48th Highlanders’ Memorial

Triangle east of Mount Pleasant Road
Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto

Formed in Toronto on October 16, 1891 with Captain John Irvine Davidson as the first commanding officer, the 48th Highlanders of Canada first saw active service in the South African War (1899-1902) when 17 Highlanders accompanied the First Canadian contingent overseas. Following the death of Lieutenant-Colonel Davidson in April of 1910, the regiment purchased a large burial lot in Mount Pleasant Cemetery. Late in the afternoon of Thanksgiving Monday, October 28, 1912 the train bringing 700 troops back to the city from a sham battle that had been held that day near Milton, Ontario, crashed into the “Detroit Flyer,” a passenger train bound for that American city. Though the rate of speed of each train at the time of impact at Streetsville Junction was minimal, one of the cars in which many of the 48th Highlanders were travelling was very old and completely demolished in the collision. Two highlanders were killed outright and 30 more injured. In tribute to the deceased soldiers, Privates Mac Murdock and John Bannatyne, a special monument was prepared for the regiment’s lot. This monument, which has subsequently had the regiment’s battle honours inscribed on it, was moved in 1969 to a more prominent location on the main road into the cemetery, a few yards east of Mount Pleasant Road.

Mike Filey
Mount Pleasant Cemetery: An Illustrated Guide
Second Edition Revised and Expanded