The Vindication of Timothy Bedel - The Embarrassment at The Cedars
Timothy Bedel’s story is one of redemption.
His involvement in the Invasion of Canada turned out to be extremely embarrassing.
However, with a little hard work, he was able to vindicate himself in the eyes of his nation.
When New Hampshire chased out it’s Royal Governor and established a Provincial Assembly, Timothy Bedel was elected to represent the town of Bath.
His position within the Revolutionary Government, coupled with his experience in the French and Indian War, led his being commissioned as a Colonel.
Bedel recruited over 1000 men and set off to join the Continental Army.
Bedel’s Regiment, as his men came to be known, participated in the Invasion of Canada.
In May of 1776, Timothy was instructed by Brigadier General Benedict Arnold to station his soldiers at The Cedars, about 30 miles from Montreal.
Bedel abruptly left his regiment to meet with friendly Native Americans in an effort to gather intelligence on the enemy’s position.
Instead of returning to The Cedars, he went to Montreal to report his findings.
The Battle of the Cedars
While he was away, the British arrived at The Cedars and attacked the Americans.
The engagement was minor but his number 2, Isaac Butterfield, quickly surrendered.
Bedel and Butterfield both took the blame for the loss. They were court martialed and cashiered from the army.
Instead of hanging his head and quietly hiding in his house, Timothy Bedel further dedicated himself to the Patriot Cause.
He volunteered with New Hampshire Militia and valiantly battled in the field.
The following year, he was reinstated in the Continental Army.
His honor restored, Bedel recruited another regiment as well as serving on the staff of Major General Phillip Schuyler.
After the Revolutionary War was complete, Bedel became a friend of the Abenaki Nation in northern New Hampshire. He unsuccessfully fought for them to be compensated in land for their siding with the Americans.
Founders were embarrassed at many points in the American Revolution
Here are some other men who were in embarrassing situations:
The Invasion of Canada is a remarkable story.
‘Benedict Arnold’s Army’ tells of the extremely unlikely (and ultimately unsuccessful) attack on the northern border.
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