EAST COAST HERITAGE VIGNETTE – THE NEW BRUNSWICK FENIAN RAID OF 1866 – The Fenians were an Irish Republican organization based in the United States. Their mission was to pressure the U.K. into withdrawing its stronghold back in Ireland. So in April of 1866; directly after the U.S. Civil War, a plot was hatched by the Fenians to capture New Brunswick. About 1000 armed Fenians arrived in the Eastport – Calais area of Maine intending to invade Campobello Island. The British, wanting to end the threat, immediately sent a half dozen Warships and about 700 British Regulars into the area. In short, the Fenians seeing this display of British military strength, skedaddled from the area ending the threat to New Brunswick. This whole event led to New Brunswick joining Confederation shortly thereafter. And now you know …..
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