Categories
Articles Canada Ghosts

The Most Haunted Cemetery in Canada is Drummond Hill

Ghost Guide Daniel – – Drummond Hill Cemetery in Niagara Falls has been shrouded in legends and superstitions. Dating back to the most violent battle of the War of 1812. The calm, peaceful cemeteries that many people know are different from this place. Filled with dark energy.

Ghost Guide Daniel Reads the Article

Cemeteries Aren’t Haunted

Historic Postcard of Drummond Hill Cemetery in Niagara Falls
Historic Postcard of Drummond Hill Cemetery in Niagara Falls

I don’t believe cemeteries are haunted. Cemeteries are often used as settings for fictional horror stories and films. These stories purposely invoke fear in the viewer to illicit an emotion such as fear or sadness. They often contain unrealistic elements and do not represent a realistic situation.

Comes from fear of being inside a city of the dead. But this has nothing to do with ghosts.

Instead, it’s about a very human fear of dying. The fear of death affects us all. We often try to avoid the topic in fear of upsetting others or feeling uneasy ourselves. But it’s natural, and normal.

In truth, cemeteries are some of the calmest lands in the world. In most cases, nothing of note occurred on the grounds. No emotional bursts of energy from tragic events. Just open fields dug out for bodies laid to rest.

But Drummond Hill Cemetery is different. Because of the largest war fought in Canada, The War of 1812.

The Battle of Lundy’s Lane

The highest peak of Lundy’s Lane, and here, in 1814 began the bloodiest battle of the War of 1812.  Just under 2,000 men died on the land now called Drummond Hill Cemetery.

Drummond Hill was the site of one of the most bloodiest battles in Canadian history. On July 25th, 1814, American forces attacked British troops stationed on Drummond Hill. The British defended the hill with vigour and bravery, but the battle ended in a decisive victory for the Americans.

Called, the Battle of Lundy’s Lane

The Battle of Lundy’s Lane, or the Battle of Niagara Falls as is sometimes known.

The British army under General Drummond had taken a position to the north of Niagara Falls, while the American forces under Brown took up a position to the south.

Drummond’s plan was to blockade the Americans in their position and force a surrender, but Brown discovered the British plans and ordered his men to attack.

The American forces won the battle, forcing Drummond and his army to retreat.

General Drummond failed to utilize skirmish pickets (soldiers posted ahead of battle), which led to the capture of his guns. He also lacked tactical finesse when executing his attacks, as he didn’t use his light infantry in the best way.

Some say Drummond might have been victorious if he focused on attacking America’s vulnerable left flank. However, his previous experience involved mostly administrative tasks.

Artist Depiction of Battle of Lundy's Lane - Hanging in the New York State Museum
Artist Depiction of Battle of Lundy’s Lane (New York State Museum)

Didn’t Know Who to Shoot

During the battle, smoke gathered. As guns and cannons fired, the air held a fog so thick that no soldier could see.

The intense fighting left smoke so thick soldiers couldn’t see more than a few feet in front of them. Some soldiers made out shapes, but it was impossible to tell who they were fighting.

The lack of visibility led to horrific consequences as soldiers sometimes fired on their own men, just feet away.

So much confusion, frustration and death. For 6 hours they fired into the fog until the battle ended.

War is Over

Just 5 months later, the War of 1812 ended with the signing of the Treaty of Ghent.

In 1814, during the Napoleonic Wars, the United Kingdom and the United States signed this treaty. The goal was to end their naval blockades against one another.

The British, knowing Napoleon’s forces were strong, but his army spread too thin, decided to free up forces stationed in other countries to send them over to France and help fight Napoleon.

The Soldier Ghosts

Visitors see the fallen soldiers walking across gravestones. Reporting shadows, or some transparent figures moving about.

Some are limping, dressed as Royal Scots and British Red-Coats. As they trudge up the hill, sadly walking into battle.

As reported by the Niagara Falls Library website, 3 British soldiers were witnessed climbing the hill towards the site of Lundy House.

Lundy House

Once on the site of Canada One Factory Outlet Mall. Was removed in 1997.

second and last Lundy House before demolition for Mall
2nd & Last Lundy House – Demo’d in 1997 for a mall

Originally the site of a log cabin built by William Lundy. Namesake of Lundy’s Lane. A Quaker who came to British Canada in 1790.

During American Revolution, William Lundy was a pacifist and loyal to the British cause because of his non-fighting ways. As this, he didn’t participate in any fighting and had to flee.

Running from Dark Figures

During a visit by The Ghost Walks (when on a Niagara Ghost Bus Tour), three guests witnessed them while exiting the cemetery.

Girly Ghost Hunters episode from Drummond Hill Cemetery, Niagara Falls

Walking through the front gates, a woman turned to look back. She had felt a cold breeze on her neck.

She screamed out to the others, “Turn around! Look!”

They saw black figures, like shadows hovered behind graves. The shadows hovered behind the headstones as if wanting their attention.

A quick flash of darkness on the daytime grounds. And then, they were gone.

Returning to the bus, the others remained silent. Waiting for the woman to share her story.

“What did you feel in the moment?” I asked this to all three of them. No answer. But their faces said it all. Fear.

Looking out at the Lundy's Lane Monument - Drummond Hill Cemetery 
Looking out at the Lundy’s Lane Monument

The Only Haunted Cemetery?

No.

Find any cemetery with a darker history. Bachelor’s Grove just outside of Chicago for example. An abandoned cemetery in Midlothian, Illinois. Once a private cemetery belonging to a long-gone community, now seemingly in the middle of nowhere.

History gives us a place for energy. With history like Drummond Hill, there’s no doubt something remains. Experiences waiting to happen if we ever return to walking cemeteries for fun. Turning the fear of graves into the dedication to memorials they were meant to be.

Until then, we have our stories.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *