The New Brunswick Connection Behind the Captured Vimy Ridge Cannon in Hopewell Cape Just Got Better

The New Brunswick connection to the First World War cannon captured at Vimy Ridge on April 9, 1917 and now found in Hopewell Cape, New Brunswick, just got better. Recent research completed on the German 105 mm K14 cannon, shows that the damage on the barrel of the cannon was probably caused by shells fired by the 4th or 6th New Brunswick Siege Batteries .

The exact location where the K14 was captured on Vimy Ridge is well documented in the war diaries of the 27th Winnipeg Battalion. In fact the diaries give the exact coordinates where the cannon was captured, and when checked against fire mission records for both NB batteries it was discovered that both New Brunswick Batteries fired heavy concentrations of 8 inch high explosive shells on those very German gun positions. Thus it is very possible that the fire that cut the gouge in the barrel was inflicted by New Brunswick's not nearly famous enough Heavy Artillery!

Those NB Siege Batteries were formed in Saint John and included many men from Albert County, including Cyrus Gaskin (d. April 11, 1917). Gaskin is commemorated in the museum's First World War Roll of Honour, and was killed with the 4th Siege Battery not long after Vimy Ridge was captured as the heavies moved forward to help defend it. 

The 4th and 6th New Brunswick Siege Batteries are perpetuated by the modern 3rd Field Artillery Regiment (The Loyal Company) in Saint John and Woodstock. 

The large German First World War 105 mm K14 Cannon that sits in the square in Hopewell Cape, was captured at Vimy Ridge, April 9, 1917, and won by the Citizens of Albert County during the Victory Loans Campaign of 1919 for raising the greatest percentage of monies over their set goal. The people of Albert County raised $347,000.00 tripling their goal of $110,000.00. That is a pretty impressive resume for a gun.

Now that's a story worth saving!

The Victory Cannon Campaign is raising funds to restore the two captured World War One cannons situated in the square in Hopewell Cape. These cannons were captured by Canadians during the Great War, and were awarded to the people of Albert County. You can donate online to the Victory Cannon Campaign here, and best of all you'll be sent a tax receipt!  Click Here to Donate!
This information was provided to us thanks to a joint research project between The Gregg Centre for the Study of War and Society at the University of New Brunswick and 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, RCA (The Loyal Company). The complete findings of this research project will be published in 2016 as a book tentatively titled “Loyal Gunners: A History of 3rd Field Artillery Regiment (The Loyal Company and New Brunswick’s Artillery, 1893-2012.” Once it is published we’ll do a Blog on it.