Alderson, Christopher

Rifleman Charles Alderson, used with permission of Brian Rollason.

Rifleman Christopher Alderson was born circa 1826 in England, son of Christopher and Ann Alderson. He was employed as a $400 a year messenger and had married his wife Janet Black on March 2, 1866 exactly three months before he was called up as a member of No. 7 Company, Educational Department, Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada and rushed to resist the Fenian invasion and participate in what would become known as the Battle of Ridgeway.

After Lieutenant Colonel Booker, the officer commanding all troops in the battle, had order the bugler to sound “form a hollow square”, Alderson was shot through the heart while in the square or attempting to enter it. He fell dead in the road.

His wife and her nine year old son from a previous marriage were left destitute by his death, receiving an annual pension of $110.

From the “Ridgeway: The American Fenian Invasion and the 1866 Battle That Made Canada” by Peter Vronsky.

Alderson is buried in St James Cemetery in Toronto along with other casualties of the battle.


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