Nelson Volunteers on Flickr from Touch Stones

Touchstones Museum has recently digitized WW1 soldier photos .

The link is below:-

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Nelson Volunteers on Flickr from Touch Stones

54th BN as reported in the Nelson News

Greg Scott reports from Nelson

NDN was a daily from it’s founding in 1902 until it’s closing, it is now in the process of
digitizing their content through UBC. They are now at 1918 and will go to 1920 under
the present funding. The link is below;-

Sample Search for items related to Colonel Arnold Kemball

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 54th BN as reported in the Nelson News


Telegram & Cable address: Telephone No.





Please address all communications to–


and quote





S-H-333(c). 3RD Sept., 1917

The Judge Advocate General,

Overseas Military Forces of Canada,

68 Victoria St., S.W.1.

I am directed to return herewith the proceedings of

General Court Martial which tried Lieut. Col. V.V. Harvey, D.S.O., 54th Canadian Inf. Bn., which you were good enough to forward to these Headquarters for perusal.


Staff Captain.

for Brig.-General.

CHT. Adjutant-General, Canadians.

A Army Form A.9.

Form of Proceedings for General, District and

Regimental Courts-Martial.

Proceedings of a General court-Martial held at Headquarters 11th Canadian ………………………………………………………………France.

On the 8th day of July 1917 by order of Major General ……….CB. EMG Commanding 4th Canadian Division dated the 1st day of July 1917.


Brig-General C.H. MACLAREN, D.S.O., C.R.A. 4th Canadian Division.


Lt-Colonel J.W. Warden, D.S.O. 102nd Canadian Inf. Battalion

Lt-Colonel J.V.P. O’Donahoe, D.S.O. 87TH Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Lt-Colonel C.M. Edwards, D.S.O. 38th Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Lt-Colonel M.J. Francis, D.S.O. 44th Canadian Inf. Battalion

Lt-Colonel L.F. Page, D.S.O 50TH Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Waiting Members

Lt-Colonel A.H. Borden, 55th Canadian Inf. Battalion

Lt-Colonel W.C.V. Chadwick, 124th Canadian Pioneer Battalion.

Lieut. C.F. Gifford, 42nd. Canadian Inf. Battalion, Judge Advocate

Trial of Lieu.Col Valentine Vivian Harvey, D.S.O. 54th Canadian Inf Btn

At 10 a.m. o’clock the Trial commences.

(1) The order convening the Court is read, and is marked A signed by the president and attached to the proceedings.

The charge-sheet and the summary of evidence are laid before the Court.

The Court satisfy themselves as provided by Rules of Procedure 22 & 23.

(2) Maj L.C. Outerbridge, 55th Canadian Infantry Battalion appears as prosecutor, and takes his place.

The above named, the accused, is brought before the Court. Major C. Carmichael, 47th Canadian Inf Btn appears as counsel for the accused.

The names of the president and members of the Court are read over in the hearing of the accused, and they severally answer to their names.

Question by the Do you object to be tried by me as president, or by any of the

President to officers whose names you have heard read over?

the accused

Answer by No.


(N.B. – If objection is made it should be recorded together with the decision by the Court on a separate sheet.)

*Here insert No. Rank, full Name, Battalion and Regiment and Appointment if any

  • Here insert name and …………………………….tion


The president, members, and judge-advocate and………………………………………………………… are duly sworn in.

An application of the accused

Vol 6317 Sergeant F. Jackson

54th Canadian Infantry Battalion

is duly sworn as shorthand writer.


(3) The charge-sheet is signed by the president, marked B2 and annexed to the proceedings.


If the accused has elected to be tried under Army Ad, sec 46(8) the fact should be here recorded.

The accused is arraigned upon each charge in the

above-mentioned charge-sheet.

Are you guilty or not guilty of the {first} charge Question to

against you, which you have heard read? the accused

Not guilty. Answer

Are you guilty or not guilty of the second charge Question

against you, which you have heard read?


Are you guilty or not guilty of the third charge Question

against you, which you have heard read?


If the trial proceeds upon any charge to which there is a Instruction.

plea of “Not guilty” the Court will not proceed upon the

record of a plea of “Guilty” until after the finding on

those other charges, such findings being accorded on Sheet 15.


C.H. MacLaren

Brig Gen



The Accused, LIEUTENANT-COLONEL VALENTINE VYVIAN HARVEY, 54TH CANADIAN INFANTRY BATTALION, an Officer of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, is charged with

A.A Sec. When the Active Service, Conduct to the prejudice of good


order and military discipline, in that he,

Accompanied by his Acting Second in Command, and Adjutant, was absent from his battalion when in the field, from about 11.00 a.m. on 21st May 1917 until about 8.00 a.m. on 22 May 1917, thereby allowing the Battalion to be without the services of the Commanding Officer, the Acting Second in Command, and the Adjutant, during the whole of such absence.


Commanding 11th Canadian Infantry Bde.



A.A. & Q.H.G.,

30/6/17 4TH Canadian Division.


Proceedings on Plea of Not Guilty

(5) The prosecutor makes his address

The accused applies to have his …………………………………

The prosecutor proceeds to call witness.

First witness for Major William Henry Collum, M.C.

Brigade Major, 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade,


Being duly sworn, is examined by the prosecutor.

“On the evening of May 20th 1917, I called on Lt.-Col.Harvey, D.S.O. at his Headquarters in the Vimy-Angres Line, S.10.d. On departing, Col. Harvey asked if there would be “anything on tomorrow.” I replied “Nothing, as far as I know!”. He the jokingly remarked that he did not wish to see any of the Brigade Staff tomorrow, “as we are going into Bethune and will not be back until late.”

Q.3 What reply did you make to Col. Harvey when he said “We are going into Bethune.”

A.3 No statement was made by me in reply.

Q.4 Were any other names mentioned by Col. Harvey, as to who were going with him to Bethune.

A.4 No names were mentioned as far as I can recollect.

Cross-examined by the accused:-

Q.5 Will you tell the Court who were present at that conversation with Col. Harvey.

A.5 Major Trotter, 11th Field Coy. C.E.

Q.6 Were any others present.

A.6 No one that I recollect.

Q.7 Where did this conversation take place.

A.7 I recollect the conversation as taking place at the road junction, adjoining Col. Harvey’s Headquarters.

Q.8 You say in your evidence that you saw him in the Vimy-Angres Line.

A.8 My recollection is that it took place outside Col. Harvey’s Headquarters.

Q.9 Was Capt. Taylor present.

A.9 Not that I know of.

Q.10 You cannot say that he was not.

A.10 His presence was not known to me at the time.

Q.11 If Capt. Taylor swears he was there, will you contradict him.

A.11 He might have been there, as my recollection is that he was sitting on a seat a few yards away.

Q.12 Was any other person present.

A.12 Not that I know of.

Q.13 Was anything said about a clean up day. Were those words used.

A.13 Yes. I should have added those words to my original statement.

Q.14 What did you infer from that clean up day, having regard to the general training of the Brigade.

A.14 My understanding of it was that Col Harvey’s Companies would be carrying on independently, devoting their time to cleaning up.

Q.15 Did you receive a copy of Col Harvey’s syllabus that would cover the 21st May.

A.15 We had received a syllabus showing training for the coming week, for the period we would be out in Divisional Reserve.

Q.16 Do you know whether Col Harvey’s Battalion held a bathing parade on the following day.

A.16 Quite probably so.

Q.17 Was the 54th Battalion carrying on a Bathing Parade on the 21st May.

A.17 As bathing arrangements are made with Staff Captains A. and Q., I cannot say definitely.

Q.18 Can you say whether Bathing Parade was laid down in the Syllabus.

A.18 I cannot recollect.

Q.19 Were the 54th Battalion bathing on that day.

A.19 In my capacity as Brigade Major, I do not know whether they were bathing, or whether they were having only the cleaning up.

Q.20 Who did you infer were going to Bethune when Col. Harvey said to you “We are going to Bethune and will not be back until late.

A.20 I made no inferences at the time.

Q.21 You made a mental note of this conversation.

A.21 Yes.

Q.22 Why did you made a mental note of it.

A.22 To take it up with the G.O.C.

Q.23 What were you going to take up with the G.O.C.

A.23 The suggestion that Col. Harvey and some of his Officers were going to Bethune.

Q.24 Why some of his Officers. Did you know who they were.

A.24 I did not.

Q.25 Who usually went with Col Harvey on these trips.

A.25 His Acting Second-in-Command, and his Adjutant, have been to Bethune with him on several occasions.

Q.26 Was this one of those occasions.

A.26 That I cannot answer. It might have been so.

Q.27 Did you tell Col. Harvey that he could not go to Bethune.

A.27 I did not.

Q.28 You made no further comment.

A.28 Not as far as I recollect.

Q.29 You know the whole history of the case, do you not. There is not detail in this case that you do not know anything about.

A.29 Not that I know of.

Q.30 As far as you were concerned, you had no objection to Col. Harvey going to Bethune.

A.30 Personally, no, but I thought it my duty to confer with the G.O.C.

Q.31 But you made no mention of your sense of duty, and raised no objections when Col. Harvey told you he was going to Bethune.

A.31 No.

Q.32 Have you the power to concur in a C.O. going on leave for a day, or must you apply to the G.O.C. Brigade.

A.32 Ordinarily I take it up with the G.O.C.

Q.33 If the G.O.C. were not there, would you have the power to concur in such leave.

A.33 I have not the power, but I would use my judgement.

Q.34 Previously, had you ever know of Col. Harvey going away and taking his acting Second–in-Command and Adjutant, as the charge suggests, to Bethune. Has he ever done so to your knowledge.

A.34 Yes. I judge so from conversations heard.

Q.35 Heard where.

A.35 Heard in Col. Harvey’s headquarters, between Col. Wright and Major Taylor, the Adjutant.

Q.36 Have you ever heard of Col Harvey having gone away and taking Col. Wright and Major Taylor with him.

A.36 Yes. It was not told to me directly, but I drew this inference from a conversation that I overheard between Col. Harvey, Col. Wright and Major Taylor.

Q.37 Did you report to Gen. Odlum that Col. Harvey had, on the 20th of May, stated his intention of going to Bethune.

A.37 Yes at or about 4 p.m. on the 21st May.

Q.38 What was your conversation.

A.38 Gen. Odlum remarked, after my report, that he had been to see Col. Harvey, but found that he was not there.

Q.39 When you came into the Brigade office that afternoon, did Gen. Odlum ask you the direct question “where is Col. Harvey, Col. Wright and Maj. Taylor.”

A.39 Not to my recollection.

Q.40 He did not mention the matter to you first.

A.40 No. I reported it to him.

Q.41 Did Genl. Odlum ask if they had obtained leave.

A.41 No Comments.

Q.42 Was Col. Harvey in the habit of informing you before he went on these visits to Bethune.

A.42 I recollect on one occasion he did so.

Q.43 Have you ever heard that Col. Harvey has gone away from his Unit without reporting his intended absence to Brigade Headquarters.

A.43 Not as far as I know.

Q.44 On the occasion that he did report that he was going to Bethune, you reported it to the G.O.C. and there was nothing further said about it.

A.44 No, as it was a statement of intent on the part of Col. Harvey, as on the 20th May.

Q.45 When Col. Harvey mentioned that he intended to go to Bethune, were you not in a position t say that he could not go, or relieve yourself of any further responsibility by referring him direct to the GOC.

A.45 Having but recently joined the Brigade, and this being our first tour in the line, I preferred to submit the matter to the G.O.C.

Q.46 Might it not have obviat4ed a considerable amount of trouble if you had told Col Harvey that you preferred t leave it with the G.O.C.

A.46 Yes.

The prosecutor objects t this question. The objection is over ruled by the Court.

Q.47 What was the rule of procedure for the first day out of the line, in the Brigade.

A.47 Cleaning up and baths.

Re-examined by the Prosecutor:-

Q.48 When you mentioned t the Brigadier that Col. Harvey had said “We are going to Bethune, was that before or after he had gone.

A.48 Apparently after.

Examined by the Court:-

Q.49 Where was Col. Harvey’s Battalion on the 21st May.

A.49 On the night of 20th/21st May, they moved from the Vimy-Angres Line into Divisional Reserve in St. Lawrence Camp, Chateau de la Haie grounds.

Q.50 Did you or did you not give Col. Harvey permission to go to Bethune.

A.51 I did not, as I took it as an application for leave.

His evidence is read to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Second Witness. Brig.-Genl. V.W. Odlum, C.M.G. D.S.O., Commanding 11th

Canadian Infantry Brigade, having been duly sworn, states:-

“On the night of the 20th May, the Brigade was relieved from the forward area, and the 54th Battalion, along with the others, moved back, going into huts in St. Lawrence Ca,. Beside the Chateau de la Haie. The move was completed during the night of the 20th/21st May. On the 21st, I took no steps to get in touch wit the Battalions until the afternoon, preferring to allow them to rest in the morning. In the afternoon I went out to visit the Battalions in turn. The last one I went to was the 54th Battalion. The time would be about 6 p.m. I found that the O.C., and Col. Wright and Major Taylor, were absent. About 19:30 the same night, and again went to St. Lawrence Camp, and again found the same three Officers absent. I left word with the Assistant Adjutant to have the O.C. call me up as soon as the returned, first waiting myself at his Headquarters until 11:45 p.m. hoping that he would return. I went back to my own Office and continued to do some work, which kept me until after one o’clock the next morning. Just before retiring, I telephoned and asked for the O.C. 54th Battalion, and failed to get him. I once more asked to be called up on his return. At five o’clock in the morning of the 22nd May, I found again, as I had had no message, and once more failed to get in touch with the O.C. 54th Battalion. At 8 a.m. I phoned for the third time, with the same result. Approximately five minutes after I had phoned on the last occasion, I was called up by Gol. Harvey, who informed me that he had just come back.

I had had no intimation that Col. Harvey proposed to leave Camp, or that he would take with him Col. Wright and Maj Taylor, nor had I given any consent for them to be absent.”

Cross-examined by the Accused:-

Q.51 Would you mind telling the Court whether you ever had any occasion to check Col. Harvey prior to this for similar conduct.

A.51 No, I never had.

Q.52 Can you tell the Court anything of Col. Harvey’s general efficiency, and the efficiency of the Unit under his Command.

A.52 Col. Harvey had always been a brave, energetic, and enterprising Officer. The Unit under his command had, from the time I first joined the Brigade, been very efficient.

Q.53 Was Co. Harvey a member of the 54th Battalion on the Battalion’s arrival in France.

A.53 Yes.

Q.54 What position did he occupy at that time.

A.54 He was a Company Commander.

Q.55 From that date, what further step did he rise to.

A.55 Major Davies, who was then Second in Command, was sent to command the 44th Battalion, and Major Harvey became second in command 54th Battalion. Later on the death of Col. Kimball, Major Harvey was promoted and given command of the 54th Battalion.

Q.56 Was that with your concurrence and recommendation.

A.56 It was on my recommendation.

Q.57 Is this present instance the only time you have had occasion to find fault with Col. Harvey.

A.57 It is.

Q.58 When you went to visit the 54th Battalion on the 21st May, did you see the then acting O.C., Major MacInnes.

A.58 I saw Major MacInnes when I went at about 11.30 p.m.

Q.59 Were you able to carry out the arrangement with him which took you there at that time.

A.59 No.

Q.60 Is it correct that there was a meeting of O’s.C. Battalions at the Brigade Office on the morning of the 22nd May.

A.60 It is.

Q.61 Was Col. Harvey present at that meeting.

A.61 He was not.

Q.62 Was he at the Brigade.

A62 He was.

Q.63 Can you tell the Court why he was not present at that meeting.

A.63 Yes. I had made up my mind that as a result of his absence, I would have to take action, and had decided not to have him present at the meeting.

Q.64 Who was the Officer who attended that meeting as O.C. 54th Battalion.

A.64 No Officer from the 54th Battalion was present.

Q.65 Prior to you first visit, had you any intimation that Col. Harvey was not present with his Unit.

A.65 No.

Q.66 Did you send Capt. Martin, of the Brigade Staff, to see Col. Harvey.

A.66 Yes.

Q.67 Did that Officer report back to you that Col. Harvey was not with his Unit.

A.67 Not until after I had myself been to St. Lawrence Camp and found that Col. Harvey was not there.

Q.68 Will you please fix the time when Capt. Martin reported that to you.

A.68 I am unable to fix it, except that by saying it would be about Mess time. That is, between 6.30 and 7 p.m.

Q.69 What was your object in visiting the Battalion, and telephoning so many times after you knew Col. Harvey was away.

A.69 I visited him the second time because I had reason to believe, from what I had heard when I was first there, that he would be back about that time, and when I found he was not there on my second visit, then I commenced to take the matter seriously.

Q.70 At what hour did you first begin to take the matter seriously.

A.70 At about 11.45 p.m.

Q.71 What steps did you ten take.

