Directorate of History and Heritage
Welcome to the Directorate of History and Heritage (DHH) website of the Department of National Defence. DHH was founded in 1996, following the amalgamation of the National Defence History Directorate and the Directorate of Military Traditions and Heritage. The roots of our organization go all the way back to the First World War.
Even in the early stages of the Internet, the usefulness of this remarkable communication tool was obvious. From the very beginning, our vision was to make the DHH website an essential tool for Canadian researchers. We have established three goals in this regard: to keep our internal and external audiences informed about the various functions performed by DHH; to make available a maximum number of archives as well as works that have been published by our predecessors, but that are no longer available in book stores; and to provide any other relevant information. Anyone comparing what was available in 1996 with what is offered today will see a world of difference, not only in the quantity, but also in the quality of the information online, which is frequently updated.
DHH serves the Canadian people and the Canadian Forces. DHH enjoys significant credibility in Canada and around the world. The current site, which will more than meet people’s expectations, will add to that credibility with its reliability and the type of information it provides.
The War of 1812
Today in Canadian Military History
HMCS Niobe sails from Halifax to complete her complement at St. John's, Newfoundland. HMCS Saint John and HMCS Swansea sink the German submarine U-247 off Land's End, England.
Captain Bellenden Hutcheson of the Army Medical Corps treated wounded soldiers under intense shelling and small arms fire in the Drocourt-Quéant line near Cagnicourt in France to earn him the Victoria Cross.
Private John Young of the 87th Battalion C.E.F. saved many lives while under heavy enemy fire at the Drocourt-Quéant Line, near Dury in France to earn the Victoria Cross.
Actions by Walter Rayfield of the 7th Battalion, C.E.F. at Arras earn him the Victoria Cross.
Sergeant Arthur Knight of the 10th Battalion, C.E.F., at Villers-lez-Cagincourt, France, bayoneted several of the enemy, killed an officer and two non-commissioned officers, captured 20 other ranks, and forced others to retreat in confusion to earn the Victoria Cross.
The Drocourt-Quéant Line is breached by Canadian troops.
Corporal William Metcalfe of the 16th Battalion, C.E.F. directed a tank along an enemy trench at Arras to earn the Victoria Cross.
Japan officially signs the terms of unconditional surrender.
Captain Coulson Mitchell of the 4th Battalion, Canadian Engineers, C.E.F., saved the bridge over the Canal de l’Escaut near Cambrai, France, to earn the Victoria Cross.