28 April

Chevalier de Lévis (1720-1787)

Lévis Defeats General Murray

When the hockey experts pick their "three stars", they usually choose two players from the winners and one from the losers. For much the same reason, history has not accorded Montcalm and Lévis the recognition they deserve as great soldiers.

François Gaston, Chevalier de Lévis, was one of Montcalm's most valuable officers. He refused to give up the battle for Canada after the fall of Quebec and spent the winter of 1759-1760 in Montreal, building up a new army. The British had not been able to capture Montreal in the autumn of 1759 because the news of Wolfe's victory at Quebec reached General Amherst too late in the year.

By April, 1760, General Lévis had recruited 7,000 men and was ready to try to recapture Quebec. One of his biggest problems was to transport this large force down the St. Lawrence River without being detected. He managed this, somehow or other, and landed at Cap Rouge (where the Quebec Bridge is), on a wild, rainy night.

Unfortunately for Lévis, at this moment one of his men fell overboard, but saved himself by grabbing a large piece of floating ice. A British sloop, patrolling off Quebec, heard the man's cries and picked him up. He was brought before General Murray, commander of the garrison at Quebec, at three in the morning. He told the general everything. Murray had just enough time to blow up an ammunition clump at Ste. Foy, so that it would not fall into Lévis' hands, and to establish a line of defense outside the city walls.

The battle of Ste. Foy was fought on April 28, 1760, and was one of the bloodiest in Canadian history. Murray was beaten and had to return to Quebec. Each side lost 1,000 men. Now it was a question of time. Murray hoped he could hold on until British reinforcements could get up the St. Lawrence. Lévis knew he had to bombard the city into submission before that happened. Murray was the victor eventually, because British ships began to arrive on May 10, before Lévis was able to break through. The French had to return to Montreal to get ready to fight again.


28 April

-1726    Charles Le Moyne was made the first governor of the French fort at Niagara. 1817 The Rush-Bagot Treaty was signed.

             Britain and the States agreed not to have guns or ships of war on the frontier waters of the Great Lakes.

            The steamer Ontario, the first on the Great Lakes, made the round trip between Lewiston and Ogdensburg in ten days.

-1967 Expo '67 opened.