A.71 I took no steps other than those that I have already referred to, except that at 1 a.m. on 22n May, I reported to Division that Col. Harvey was absent.

Q.72 In what manner was that report submitted to Division.

A.72 By telephone.

Q.73 Was that conversation subsequently confirmed in writing.

A.73 It was confirmed by a telegram.

Q.74 Can you tell the Court what training was provided for in the syllabus for the 54th Battalion, on May 21st.

A.74 The 54th on that day were bathing.

Q.75 Was there any confusion or disorder as a result of Col. Harvey being away from his Unit, during the hours alleged in this charge.

A.75 None.

Q.76 Is it correct that Col. Wright was attached as a Supernumerary Officer to the 54th Battalion, and had Col. Harvey authority to use this Officer in any capacity he saw fit.

A.76 He was so attached, and Col. Harvey had that authority, except that he was restricted in making Col. Wright permanent Second in Command.

Q.77 What position did Major MacInnes occupy.

A.77 Major MacInnes officially was being transferred into the 54th Battalion, but had applied for transfer to the 72nd Battalion and the application had not been dealt with. Col. Harvey had reported to me that he could not utilize Major MacInnes.

Q.78 Are the relations between yourself and Col. Harvey of a friendly character.

A.78 They always have been.

Q.79 Was Col. Harvey in command of the 54th Battalion during the time it was engaged in the Vimy operations.

A.79 He was personally in command.

Q.80 Can you say anything as to his efficiency through these operations.

A.80 Col. Harvey always has been efficient, and he was efficient.

The accused hands witness copy letter No. 2566/99 dated 23/5/17 addressed to 4th Canadian Division, and signed V.W. Odlum, Brigadier-General, Commanding 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade.

Q,81 Is this copy letter produced a true copy of a letter written by you to the 4th Canadian Division in reference to Lt.-Col. V.V. Harvey.

A.81 Yes.

Copy letter is marked “1”, signed by the President, and attached to the proceedings.

By the Accused:-

“I desire to put this copy letter in as evidence on my own behalf.”

Q.82 Was a previous letter, along these same lines, forwarded to the 4th Canadian Division.

A.82 There was a previous draft of that letter written, which was amended and officially submitted in its present form.

The accused hands witness copy letter dated 23rd May 1917 purporting to be written by the accused, and addressed to “G.O.C. 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade.”

Q.83 Is this copy letter a true copy of a letter received by you from Lt.Col. V.V. Harvey.

A.83 Yes.

Copy letter is marked “U”, signed by the President, and attached to the proceedings.

By the Accused:-

“I desire t produce this copy letter as evidence on my own behalf.”

Q.84 The charge as laid is signed by you.

A.84 It is.

Q.85 How did you come to lay this charge.

A.85 I was directed by higher authority to lay this charge, and the charge was framed by higher authority.

Q.86 Can you tell the Court the state of the weather on the night of May 21st/22nd.

A.86 When I returned to Camp at about 11.45 p.m. 21st May, it was commencing to rain. In the morning at 5 o’clock, I found that it had been raining through the night.

His evidence is read to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Third Witness: Lieut.-Col. J.G. Wright, attached 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having been duly sworn, states:-

“On the day after the Battalion was relieved from the Vimy-Angres Line, which, as well as I remember, was the 20th May, we were at St. Lawrence Camp, Chateau de la Haie grounds. I asked permission from Col. Harvey to accompany Major Taylor, Adjutant of the 54th Battalion to Bethune. That permission was given, and Col. Harvey suggested accompanying us. I saw him go to the telephone and heard him ask for the Brigade Major. I heard Col. Harvey say “I am going to Bethune.” Col. Harvey accompanied Major Taylor and myself to Bethune that day. We left Chateau de la Haie about Noon, and arrived in Bethune about 2 p.m. We went on horse-back.”

Q.87 What was your position in the 54th Battalion.

A.87 I was an attached Officer.

Q.88 Were you supernumerary t the establishment.

A.88 I presume so.

Q.89 What duties did you have allotted to you.

A.89 I had a class of N.C.Os for instruction.

Q.90 What duties did you have when in the line.

A.90 Any duties which were detailed by Col. Harvey, I carried out.

Q.91 With whom were you quartered when in the line.

A.91 Battalion Headquarters.

Cross-examined by the Accused:-

Q.92 Were you ever detailed as acting Second in Command of the 54th Battalion.

A.92 No.

Q.93 Were you ever away with Col. Harvey, to Bethune, for a day.

A,93 Yes. On several occasions.

Q.94 On what days were such journeys usually made.

A.94 Usually the day after coming out of the line.

Q.95 Do you know why that day was chosen.

A.95 It was chosen because that was the day the men were cleaning up and had no special training to do.

Q.96 Have you ever discussed these trips with the Brigade Major.

A.96 I have told him of them.

Q.97 Have you ever heard Col. Harvey ask the Brigade Maj for leave on any of these occasions.

A.97 On each occasion, over the ‘phone.

Q.98 Have you ever heard Col. Harvey, in the presence of the Brigade Major, and in your presence, ask for such leave.

A.98 No.

Q.99 Was the subject of your going to Bethune, in company with Col. Harvey and the Adjutant, ever discussed in the presence of Gen. Odlum.

A.99 Yes.

Q.100 When and where.

A.100 The last time the Battalion was in the Support Line, in the Battalion Headquarters Vimy-Angres Line.

Q.101 Did Gen. Odlum pay you a visit there.

A.101 Yes.

Q.102 About what date.

A.102 I don’t remember the date.

Q.103 Was Col. Harvey in Command of the Battalion at the time.

A.103 Yes.

Q.104 What anything said at that discussion, in your presence, that would lead you to believe that you were doing wrong in taking these trips to Bethune without the express sanction of the General.

A.104 No.

Q.105 Were you present during the whole of that conversation.

A.105 Yes.

Q.106 As the result of your joint absence, did anything irregular occur in the Battalion, insofar as you know.

A.106 Not in my opinion.

Q.107 Have you been identified with the Battalion ever since.

A.107 Yes, until quite recently.

Q.108 Up to that time, had you any reason to believe anything had gone wrong.

A.108 No.

Q.109 What was the state of the 54th Battalion when you joined it.

A.109 When I joined it, on the 7th March, it had just come out of a stiff raid, which happened on the 1st Match, and the Battalion was apparently very much disorganized at that time.

Q.110 What was the state of efficiency on May 21st.

A.110 The efficiency of the Battalion, in my opinion, was very good.

Q.111 Why did you not return on the night of 21st May.

A.111 It was raining very hard when the time arrived to return, and the training had been arranged for the next day, and consequently there was no particular need to return to the Battalion that night.

Q.112 At what time were you prepared to start back.

A.112 About 11.30 p.m.

His evidence was read to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Fourth Witness: Capt T.B.L. Taylor, 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having been duly sworn, states:-

“On the 21st May, I was Adjutant of the 54th Battalion. On that day, Col. Harvey, Col. Wright, and I, rode to Bethune. I had permission from Col. Harvey to go. We started about noon. Col Harvey, before leaving, instructed me to detail Major MacInnes to be in charge of the Battalion, and Lieut. Cherrie to be in charge of the Orderly Room, during our absence. I carried out these instructions. We arrived in Bethune about 2 p.m., and left there soon after five the next morning.”

Cross-examined by the Accused:-

Q.113 Was the Brigade Major ever informed, in your presence, of any previous occasions about these three officers named in the charge going to Bethune.

A.113 I have heard Col. Harvey on at least two previous occasions use the telephone and ask for the Brigade Major, and state that he and I were going to Bethune.

Q.114 Were you present at Battalion Headquarters on the Night of the 20th May.

A.114 I was.

Q.115 Was the Brigade Major there that night.

A.115 Yes.

Q.116 Do you remember any conversation that took place then.

A.116 I do.

Q.117 Will you tell the Court what that conversation was so far as it relates to this charge.

A.117 Col. Harvey said to the Brigade Major, Maj. Collum, “We are going to Bethune tomorrow.”

Q.118 What reply did the Brigade Major make.

A.118 I cannot remember what reply was made.

Q.119 Did you hear him refuse permission.

A.119 No.

Q.120 Where did this conversation take place.

A.120 In the Battalion Headquarters in the Vimy-Angres Line at S.10.d.05.55. It was in a dug-out.

Q.121 During your term as Adjutant, did you ever publish in orders Col. Wright’s posting as Second-in-Command or Acting Second-in-Command of the Battalion.

A.121 No.

Q.122 Can you say of your own knowledge that he ever held either one of these appointments.

A.122 He did not.

Q.123 As a result of your trip to Bethune, do you know of anything irregular having occurred in the Battalion.

A.123 No, nothing irregular occurred.

Examined by the Court:-

Q.124 At the interview with the Brigade Major in the dug-out at Battalion Headquarters on 20th May, did you hear Maj. Collum grant permission to Col. Harvey to go to Bethune.

A.124 No.

His evidence is read to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Fifth Witness: Major M.A. MacInnes, 54th Battalion, having been duly sworn,


“On the 21st May last, I was attached to the 54th Battalion as a Supernumerary Officer. I was attached to Headquarters Staff, and performed any duties allotted to me by the Commanding Officer. On the morning of the 21st May, between the hours of 11 a.m. and 12 noon, Col. Harvey, Maj. Taylor, and the Adjutant, and Col. Wright left the camp. Col. Harvey told me that he was going to Bethune. He ordered me to take command of the Battalion during his absence.”

Q.125 Did Col. Harvey tell you when he would be back.

A.125 He stated in my presence that they would be back that day. He did not definitely say that to me. To the best of my knowledge that was said to the Adjutant, who, I understood, was going with him. It was in the nature of a general remark.

Accused declines to cross-examine this witness.

His evidence is read to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

The prosecutor informs the Court that Lieut. R. Cherrie, whose evidence appears in the Summary of Evidence, cannot attend as a witness, having been evacuated to the Base through illness.


The Counsel for the Accused states:-

“I submit that the Prosecution has not made out a case, and that the Accused be honourably acquitted.”

The President of the Court states:-

“The motion has been considered, and in the opinion of the court the case should be continued with, but, owing to the late hour now, it has been decided that the case will be postponed until 9.30 a.m. Tuesday, 10th July 1917.”

The Court re-assembles at 9.30 a.m. 10th July 1917.

The Accused makes the following application:-

“This case should be referred back to the Convening Authority to ascertain what the Accused is charged with, and I wish to submit certain authorities in support of that application.

The authorities upon which I rely are as follows:-

Para. 8 page 57, M.M.L.

Section 40, Army Act, and notes 2 and 3 to that Section.

Para.32, page 23, M.M.L.

R.P. 11, and last note to that rule on page 577, also

Note D. to R.P.11.

Rule 9 on page 576, M.M.L.

Rule 23, Note 2.

R.P. 12 and 13.

Para.61 on page 46, M.M.L.

Para 40 page 42, M.M.L.

Second part of Note 3 on page 579, M.M.L.

R.P. 32.

R.P.104, Notes 1 and 3 particularly.

Para.6 page 26, M.M.L.

R.P.103, Note F.

Paras.12 and 13, page 58, M.M.L.

K.R. & O. para. 591.

The President of the Court states:-

“The Court have considered the application, and refuse it.”

The prosecution is closed.


Question Do you apply to give evidence yourself as witness: Yes.

to the

accused. Do you intend to call any other witness in your defence? Yes.

Is he a witness to character only: Answer. No.

(7) [If the accused gives evidence himself, but calls no other witness to the facts of the case, his evidence will now be taken on a separate sheet.]

(6&7)*[The prosecutor addresses the Court upon the evidence for the prosecution (and the evidence of the accused) as follows:- Page 0.16

Question 2133A (6, 7 & 8) Have you anything to say in your defence:

to the

accused. A133A The accused in his defence says:- page 8.27

“If the accused calls other witnesses to the facts of the case, whether he himself gives evidence or not, this paragraph will be struck out, and the course laid down in R.P. Appendix 11. (8) will be followed.

This question will always be asked, whether the accused has given evidence or not.

Major W.H. Collum, M.C. Brigade Major, 11th Canadian The Evidence of the

Infantry Brigade, having been recalled at the request witnesses for the

of the Accused, is examined through the Court:- defence including that of the accused, if he

is a witness, will be taken here in the order in which they give

Q.126 Did Col. Harvey ever tell you that Col evidence.

Wright was his acting second-in-command.

A.126 No.

Q.127 In your evidence, you state that you recollect on one occasion Col. Harvey informed you before he went to Bethune. On what occasion was that.

A.127 Some time between Apr8l 24th and May 10th, probably about May 1st, during the period in which the Brigade was in divisional Reserve at Chateau de la Haie.

Q.128 Do you remember an occasion at Cambligneul when you were expecting a car to go to the Divisional School, Ferfay, and which could not be procured.

A.128 Yes, prior to April 24th. Col. Harvey told me he expected a car to conduct him to Bethune.

Q.129 When the Brigade went into the line on May 12th, what Brigade did it relieve.

A.129 My recollection is that we relieved the 10th Brigade on the 10th, or 11 of May. It was a partial relief extending over two or three days.

Q.130 Previous to that was the 11th Brigade in Divisional Reserve.

A.130 Yes.

Q.131 Was this the first or second tour that you made with the 11th Brigade in the line.

A.131 The first, as I recollect it, before the tour commencing 10th, 11th or 12th May.

Q.132 Previous to May 12th, was the 54th Battalion in Divisional Reserve.

A.132 Yes.

Q.133 Therefore, was it not a fact that the 54th Battalion was in Divisional Reserve on May 21t for the second time.

A.133 Yes.

The Prosecutor declines to examine the witness as to his further evidence.

Examined by the Court:-

Q.134 Are applications for leave of absence for a day by Battalion Commanders made through you, as a rule.

A.134 Not regularly.

Q.135 Did you receive any telephone message on May 21st from Col. Harvey with reference to his going to Bethune.

A.135 No.

His evidence is read over to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

First Witness: Lieut. R.H. Bradfield, 75th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having been duly sworn, is examined by the accused:-

Q.136 What Battalion did you belong to before you joined the 75th.

A.136 The 67th Battalion.

Q.137 Prior to that.

A.137 The 84th Battalion.

Q.138 Do you know if Col. Harvey was a member of that Unit.

A.138 He was.

Q.139 Can you give the Court any information as to the appointment Col. Harvey held.

A.139 He was first Adjutant, next Junior Major, and then Senior Major.

Q.140 Have you ever worked with Col. Harvey.

A.140 I was Adjutant for Col. Harvey for three or four months.

Q.141 Can you tell the Court anything as to his general attention to duty.

A.141 He was always very attentive to duty. He gave as many as three lectures a day to Officers, after parades during the day.

Q.142 Can you say anything as to his efficiency in that Battalion.

A.142 Col. Harvey, to my belief, was very efficient.

Q.143 Can you say what the feeling in the Battalion was towards him.

A.143 At first it was not very good, as he came to Oshawa to take the place of Major Wright, who had always been very popular, and when everyone regretted to lose. However, we out-grew that feeling and soon began to like Col. Harvey very much.

Q.141 Can you say if Col. Harvey, to your knowledge was ever neglectful of duty.

A.141 No, never.

The Prosecutor declines to cross-examine this witness.

His evidence is read to the Witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Second Witness. Lieut.-Col. R.D. Davies, Commanding 44th Canadian Infantry

Battalion, having been duly sworn, is examined by the Accused.

Q.142 Can you tell the Court the circumstances under which Col. Harvey joined the 54th Battalion.

A.142 In the early part of July 1916, Col. Harvey, then Major Harvey, came to the 54th Battalion.. The C.O., Col. Kemball, informed me that he had applied for Major Harvey, who joined the 54th at the time I have stated. He was given supervision of the interior economy and administration in the Battalion.

Q.143 Can you say how he carried out these duti4s.

A.143 Yes. That work was done by him t the entire satisfaction of the C.O. I may say his efficiency was recognized by everyone in the Battalion.

Q.144 Can you tell the Court the feeling of the Battalion towards him on joining.

A.144 Yes. The feeling in the Battalion was not good amongst the Officers, especially the Senior Officers. The trouble really began before Col. Harvey arrived; on the announcement of the introduction of another senior Officer.

Q.145 How would the fact of Major Harvey joining the Battalion affect these other Officers.

A.145 It would delay other Officers’ promotion. This was taken up by the senior Officers of the 54th, with Col. Kimball, who refused to allow their right to protest against Col. Harvey’s appointment. The feeling continued very strongly, after the Battalion arrived in France, but I would also say as second in command of the Unit, that Col. Harvey’s work was always done regardless of this, and that on no occasion, to my knowledge, did he do anything to merit such feeling.

Q.146 Can you say anything as to a change of feeling.

A.146 No, except amongst the men of the Battalion. I think, as long as I remain in the Battalion, that feeling existed amongst the Officers.

Q.147 Do you know if the matter was ever taken up with the Brigade Commander.

