This application is sponsored by the City of Fredericton, New Brunswick.
George Morehouse was the son of Daniel Morehouse of Queensbury, New Brunswick. His father had been a sergeant-major and quartermaster of the Queens Rangers and received a Loyalist land grant following the American Revolution. He later rose to the rank of major in the New Brunswick Militia and commanded the 2nd Battalion Carleton County Militia, headquartered at Woodstock, from 1810 to 1818. Major Morehouse was instrumental in providing assistance to military activity along the upper Saint John River during the war. Major Morehouse was charged with guiding men of the 104th (New Brunswick) Regiment of Foot to their post at Eel River in July 1812, and drilled the men of the 104th at that station in October of that year. He was later mentioned in the spring of 1814 as having aided in the conveyance of seaman from the Maritimes to Canada, where they were to join the British squadron on Lake Ontario. He also spent some time chasing a suspected American agent who was operating in the Woodstock area.
His son, Ensign George Morehouse, was posted further up-river at Grand Falls in February 1813, in command of a detachment of embodied militia. Ensign Morehouse, like his father, was responsible for maintaining the vital lines of communication on the upper St. John River. Among his first duties was to assist the 104th (New Brunswick) Regiment of Foot in their famous overland march to Quebec. The New Brunswick Fencibles were being recruited in early 1813 following the departure of the 104th for Upper Canada and George Morehouse applied to join it. He completed recruiting for the rank of temporary lieutenant in March 1814, at which time he submitted his preference for a permanent ensigncy. His request was recommended by HQ and confirmed by letter from the Horse Guards in July 1814.
In January 1815, he was in command of the detachment at Meductic, along the St. John River. The purpose of this post was to guard the Eel River portage that was a possible American invasion route. The District of Maine lying east of the Penobscot River had been captured by the British in the summer and fall of 1814 and annexed to the province of New Brunswick. On 9 January, Morehouse was sent orders to “capture” the village of Houlton, District of Maine. He had accomplished his mission by 14 January and submitted his report to the headquarters in Fredericton. The following oath was administered to the nineteen male members of the village that were over the age of sixteen:
“We the undersigned do swear that as long as we shall continue within the Territory East of Penobscot River which has been taken possession of by His Britannic Majesty, we will behave peaceably and quietly, and will not carry arms, or in any respect, act in a hostile manner towards His Majesty, or any of His Subjects, So help me God”.
This was the only expedition launched from New Brunswick against American or formerly American territory. The Treaty of Ghent that had been signed on 24 December 1814 returned the eastern portion of the District of Maine to the United States. The border between this area and British North America remained in dispute until the Ashburton-Webster Treaty of 1842.
George Morehouse married Mamre, daughter of John Ingraham of Bear Island, in 1820. She was the grand-daughter of Sgt. Benjamin Ingraham, a well known Loyalist. They settled at the Muniac (now Kilburn Station, Victoria County). George Morehouse was a prosperous farmer and held several important offices. He was a Crown surveyor, Justice of the Peace and a captain of the 2nd Battalion York Militia from 1822 to 1832. As such he played a prominent role in the Maine-New Brunswick boarder dispute of 1820s and 1830s. He is remembered as the magistrate that issued the writ that sparked the “Roostook Riot” in 1827. Morehouse was elected to the New Brunswick Assembly in 1834 and sat in the House until 1837, when he retired from politics. In 1839 he moved back to the farmstead at Upper Queensbury. He was a central figure in the erection of St. Thomas Anglican Church in 1848-49 and was for many years a church warden. George Morehouse died in 1866, leaving three children.
Darrel N. Butler. “The History of the Morehouse Family” (1997). A background paper, written by the Chief Curator, on the history relating to the Morehouse house that is now located at Kings Landing, New Brunswick.
Robert L. Dallison. A Neighbourly War: New Brunswick and the War of 1812. Fredericton: Goose Lane Editions and the New Brunswick Military Heritage Project, 2012.
Public Archives of New Brunswick. RS 336/A.2 and RS8-49 mfm F-7906
Veteran SummaryGeorge Morehouse
Ensign, New Brunswick Fencibles
Place of Birth
Upper Queensbury, NB, CAN
Place of Death
Upper Queensbury, NB, CAN
Died on: 22 JUL 1866
Reason: Old Age
Location of Grave
Forest Hill Cemetery, Forest Hill Road
Fredericton, NB, CAN
Latitude: 45.938997N Longitude: -66.634608