and men. Together with the 10th Canadian Field Hospital, it formed the third Canadian contingent of the Canadian Mounted Rifles.

Site: Canadian War Museum

Canadian Victoria Cross Winners - South African War

Type: Document

During the South African War, Victoria Crosses were awarded for rescuing fellow soldiers under enemy fire, rear-guard action at Leliefontein, and for service in the Medical Corps.

Site: Canadian War Museum

The Colt Model 1895 Machine Gun - Weapons used by Canadians in the South African War

Type: Document

The legacy of the Canadian experience with machine guns in South Africa was that the Canadian Expeditionary Force went to war in 1914 armed with the Colt machine gun.

Site: Canadian War Museum

Venezuela and Canada

Type: Document

The 1895 Anglo-American crisis over Venezuela had reverberations in Canada, including a potential confrontation with the United States. The Canadian government reacted to this situation by investing $3 million in rearmament. Modern repeating riles were introduced, a few machine guns were purchased, and a mobilization plan for the militia was developed.

Site: National Defence

The Fenians

Type: Document

The end of the American Civil War in 1865 brought a new military problem. There were 10,000 Irish-American veterans who belonged to the Fenians, a well-armed Irish secret society that wanted revenge against Britain. The Fenians planned to invade Canada.

Site: National Defence