A.147 Yes. On instructions of the C.O. I made enquiry into this matter, for the information of the G.O.C., and I reported that the feeling still existed, but without apparent cause.

Q.148 What was the custom in the Battalion with regard to responsibility of Company Commanders.

A.148 The Second-in-Command, and Officers on the Battalion Staff, were not allowed to control the notion of Company Commander after orders had been given. Col. Kimball was most particular in this. He made it a point to leave company Commanders particularly free to carry on the work in the Companies, merely telling them what was intended to be done.

Q.149 Would it necessarily need the attendance of an Officer of the Staff to superintend a bathing parade.

A.149 By no means.

Q.150 If Company Commanders got orders to hold a bathing parade, that would be sufficient for them.

A.150 Quite.

Q.151 Can you recollect any incident when Col. Harvey went away unknown to this C.O., or neglected his duty.

A.151 Certainly not. Col. Harvey was particularly good on procedure, and very particular, all the time I was in the Battalion, to observe points of discipline of that nature.

Q.152 Can you say anything about him so far as being a disciplinarian is concerned.

A.152 I can say that his ability as a disciplinarian was of great value in the 54th Battalion, and was recognized as such by everybody.

The Prosecutor declines to cross-examine the witness.

Examined by the Court:-


A.153 No in his responsibility. He wished to allot minor responsibilities t junior Officers. He did not consider that any minor irregularity, such as, say, an irregularity in the baths, would require his action to straighten it out.

His evidence is read over to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Third Witness: Capt. W.G. Foster, 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having

been duly sworn, is examined by the Accused:-

Q.154 What is you position in the 54th Battalion.

A.154 Quartermaster.

Q.155 How long have you held this position.

A.155 Since May 14th 1915.

Q.156 Can you tell the court anything about the interest Col Harvey showed in the men under has command so far as you can say from your Department.

A.156 Col. Harvey always took an interest in the men and their welfare, so far as the work in my department is concerned. Any difficulties arising out of ration indents, or anything of that nature, he always personally dealt with without delay. In reference to clothing and supplies generally, he was always careful that the men had sufficient consistent with the public interest. H4e most carefully checked the Company indents, and any time there was any difficulty, he took the matter up at once.

Q.157 Did he exhibit any special interest in your Dept.

A.157 Yes. He checked yup the Department periodically, and if there was any question, he personally checked it up.

Q.158 As an Officer of the 54th Battalion, have you ever had cause for grievance against Col. Harvey.

A.158 No.

The Prosecutor declines to examine the witness.

Examined by the Court at the request of the Accused:-

Q.159 Did Col. Harvey make any innovations in the 54th Battalion in the way of institutions when he was given command.

A.159 He established a Regimental Canteen, a Sergeants’ Mess, introduced Sports, and bought sporting goods for the men to carry on with.

His evidence is read over to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

Fourth Witness: Lieut. H.C. Green, 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having been duly sworn, is examined by the Accused:

Q.160 How long have you been in the 54th Battalion.

A.160 Since May 20th 1917.

Q.161 Have you any grievance against Col. Harvey.

A.161 None at all.

Q.162 Do you know of any difficulty or feeling amongst the Officers of the Battalion against Col. Harvey.

A.162 When Col. Harvey joined the Battalion originally, there appeared to be a little feeling against him, but when we came to France, as far as I could tell, there was none at all. We all liked Col. Harvey in the trenches, and he treated everybody well.

The Prosecutor declines to cross-examine the witness.

Examined by the Court:-

Q.163 What position do you now hold in the 54th Battalion.

A.163 Company Commander.

Q.164 How do you get your orders for training.

A.164 Written orders, in the form of a syllabus.

Q.165 Are you left to carry out that syllabus.

A.165 I am.

His evidence is read over to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

First Witness: Lieut. A.A. Kerry, 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, having been duly sworn, is examined by the Accused.

Q.166 What Battalion did you come from to the 54th.

A.166 The 84th Battalion.

Q.167 How long have you known Col. Harvey.

A.167 Since January 1916.

Q.168 Can you say anything as to his efficiency.

A.168 I can say I always found him most efficient.

Q.169 Can you tell the Court whether or not he took any part in the training of the 84th Battalion.

A.169 Yes. He supervised all the training, made out the syllabus each week, and came from Oshawa to Brantford every week to see that the training at Brantford was going on.

Q.170 How was the 84th Battalion divided in formation.

A.170 The Headquarters, and “C” and “D” Companies were at Brantford – “A” and “B” Companies at Oshawa.

Q.171 Who was in command at Oshawa.

A.171 Major Harvey.

Q.172 Have you any grievance against Col. Harvey.

A.172 No.

Q.173 Do you know if the other Officers ever had.

A.173 No, I never heard of any.

The Prosecutor declines to cross-examine the witness.

His evidence is read over to the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

The Accused takes his stand at the place from which other witnesses give their evidence.

Sixth Witness:

The Accused is duly sworn.

The Accused gives his evidence as follows:-

“Ever since joining the 54th Battalion, in July 1916, I have been in complete accord with Col. Kimball and his manner of running his Battalion. I considered, with his twenty five odd years service in India, that he was an excellent model to follow. I believed, like him, in developing the responsibility of my junior Officers. Both prior to and after getting command of the 54th Battalion I was in the habit of taking one afternoon off when the Battalion came into rest. This time was generally chosen when we were allotted the baths, and since getting command, I was usually accompanied by Col. Wright and Capt. Taylor. Before going, my procedure was invariably the same. I would ring up , or speak personally to, the Brigade Major, telling him where we proposed going, and the probable hour of our return and ask him if it was alright. Furthermore, I had on more than one occasion mentioned to Genl. Odlum himself, that we had been t Bethune, and I have never bee told either by Genl. Odlum or his Brigade Major, past or present, that I was doing wrong in so going. During Major Collum’s association with this Brigade, I have been away on two previous occasions. The first time was when Brigade Headquarters were at Cambnligreal, and I telephoned to him on that occasion to say, first, that the car was not available, and then that the three of us were going to Bethune, riding. The second occasion was personally to Major Collum, in our Headquarters but at St. Lawrence Camp, about May 2nd. On the occasion in question, that is to say, May 21st, I carried out the usual procedure. I gave the Brigade Major good notice as I informed him in my Headquarters dug-our in the Vimy-Angres Line on May 26th, and on being informed that it was alright, I took no further steps. Before leaving Camp on May 21, I took all necessary and usual precautions. I left a senior Officer, Major MacInnes, the former second-in-command of the 96th Battalion, who was attached to my Staff, in charge of the Battalion, and the Assistant Adjutant was to carry on in the Orderly Room. He was informed where we were going, the probable hour of our return, and where we could be found in a case of urgency. My syllabus of training for the period that we were to be out had been prepared, issued to the Company Commanders, and discussed with them, prior to this. About the time we proposed to return, which would be between 11.30 p.m. and Midnight it was raining very heavily, and I had, as I considered, three steps to choose from. The first; to return at once, and thereby get thoroughly wet, being caught …………… unexpectedly. Secondly; to wait, rather indefinitely, until the rain stopped. Thirdly; to go to bed there, and arise early, thereby getting sleep, which was necessary for efficiently carrying out our duties with the Battalion. I decided on the latter and we started at 5.30 a.m. 22nd May, to return to Camp. This decision on my part may have been an error of judgement, but certainly not an offence, with the clear record that has been given me, and certainly not a case for Court Martial. Several witnesses have given evidence as to the feeling in the Battalion. Genl. Odlum, at the time he was considering giving me command of the Battalion, in March, made the statement that he was sorry I was an Eastern man in a Western Battalion, and that he might have cause to make a change in my case, if he considered it in the best interests of the Service. This he eventually did, but in taking the steps to have me removed I think he lost sight of the injustice he was doing me by advocating my return to England, when I had proved myself, to his satisfaction, efficient. This left me no alternative but to object. My letter of objection is attached to the Proceedings, and as a result this Court Martial was ordered. I did not join the Expeditionary Force to serve in England, and I have been led to believe that my services can still be used to good advantage in France.

Examined by the Accused’s Friend:-

Q.174 Was Col. Wright your second in command or acting second in command.

A.174 No he was not.

Cross-examined by the Prosecution:-

Q.175 Do you repeat that when you said to the Brigade Major “We are going to Bethune” that he answered “It will be alright.”

A.175 No. I said I asked the question “Would it be alright” and he answered “Yes.”

Examined by the Court:-

Q.176 Did you have any second in command or acting second in command at the time.

A.176 I had several attached Officers who preferred duties that I could not handle myself. I was in a difficult position. Several Officers had been suggested as second-in-command, but had not proved satisfactory, and I preferred to do as much work as I could myself, and the overflow was given to Col. Wright, Col. Lightfoot, and Major MacInnes.

Q.177 When you decided not to return that night, did you send any word to the Officer in charge of the Battalion.

A.177 No. I did not, but he, Major MacInnes, lived in our hut, and would know s soon as I came back.

Q.178 Did he have any knowledge of when you would return.

A.178 No.

Q.179 You did not make any effort to advise him you would not be back until the morning.

A.179 No, as there was nothing he would not be capable of carrying out in my absence.

Q.180 Did you phone, before leaving St. Lawrence Camp, to the Brigade Major on the 21st May.

A.180 No. I did not. I considered the matter closed after our conversation on 20th May.

Q.181 When you made these trips, on coming out of the line, to which you have referred, did you ask permission from the Brigade each time.

A.181 Invariably; through the Brigade Major.

Q.182 On the night that you were in Bethune, did you receive any message from your Unit.

A.182 No.

Q.183 Did you ever leave your Unit without asking permission through Brigade before leaving.

A.183 Never.

Q.184 Were you under the impression that when you spoke to the Brigade Major, that was sufficient.

A.184 Yes. I had done it frequently.

His evidence is read to the Accused.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

The Accused withdraws from the place from which he has given evidence.

Sixth Witness: Major Harold L. Trotter, 11th Field Coy. C.E., having been

duly sworn in, is examined by the Accused:

Q.185 Do you ever recollect hearing a conversation on the part of Col. Harvey and the Brigade Major on or about the 20th May.

A.185 Yes.

Q.186 Where did that take place.

A.186 In the Orderly Room of the 54th Battalion Headquarters dug-out in the Vimy-Angres Line.

Q.187 Do you remember if there was any discussion about Bethune.

A.187 Yes.

Q.188 What was that, and who was it by.

A.188 The discussion started on the question of living underground in a smelly hold like that, and Col. Harvey said he was hoping he would soon get out of it, and that he was going to Bethune and probably would not be seen the day after he got out.

Q.189 Who was that addressed to.

A.189 That was addressed to the Brigade Major. He and the Adjutant were standing together talking about it, and Col. Harvey said “We will probably not be seen at all the day after we get out of this dug-out.”

Q.190 Who were present at that conversation.

A.190 Col. Harvey, the Brigade Major, Major Taylor and myself.

Q.191 Did you hear the Brigade Major make any reply.

A.191 I don’t remember hearing any reply being made.

Examined by the Court:

Q.192 Do you remember hearing Col. Harvey say to the Brigade Major, with reference to going to Bethune, “Will it be alright.”

A.192 I do not remember. We were having tea at the time, and the conversation was more or less jocular.

Q.193 May I ask why you particularly remember this conversation.

A.193 Because Col. Harvey had spoken to me about going with them.

Q.194 Hot it is that if you remember a portion of the conversation, you do not remember whether the Brigade Major made any reply to Col. Harvey with reference to going to Bethune.

A.194 I do not know whether the Brigade Major made a reply, as the conversation was general, and I did not pay particular attention.

His evidence is read t the witness.

Rule 83b has been complied with.

Witness withdraws.

On application of the accused, the further hearing was this 10th day of July 1917 adjourned until 9.30 a.m. on Wednesday, 11 July 1917, to enable accused to prepare his address.

The Court re-assembles at 9.30 a.m. on the 11th day of July.

The Accused hands in a written address which is read, marked “V”, signed by the President, and attached to the Proceedings.

The Prosecutor addresses the Court upon the evidence for the Prosecution, and the evidence for the Accused, as follows:-

“The Prosecutor submits that the evidence has proved that Col. Harvey, Col. Wright, and Major Taylor, were absent from the 54th Battalion approximately between the hours mentioned in the charge, and that in view of the circumstances as brought out in the evidence, namely, firstly no permission was granted, and secondly, the Battalion being in Divisional Reserve, that the act charged is, in reality, conduct to the prejudice of good order and military discipline.”

The Accused in his Defence says:-

“As far as this charge goes, I wish to point out to the Court that the premumation in Law is that a man is innocent until he is proven guilty. Now the burden of proof as to an Accused’s guilt rests entirely on the Prosecution. In this case, the Court must feel satisfied that there is sufficient evidence upon which to enter a conviction. The Defence is absolutely an answer to the charge, but unless the Prosecution have established the guilt of the Accused on the charge they have laid, then, my contention is that at this junction the case is entitled to what I am going to apply for now; an honourable acquittal.

As far as the charge itself goes, I submit that it is very badly worded. It is the duty of the Prosecution to lay the charge sufficiently clear to indicate to the Accused as to what crime under the Army Act he is to meet. I submit that this charge does not contain that information, and will go into the details later.

Each Charge Sheet should state one offence only, and should contain, under division in two parts, a statement of the offence, and the particulars. There is no offence set up in this charge against Col. Harvey. If, instead of the word “accompanied” the word “allowed” had been substituted, it would certainly have taken the shape of an offence against Col. Harvey. However, the Court must deal with the charge as it is laid. On the evidence, we are charged with being absent, which I say is a mis-statement. The Prosecution’s own evidence shows that we had leave. A Staff Officer of the Brigade as notified, the Brigade Major, who admits himself that he took that as an application for leave. Assuming that he did, he did not act on it, and he did not indicate in any way to the Accused that he had not right, on the strength of that application, and I submit his silent concurrence with Col. Harvey in fact was a ‘grant of leave.’

If the Prosecution tries to set up that a “conduct” which is the word used in the charge, was committed from which harm or wrong resulted to create an offence as provided for in Note 3 to Section 40, which says_:

“A Court is not warranted in convicting unless of opinion that the conduct charged was to the prejudice both of good order and of military discipline, having reward to the conduct itself and to the circumstances in which it took place.”

I submit that there is not a tittle of evidence before this Court that would justify a finding under the very section that this charge is laid. If they try to saddle responsibility on the Accused, then I submit the Brigade Major is guilty of equally culpable conduct, because, if eh had not given Col. Harvey leave, or if he had noted in a manner that his Office requires him t do – there are obligations on the Brigade Major the same as anybody else – then the salient feature f this charge, or any crimes that the prosecution try to set up, would never have been committed. Col. Harvey would not have been “absent”; he would not have been “accompanied” by his Supernumerary Officer. There is no evidence to show that “Co. Wright was second in command, there if there is any evidence to set up on offence, Col. Wright can be eliminated from the charge altogether.

And what does this bring us down to? It brings us down to this. Colonel Harvey acted reasonably; intelligently. He notified his higher formation, as he had always done previously, that he would be absent. Nothing was said. And he ……….. say, is where I attach the importance to those documents which have been submitted to you today; that it is the result of those that this charge has been laid.

In addition, Col. Harvey would not have been absent in such a manner as to deprive the Battalion of the services of himself, and his Adjutant – eliminating Col. Wright, who does not show in this thing at all, from the evidence – unless the Brigade Major had given him leave.”

The Judge Advocate makes the following summing up:

The charge against the Accused is one of When on Active Service, Conduct to the prejudice of good order and military discipline, in that he, accompanied by his Acting Second in Command had Adjutant, was absent from his Battalion when in the field, from about 11 a.m. on 21st May 1917 until about 6 a.m. on 22 May 1917, thereby allowing the Battalion to be without the services of the Commanding Officer, the Acting Sec0nd in Command, and the Adjutant, during the whole of such absence.

It has been stated by the Prosecution, and it is not disputed by the Accused, that he was absent from his Battalion on the dates and for the period mentioned in the charge, and that Lt. Col. Wright and Major Taylor, his Adjutant, were also absent from the Battalion on the same dates and for the same, period, but it is not admitted, and is in fact denied by the Accused that Lt. Col. Wright was on the date in question, or at ay other time, Acting Second in Command of the Battalion.

The questions which the Court will have to consider are:

  • Was Lt. Col. Wright on the date in question, Acting Second in Command of the 54th Battalion.
  • Whether, having regard to the evidence, the conduct charged was conduct to the prejudice, firstly, of good order, and secondly, of military discipline.

The charge is laid under Section 40 of the Army Act, and the attention of the Court is directed to the provisions of that Section and to Note 3 thereto. Note 3 to this Section lays down that a Court is not warranted in convicting unless of opinion that the conduct charged was to the prejudice both of good order and of military discipline, having regard t the conduct itself and to the circumstances in which it took place.

