BEEKMANTOWN, NY CEMETERY ON SATURDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2022, AT 1:00 PM
– John C Gosselin, Brief Introduction, acknowledge Benefactors Jeff Luck and Society of the Cincinnati
– Serge Pouliot, Master of Ceremonies, V.P. Assoc. Quebec – France
– Norm Davis – Beekmantown Supervisor
– Gary Vancour – Beekmantown Historian
– Jonathan Carman – Staff member for Rep. Elise Stefanik
– Dr. Gerard Charpentier – President, Ordre Lafayette Order / USA
– Luc Desilets – Member Canadian Parliament, Riding Riviere – des – Prairies
– Jean-Claude Belanger Cyr – Author of Books, French Canadian History in North America
- Trumpet, “Il Silenzio”, Matt Van Wagner
- Norm Davis, John Gosselin, Unveiling
- John Gosselin, salute memorial (photos)
- Jean-Louis Lefebvre, President, Assoc. Quebec – France (Closing Statement)
Gérard CHARPENTIER speech
Distinguished representatives of New York State and of the Province of Quebec, Presidents of organizations, Members of the Gosselin Family, Members of the Society of the Cincinnati, Members of the Ordre Lafayette Order, Ladies, and Gentlemen.
With the unveiling today in Beekmantown of this new plaque dedicated to Clément Gosselin, it is for me a new stage in an adventure that began ten years ago. I first visited the region of Beekmantown and this cemetery in 2012 as I made my first contact with the city.
Then in 2013 in Quebec, more precisely on November 9, I met Serge Pouliot for the first time and I told him about my research relating to Clément Gosselin and the project that the Lafayette Order had in mind, to create a memorial site in Sainte-Famille to honor Clément Gosselin and his comrades in arms during the American Revolution.
After this first meeting, four activities were initiated and sponsored by the Ordre Lafayette Canada in Quebec and organized by Serge Pouliot. The most important was on July 21, 2018, with the official unveiling of the Clément Gosselin plaque in the park of the ancestors near the church of Sainte-Famille.
That said, one might still wonder what the Ordre Lafayette has in common with a native of Sainte-Famille, at the time under the French regime of New France (So French citizens), and buried here in Beekmantown, New York!
In short, the Ordre Lafayette Order is a French associative Order with independent branches – one in the United States and one in Canada. It is a non-political, non-religious, non-union organization, dedicated not only to promoting the memory of the engagements of the Marquis de Lafayette -The Hero of two worlds – during both the American and French Revolutions but also to maintaining in present times a collective memory of these historical moments which are the basis of our modern societies.
In fact, Clément Gosselin who was fighting in the Continental Army as part of the 2nd Canadian Regiment – also known as the Hazen Regiment – with the rank of Captain would have crossed paths twice with Lafayette, while he was serving as Major General in the Continental Army under the orders of George Washington. Two probable meetings which remain to be confirmed, however, would have taken place:
*For the first time in February 1778, in the region of Albany, as part of a project to reconquer Canada. Major General Lafayette had come at the request of George Washington to assess the combat capabilities of the Hazen Regiment. What he then discovered was not an army of 2,500 men as promised, but about 900 men living in very precarious conditions and above all without any equipment or supervision, and no formal military training. The project was therefore abandoned.
*And again, for the second time in October 1781, in Yorktown, Virginia, at the end of the Revolutionary War during the siege of Yorktown, where the now well-structured 2nd Canadian Regiment was placed under the command of Major General Lafayette. The regiment that Clément Gosselin was still part of was assigned to work in the trenches. He was injured on October 13 by splinters of wood projected during a bombardment, six days before the victorious final battle.
This is why today, more than two and a half centuries later, I am as President of both the Ordre Lafayette Order USA and Ordre Lafayette Canada proud to be able to honor, jointly with the towns of Beekmantown and Sainte-Famille, the memory of Clément Gosselin and all his comrades in arms.
Thank you very much
Press Release For more information contact: John C. Gosselin, Society of the Cincinnati (802) 343-6666 JohnCG4591@gmail.com Gary VanCour, Historian Town of Beekmantown 518-563-4650 firstname.lastname@example.org A Memorial Event in the Town of Beekmantown For immediate release:
Major Clement Gosselin Memorial Dedication Ceremony Beekmantown, New York 9/23/2022 On Saturday, October 8, 2022, at 1:00 PM, the Town of Beekmantown, in collaboration with the Association des Familles Gosselin, and the Quebec France Foundation, will conduct a memorial ceremony to honor Revolutionary War hero Major Clement Gosselin. The unveiling of the monument will take place at the East Beekmantown Cemetery, 26 Ashley Road, Plattsburgh, NY 12901. The plaque will be unveiled in the presence of Town Supervisor Mr. Norm Davis, Mr. John C. Gosselin, a direct descendant of the Major, and U.S. Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (or her Representative) along with other dignitaries and honored guests. Major Gosselin, who was born in Ste-Famille, Isle d’Orleans, Quebec, served in the 2nd Canadian Regiment of the Continental Army. According to John Gosselin, “Major Gosselin worked primarily as a spy and reported directly to General-in-Chief George Washington. He survived a serious leg wound at the Battle of Yorktown, the decisive battle of the Revolutionary War. This victory enabled the 13 Original Colonies to gain independence from Great Britain and soon became the United States of America.” For his service, Major Gosselin received a large land grant in what is now Beekmantown, where he lived after the war, died, and was buried.
The Town of Beekmantown acknowledges the Ordre Lafayette of Quebec, which initiated the project in 2013 to recognize the virtues of Major Clement Gosselin,
along with the participation of L’Association des Families Gosselin and l’Association France – Quebec, Jean-Pierre Turcotte, Mayor of Ste.-Famille, and the generous benefactors, Mr. Jeff Luck of Luck Brothers Inc. in Plattsburgh, NY, and the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati, for funding the monument.
This event is free to attend and open to the public. Further resources for Major Clement Gosselin include: Biography: https://pasocietyofthecincinnati.org/gallery_post/capt-clement-gosselin/ TV documentary (French w/English subtitles): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMC4KmpP31Y