This Week in History
The Queen Elizabeth Chalice
This story was initially published in 2001
On September 27, 1984, Queen Elizabeth II met Chief Melville Hill and other Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte to commemorate the bicentennial of their settlement in Eastern Ontario. Through the presentation of gifts, the Mohawks and the British Crown renewed a centuries-old alliance.
Queen Anne's Chapel was a place of worship until the American Revolution began in 1776. Forced to choose between the Crown and the Americans, the Mohawks left for Canada. Some went to the Grand River, near Brantford, while others went to Tyendinaga on the Bay of Quinte, near Kingston. According to tradition, they buried the communion service near the chapel. A party of chiefs later recovered the service and divided it between the Grand River and Tyendinaga settlements.
At the close of the ceremony on that day in 1984, Chief Melville Hill showed the Queen the communion silver in the possession of the Mohawks of Tyendinaga. It was an historic moment: Queen Anne's descendant and the descendants of the chiefs who met Queen Anne in 1710, renewing their alliance through the gift of silver.
Due to its rich history, Christ Church is a national historic site of Canada. Her Majesty's/St. Paul's Chapel of the Mohawks, located on the Grand River Territory of the Six Nations near Brantford, is also a national historic site of Canada and home to pieces of the Queen Anne communion service belonging to the Six Nations.
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