In considering the first question, that is, the question as to whether Lt. Col. Wright was or was not the Acting Second in Command of the Battalion, it is pointed out that, should the Court decide that Lt. Col. Wright was not on the date in question Acting Second in Command, this will not preclude them from finding the Accused guilty of the charge if they are of the opinion that such variation from the facts as stated in the charge is, having regard to the evidence, immaterial. (See Notes 2 and 3 to R.P. 44, M.M.L.)

As regards the second question, which is the main question at issue, the Court will have to carefully weigh the evidence, bearing in mind the fundamental principle of English Law that a man must be deemed to be innocent until he is proved guilty, and that the Accused is entitled to the benefit of any doubt.


  • The Court is closed for the consideration of the finding.

(10) & (11) The Court finds that the accused Lieutenant Colonel Valentine Vivian Harvey, D.S.O., 54TH Canadian Infantry Battalion is guilty of the charge.

Proceedings of Conviction before Sentence.

  • The Court being re-opened, the accused is again brought before it.

Major L.C. Outerbrid…….., 55th Canadian Infantry Battalion, is duly sworn

Have you any evidence to produce as to the character and particulars of service of the accused?

Answer by the Witness:

Yes, I produced a statement showing the accused’s Record of Services.

The above statement is read, marked “W”, signed by the president, and annexed to the proceedings.

Is the accused the person named in the statement which you have heard read:

Answer by the Witness: Yes

The Accused declines to cross-examine this witness.

Do you which to address the Court?

Answer: No. …………….

The Court is closed for the consideration of the sentence.

To be omitted except in cases of a plea of Not Guilty having been proce………… with …………..


The Court sentences the accused: Lieutenant Colonel Valentine Vivian Harvey, D.S.O. Reprimand 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion to be Reprimanded.

Signed at Headquarters 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade, Gerry Ser………………… this 11th day of July 1917.

C.A. MacLaren

Lieutenant Brigadier General

Judge Advocate President


16/7/1017 Lieutenant-General

Commanding Canadian ……

Promulgated and Extracts taken this 18th day of July 1917.

………………………………. Capt.

Staff Captain

For ……….11th Canadian Infantry Brigade

The evidence of Genl. Odlum as to character was applied for by the Accused, and it appearing that Genl. Odlum was away from his Brigade and not available for the day, and no application having been made by the accused to have Genl. Odlum present on this date, and the Court being satisfied, in view of Genl. Odlum’s previous evidence, that no injustice would be done to the Accused, by reason of Genl. Odlum’s evidence as to character not being on record before the Court, the application for adjournment to take this evidence was refused.

C.H. MacLaren. Brig. Gen.



Commanding 4th Canadian Division.


July 1st, 1917.

The detail of Officers as mentioned below with assemble at the 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade Headquarters, GOUY SERVINS, AT 10 A.M. July 5th, 1917, for the purpose of trying by General Court Martial, the accused person named in the margin, and such other person or persons as may be brought before them.

Lieut-Colonel VALENTYNE VIVIAN HARVEY, D.S.O., C.R.A. 54th. Canadian Infantry Battalion.


Brig-General C.H. MACLAREN, D.S.O., C.R.A. 4th Canadian Division.


Lt-Colonel J.W. Warden, D.S.O. 102nd Canadian Inf. Battalion

Lt-Colonel J.V.P. O’Donahoe, D.S.O. 87TH Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Lt-Colonel C.M. Edwards, D.S.O. 38th Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Lt-Colonel M.J. Francis, D.S.O. 44th Canadian Inf. Battalion

Lt-Colonel L.F. Page, D.S.O 50TH Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Waiting Members

Lt-Colonel A.H. Borden, 55th Canadian Inf. Attalion

Lt-Colonel W.C.V. Chadwick, 124th Canadian Pioneer Battalion.


Major L.C. Outerbridge, 55th Canadian Inf. Battalion.

Judge Advocate

Lieute. C.F. Gifford, 42nd. Canadian Inf. Battalion, has been appointed JUDGE ADVOCATE.

The accused person will be warned, and all witnesses required to attend.

The proceedings will be forwarded to Headquarters, 4th Canadian Division.

Signed this First day of July, 1917.

Ede B. Parret


A.A. & Q.M.G.

4TH Canadian Division

COPY No. 8566/00

CONFIDENTIAL Headquarters,

11th Cdn. Inf. Bde.


Fourth Canadian Division.

Lt-Col. V.V. Harvey,

54th Cdn. Inf. Battn.

On the night of 20/21 May the 54th Battalion was relieved in the forward area and marched to ST. LAWRENCE CAMP, near CHATEAU DE LA HAIE.

At 2 p.m. on the 21st, I sent Captain E.O.C. martin, Staff-Captain, to see the Battalion and arrange with the CC.for me to visit him later in the day. Captain MARTIN found that Lt-Col. V.V. HARVEY, with Lt-Col. J.G. WRIGHT, who is acting second in command, and A/Major T.E.L. TAYLOR, the Adjutant, had gone to BETHUNE and were not at the Camp.

At 5:15 p.m., I myself went to ST. LAWRENCE CAMP to arrange about a programme of training for the tour in divisional Reserve. I found the O.C., the Second in Command, and the Adjutant away. The Assistant Adjutant, Lt. R. CHERRIE, told me that they had gone to BETHUNE, but were expected back at any time.

At 10:30 p.m., I again went to the Camp. All three senior Officers were still absent. Major M.A. McInnes, who is with the Battalion as supernumerary officer, told me that they should be back at any time. They had gone to BETHUNE for lunch, and had apparently stayed longer than they intended.

I remained at the Battalion Headquarters till 11:45 p.m. but as the three officers did not turn up, I returned to Brigade Headquarters, leaving instructions for Lt-Col. HARVEY to phone me as soon as he arrived.

At 1 a.m., on the 22nd, I again phoned and found that the party were not back. I once more left definite instructions to be called up on their return, and I notified Divisional Headquarters of their absence.

At 5 a.m., I phoned a second time, and at 8 a.m., a third time. They were still absent. I had called a conference of C.O.’s. for 8:45 a.m.

At 8:10 a.m., Lt-Col. HARVEY called me up and said that he had just got in. He remained at BETHUNE over night owing to rain.

 I was myself out at 11:45 p.m. the night before. It was then only commencing to rain and the rain was very light. It was raining much more heavily on the morning of the 22nd.

 I had given no permission to Lt-Col. HARVEY to be absent from Camp, nor had be applied for any. If he had applied, I would have refused permission as I wanted all Commanding Officers to be present to arrange for the programme of training.

In view of this incident I no longer have confidence in Lt-Col. HARVEY and I recommend that he be removed from the command of the 54th Battalion and returned to England where he may be otherwise employed. I would not again send the Battalion into action under his command.

I have placed Major A.B. CAREY, of the 102nd Battalion, in acting command of the 54th Battalion.

May this recommendation be treated as urgent, please.

(Sgd) V.W. ODLUM,


Comdg. 11th Canadian Inf. Brigade.

I have read the above and letter attached.

(Sgd) V.V. HARVEY,



This case must fail on the grounds that under A.A. Section 40, no specific Conduct to the prejudice of either good order or Military discipline has been proved in evidence. The whole of the prosecutions evidence deals directly with Absence which is not charged in this case. The accused is therefore entitled to an Honourable Acquittal.


11/7/17 Counsel for Accused

Record of Services of Lieut-Colonel V.V. Harvey, D.S.O.

54th Canadian Infantry Battalion

Black Watch – 1904 to 1908

25th Country of London Regiment – 1908

109th Canadian Militia – 1914 to 1915

84th Battalion, C.E.F. – 1915 to 1916

54th Canadian Infantry Battalion – 1916 —

Honours & Rewards:

D.S.O. November 18th, 1916.

Mentioned in Despatches once.

From : LCOL VV Harvey,

OC 54th Canadians

To: The GOC

11th Cdn Inf Bde


May 23, 1917


I have the honour to request that you will forward this letter with the amended statement  you have sent me to sign and “read”, for the consideration of the Corps Commander.

In connection with the first paragraph of page 2 I had informed the brigade major that I intended going to Bethune on the 21st and I was not informed that my presence would be required.

I chose this day as my Bn was aloted the Baths and all my arrangements had been completed and copy sent to the brigade showing my system for _______ days.

The Assistant Adjudant knew where I was an if the matter was important “he could have found me.”

I was at the Conference of the CO’s called for 8:45 and was then told I was not required ___________. I am not prepared to be sent back to England on these grounds.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on FF2 LCOL VV HARVEY COURT MARTIAL

FF1 The Kemball’s

Lieutenant Colonel Arnold Henry Grant Kemball was born on  January 4th 1861 in Belgaum, India, the son of Major General John Shaw and Dora Kemball.  After completing his formal education at Sandhurst in 1880, he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1st Battalion Royal Scots Regiment.  Joining the 5th Gurkha Rifles of the Indian Army he rose to the rank of Captain.  During his early service in India, Lieutenant Colonel Kemball saw action in the Black Mountain Expedition in 1888, Hazara 1891, North West Frontier 1897-98 and Tirah Expeditionary Force 1897-98.  He was mentioned in despatches for his service on the North West Frontier and Tirah.  After being promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1905 he was selected to command  a battalion of the 5th Gurkha Rifles.  In 1907 he was promoted Colonel and commanded the 5th Gurkha Rifle Regiment until his retirement in 1910.  

Upon his retirement, Lieutenant Colonel Kemball with his wife Alvilda, daughters Dorothy and Gerda, moved to Kaslo, British Columbia to begin a fruit orchard.  In 1912, he was made a Companion of the Bath for his service in India.  

At the outbreak of World War One, Lieutenant Colonel Kemball volunteered for service in the Canadian Army, initially on the rolls of the 107th Regiment in Fernie B.C., and was soon appointed Major and Deputy Commanding Officer of the newly formed 54th Kootenay Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force.  During initial training of the battalion in Vernon in July 1915 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and given command of the 54th.  Leading the battalion through training in Canada and later England, he arrived in France on August 14th, 1916 where the battalion joined the newly formed 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade of the 4th  Canadian Division.  After familiarization training in the relatively quiet sector of the Ypres Salient in southern Belgium, he led the battalion to the Somme, a sector of very heavy fighting since July 1, 1916.  The period spent here was marked by extremely harsh weather conditions which put the men of the 54th under great stress. In an action on November 18th 1916, Lieutenant Colonel Kemball led the 54th Kootenay Battalion in the highly successful attack on Desire Trench.  For his gallant leadership, Lieutenant Colonel Kemball was awarded the Distinguished Service Order.

After the success at Desire Trench, the 54th Kootenay Battalion marched north to the Vimy Front to join the rest of the Canadian Corps.   In late February 1917, the 54th Kootenay Battalion was ordered to carry out a large trench raid in conjunction with other battalions of the 4th Canadian Division.   This raid was to be carried out with gas instead of the customary artillery barrage.  On March 1st, 1917 Lieutenant Colonel Kemball, foreseeing that the raid had little chance of success, defied orders and personally led two companies engaged in the raid.  The companies lost direction in the poor visibility and he moved to lead the left-hand company on the proper bearing.  While trying to find a gap in the wire, he was killed by German fire. Of the 405 soldiers participating in the raid, over 200 were casualties.  On March 3rd, a temporary truce to recover the fallen was arranged. Recognizing Lieutenant Colonel Kemballs devotion to duty, the Germans returned his body with great respect.   He is buried at Villers Station Cemetery within sight of the Vimy Memorial.  Lieutenant Colonel Kemball is memorialized on a plaque commissioned  by his men in Kaslo, British Columbia and in the books Vimy by Pierre Berton, the official Canadian History of WW1 published in 1963, and most recently in the books on gas warfare on the Canadian Front “No Where to Run” by Tim Cook (1999) and “Surviving Trench Warfare” by Bill Rawling.

Kemball came from a family with long ties to the British Military and government –

LCol Arnold Kemball’s brother

KEMBALL, GEORGE VERO, Lieut.-Colonel, was born in Oct. 1859, son of the late Major-General John Shaw Kemball, of Fairseat, Wrotham. He was educated at Harrow, and entered the Royal Artillery, as Lieutenant, 18 Dec. 1878. He served in Afghanistan, 1878-79 (Medal); became Captain 7 Sept. 1886 ; took part in the operations in Chitral, 1895, serving on the Staff, with the Relief Force. He was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 15 Nov. 1895]; was given the Brevet of Major 22 Jan. 1896, and received the Medal with clasp. He was promoted to Major 10 Sept. 1896, and served on he North-West Frontier of India in 1897, in the Tochi Expedition, on the Staff; was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 11 Feb. 18981, and received a clasp, In 1900 he served in West Africa, in Northern Nigeria, with the Kaduna Expedition (Medal and clasp). He was in command of the operations against the Forces of Bida and Kontagora; was mentioned n Despatches [London Gazette, 18 April, 1902]; received  the Medal and clasp, and was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 25 April, 1902]: ” George Vero Kemball, Lieut.-Colonel (Brigadier-General), Inspector General, West African Field Force. In recognition of services during the operations in West Africa (Kontagora and Bida Expeditions).” He was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel 23 July, 1901. He commanded the Kano-Sokoto Expedition, 1903 (C.B. and clasp) ; was Director at the War Office, 1909-13, and commanded a brigade in India, 1914; was promoted to MajorGeneral 8 April, 1914. Major-General Sir G. V. Kemball served in the Great War, 1915-16, in Mesopotamia, as Major-General, General Staff of the Expeditionary Force, and in command of the 28th Frontier Force Brigade. He was present at the actions and capture of Kurna, Battles of Kut and Ctesiphon, 1915, Battles of Sheik-Saad, the Wadi, Um-el-Hannah (2), Dujailah and Sannaiyat, 1916.

The following is an extract from a letter: “As regards Mesopotamia, it may be of interest to add : The 28th Frontier Force Brigade, consisting of the 2nd Leicestershire Regt. and 51st Sikhs, 53rd Sikhs and 56th Rifles (Frontier Force), lost, in the three months’ fighting on the Tigris in the vain attempt to relieve Kut, well over 100 per cent. in killed and wounded. With a nominal establishment of some 3,100 of all ranks, the casualties from the enemy’s fire, between 6 Jan. and 22 April, 1916, were over 3,800. The establishment of British officers was 75, and the casualties 121, of whom 39 were killed. At one time during that period less than half a dozen of the Regimental Staff and medical officers who had served in the Brigade remained untouched.”
He was mentioned twice in Despatches; was wounded at Sannaiyat, and created a K.C..M.G., June, 1916 ; commanded a division, India, 1917-19.

Ref: THE VC and DSO, the Standard Art Book, Co., Ltd., London, 1924, p. 258

Kemball’s uncle –

KEMBALL, Sir ARNOLD BURROWES (1830 – 1908), general, colonel commandant, royal artillery, born in Bombay on 18 Nov. 1830 of of five sons of Surgeon-general  Vero Shaw Kemball, of the Bombay medical staff, by his wife Marianne, daughter of Major-General Shaw, formerly of the Black Watch. Kemball’s brothers did good service in the Bombay presidency; George and Alick in the Bombay cavalry, Vero Seymour in the Bombay Artillery, Charles Gordon in the civil service, rising to be a judge of the supreme court, and John in the 26th Bombay infantry. Passing through the Military College at Addiscombe, Arnold received his commission as a second lieutenant in the Bombay artillery on 11 Dec.1837. He served in the first Afghan war with a troop of Bombay horse artillery, and was present at the storming and capture of Ghazni on 28 July 1839 and at the subsequent occupation of Kabul. On the march back to Bombay he took part in the capture of the fortress of Khelat. For this campaign he received  the modal. After his return to the Bombay presidency he passed in the native languages, and was appointed assistant political agent in the Persian Gulf, in the neighbourhood of which he remained from 1842 until the close of his military career in 1878. Kemball, who was promoted captain in 1851, took part in the Persian war of 1856-7, and was specially mentioned in the despatches of Sir James Outram (q. v.], who had applied for his services. Lord Canning, the governor-general of India, in general orders of 18 June 1857 especially commended his share in the brilliant expedition against Ahwaz. For the Persian campaign Kemball received a brevet majority, the C.B., and the Indian general service medal, with clasp for Persia. At the close of the war Kemball resumed his political duties in the Persian Gulf, and two years later was appointed consul general at Baghdad. In 1860 he became lieut.-colonel, and in 1863 attained the rank of colonel in the royal artillery. In 1866, on the ex!
tension of the order of the Star of India, he became one of the first knights commander, and in 1873 he was attached to the suite of the Shah of Persia during that monarch’s visit to England.

