Rebel Heartland


Municipal Office

395 Mulock Drive P.O. Box 328 Station Main, Newmarket, Ontario
L3Y 4X7

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Date: September 22 to 23, 2018
Location: Fairy Lake Park, Water Street
Time: Saturday 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

A re-enactment of the 1837 Upper Canada Rebellion, in which Newmarket played a vital role. The ARCH Committee, comprised of the Newmarket Historical Society, Heritage Newmarket, and the Elman W. Campbell Museum, will present a re-enactment and encampment at Fairy Lake park on September 22 and 23, 2018.  The event will involve an encampment of military re-enactors, sutlers, vendors, and craftspeople. FREE!

On Saturday, the rebels will recruit followers at the Farmers' Market and on Main Street to hear William Lyon Mackenzie's speech encouraging armed rebellion against the colonial government. This will be followed by a march down Main Street, to be met by the militia and be dispersed.  In the afternoon, the rebels will encounter the militia at "Montgomery's Tavern" (in Fairy Lake Park) and a "battle" will follow.  Samuel Lount and Peter Matthews will attempt to flee but will be apprehended and turned over to the Lieutenant-Governor, who will order their execution. The "hanging" will take place in front of the Old Town Hall. Watch for an old fashioned "barn dance" Saturday night. 

On Sunday, social life in the colony will be represented by demonstrations, a church service, a boxed lunch social and encampment activities.

For more information call: 905-953-5314

Event Map:

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Event Schedule:

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Related Lectures:

Heritage Lecture Series: 

The 1837 Rebellion: Its Causes, its Collapses and Mackenzie’s Escape - Through Newmarket

  • September 6, 2018
  • Old Town Hall (460 Botsford Street)
  • 7 to 8 p.m. Followed by Q&A
  • $5/person. Register or drop in, course code 116562 at

Guest speaker: Author Chris Raible, followed by a Q&A.Downtown Newmarket was once a gathering hub for rebels and militia as they clashed over the future of Upper Canada. Join us for a brief history and learn about Newmarket’s own Rebel Heartland Story. 

Newmarket Historical Society Lecture

Peter Matthews: The Other 1837 Martyr

  • September 19, 2018
  • Newmarket Community Centre and Lions Hall (200 Doug Duncan Drive)
  • Free admission, donation appreciated

John Edwards and Julia Oaks from the Pickering Museum Village - while in costume - will tell the fascinating story of Captain Peter Matthews’ role as a rebel in the 1837 Upper Canada Rebellion. Authorities made an example of Matthews and another prominent rebel, Samuel Lount and convicted them both of treason. They were publicly hanged in 1838 and became martyrs of the rebellion.

Presented by the Newmarket Historical Society, for more info visit us at
or email us at

Sponsored by:



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St. Andrew's Community Lunch Group


  • Incorporated Militia of Upper Canada
  • Lloydtown Rebels
  • Upper Canada Volunteer Regiments Organization
  • Newmarket Citizens Band
  • Danceweavers (English Country Dancing)
  • Bruce Whittaker (trapper)
  • Doug Scott (gallows maker)
  • Tibor Gaidacs (blacksmith)
  • Sharon Miller (seamstress)
  • Chris Wilkinson (First Nations trader)
  • Suzanne Angle (leather working)
  • John Foreman (broad axe hewing)
  • Al and Beth Bristow (ironmongers)
  • Common Ground
  • St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church
  • St. Paul's Anglican Church
  • Special thanks to: The Maid's Cottage (buttered loaf game) and Doug Scott (gallows builder)