A History of The 11th Field Battery

Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery

The 11th Hamilton Wentworth Field Battery R.C.A can trace its history to 1836 when a private citizen bought artillery equipment and formed the "Hamilton Cannon Company" manned by civilian volunteers.
Artillery is a military term for field guns and/or cannon related equipment.

In 1854 Britain entered the Crimean War and withdrew all but 3000 troops from North America. To provide for the defense of Canada the Legislature passed the Militia Act of 1855 to authorize a Militia of 5000 men including five Batteries of Artillery Located in Quebec, Ottawa, Montreal, Hamilton, and Kingston.

The "Militia Field Battery Hamilton" officially came into being on December 6, 1855 it was renamed the 4th (Hamilton) Field Battery in 1895.

The Battery was mobilized in august 1914 for service in World War 1 and was designated the 7th Field Battery. On Nov 17, 1914 it was again redesignated as the 11th Field Battery and served with the 1st Canadian Division Fighting In Ypres, the Somme, Passchendale and Vimy Ridge.

Mobilized in June 1940 for service in World War II, 11 Battery proceeded overseas as part of the 3rd Canadian Division in July 1941. In July 1943 the 3rd Division began assault training in preparation for the invasion of Europe on June 6th 1944, "D-Day". 11 Battery was the only Hamilton unit to play a role in the landing in Normandy on that day. The Guns of 11 Battery were the first Canadian guns to fire from positions on French soil. Firing in support of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles the Battery engaged German defensive positions over "open-sights" (point blank range).

During the Normandy campaign the Battery fired its guns in support of not only the infantry of the 3rd Division but other Divisions such as the 2nd Canadian, 15th Scottish, and Polish Armored. Following defeat of the German Army in Normandy the Battery fought its way through Europe to the Rhine River. As part of the 12th Field Regiment the 11th Battery was the first Canadian Artillery deployed across the Rhine.

At the conclusion of the war 11 Battery returned to Hamilton to become part of the 8th Field Regiment together with 40 Battery in Hamilton and 102(Wentworth) Battery in Dundas.

Restructuring of the Militia in 1970 saw 40 and 102 Batteries being struck from the Order of Battle and 11 Battery, while still based in Hamilton, came under Command of the 11th Field Regiment R.C.A. in Guelph. At the same time approval was granted for restoration of 11 Battery's Historical name "Hamilton" and for preservation of 102 Battery's "Wentworth" Designation. As it has for more than 144 years
11(Hamilton-Wentworth) Field Battery continues to serve Canada in Keeping with the mottos of the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery:
"Ubique" and "Quo fas et gloria ducunt" Everywhere, whither right and glory lead".

Hamilton Military Museum (2001)
Department of Culture and Recreation
Corporation of the City of Hamilton

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