In 1875 Kemball was nominated British delegate on the international commission for delimiting the Turco-Persian frontier, and on the outbreak of the war between Turkey and Servia, he was appointed military commissioner with the Turkish army in the field. He was present at all the operations in the vicinity of Nisch and Alexinatz, and at the close of the campaign was nominated president of the international commission to delimit the frontiers between Turkey and Servia. His intimate knowledge of the Turkish language, added to his imperturbable calmness under fire, endeared him to the Turkish soldiery. In the spring of the following year, on the outbreak of the war with Russia, he was transferred in his former capacity to the Turkish army in Asia. The Turkish troops continued to show the fullest confidence in his judgement and gallantry, and fully appreciated his kindness to the wounded. Wherever the fight was hottest he was on observation (The Times, 20 July 1878). The Russians !
were well aware of the veneration in which Kemball was held by the Turks, and like the Servians in the preceding campaign were under the mistaken impression, that he was in command of the Turkish forces. After the battle of Zewin Duz on 16 June 1877 a determined effort was made to capture him. Cossack pursuers were only thrown off after an exciting chase of more than twenty miles, and Kemball by a daring swim across the Araxes river found shelter in a Turkish camp. He firmly protested against Kurdish atrocities, and at his insistence the Ottoman commander-in-chief took steps to suppress them.

At the close of the Russo-Turkish war Kemball was made K.C.B. and was promoted lieut-general. The Sultan also bestowed on him the medal for the campaign. Recalled to England, Kemball. was designated to be military adviser to Lord Beaconsfield’s special mission to the Berlin congress, but his uncompromising objection to the cession of Batum to Russia led to the withdrawal of this offer, and he was not afterwards employed. At the close of the Russo-Turkish war he was entertained by the officers of the royal artillery at Woolwich.

Kemball took a keen interest in the construction of the then projected railway from Constantinople to the Persian Gulf, and was more or less intimately bound up with the Euphrates Valley railway scheme (see Journal of the Royal United Service Institution, June 1878). After his retirement from active service he was prominently associated with Sir William Mackinnon (q. v. Suppl. ] and others in the development of East Africa, and was one of the founders in 1888 and first chairman of the Imperial East African Company. To his prescience is mainly due the construction of the Uganda railway and the sovereignty of Great Britain over the East African Protectorate (see The Times, 20 Sept. 1892).

Kemball, who attained the rank of full general in Feb. 1880, died at his London residence, 62 Lowndes Square, Knightsbridge, on 21 Sept. 1908, and was buried in Kensal Green cemetery. He married in 1868 his cousin, Anna Frances, third daughter of Alexander Nesbitt Shaw of the Bombay civil service. His only daughter, Wynford Rose, married in 1902 Bentley Lyonel, third Baron Tollemache. A tablet to his memory has been erected in St. George’s garrison church, Woolwich, by his widow. A cartoon by ” Ape ‘ was reproduced in ‘Vanity Fair in 1878.

Dictionary of National Biography
Supplement Jan 1901 – Dec 1911
Oxford University press, London 1912

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on FF1 The Kemball’s

George Miller – A Life in Pictures

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on George Miller – A Life in Pictures

Northern BC Men

From Brian Milthorpe, a paper written at the University of Northern BC

November 11, Remembrance Day. How many of us have stood and watched as old men, many now infirm or confined to wheelchairs place wreaths to “Fallen Comrades” at the local cenotaph and stand to attention while the “Last Post” sounds? What are their thoughts? Are they being transported back in time by the melancholy notes of the bugle to a dusty field in sun baked Italy or are they now as their number dwindle, remembering a grave side service amid the mud of Flanders. What was it that prompted them to take up arms against a foe with whom they had no personal quarrel, which took them from their families and their communities and caused them to be “buried in a corner of some foreign soil?”

Many of these questions are impossible to answer, being locked away in private memories. Individual motives cannot be fathomed as there are as many reasons for doing something as there are men. Although there are twenty-two names on the World War II portion of the Quesnel cenotaph, the World War One section contains the names of sixty-six “men of the Cariboo whose name liveth for ever more.” During the First World War, over 300 men from the Cariboo District of Central British Columbia volunteered for active service. What can be examined however is who these men were and what led them to suffer nearly one quarter of their number to be killed in action, the numbers of men killed in relationship to those who volunteered is quite out of proportion to the national average. Between August 1914 and January 1919, the Canadian Expeditionary Forces totalled 630,000 strong. Of these 59,500 were either killed in action, died of wounds or disease or were reported missing in action. This is roughly one death in ten that is, by any standards, a terrible price to pay. The fatality ratio for the men from the Cariboo was almost one in five, double the national average. This essay will endeavour to determine who these men were who volunteered for active service and the reasons for their disproportionally high casualty rate. It is not meant to be a history of Canada in World War One but will unavoidably trace the movements and actions of some units to which the men from this region were attached.

In 1913, the Canadian economy was in the midst of a depression. In central British Columbia however, the region was undergoing a minor land boom. With the building of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway to Prince Rupert, the Pacific Great Eastern Railway was hurriedly being constructed to connect with it in Fort George. Land prices were on the rise and there was much speculation as to where the new track was to be laid. Although the once prosperous gold mining towns of Barkerville, Stanley and Van Winkle were by now mere shadows of their former glory, they still maintained active hydraulic and hard rock operations. The townsite of Quesnel was an active community supporting numerous sports teams, a Masonic Lodge, movie theatre, newspaper and a local area population of approximately 850 people.

Many area residents were involved in multiple activities. Nelson Kenny, for example, a surveyor for Haggon’s & Co., captain of the Quesnel Lacrosse League, a “crack hockeyist” (Cariboo Observer, 6 Nov. 1915) competed with rink manager and team mate George Box in billiards tournaments in his spare time. Secretary of the Quesnel Hockey Association and assistant resident engineer Carl Beatty, another billiards player, who as a member of the Quesnel Gun Club, also enjoyed trap shooting. Sporting activities were far from the only leisure pastimes engaged in. There was also a lively amateur theatre group that included in its membership Alex Neveu and the ubiquitous George Merry Box.

The Dominion Day Holiday of 1914 had been spent by Cariboo residents oblivious to the ominous events unfolding in Europe that would so deeply affect this small community. Chester Boyd had taken the time from his position as clerk at the provincial court house to spend with his widowed mother and siblings at the family owned roadhouse at Cottonwood. Alex “Scotty” Shand had left his night shift operating a donkey engine at the P.G.E. bridge over the Cottonwood River and had spent a couple of days in town. Irish born James Murphy, pipeman on a hydraulic operation at Stout’s Gulch spent the weekend with his wife and children enjoying the holiday festivities held at their home in Barkerville.

News of the assassination of the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne by 18 year old Serbian, Gavrilo Prinzip competed for space in the July 4, edition of the Cariboo Observer with headlines declaring a successful Dominion Day celebration in Quesnel. One of the more successful competitors in the day’s sports events was another teenager, 15 year old Willie Hilborn with two first place and one second place finishes in the “Young Men’s Races, 18 and Under. One month later, on August 8 the headlines read “WAR IN EUROPE!”

According to the Observer, the town was “electrified” at the news that war had been declared between England and Germany. Since Canada was part of the British Empire, Sir Wilfred Laurier had declared that “When Britain is at war, Canada is at War.” Canada of course was ill prepared for war, the Cariboo even less so. The Minister of Militia, Sir Sam Hughes sent out a call for 25,000 volunteers and men flocked to recruiting depots by the thousands. By September, there were 32,000 men encamped on the banks of the Jacques Cartier River near Quebec City in the hastily built camp of Valcartier. Men from the Cariboo region were a little slower to respond to the clarion call to arms.

Elsewhere, many who enlisted at the outbreak of the war were from areas suffering from economic depression or who had been membersof local militias. The Cariboo had been enjoying relatively strong economic health and there were no militia units in the area. In a newspaper editorial, John G. Hutchcroft countered the general attitude that “it would be over by Christmas” in an amazing stroke of insight, writing that “The war is likely to prove a long one, as there is much bitterness of long standing between the European nations” (Ibid., 8 Aug. 1914). To satisfy the interest in the progress of the war, federal Member of Parliament John Fraser displayed the latest bulletins from the “front” in his store window on Quesnel’s Front Street. By the second week of August, citizens were seemingly becoming already war-weary and were complaining that “one of the local merchants has advanced the price of flour $1.00 per 100 pounds” (“Are War Prices Beginning to Prevail in Quesnel?” Ibid., 15 Aug. 1914). In a time when “the might of the British Empire was gathering towards the shores of Britain to fight her battles for the freedom of the world” (Scudmore, 4). The citizens of the Cariboo seemed strangely complacent. This complacency was about to be challenged.

On August 29, 1914 “Englishman” had this letter to the editor of the Cariboo Observer under the heading “Where Does Quesnel Stand?” It appeared that a corner had been turned:

To the editor of the Observer:

Sir-not long ago England was roused by a speech from the King the gist of which was “Wake up, England . . . ” Where are our leading citizens, to strike the note of help which a town of our size at any rate can offer? Are the people of Quesnel content to sit back and do nothing, when the Empire is engaged in a life and death struggle? Has the magnitude of this fight not dawned on our citizens?

Faithfully yours, Englishman

The Observer responded in an editorial in its 5 September edition.

The letter by an Englishman in our last issue created considerable discussion, and has achieved the object for which it was written . . .We know that there are numbers in our town and district who feel that we ought to do something for the Empire at this critical stage, many are ready to go to the front. That necessity has not yet arisen, but there are other means by which we may gratify our desire to be of service . . . we feel sure that the people of this district will not be backward in extending all the assistance they possibly can, and thus show we are grateful for all the benefits we have received. (Ibid., 5 Sept. 1914)

As the fall and winter progressed, Quesnel residents had begun to take positive steps in order to express their loyalty and support for the war effort. A Belgian Relief Fund had been established and “All young men of the town who have nothing to do in the evenings and would like to spend a few hours in good wholesome exercises, ” were invited “to visit the Quarters of the Quesnel Home Guard, two doors west of the Rex Theatre, next Wednesday evening at 8 o’clock” (Ibid., 24 Oct. 1914). There were calls for volunteers in the “Legion of Frontiersmen” being formed in Ft. George, Edmonton, Vancouver and Calgary and in a mounted corps “consisting of nothing but expert riders and crack shots,” to be “largely recruited in the interior of British Columbia” (Ibid., 3 Oct. 1914).

Several men left town to make their individual contributions. British born A.J. Pickup and Captain Geoffrey Watson had left for England to accept commissions in their old regiments as soon as the war broke out. Sam Scobie had joined the 101st Edmonton Fusiliers and by September 19 was at Valcartier training with the first contingent. Joseph Callanan, only son of Barkerville physician and Conservative M.L.A. for the Cariboo, Dr. Michael Callanan, had enlisted in the 29th Vancouver Battalion. Henry Stoner, resident engineer P.G.E. Rlwy. left for Fort George, presumably to join the “Legion” and Carl Beatty had followed young Callanan’s lead and had enlisted in one of the Vancouver battalions. Home Guard training continued throughout the winter having to move from their quarters next to the Rex Theatre to Cowan’s hardware warehouse due to sub zero temperatures, but the rate of recruitment remained desultory. The Cariboo Observer of 2 January 1915, reported an ironic statement made by “a local well-known Indian, upon learning that a number of Ontario natives were likely to go to the front to fight for their King expressed a desire to go also. He believed that 2,000 Indians would be able to hold down the Germans for one month-give white man a rest . . . ” This statement was made of course before any Canadian troops had even landed in France.

It was not until May of 1915 that there was any organized recruitment in the interior of the province. Until now, men who wished to enlist had to travel either to Vancouver or Victoria as there were no military units operating outside the major centres. By May 8, 27 men were awaiting placement as there were no vacancies in the established British Columbia battalions. The 54th(Kootenay) Battalion based in Nelson was authorized by the Militia Department under the command of Lieut. Col. Mahlon Davis on May 1, and by the 28th, recruiting officer Lieut. Archer and Sgt. Major. Edwards had arrived in town and had signed up 40 successful candidates.

They were a varied lot, these men of the Cariboo. Eighteen of them were native born Canadians and another 18 called the British Isles home; there were two Americans, a Dane and a Serbian. These were not young men flush with the first glow of patriotism, but older seasoned men with an average age of 28, the youngest being 19 and two men of 45. They were by now well aware of the terrible casualties sustained by their countrymen’s first blooding at Ypres and knew that the war was not a glorious adventure. After a lavish farewell dance and dinner lasting until 4:00am, the newly minted soldiers boarded the B.X. steamer and amid cheers of hundreds of well-wishers left for Soda Creek followed by an overland stage trip to the training camp at Vernon.

The Quesnel contingent remained intact within the 54th Btn. and became part of “D” Company consisting of 250 men from Kamloops, Revelstoke, the Similkameen and the Cariboo. In June, Quesnel had to turn down a challenge from the Fort George Lacrosse League for a series of games as the entire team was in khaki serge practicing drill in Vernon. After a slow start, the level of recruitment in the Cariboo began to makeup for lost time. Even as “D” Company was announcing its arrival at the Canadian base in Shorncliffe England in August, another call for recruits from the Cariboo was sounded. By mid September, Lieut. Cooke of the Victoria based 67th (Western Scottish, Pioneer) Battalion had succeeded in obtaining 30 more enlistees. By the time of the farewell dance at the Rex Theatre “which was attended by about all the people who are left in town” (Ibid., 25 Sept. 1915), 51 men had taken the oath. By the end of the month, this number had grown to 67. During a speech to the new members of the 67th upon their departure, Mr. J.L.Hill stated:

at in the portion of the Cariboo between 150 Mile House and Blackwater, a total of 6 men had enlisted, and if the same proportion had enlisted all over the Dominion, instead of having a few over one hundred thousand men under arms Canada would have a million a and a half.

(id., 9 Oct., 1915)

The editor of the newspaper observed that the number of recruits that joined after the previous week’s edition pushed the number to “near the 200 mark, and so strong is the feeling of loyalty here that we feel certain half as many more could be secured if the age limit was raised a few years.” (Ibid.) Like the earlier enlistees, this group of volunteers “left a variety of occupations, many of which were exceedingly lucrative, to serve their country . . . not a few are miners and prospectors, and one cleaned up about $50 in one day from a newly-staked claim. Of the contingent, which came from the Cariboo, there are eighteen who have left ranches . . . while they fight for the country, and ten who have abandoned good mining claims that they might do their duty. The Boyd brothers are owners of the 21-mile Cottonwood House, on the Cariboo Road . . . Their personal interests were not permitted to come between them and their determination to do their duty. (Ibid., 6 Nov., 1915) There seemed to be an honour bound obligation to do one’s duty.

The true horror of the war had not yet been realised. It was not until September 25,1915 that Pte. John Craig became the first Quesnel resident to be reported “killed in action.” Craig, second son of “the well-known road foreman” (Ibid.,23 Oct. 1915), James Craig was born in Quesnel and had been living in Vancouver when the war began. He had enlisted in the 47th New Westminster Battalion but had been transferred to the 7th to replace the dreadful casualties suffered by the First Contingent during the poison-gas attack at the 2nd Battle of Ypres in April of that year. On the 25th of September, the Canadian Corps was involved “in simulating a bogus assault to keep the Germans on tenderhooks” (Beaverbrook, 34)during the British offensive at Loos. This required the laying down of smoke barrages and the firing of rifles and machine guns over the parapet . The Germans believing that an attack was imminent, laid down a heavy barrage on the Canadian lines “to prevent the arrival of supports.” (Ibid., 35) This feint to divert the enemy’s attention was Private Craig’s first and last battle. With the losses sustained by the First Contingent in 1915, 1916 saw a renewed fervour in the appeal for volunteers. A new battalion had been authorized for central British Columbia by Sir Sam Hughes to be designated “The Cariboo Battalion.”

The feeling had arisen that Central British Columbia, by reason of the lack of a distinctively local over-seas battalion was not receiving the recognition due to the efforts and sacrifices of the people of the district or the ready response of its young men to the call for volunteers.

Many . . . have been the complaints against . . . the removal of troops recruited in this district to fill gaps in the ranks of corps mobilized at the coast, or even in the ranks of the Kootenay Battalion. (Cariboo Observer, 15 Jan. 1916)

The Observer wholly supported this action in an editorial unsurpassed in its patriotic zeal.

The historic name “Cariboo” is to figure in the final chapter of the story which is now being written in letters in blood and fire on the fields of Flanders and France . . .and its reward will be won on the blood-red fields of battle. The volunteers of 1916 will face unknown dangers and surmount . . . difficulties to add another page to the record of an Empire’s glory. Every man of military age, and physically able to pass the medical should offer himself without delay, and thus help to prove that the spirit of ’62 still thrives and abides in the district. Friends will be able to remain together from the time of attestation, . . . and when the period of probation is over will be comrades in the trenches, and shoulder to shoulder in the wild rush of the iron game. (Ibid.)

Recruitment proceeded quickly for this new battalion officially designated as the 172nd Battalion Cariboo Rangers, C.E.F. By the end of February, over 700 men from the Boundary country on the south to the new settlements on the line of the G.T.P. on the north, (Ibid., 5 Feb. 1916) had “poured” in and were assembling at the regimental headquarters in Kamloops. By the end of March, sixteen men from Quesnel and the Barkerville area had left and there would be many more to follow. A popular subscription had been set up to raise money for material to provide a set of flags for the battalion to be made by women of the district, an official badge had been adopted and the slogan “The Fighting Cariboos” had been decided upon as the “fighting name” of the 172nd.

