Provincial Marine get donations of cannonballs and portraits

Provincial Marine donations

By Ron Giofu


The Provincial Marine has added new artifacts to its collection, which include portraits and cannonballs.

Through a grant from the Windsor-Essex Community Foundation, the Provincial Marine have acquired ten cannonballs from honorary member and local resident Terry Hall.

Hall said he owned the cannonballs since he purchased them as a teenager some 40 years ago.

“I felt they should stay in the community,” he said, of the reason he originally purchased them.

Hall noted the cannonballs were originally found in the river at the King’s Navy Yard when a breakwall was built by the Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Co. in 1934-35. A local antique dealer, C.R. Lalonde, who occupied the Park House in its original location at the foot of Gore St., would later sell them to Hall, who wanted them kept for local history.

Allowing the Provincial Marine to purchase them was something he felt was the right thing to do.

“I always thought they should come back to the Navy Yard,” he said.

The Provincial Marine’s plan for the cannonballs is to add them to the monument next March when the two additional figures are added. The monument is located in the north end of King’s Navy Yard Park, near the Commissariat.

Hall also had a hand in the Provincial Marine acquiring six portraits of individuals important to history. Hall loaned the historical portraits to the Provincial Marine for the War of 1812/13 activities. Through the generosity of well-known local woodcarver and Provincial Marine honorary member Grant Bone, the Provincial Marine were able to purchase them and ensure that they will be on permanent display in the Commissariat.

Bone was quick to give credit to Hall for the donation.

“He’s the donor,” said Bone. “I’m just the facilitator.”

Bone has commissioned works on display at Fort Malden National Historic Site, noted Hall.

The portraits had been assembled by Hall during the town’s bicentennial in 1996. Portraits include King George III, British monarch during the War of 1812; General George Prevost, Commander of British Forces in the War of 1812; Major-General Isaac Brock, victor at Fort Detroit 1812; Captain Robert Barclay, defeated at the naval Battle of Lake Erie 1813; General Peregrine Maitland, Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada 1818-28; Jeffrey, Lord Amherst, Commander-in-Chief of British Forces in North America  1758-63, and for whom the town is named.

Hall states the portraits were created by a special process of printing on canvas. The portrait of King George is the only copy of a painting by Joshua Reynolds in the Senate of Canada, a gift from Queen Victoria at the Confederation of Canada 1867.

“The Provincial Marine would like to add our heartfelt appreciation for the donations,” said president David May.

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