Sunday, December 18, 2011

Walking with Joseph

Six Months and Counting 18 Dec 2011 [First of three posts prior to 18 June 1812]
Joseph Stanzel is my He was born [tbd] somewhere near Strasbourg, France? about 1788. I estimate he was conscripted into Napoleon's Army in 1806. From a family document the method of recruitment in those days was rather simple. It was carried out by a recruitment officer who came to each home. "If you had sons eighteen yrs of age or older, they were obliged to reach into a leather pouch which contained white and black balls. If you drew a white ball, you stayed at home, if a black ball, you were in the army. [I wonder if this is the origin of the expression 'blacked balled'] If the army was in need of more recruits, the officer removed some of the white balls. There was no medical checkup in those days and the young man was sent off for training usually in the infantry"
A few events in Europe; French Revolution 1789-1795; Napoleon in Egypt 1798 and he returned to France 23 Aug 1799; Brittain attacked Copenhagen, 2 Apr 1801; Peace of Amiens, 24 Mar 1802; Brittain declares war on France, 16 May 1803; Napoleon, b. 15 Aug 1769 in Corsica, crowns himself Emperor, 2 Dec 1804; Nelson dies at Battle of Trafalgar, 21 Oct 1805; Confederation of the Rhine, 12 July 1806; British Bombard Copenhagen and sieze Danish Fleet, 2-7 Sep 1807.
Most of above events taken from 'The Napoleonic Wars' by Gunther Rothenberg, 1999.
Walking with Joseph will deal with events in Europe. On 18 Jan 2012 we start 'Walking with Andrew' which will deal with events in North America. Andrew Spearman was a Sgt in 100th Reg't. We will hear more about him later. Both Joseph and Andrew settled in Goulbourn Twp as part of the Richmond Military Settlement, 1818

Friday, November 18, 2011

War of 1812

I have been on a virtual walk since 1 March 2004 when I left St. John's NFLD. I am about 70 K's short of Inuvik, NWT on the Demster Hwy.
So I am taking two new walkers under my 'wing' as we walk towards the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, 18 June 1812. First will be 'Walking with Joseph' He is my gr gr grandfather, Joseph Stanzel, who according to the family story was in Napoleon's army before coming to Canada. He will be walking around Europe and his adventures will be posted in December, February and April. Second will be 'Walking with Andrew'. He is Sgt. Andrew Spearman of the 100th Regiment [99th Reg't after Feb 1816] and will be walking with his Regiment during their stay in Canada. His adventures will be posted in January, March and May.
All posts will be on/near 18th of each month
Joseph's posts will cover the years 1806 ,the year it is estimated that he was conscripted into Napoleon's Army, until 1812.
Andrew's posts will cover the years 1805, the year his regiment had its traumatic voyage to Canada, until 1812. Each post will be in 2 year 'steps'
Posts for both during the years 1812-1814 will cover events in both theatres as we walk thru the calender
There may be posts about the first of each month dealing with points of interest about the war

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Walking around Canada

Since leaving Ft. McPherson on 3rd of Sept I have been walking in slow gear. Reached the MacKenzie River crossing on 9 Oct. a distance of 56K's . From the river it is 120 K's to the Inuvik Airport where we find pavement. What a change but due to a peculiarity of the area we have permafrost. The road was like riding in a boat on slightly rough seas. Only 10K's to Inuvik, the end of the road. When I arrive at Inuvik on my virtual walk I have to determine my next leg of my walk but I will be virtually flying somewhere.
I have just received a strange dispatch. I have been informed that there is an order to the Quartermaster for two pairs of Boots. My informant would not disclose the source of these orders but I suspect that someone or sometwo are to start walking?? I wonder if it has to do with the date on the calender. 'Walking with Jim' may have company?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Walking Around Canada

To-day is 29 Sept 2011 and I have been negligent about posting my virtual walk. Since crossing into the North West territories [18 July] I travelled along the Dempster Hwy, all gravel,reaching Midway Lake. There was a huge music fest underway.[44k] Next we crossed the Peel River [74k, 25 Aug] by cable ferry. B was driving and had a bumpy drive up onto the ferry. The river was higher than normal and they had to build up the ramp so it wasn't hard packed. 51K's back the road descended 853 meters out of the mountains. A spectacular view. On 3 Sept I reached Fort McPherson [86k]
In the real world B and I spent 2 weeks in Yellowknife with a trip into Little Doctor Lake, 1 to 6 Aug 2011, where we spent 6 days in a lodge on the lake with no one around. Closest civilation was Fort Simpson, a 40 minute flight away by float plane. On our way back to civilization we made a stop at Virginia Falls, a real spectacular sight [twice as high as Niagara Falls]. Word is that we have completed or sojourns into the [no appropriate adjective exists]northern parts of Canada

Monday, June 20, 2011

Walking Around Canada

Last Thurs 16 June 2011, I crossed the artic circle on my virtual walk heading for Inuvik, NWT.
I have been on this walk since 1 March 2004 in St. John's NFLD. When I reach Inuvik I will backtrack to Flat Falls and head west to Dawson City and loop thru Alaska back to Whitehorse.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Walking around Canada

On my walk around canada I reached Eagle Plains on 26 May which is about the halfway point on the Dempster Hwy to Inuvik. I was physically there in early august 2010. Expect to be at the article circle this week. The picture on my Facebook is of me at the sign indicating article circle
66 degrees and 33' 14/6/11

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Walking Around Canada

Chapman lake, the largest on the trip is at 116.0K and at 120.3K we pass the northern boundry of Tombstone park. On 5 Dec 2010 we actually drive down a runway, at 124.4K- no parking or stopping allowed. There are two runways, used when they built the highway, now for emergencies. The Dempster now follows Engineer Creek down to the Ogilvie R. starting 168.3 to 237K, here on 29 Dec. On 14 Jan 2011 reached Engineer Creek Campground and Sapper Hill at 193.8K. If we ever go back we will use these campgrounds? At 195.0 K we cross Engineer Creek bridge and the Ogilvie R. watershed. William Ogilvie, after who all the 'Ogilvie' features are named, was a surveyor sent to the area to determine the 141st meridian, border between Yukon and Alaska in 1887. On 11 Feb at 237.0K we drive down an airstrip, no parking or stopping, that was used in construction of the highway. Now for emergencies.
On 17 Feb we start up Seven mile hill to reach the 300m high Eagle plain plateau
On 24 Feb we reach the Ogilvie-Peel viewpoint at 259.0K. Great view! these rivers flow into the Mackenzie basin. On the road to the richardson mts [9 mar 2011]