It was the practice in the British Army after the horrific losses suffered by the regular army’s “Old Contemptibles” in the retreat from Mons and in the First Battle of Ypres, of recruiting battalions wholly from a particular area or town. This “New Army” known as “Kitchener’s Army”‘ was made up largely of so-called “Pals Battalions”. Since most of the volunteers were from the same region such as the “Barnsley Pals” or the “Manchester Pals”, when a particular unit suffered often devastating casualties, a village or neighbourhood would bear a terribly disproportionate burden of loss. This practice being copied by the Canadian authorities would, in the coming months and years bear bitter fruit.

The 54th Battalion arrived in Bramshott camp on the south coast of England in November 1915. Many of the drafts landing in England from the Second Contingent were being used to fill the depleted ranks of the battalions of the First Division. The Kootenays and later, the Western Scots were attached as reserve battalions to the 7th and 16th Btns. and to the Royal Canadian Regiment. Among the men transferred directly to the firing line were Privates A. Gibson, Hagen, Mayant, and Safken to the 7th, Davis, Duckworth and Hendry to the R.C.R., Alex Neveu and Wilfred Weetman to the 16th Canadian Scottish and Pope to the 47th Btn. Since the Kootenay Btn. would not arrive in France until August, these men were the first from the group that enlisted in Quesnel in June of 1915 to see action, they would also be the first to be killed. Davis, Duckworth and Hendry would be killed in a trench raid in January 1916. Bert Pope “became curious and stuck his head over the parapet, and was immediately hit by a sniper’s bullet” (Ibid., 1 April 1916). The men of the 7th Btn. would die during the fighting in the Ypres Salient for the high ground at Mt. Sorrel during the Battle of Sanctuary Wood.

Between the 1st and 4th June (1916), our casualties were particularly heavy, some of the best of the battalion losing their lives and when we were withdrawn on the 15th June we had the additional misfortune to be caught in one last strafe and lose a large number of men . . . The Battalion counter attacked on 3rd June from Square Wood with the object of recapturing Sorrel Hill. (Scudmore, 25)

Alex Neveu was “shot by a German sniper while on patrol duty” near Hill 60,13 May and “died of wounds” (Cariboo Observer, 17 June 1916) June 5. His obituary read, “he met it like a man and a patriot, in doing his best for the defence of his country” (Ibid). Weetman was “Killed in Action” 4 June at Zillebeeke Lake, one year and two days after enlistment and Joseph Callanan who had “enlisted early in the war with the famous 29th Batt. of Vancouver . . . had been killed in action on June 6th” (Ibid., 8 July 1916). Callanan’s death in particular, elicited a touching response of sorrow and of patriotic outpouring from the Quesnel newspaper that was unusual when there were so many casualty reports containing familiar names.

When we pick up our papers and scan the columns listing the killed and wounded, the thought seldom strikes us that each individual name has the same meaning to some hamlet or household, and sends a thrill of despair through some near relative as it robs them of their chief pride hope. And to those of us who stay home, with nothing to offer but a verbal demonstration of patriotism, excuse ourselves as we may, we may not claim the same standard of citizenship as the young man who separates himself from all who are near and dear to him, and takes his place in the front trenches to oppose an inferno of shell fire and all the devices of the human laboratory turned loose by an alien enemy whose life dream is world domination (Ibid.).

At 7:30am, 1 July, 1916, the British Army climbed out of their trenches and attacked the German positions on an eighteen-mile front astride the Somme River Valley. Thus began the longest and most costly offensive of the war. The first day losses cost “Kitchener’s Army” 57,470 casualties including19,240 killed and 35,493 wounded. The battle would rage on for 141 more days, eventually grinding to a halt in mid November. On 14 August, the 54th Battalion crossed the English channel with the Fourth Division, were issued steel helmets and gas masks and were sent to join their countrymen at Ypres. On 31 August, the Canadian First Division moved into position on the Somme sector and into the frontline trenches on Sept. 7th,relieving Australians at the German stronghold of Mouquet Farm between Thiepval and Courcelette. The Battle of the Somme took a high toll among the front line troops and casualties among the Cariboo volunteers began immediately. A day after arriving on the firing line, George Box who had recently returned to his unit after recovering from wounds, suffered a direct hit from a shell that “blotted him out of existence” (Ibid., 7 October, 1916) The Quesnel newspaper that had two years earlier praised him for his singing voice in an amateur theatre production ran an obituary that read, “George was one of the largest hearted men one could meet, and make a friend out of every person he became acquainted with. Expressions of regret are universal at his loss, but we all feel that his death is as noble as any man could desire” (Ibid.). The history of the 7th battalion records that during the Somme Offensive

its losses whilst holding trenches were constant and severe and there was always the odd counter attack to be repelled. As an instance of this, the fight on 27th September, 1916, is a good example. Whilst No. 2 Company under Major A.C. Nation, M.C. was moving up to Mouquet Farm to relieve another unit, they found a counter attack by the enemy in progress. They flung themselves into the action without waiting and with such effect that the enemy were driven back to their trenches, the normal relief of the unit was carried out and the line occupied by the 7th Batt. (Scudmore, 28)

The losses from this action resulted in 22 “Killed in Action” and seven reported missing. Private L. Patrick Hennerty of the Cariboo gold fields was listed among the missing. Alex “Scotty” Shand, the former P.G.E. donkey engine operator on the Cottonwood was taken prisoner during his battalion’s failed attack on Regina Trench on the morning of October 8 and died of wounds in Germany, October 25. He lies buried along with several hundred fellow prisoners of war at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission plot in Ohlsdorf Cemetery near Hamburg. The Cariboo Observer would run many obituaries over the next few months, each one extolling the noble and patriotic virtues of “Dulce et Decorum est Pro Patria Mori.” Privates Davis, Duckworth and Hendry of the Royal Canadian Regiment were eulogized as “heroes . . . who fell in the most righteous cause humanity has ever been called to” (Ibid., 12 Feb. 1916). Fred Knox “died for a just cause, as any one of us is willing to do if called upon. His glorious example has done much to help the rest of us to bear the little discomfort we experience out here” (Ibid., 30 Dec. 1916). When Lance-Corporal Archie Boyd was killed at Vimy Ridge on April 9, 1917 the paper recalled that “He had been in the trenches about nine months before he was called on to make the supreme sacrifice-to lay down his life that right and justice might still prevail” (Ibid., 28 April 1917).

Even as the casualty lists mounted, letters from the men at the front made continuous pleas to those left behind to join them in the trenches. “A Timely Warning” appeared in the Cariboo Observer on March 15, 1916 directed to all single men of military age “who are of Old Country birth” decrying the “slackers” who “let thousands upon thousands who never saw England, fight and die in its defence . . . Why, these men will never be able to show their faces at home again. Yours, etc., EX-CARIBOOITE.” This “stiff upper lip” attitude of the men at the front was exhibited repeatedly in the letters received and printed in the local newspaper. Driver, Henry Mehaffey of the 3rd Divisional Ammunition Column wrote to the editor of the Observer, “I hope all the boys left behind, whom I believe are few, will join up, as we will be pleased to see them over here before Fritz gets his fatal dose of lead” (Cariboo Observer, 30 Sept. 1916).

During the so-called “Khaki election” of 1917, there was no question to which the Cariboo Observer supported. The front page stated quite clearly where its loyalties lay in article titled “MONDAY IS POLLING DAY”: This will be the last issue . . . before the people vote on the question of conscription or no conscription, and as we feel strongly that the Union government should be returned in order that Canada’s pledged word to her brave sons at the front may be fulfilled, we are devoting considerable of our space this week to current election news, so that our readers may have a clear conception of their duty in this important crisis(Cariboo Observer, 15 Dec., 1917). Through its editorials, by publishing letters from the troops overseas and by blatantly biased news stories, the pro-conscription Unionist Party led by Sir Robert Borden enjoyed tremendous support. There was absolutely no attempt at nonpartisan reporting in vilifying Raymond Leighton, the local Opposition Candidate and heaping praise upon praise on Fulton who represented the Government. Testimonials from the front lines were especially popular. Sgt. Major William Vaughan’s letter to his brother was faithfully printed stating, “Boost for conscription” (Ibid.). Corporal Ernest Seeley of Barkerville simply wrote to a friend, “Returning soon, vote conscription” (Ibid.). A series of short paragraphs following the afore mentioned letters read as follows, “The Great War Veterans’ Association disowns Leighton. Are you going to support him? . . . A referendum wouldn’t be much of a Christmas box for the boys in the trenches, would it?” and finally “Cast your vote with the Old Veterans and the Great War Veterans, for Fulton and the Union Government” (Ibid.). The Unionist Party won by a landslide.

On May 4, 1918 the Observer acknowledged that “Killed in Action is taking a considerable toll from the lads who enlisted from this section.” Among the last of the “Cariboo Boys” to die in the “Great War for Civilization” was 19-year-old Capt. Willie Hilborn D.F.C., R.A.F. who died of injuries sustained in a flying accident on the Italian Front on August 16, 1918. Four years earlier he had shared the front page of his hometown newspaper with Serbian nationalist Gavrilo Princip who had preceded him in death four months earlier of tuberculosis in prison.

That there was an extraordinary amount of patriotism at the time of “The Great War” cannot be denied. Just how much influence the local newspapers had in inciting these feelings or whether they merely reflected the mood at the time is a question worth exploring. Being the only newspaper between Ashcroft and Fort George, the Cariboo Observer was for most people of the region, the only source of information available and exercised tremendous influence. It was supportive of the recruitment drive in the Cariboo region to the extent that this area had one of the largest per-capita enlistment rates in the nation. Due to the nature of the local recruitment, it also suffered one of the highest casualty rates in the nation as well.

The reason for this is quite simple. The Canadian Corps was made up of a large variety of units, only a small proportion of which were front line infantry battalions. In a large centre such as Vancouver, Winnipeg or Toronto, a recruit had an opportunity to be placed in any number of non-combatant roles such as the Army Service Corps, Transport Corps, Railways Corps etc. Quesnel had been selectively recruited by the 54th, 67th, and 172nd infantry battalions. Of the men of the 54th (Kootenay) battalion who enlisted in Quesnel in May of 1915, almost one quarter had been killed in action, many having being transferred to the 7th battalion as reinforcements after that battalion’s horrendous losses during the poison gas attack at the 2nd battle of Ypres. Of the 1,440 fatalities eventually suffered by the 7th, 16 of them had come from the Cariboo. Eight men had been killed while in service with the remainder of the 54th Kootenays, five each with the 16th Canadian Scottish, the 47th British Columbia and the 67th Western Scots. Of all the fatalities experienced by the Boys of the Cariboo over 90% were from infantry battalions. It is interesting to note that after conscription having been introduced, there was not a single case of a man from the Cariboo who having been drafted into service being listed as killed in action. All of the fatalities that took place were from the original volunteers that had enlisted in 1914, 15 and 16.

The purpose of this essay has been to find out who some of these men were who so unselfishly gave their lives for their country. The argument of whether they succumbed to the jingoism of the time and accepted what Wilfred Owen called the lie, “Dulce et Decorum est Pro Patria Mori” must be left to another time. These men “Whose Names Liveth for Evermore” can only be remembered now through a conscious effort on our part, the living, otherwise the monuments to their struggle and sacrifice will be torn down to make way for car parks and shopping malls. We cannot let that happen.

The Glorious Dead, Quesnel Cenotaph

442031 Baker, George, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn………………..Pulmonary T.B. 05-May-16

Born 17 Oct. 1889, Age 26 yr, 6 mo., 18 dys. Son of August and Cecilia Baker, of Quesnel. “Pte. Geo. Baker, we are sorry to learn, is seriously ill at one of the hospitals in England” (Cariboo Observer 29 April,1916). “We lost one of our dear Canadian boys in the Hospital here a short time ago, George Baker, of Quesnel, B.C., he died of pulmonary tuberculosis” (Cariboo Observer, 1 July 1916). Chichester Cemetery.

150793 Baker, William Victor, Pte., 16 Cdn. Scot Bt. (79th Btn.)………..K.I.A.. 04-Sept-16

Soda Creek. Age 22, Son of Richard George and Augusta Baker. Memorialised (missing) on the Vimy Memorial.

463237 Baker, Roy Elmer, Pte., 62nd Btn/72nd Seaforth Highlanders Btn…….K.I.A.. 04-Aug-17

Age 35, Born 2nd May 1882, Woodstock N.B., son of James F. and Levina Baker. “Three more residents of Quesnel and district left on Monday for Vernon for the purpose of enlisting for the war. They were . . . R. Baker of Alexandria” (Cariboo Observer 10 July, 1915). Noeux-Les-Mines Communal Cemetery.

259 Beatty, Carl John, 2nd Lieut. 7th Sqdn., Royal Flying Corps………………..K.I.A.. 15-Sept-16

Age 27, Son of W. T. and Stella N. Beatty. Cornet player, member of Quesnel Conservative Association. “C.J. Beatty, member of Provincial Resident Engineer’s staff here during the summer, left on Wednesday for the coast” (Cariboo Observer, 14 Nov.1914). Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, Somme.

103101 Boyd, Archie Arthur, L/Cpl., 67th Western Scots Pnr. Btn……….K.I.A.. 09-Apr-17

Born 21 August 1887, Cottonwood House. Son of the late John Boyd and of Janet Fleming Boyd. Enlisted 21 Sept. 1915, Quesnel. “Archie was shot through the heart while his company was charging, being killed instantly, and was buried two days later on the spot where he met his gallant end” (Cariboo Observer, 19 May, 1917).”Walter and Chester were alongside of Archie when he got killed, and took it pretty hard” (Cariboo Observer, 2 June, 1917). Killed in action, Vimy Ridge. Vimy Memorial.

103114 Boyd, Chester Flemming, Cpl., 54th Ktny Btn.,(67th Btn.)……….D.W. 07-Aug-17 Born 24 March 1889, San Juan Washington, USA. Son of John and Janet F. Boyd, of Cottonwood House, Chief Clerk, office of the Provincial Assessor. Enlisted 21 Sept.1915, Quesnel. “previously reported dangerously wounded, now officially reported died of wounds on August 7th, 1917 at the 7th casualty clearing station, of gunshot wounds in the abdomen and shoulder.” Hill 70. Noeux-les-mines Communal Cemetery, France.

442246 Box, George Merry, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn.,(54th Btn.)…………………K.I.A.. 08-Sep-16 Born 1st Feb, 1880, Bathampton, Somerset Eng. Worked as a carpenter, popular singer and amateur actor. “He was wounded in the arm last June, and had not been long returned to the trenches when a shell blotted him out of existence” (Cariboo Observer, 7 Oct, 1916) Somme front near Moquet Farm, Courcelette. Vimy Memorial.

103178 Brennan, Peter Austin, Lt., 54th Kootenay Btn.,(67th Btn)……..D.W. 07-June-17

Born 4 March 1889, East St. Cleod Minnesota USA. Son of William Peter Brennan and Catherine M. Healy, of Elk River Minn. Rancher, 70 Mile House. “I feel keenly the loss of two of my officers, namely Lieut. N.C. Kenny and Lieut Pete Brennan, both of whom were killed in action. These officers are buried side by side with the regimental cross over each grave. C.C. Harbottle” (Cariboo Observer, 25 Aug. 1917). K.I.A. Hill 70. Villers Station Cemetery, Viller-Au-Bois.

76017 Callanan, D. Joseph, Pte., 29th Vancouver Btn………………………….K.I.A.. 06-Jun-16 Born 11 November 1889, Victoria BC. Son of Dr. Michael and Hannah Callanan, of New Westminster. Enlisted 13 November 1914, Vancouver. “Perhaps not since the beginning of the war has its grim reality been brought home to us more personally than when word arrived that Joseph Callanan, only son of Dr. Michael Callanan (M.L.A.) of Barkerville, had been killed in action. He enlisted early in the war with the famous 29th Batt. of Vancouver” (Cariboo Observer, 8 July 1916).Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial.

Deal/696 Cameron, Ewan Donald, Spr., Royal Marine Engineers………………..K.I.A.. 13 Nov. 1916 Son of Donald and Margaret Cameron, Exeter England. Knightsbridge Cemetery, Mesnil-Martinsart, France.

442081 Carlson, Eric, Pte., 7th British Columbia Btn………………………….K.I.A.. 13-Jun-16 Born 22 March 1889, Stokholm Sweden. Occupation, miner, Barkerville. Enlisted 54th Btn. at Vernon, B.C. 15 July, 1915. K.I.A. Mount Sorrel, Railway Dugouts Burial Ground, Zillebeke,Ypres.

