An obscure fort which figured in the Crimean War 1854-56, gave this community its name.
One of the stumbling blocks to the British assault on the Russian Black Sea port of Sevastopol, was the Redan, a fort in the centre of the bastion’s defences. British troops made two terrific attacks on the Redan, only to be beaten back with terrible losses. However, artillery pounding, and heavy shelling from off-shore cruisers, softened up the defences, and in 1856 the British mounted a final assault and took Redan. The story of Redan was widely told in that year of 1856 when the good fathers of this community met in a school house to choose a name.
The old community of Redan is reached via Hwy 29, turning east at Addison onto the Addison-Greenbush Road. A couple of miles east of Addison, an old dirt and gravel road leads north directly into the heart of this old community. The old Anglican Church stands out as a landmark as the centre of Redan. The Elizabethtown-Kitley township line runs just north of this community.
Redan was settled in the years 1840-1860 by Irish Immigrants. The original inhabitants were the Youngs, the Marshalls, Burnetts, Pritchards, Motts, Richards and Wilsons. The old Richards’ homestead here was originally part of a clergy reserve. In 1854 the government released all clergy reserve land to the public and the Richards family took a 100 acre plot in the centre of this community.
Redan School was located a short distance from the Mott homestead. The original schoolhouse was a log structure located near the junction of the Rocksprings and Redan Roads. The site is now covered by a swamp. There was a cheese factory in Redan located just north of the school. The factory burned down around 1940 and was never rebuilt. Redan did not have a mill and local farmers took their grain to Addison or Greenbush for grinding.
All Saints Church served this community faithfully for 77 years until a dwindling congregation and lack of funds forced the Anglican Church to close it down in 1970. The church was built in 1892-93 by Anglicans who were strong supporters of Sir John A. Macdonald. Some say that the church was intended as a memorial to the statesman who died in 1891. (Recorder and Times, Darling Collection Book 3)
The Athens Reporter and County of Leeds Advertiser
Excerpts have been taken from this paper referencing the following hamlet for the years 1889, 1894 and 1895
Redan– March 18, 1889
On Friday last, while Mr. Wolf was sawing wood with his machine at Mr. John Pritchard’s near Redan, the heavy fly wheel of the machine burst, sending large fragments flying with terrific force in all directions. One piece, weighing 19 pounds, was thrown a distance of 60 rods. One spoke cut off a man’s boot and then penetrated a block of wood two inches. Another spoke was hurled to a great height, and in descending almost grazed a man, while a flying fragment cut the pants off another man. There were several other narrow escapes, and considering that the wheel burst in the midst of eight horses and nine men, it was wonderful that not even an injury was inflicted.
Tuesday Sep 10, 1895 issue
A sad gloom was cast over the home of Mr. and Mrs. Wellington Barrington of the Redan on Saturday evening last by the death of their little baby boy aged five months.
Tuesday Oct 1, 1895 issue
Redan, Saturday Sept. 7 –
Mr. F.L. Moore and family have moved into the residence formerly occupied by Mr. M. Banford. It has been remodelled and refurnished and is now one of the prettiest in the district.
Ditching has been the topic in this district for some time. Mr. Richard Stafford appealed against the award of Mr. Bryce J. Saunders, C.E, of the Township of Elizabethtown. The appeal came before His Hon. Judge Reynolds at the town hall in New Dublin. The Judge did not see to agree with Mr. Saunders in his award in regard to Mr, Stafford and decided to keep him (Mr. Stafford) our altogether. Both sides were ably defended by two of our most eminent and learned lawyers. Despite the effort of Mr. Lewis, lawyer, his honor thought fit to set a part of the award aside, and owing to the conflicting testimony of some of the parties, and the great difficulty there was in ??? some of them to tell the truth, he could come to no other conclusion. We trust after this matter is settled our neighbors will live in peace and harmony and that the name of Redan will not ??? a blush on the checks of ?? and honestly disposed residents of this district.
Mr. Geo. Churchill and aunt Miss Elizabeth Scott have moved into the residence late vacated by Mr. F.L. Moore.