Dolsen's Rifles


Captain John Dolsen's
Company Number 5
1st Regiment
Kent Militia

In the Militia return dated 24 March 1813, the Fifth Company of the 1st Regiment, Kent Militia commanded by Captain John Dolsen. This was a Rifle Company with one hundred and sixteen issued government rifles and thirty additional privately owned rifles.

Since it was not common practice for British Canadian Militia Companies to be armed with rifles, Captain Dolsen's Company of Rifles was somewhat unique in the War of 1812.

The History of the Kent Regiment

- 1792 -

The Inception of the Kent Regiment.

- 1794 -

Jay's Treaty states the British agree to relinquish control of the lands on the American side of the Detroit River.

- 1796 -

Fort Detroit passes to American control. The British troops moved to Canadian side of the Detroit River.

- 1812 -

Anglo-American War declared and Kent Militia Regiment dispatched to Sandwich Frontier. On 16 August 1812, The Kents participate in the capture of Fort Detroit. Dolsen's Company of Rifles are part of the garrison force at Fort Detroit. The Kent Regiment take part in the skirmish at Amherstburg and Fort Malden. The Battle of Queenston Heights on 13 October 1812 found the Kent Regiment in attendance.

- 1813 -

The Kents are present at the Battle of Fort Meigs. Although not as a formal unit, members of Dolsen's Rifles were present at the Battle of the Thames on 4 October 1813. The Kents move to the Niagara region for the remainder of the war.

The Re-enacted Unit

This unit is now being portrayed by a group of seasoned re-enactors in Southwestern Ontario. The group attends reenactments in Canada and the United States throughout the year. We hold "Authenticity" and "Historical Correctness" as the main goal of the group.

This recreated Company of Rifles is dressed in 1813 British pattern coatees of green wool with red facings and armed with rifles as approved by the British Government during the War of 1812. Acting as a light company, Dolsen' Rifles will enhance Ranger and Artillery Companies at battle reenactments. According to historical accounts, The Kent Regiment also helped to man cannons during the War of 1812. Similarly, this company of men also portray a cannon crew at selected events.



Interested parties are urged to contact
the Commander of
The 41st Regiment of Foot
as membership in Dolsen's Rifles
is closed at this point in time.