116909 Coppens, Benoit, Pte., 11th Canadian Mounted Rifles……

Born 21 February 1879, Miere Belgium. Owned ranch in Quesnel. Enlisted 11 May, 1916 in Victoria. Married, son of Jaiku Coppens, Belgium.

428762 Craig, John Dennis, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn.,(47th New Westminster Btn.)…….K.I.A.. 25-Sep-15

Born 25 February 1889, Quesnel BC. Employed as logger. Officially reported killed in action on September 25th. “The deceased young man was the second son of Mr. James Craig and Catharine Denis Craig, of Quesnel, the well known road foreman” (Cariboo Observer, 23 October, 1915). On the 25th of September, the Canadian Corps were involved “in simulating a bogus assault to keep the Germans on tenderhooks” (Beaverbrook, 34) Berks. Cemetery Extension, Ploegsteert, Ypres, Belgium.

76484 Davidson, James Rittie, Pte., 29th Vancouver Btn…………………….K.I.A.. 06-Nov-17 Alexandria. Born 14 July 1888, Ellon Aberdeen Scotland, Enlisted 19 April 1915, Vancouver. K.I.A. Passchendaele, Tyne Cot Cemetery.

442048 Davis, Richard, Pte., Royal Cdn. Regiment, (54th Btn.)……………K.I.A.. 12-Jan-16 Enlisted Soda Creek, “I deeply regret to inform you that a few casualties have occurred among the Cariboo volunteers who enlisted last May. The following men were killed: Pte. R. Davis, Pte. A. Duckworth, Pte. A. Hendry.Yours sincerely, E.A. Palmer, Royal Canadian Regt. B.E.F., France Jan. 13,1916” (Cariboo Observer, 12 Feb., 1916). St. Quentin Cabaret Military Cemetery, Heuvelland, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

227668 Denton, Horace Farnsworth, Pte., 11 CMR/47th BC. Btn…………..K.I.A.. 18-Aug-17

Born 23 May 1872, Logan Utah. Rancher, Alexandria BC. Married to Louisa H. Denton of Challis Utah. Enlisted 4 June 1916, Victoria. Chaudiere Military Cemetery, Vimy.

116937 Dohaney, George Ernest, Pte, 11th CMR/7th BC. Btn………………..K.I.A.. 15-Feb-18

Born 2 October 1887, Chipman, Queen’s County, New Brunswick, son of John and Margaret Dohaney. Rancher, Alexandra BC. Aix-Noulette Communal Cemetery Extension.

442060 Duckworth, Arthur, Pte., Royal Cdn. Rgt, (54th Btn.)………………K.I.A.. 12-Jan-16 Born 19 August 1890, Burnley Lancs., Eng. Enlisted Soda Creek. “I deeply regret to inform you that a few casualties have occurred among the Cariboo volunteers who enlisted last May. The following men were killed: Pte. R.Davis, Pte. A. Duckworth, Pte. A. Hendry.Yours sincerely, E.A. Palmer, Royal Canadian Regt. B.E.F., France Jan. 13, 1916” (Cariboo Observer, 12 Feb., 1916). St. Quentin Cabaret Military Cemetery, Heuvelland, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

3030467 Dunn, Alfred, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn………………………………K.I.A.. 09-Aug-18 Age 39, Son of John and Mary A. Dunn, of Bradford, Yorkshire, England; husband of Mary H. Dunn, of Philadelphia, U.S.A. Beaucourt British Cemetery.

442054 Durston, Jack, Pte, 7th BC Btn., (54th Btn.)……………………….K.I.A.. 23-Jun-17 “Pte. Durston enlisted here the latter part of May, 1915, went overseas in July of that year, and to the trenches the following April” (CaribooObserver, 4 Aug. 1917). Age 35, Son of Charles and Lydia Durston, of Bridgwater, Somerset, England. Born at Rooksbridge, Somerset. Arras Road Cemetery, Roclincourt, France.

443782 Ellis, Jack Hugh, Cpl., 54th Kootenay Btn………………………………K.I.A..01-Mar-17 Age 25, Son of Sam and Harriett Ellis, Burton-on-Trent, England. “Another Barkerville man, John Hugh Ellis, was killed on the Western front during a raid on the 1st of March. Enlisted Aug. 1915, and had been at the front, including six weeks in the Somme drive, nearly nine months” (Cariboo Observer, 21 April 1917). “Jack Ellis got killed about a month ago; he was wounded in a sap in “No Man’s Land” with a machine gun bullet, and before he was able to get back he got gassed” (Cariboo Observer 2 June, 1917).”The young men from the Kootenays . . . were mowed down almost before they left the security of their own lines. And when they tried to take cover they died horribly. The gas – the ultimate weapon, which was supposed to nullify all opposition – was waiting for them in the slime” (Berton, Vimy,130) Vimy Memorial.

116928 English, Eugene, Pte., 29th Vancouver Btn……………………………K.I.A.. 19-May-17 “In respect to the dance given at Soda Creek . . . Guest present were . . . F. English, of 150 Mile House, father of Eugene English . . . who was killed at Passchendaele” (Cariboo Observer, 15 March, 1919). Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, France.

76233 Farley, Patrick Joseph, Cpl., 6th M.G. Coy………………………………K.I.A.. 16-Sept-16 Shoemaker, Born 21 April 1879, Bailieborough, Co. Cavan, Ireland. Age 35, Son of Patrick Farrelly and Cathrine Farrelly. Enlisted 6 Nov. 1914. Vimy Memorial.

335865 Fowler, William Leslie, Gnr., 4th Bde., Cdn Fld. Arty……………..K.I.A.. 10-Mar-18 Age 20, Son of Lydia Flockhart (formerly Fowler), of Moncton N.B. and the late W.E. Fowler. Amherst Cemetery.

442067 Fryer, Charles Richard, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn……………………………..K.I.A.. 27-Sep-16 Born 24 May 1881, London Eng. Son of Frank Fryer. Rancher, Harper’s Camp. “Word was received here last week of Chas. Fryer having been ‘killed in action, somewhere in France.’ Mr. Fryer was one of the local boys who left here early last year. He had been on the firing line for some months” (Cariboo Observer, 4 Nov. 1916). “At 4pm a defensive flank was dug from Hessian Trench to Zolleran Trench, mainly by the 7th Btn. who took over the left flank at 10:30pm.” (Scudmore, T.V.). Vimy Memorial.

437514 Gibb, William, Pte., 7th British Columbia Btn………………………..K.I.A.. 10-Apr-18 Born 16 June 1880, Alva Scotland, son of Mary Gibb. Enlisted Edmonton, 15 August, 1915. Vimy Memorial.

442075 Gibson, Arthur, L/Cpl., 7th British Columbia Btn…………………….K.I.A.. 03-Jun-16 Born 11 June 1889, Manchester Eng. Age 26, husband of Catherine Gibson, of Horsefly. “Mrs. A. Gibson, states that her husband, Pte. Arthur Gibson, is still reported as “officially missing” and she thinks his chances of being alive are slim. Pte. Gibson enlisted at 150-Mile House with the 54th Kootenay Battalion, and went into the trenches last January” (Cariboo Observer 28 Oct.1916) Ypres(Menin Gate) Memorial.

102911 Graham, James Edward, Sgt. 67th Btn………………………..

Born 15 Aug. 1877, Windsor Nova Scotia. Enlisted Quesnel 18 Sept. 1915. Son of Mrs. Jane Graham. “Sgt. J.E. Graham. who enlisted in the fall of 1915 in the 67th Western Scots, states that he recently received the Croix de Geurre (Belgian) for “conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during the recent Ypres operations” (Cariboo Observer 25 May 1918).

443773 Guy, James, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn…………………………………..K.I.A.. 01-Mar-17 Born 7 December 1887, Alexandria BC. Son of Frank and Agnes Guy; husband of Julia Annie Guy, of Vancouver. Harness maker and teamster. Special Memorial at 27, Memorial Row, situated right and left of the entrance. La Chaudiere Military Cemetery, Vimy.

116910 Hanson, Clayton M., Pte., 11th CMR/47th BC Btn.,…………………..M. 31-Mar-17 Born 6 November 1876, St Andrews New Brunswick. Son of the late Jeremiah Munn Hanson and Mary Elizabeth Hanson. “Pte. Clayton Hanson, who enlisted here about two years ago, has been reported ‘presumably dead’ being missing since last March and not having been reported as a prisoner. Pte Hanson apparently left no next-of-kin.” (Cariboo Observer, 20 Oct. 1917). Vimy Memorial.

442102 Hagan, James Francis, Pte., 7th BC Btn………………………………………….M. 05-May-16 Soda Creek. Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial.

442086 Hennerty, L. Patrick (Mike), Pte., 7th BC Btn………………………………….

Born 15 August 1887, County Armagh, Ireland”J. P. MacAdams, of Alexandria, informs us . . . of the death of Pte. Patrick Hennerty of Soda Creek. Pte. Hennerty enlisted with the 54th and went overseas with the first draft. He was formerly employed by Mr. Hargreaves” (Cariboo Observer, 25 Nov, 1916). M.I.A. Mouquet Farm, Somme.

Hilborn, William Carrall, D.F.C., Capt., 45th Sqdn., R.A.F……………..K.I.F.A. 26-Sep-18 Alexandria. Born 1899. Age 20. Son of Stephen Lundy Hilborn and Josephine Elizabeth Hilborn, of Quesnel. Joined the Royal Flying Corps in the summer of 1917 and served in Italy. Three days after he transferred to 45 Squadron, he was fatally injured in a flying accident. “Word was received that Capt. Willie Hilborn, who died on the 26th from injuries received on the Italian font on the16th of that month, had been awarded the newly instituted British decoration for airmen, the D.F.C. While on patrol he attacked single-handed and put to flight, eight enemy machines” (Cariboo Observer, 5 Oct. 1918). “An excellent patrol leader who on all occasions displays courage, endurance and skill. He has accounted for six enemy aircraft” (D.F.C. citation, London Gazette, 2 Nov.1918) Montecchio Precalcino Communal Cemetery Extension, Italy.

Hunter, Andrew, Pte., Rly Serv.Guard………………………………………………….K.I.A.. ? 1918 Harper’s Camp (Horsefly).

116932 Isnardy, William, Pte., 11 CMR/29th Vancouver Btn…………………………….K.I.A.. 28-July-17 Born Feb 15 1895 in Chilcotin, son of Joe Isnardy of Chimney Creek BC. Employed as cowboy, Soda Creek. Fosse No. 10 Communal Cemetary Extension, Sains-en-Gohelle.

103098 Jensen, George, Pte., 67th Western Scots Pnr. Btn…………………..K.I.A.. 10-Sep-16 “Pte. Geo Jensen is the owner of the ‘Dog Prairie’ Ranch at Quesnel, of which seventy acres are under cultivation. He is another who left his crops that he might train for active service” (Cariboo Observer, 6 Nov. 1915). Supplied hay to Occidental Hotel stables. “The Observer received a letter from “Somewhere in France” confirming the death of Pte. Jensen” The Somme front nr. Courcelette. Reninghelst New Military Cementary.

107346 Jones, Henry Horace, Dvr., 6th Bde., Cdn. Field Artillery…………K.I.A.. 21-Oct-16

Owner of “Last Chance Claim” in Stanley.

Kenny, Nelson Clarke, Lt. 54th Kootenay Btn (67th Btn.)…………………..K.I.A.. 18-May-17 Born at Guelph, Ontario. Age 25, Son of James and Amy Kenny, of Whitby, Ontario. Member of R.W. Hagen’s survey party, “Information was received in town this week of the death in action of Lieut. Nelson Clarke Kenny, of the Western Scots. He was born in Orillia Ont. in 1891. He had only returned to firing line a short time when he met his death” (Cariboo Observer, 9 June 1917). Villers Station Cemetery, Viller-Au-Bois.

2138516 Kitchen, William Douglas, Pte., 46th Btn……………………………..K.I.A.. 01-Nov-18 Age 22, Son of James and Mina Kitchen, of Hillsdale, Ontario. Aulnoy Communal Cemetery, nr. Valenciennes.

443270 Knox, Frederick Vivian, Cpl., 2nd Cdn Mtd Rifles, (54th Btn)…..K.I.A.. 21-Nov-16 Age 30. Son of late John A. and F. E. Knox. Employed at the Australian Ranch, enlisted May 1915, 54th Btn. “We made a night raid on the enemy, and he was unfortunately killed whilst bombing thro’ the trenches. He was leading his squad, and I could hear him distinctly calling to his comrades . . . when suddenly he was struck by a bomb and was instantly killed. We took his body back to our lines, and the next day I took the party out, including all his comrades in the raid that were not wounded, and we buried him in the cemetary with full military honours” (Cariboo Observer, 30 Dec. 1916). Louez Military Cemetery, Duisans, nr. Arras.

442132 Mayant, Arthur Zephirin, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn.,(54th Btn)…………..K.I.A.. 03-Jun-16 Age 35, Son of Pierre Magnan Mayant, and his wife, Valerie Depatie. “Casualty list published on the 9th contained the name of A. Mayant, Kersley, under the heading “previously reported missing-now killed in action” enlisted June 1915 and was listed as missing since last June. He is brother of Mrs. George Duclos, of this town.” (Cariboo Observer, 17 Feb. 1917). K.I.A. Mount Sorrel. Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial.

443293 McLeese, John James, M.M., Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn…………………….K.I.A.. 28-Oct-17 Age 25, Son of John and Matilda McLeese, 150 Mile House. “He was hit by a bursting shell, and died instantaneously. He was buried on the spot where he fell, and a cross is now being made to mark this spot. He was awarded the Military Medal for conspicuous bravery in getting the rations up. He was killed when taking water up to the front in one of the worst places ever” (Cariboo Observer, 22 Dec. 1917). Killed at Passchendaele. Potijze Chateau Grounds Cemetery.

Middleton, Ernest……………………………………………………………………


A42133 Muir, James, Sgt., 7th British Columbia Btn…………………..W. and M. 15-Aug-17 Soda Creek. Age 28, Son of Robert and Jessie Muir, of Dalbeattie, Scotland; husband of Agnes Boyd Muir, of Rutherglen, Glasgow, Scotland. K.I.A. Mount Sorrel. Vimy Memorial.

102912 Murphy, James, Sgt., No. 3 Co, 67 Wstn Scts Pnr. Btn……………D.W. 20-Oct-16 Age 44, Son of Stephen and Mary Murphy, of Navan, Ireland. Well known mining man of the district of Wing Dam. Pipeman for John Hopp on hydraulic monitor, Stouts Gulch, Barkerville. “Private Jas. Murphy had the honour of proposing the toast to the “67th Batt. Western Scots . . . his fluency and his refreshing brogue made the points of his observations forcible” (Cariboo Observer, 27 Nov. 1915).”Sgt. Murphy was wounded by gunshot in the back, on the 16th of October, and died on the 20th, two days after being admitted to the hospital” (Cariboo Observer, 18 Nov. 1916). Wounded in action, Somme. St. Sever Cemetery, Rouen.

 103199 Murray, Norman Frederick, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn……………….K.I.A.. 12-Oct-16 Born at Scotsburn, Pictou Co., Nova Scotia. Age 48. Son of the late Angus Murray and his wife Jane Mackay, of Scotsburn and Truro. Educated at Truro Academy and Dalhousie College, Halifax.Was engaged in mining and civil engineering in British Columbia. Murray River and Murray Range in Northern British Columbia, Peace River District, has been named after him. “I suppose you know ‘ere now that Norman Murray went over the Big Divide. W.F. Cogce (Cariboo Observer, 18 Nov. 1916). K.I.A. Somme. Vimy Memorial, France.

645715 Murray, Hector William, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn…………………………….K.I.A.. 02-Sep-18 Age 33, Son of Mrs. D. J. Murray, of Martintown, Ontario. Proprietor of the Quesnel Bakery. Upton Wood Cemetery.

442169 Neveu, Alexander, Pte.,16th Cdn. Scottish Btn.,(54th. Btn.)……….K.I.A.. 05-Jun-16 “Pte. A. Neveu…now wears the kilts as a member of the 16th Canadian Scottish” (Cariboo Observer, 29 Apr. 1916). Wounded May 13 1916, Hill 60, trench 38-44, “Lover’s Lane”, “Alex was shot by a German sniper while on patrol duty” (Cariboo Observer, 17 June 1916). Boulogne East Cemetery, France.

Pickup, Alfred James, 2nd Lieut. 2nd Btn. Yorkshire Rgt.,…………………..K.I.A.. 26-Sept-15 “Formerly in a London Territorial Regiment . . . Member of Mr.Garneau’s timber and surveying party . . . in the vicinity of Barkerville . . . when the war broke out . . . threw up his job and went to England at once”. “On Dec. 18, I stopped a bullet through a couple of fingers of my left hand, also hit me in the side but did not perforate” (Cariboo Observer, 28 Jan. 1915) Loos Memorial.

