Monday, Sept. 22, 2014

Community News

A Hundred Years Strong

Loyalists honour founding members at museum

Submitted by Marlene Dance UELAC

 

Flag bearers (left to right); Koralee Heibner, Shay Thornton, Alan Reid, Branch President Shirley Dargatz and Piper Dr. Dan McDermid.

 

n Sept. 20th, 2014, Chilliwack Branch UELAC celebrated the 100th anniversary of the founding of the United Empire Loyalists' Association by presenting a plaque to the Chilliwack Museum honouring the many families of Loyalist descent who found their way to Chilliwack

 

President Shirley Dargatz presided over the event which began with Piper Dr. Dan McDermid leading the parade of flags and special guests into the Council Chambers of the Old City Hall (now the Chilliwack Museum).

 

Mayor Sharon Gaetz presented the plaque on behalf of the branch to Museum Director Ron Denman. Then both assisted Marlene Dance UE with the presentation of Loyalist certificates to 9 branch members.

 

The dedication on the plaque reads in part:  The UELAC was established by Royal Charter in 1914, as a means of bringing together the descendants of those Loyalists who left the Thirteen Colonies at the time of the American Revolution (1775-1783) in order to remain under a Constitutional Monarchy.

 

The Loyalists were multi-racial, multi-ethnic and multi-religious. It is estimated that over 50,000 refugees came into what became Canada.

 

This plaque is placed to honour the many families of Loyalist descent who traversed the continent westward and crossed the Rockies finding their way to Chilliwack beginning in the 1850's.

 

Their names are memorialized throughout the District on landmarks, streets, parks and buildings. In moving west they helped to open another frontier exemplifying the true spirit of adventure and individualism expressed by their Loyalist forbearers.

 

About 41 members and friends joined in the event. Refreshments followed.

 

 

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