"Saint John - Born of the American Revolution" Top 5 Page for this destination Saint John by 850prc
Saint John Travel Guide: 126 reviews and 262 photos
As we Americans all learned in our school history classes, we had a revolutionary war with Great Britain. At first, things were going really badly and it looked as if we were doomed. But then Washington crossed the Delaware and mopped up the Hessians on Christmas Eve. The fighting continued on for several more years until Benjamin Franklin convinced the French to help our cause. Fast forward to 1781 and Virginia's Yorktown peninsula. Washington's army cornered Lord Cornwallis and the British forces and, with the undeniable assistance of the French fleet and Admiral deGrasse, the British "saw the light", and chose to end their hold on colonial America.
There was much celebration and the new nation was born. But - there were people who were on the other side, people who were NOT happy with the way things worked out. These folks were the loyalist, loyal to the crown, loyal subjects of King George III. And, revolution or not, they wanted to STAY loyal subjects of the British crown. So when things didn't go their way in America, they looked north to Canada. THAT is the genesis of the town of St. John, it was essentially founded by loyalists fleeing the new United States of America.
There were other waves of people fleeing issues that continued to expand the St John population. In the early 1800s, thousands fled the Napoleonic Wars in Europe, finding their way to both Canada and St John. And when the potato famine decimated Ireland in the 1840s, St John grew along with the American cities to the south.
Yes, St John is a proud loyalist town, and they owe their birth to these American ex-patriots' move northward after the 1783 Paris Peace Treaty.
The photo above shows the final resting place of a member of the Royal Artillery. He's buried, along with several dozen other contemporaries, in the downtown loyalist cemetary. Perhaps he was a redcoat who chose to stay on this side of the Atlantic - albeit a bit north of the new United States - after the British went home.
Incorporated in 1785 (two years after the Paris Peace Treaty ended the American revolution hostilities), St. John was the first city to be incorporated in Canada.
Saint John is a terrific place to enjoy a huge slice of Maritimes life and culture.
And, it's not a bad place to enjoy a big slice of Sicilian pie, too. :)
- Pros:As welcoming a citizenry as I've ever encountered.... literally a town full of volunteer tourist guides.
- Cons:Most visitors really would like a little more time in this friendly town.
- In a nutshell:Enjoyable and hospitable to the "nth" degree - A great place to visit.
One thing that we noticed throughout our visit to Saint John was the pride with which locals view their city. All you... more travel advice
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