442239 Pope, Norman Allan, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn.,(54th Btn.)………………..D.W. 04-Jun-16 Age 32. Son of Arthur N. and Emma Ryland Pope, of Melita, Manitoba. “Monday last’s daily papers contained among those . . . listed as dying from wounds was N.A. Pope, Peachland B.C. The latter was one of those who enlisted here in May 1915 and will be remembered . . . as an employee of the Water Rights Branch” (Cariboo Observer, 1 July 1916) Also listed as K.I.A. on Peachland cenotaph. D.W. Mount Sorrel. Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Poperinge,West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

79873 Profit, James Allen, Sgt., D.C.M., 31st Alberta Btn……………………K.I.A.. 26-Sep-16 Barkerville. Vimy Memorial.

Reader, William, Pte., Royal Canadian Dragoons…………………….

Richards, Joseph Wilfred, Lt. 67th Btn…………………………………………….K.I.A.. 01-Apr-18 Employed Hudson’s Bay Co., South Ft. George, Enlisted 67th Btn. Fall 1915. “In the casualty list issued on Saturday, April 6th, appears the name of Lieut. Jos. W. Richards, under the heading of “accidentally killed” (Cariboo Observer, 20 Apr. 1918). Watlington (St. Leonard) Churchyard.

189360 Ritchie, Richard A., 18th Western Ontario Btn……………………….K.I.A.. 08-Aug-18 Alexis Creek. Vimy Memorial.

2138520 Ross, Thomas T., 2nd Depot Btn, B.C. Rgt…………………..Meningitis 02-Mar-18 Son of Ralph Ross, of Alexis Creek, British Columbia, and the late Susan Ross. Age 20. Ross Bay Cemetery, Victoria.

442196 Safken, August William, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn.,(54th Btn.)…………..K.I.A.. 28-May-16 Born 26 June 1876, Osborne Kansas, son of Charles Safken. Employed as barber. Dragon Lake, “Last week’s casualty lists contained sad news for many readers, in the announcement of the death of another of the local lads. A.W. Safken was killed in action on May 28th” (Cariboo Observer, June 1918). Railway Dugouts Burial Ground, Zillebeke, Ypres.

827131 Saucier, Bert Daniel, Pte., 143 Btn/47th B.C. Btn………………………………K.I.A.. 29-Sept-18 Born 23 February 1896, Kelowna BC, son of Joe Saucier.Vimy Memorial.

447909 Shand, Alexander (Scotty), Pte. 50th (Alberta) Btn……………………………..K.I.A.. 24-Oct-17 Born 13 February 1889, Knockandu, Moray Scotland. Enlisted at Calgary 15 Nov. 1915.

” . . . letters sent from here to the following boys have recently been returned with the words ‘Killed in Action’ stamped across the face: ‘Scotty’ Shand, formerly employed here by Johnston Bros. and engineer of Occidental Hotel.” (Cariboo Observer, 4 May 1918). Menin Memorial, Ypres.

500255 Snider, Edwin Percival, Pte., 1st Btn……………………………………K.I.A.. 03-May-17 Born 30 August 1880, Victoria BC, son of Mrs. W.H. Snider. Miner and bridge carpenter. Vimy Memorial.

103096 Smith, Frank, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn., (67 Wstn Scots)………….K.I.A.. 06-Sep-17 Born October 7 1878, Pittsburg Pennsylvania. Enlisted Oct. 1915, “Three years ago came to Cariboo, locating on pre-emptions up the Quesnel River, had been at the front about 15 months when, reported killed in action on the 6th of September” (Cariboo Observer, 22 Sept. 1917). K.I.A. Hill 70. Vimy Memorial.

2355681 Stoner, Henry Blaine,Pte…………………………………………………

Born Moose Jaw, Sask, 20 May 1885. Engineering staff of P.G.E. Enlisted London Ontario, 15 Nov. 1917. Married to Dorothy.

443786 Tanfield, Francis Louis, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn…………………….K.I.A.. 11-Sept-16 Williams Lake. Reninghelst New Military Cemetery.

688085 Trueman, John Pte., 47th British Columbia Btn……………………….M. 13-Apr-17 Co-owner with brothers James and Tom of pre-emption at Dragon Lake.

442234 Warlow, Fred Norton, L/Cpl., 7th B.C. Btn.(54th Btn.)…………..D.W. 01-Oct-16 Age 32 Son of William Warlow, of Pembroke Dock, South Wales. “Cpl. Warlow, a fellow-employee of the P.G.E. here died of wounds at Havre on Oct. 1st.” Wounded on the Somme front, Sept 1916. Ste. Marie Cemetery, Le Havre.

442227 Weetman, Wilfred Henry, Pte.,16th Btn.,(54th Btn)……………….K.I.A.. 04-June-16 Age 19, Born in England. Son of Francis and Frances E. H. Weetman, of Williams Lake. Enlisted June 2nd, 1915. Killed in action at Zillebeeke Lake, Fosse Way nr. Ypres. Railway Dugouts Cemetery, TransFarm.

442238 Wiley, Ralph, Pte., Royal Cdn. Rgt.,(54th Btn.)………………………K.I.A.. 27-Apr-16 Harper’s Camp. Menin Road South Military Cemetery, Ypres.

ADDENDUM: Men reported K.I.A. but not listed on Quesnel Cenotaph

437150 Hawthorne, Thomas Orlando, Pte., 7th B.C. Btn…………………….K.I.A.. 10-Nov-17 Born 26 May 1889, Warsaw Ontario. Son of Edward & Mary Ann Hawthorne, “…letters sent from here to the following boys have recently been returned with the words “Killed in Action” stamped across the face: Tom Hawthorne, an employee of Mcleod & Smith, P.G.E. contractors” (Cariboo Observer, 4 May 1918). Ypres(Menin Gate) Memorial.

442085 Hendry, Alexander, Pte., Royal Cdn Rgt, (54th Btn.)………………..K.I.A.. 12-Jan-16 Born 20 May 1882 Seatown, Gardenstown, Banff, Scotland. Son of Mr Alex Hendry. Enlisted 1 June 1915 Soda Creek, “I deeply regret to inform you that a few casualties have occurred among the Cariboo volunteers who enlisted last May. The following men were killed: Pte. R. Davis, Pte. A. Duckworth, Pte. A. Hendry.Yours sincerely, E.A. Palmer, Royal Canadian Regt. B.E.F., France Jan. 13, 1916″(Cariboo Observer, 12 Feb. 1916). St. Quentin Cabaret Military Cemetery, Heuvelland, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

426011 Jones, Albert Henry, Pte., 16th Cdn Scottish, (46th Btn.)………….. K.I.A.. 8-Oct-16 Enlisted in the 46th Bn 18.12.14. Arrived France 16.6.16. K.I.A. at Regina Trench, The Somme. No Known Grave, memorialised at Vimy.

6672 Newton, H.W. Goodwin, 2nd Lt., S. L. I., (1st/14th Bn., London Regt. [London Scottish])……………………………………………………………………………………K.I.A.. 19-Sep-16 Layman on staff of St. John’s Mission, Dragon Lake. Enlisted as Sgt. in Pnr. section of 21st London Fusiliers. ” . . . killed in action, September16th . . . He was given a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Somerset Light Infantry, and was with his battalion at the front only two days when he was killed” (Cariboo Observer, 4 Nov. 1916). Thiepeval Memorial.

688023 Martello, Frank, Pte., 172nd Rocky Mtn. Rngrs Btn………….Rptd. K.I.A.. Jan-1917 “Pte. W. Irwin of the 172nd Battalion announces the death in action of another member of that unit who enlisted here-Pte. Frank Martello, who had a pre-emption near Mud Hill” (Cariboo Observer, 27 June 1917).

77454 Mason, Morton Joseph, Capt., M.C. 16th Btn., (30th Btn.)………..K.I.A.. 02-Sept-18 “Lieut. Morton Joseph Mason, M.C., acting Captain in command of No. 4 Co. of the 16th Btn. Canadian Scottish, was killed in action Sept., 2 according to advices received. Lieut. Mason was the son of the late Mr. Joseph and Ada Mason, (partner of Mason & Daly in Barkerville) M.P.P. for Cariboo (in 1890)” (CaribooObserver, 21 Sept. 1918). Age 34. Dominion Cemetery, Hendecourt-Les-Cagnicourt, Pas DeCalais, France.

116907 Parsons, John Thomas, Pte., 29th Vancouver Btn……………………K.I.A.. 21-Aug-17 Age 29. Son of James and Susannah Parsons, of Curling, Newfoundland. ” . . . letters sent from here to the following boys have recently been returned with the words ‘Killed in Action’ stamped across the face: J.T. Parsons, from the Nazko” (Cariboo Observer, 4 May 1918). Vimy Memorial.

442245 Pope, Bert, Sgt., 47th British Columbia Btn……………………Rptd. K.I.A.. Mar-1916 ” . . . the writer states that he had been notified of the death in the trenches of Bert Pope . . . It appears that Pope became curious and stuck his head up over the parapet, and was immediately hit by a sniper’s bullet. This is the first fatality among the boys who enlisted at Quesnel” (Cariboo Observer, 1 Apr.1916).

443707 Trainer, Patrick, Pte., 54th Kootenay Btn………………Reported K.I.A.. Oct-1916 “In the casualty lists issued recently appeared the name of P. Trainer, who was killed in action, address of kin unknown. A soldier of that name apparently unknown to a majority of our citizens, enlisted here with the 54th, and he is doubtless the same, his number corresponding with others in that battalion” (Cariboo Observer, 28 Oct. 1916).

Watson, Geoffrey Launcelot, Capt. “A” Coy. 3rd, attd. 1st Bn, East Surrey Rgt………………………….K.I.A.. 20-Apr-15

108 Mile Ranch. “News was received at Westholme on Sunday that Captain G.L.Watson was killed in action near Ypres on Wednesday inst. Early in the war Captain Watson left for England and obtained a commission in the East Surrey Regiment. Captain Watson came to British Columbia some eight years ago,and purchased a ranch in the Cariboo District (108 Mile)” (Cariboo Observer, 8 May, 1915). Age 35 Son of the Rev. C.S. Watson. Menin Gate Memorial.

Westman,W……………………………………………………………………Reported K.I.A.. Jun-1916 “Monday last’s paper contained among those killed in action at the front the name of W. Westman, 150-Mile Cariboo Road” (Cariboo Observer, 1 July,1916).

D.W. – Died of Wounds, K.I.A..- Killed in Action, K.I.F.A.- Killed in Flying Accident

M.- Missing, P.O.W.- Prisoner of War, W. and M.- Wounded and Missing


Aitken, Sir Max. Canada in Flanders Volume I, London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1916

Beaverbrook, Lord. Canada in Flanders Volume II, London, Hodder & Stoughton, 1917

Berton, Pierre. Vimy, Markham Ontario: Penguin, 1987

Bindon, Kathryn M. More Than Patriotism, Canada at War 1914-1918, Toronto, Personal Library, 1975

Bird, Will R. The Communication Trench, Amherst, Nova Scotia: Bird, Will, 1933

Books of Remembrance, Sept-Nov. 1997. Online internet

Canadian Expeditionary Forces Archives, Sept-Nov. 1997. Online internet. Available: .ca/db/cef/records.html

Cariboo Observer, July 1914 – September 1922

Cinquante Quatre: Being a Short History of the 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion by One of Them. N.p., n.d.

Comonwealth War Graves Commission, Online internet.

Dancocks, Daniel G. Legacy of Valour: The Canadians at Passchendaele, Edmonton: Hurtig, 1975

Elliott, Gordon R. Barkerville, Quesnel & the Cariboo Gold Rush, Harker, Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 1980

Douglas E. The Dukes, The Story of the British Columbia Regiment, Vancouver: The British Columbia Regiment, 1974

Luddit, Fred. Barkerville Days, Langley: Mr. Paperback, 1980

McCarthy, Chris. The Somme: The Day by Day Account, London: Greenwich Editions, 1996

Morton, Desmond, and Granatstein, J.L. Marching to Armagedon, Toronto: Lester & Orpen Dennys Limited, 1989

Nasmith, Col. George G. Canada’s Sons and Great Britain in the World War, Toronto: John C. Winston, 1919

Scudmore, T.V. A Short History of the 7th Battalion C.E.F., Vancouver: Anderson & Odlum, 1930.

Skelton, Robin. They Call it the Cariboo, Victoria: Sono Nis Press, 1980

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Northern BC Men

Cap Carruthers

For sixty-five years this was the story of John Clement Carruthers’ grave in the Soldier’s section of the Nelson Cemetery. While the position and number of the grave was recorded, no headstone graced the barren spot.  This fact was discovered by local historian Greg Scott, while he was researching “A Cathedral Whispers “, a guidebook to the stained glass windows of St. Saviour’s Anglican Pro-Cathedral. Among the sixteen memorial stained glass windows in the Church is one “In Loving Memory of John Clement (Cap) Carruthers 1862 – 1948”. Furthermore, Carruthers is also commemorated on the James Balding plaque next to the Church’s Columbarium. It is interesting that to be so remembered with both a window and a plaque, there would be no headstone.

Scott took it upon himself to investigate whether the Commonwealth War Graves Commission or any other veterans organization could rectify this oversight, as he holds the opinion that veterans should be remembered with a marker whether they died in action or not. From this project, and with the support of, among others, Perry Hale from Nelson’s Branch 51, Royal Canadian Legion, Floyd Low of the 54th Battalion website and Ean Gower of St. Saviour’s Church, a successful application was made to the Federal Government’s Last Post Fund. This culminated last October 29th when City of Nelson workers erected the monument over Carruthers’ grave. The Last Post Fund, among other things, administers the Unmarked Grave Program which is meant to provide military markers for unmarked Veterans graves. The Fund also reimbursed the City of Nelson its costs for erecting the gravestone.

Born in Portsmouth England, John “Cap” Carruthers came to the Kootenays in 1897, living in Rossland prior to moving to Nelson. Making Nelson his headquarters, he was engaged in traveling for several mercantile firms throughout southern British Columbia. During the First World War, Cap enlisted in the locally raised 54th Kootenay Battalion. The Nelson Daily News noted when the popular Carruthers enlisted in 1915, that he “set an example to the eligible young men of Nelson who have not yet taken to the colours”. At the time Captain Carruthers, the title having been taken from his seafaring not a military past, was an advanced forty-four years old, perhaps considered too old for military service. However, he felt just as young as he did when he was doing pioneer work in Oregon thirty years before and to quote him, “I am in pretty good shape now, a trifle over weight, perhaps, but by the time the boys go under canvas I will be as fit as the best of them”.  A number of dinners, “smokers” and other events were held in Nelson prior to the departure of the 54th Battalion in June of 1915 including a “Patriotic Demonstration”, which took place in front of the Nelson Court House. During this demonstration, which was attended by not only many local citizens but upwards of 200 members of the 54th, Carruthers gave a rousing speech that confirmed his love of the Empire and the justness of the cause. In his speech, he stated that the path to duty leads to the recruiting office. He went on to admonish middle aged men for not enlisting while, at the same time, they urged younger men to prove their worth by enlisting. This was capped it off with a wish for conscription, which was not to occur in Canada for another two blood soaked years.

From Nelson, the Battalion was sent for training at Camp Vernon where Carruthers soon found himself promoted to corporal in the Battalion’s quartermaster section. In this regard, his background as a manufacturers agent augmented by his maritime training would serve him well, as a quartermaster is responsible for regimental supply and stores. In a reminisce, fellow quartermaster, H.H. Gill remembers Cap as a “Good old scout” in arranging for Cap and himself to “go find some bottles for a few of the boys” while they were in transit in Montreal. Cap promptly disappeared leaving Gill to fend for himself but “fixed it up” when Gill nearly missed the embarkation boat. By the time the Battalion left for England on the “Saxonia” in November 1915, Cap had been promoted to Quartermaster Sergeant and would eventually attain the rank of Regimental Quartermaster Sergeant while in France. He is said to have turned down an officer’s commission in order to stay with “his boys”, as a commission would have meant a return to base camp in England and eventual redeployment to another battalion. The Battalion arrived in France in August 1916 and was in action by the following October. However, Cap was soon before a medical board and in June 1917, he was returned to England as “being physically unfit for further service”. Sent home to Canada, he was officially discharged in February 1918 with the rank of Warrant Officer 2 and, it is noted, a new pair of glasses. At this time his true age had finally caught up with him, which no doubt was a major cause of the physical condition that led to his discharge. You see, Cap was fifty-five years old! He had lied about his birth date when he joined to get under the forty-five year maximum age limit, claiming he was born in 1871 not 1862. While his job should not have put him directly in the trenches, he would have been close enough to have been considered in combat. Imagine being in the infamous front-line conditions of the First World War at an age of fifty-five!!

By 1920 he was again gainfully employed in his old profession, this time as a travelling representative of Turner & Beeton, the pioneer Victoria dry goods store, and he remained in the mercantile business until advancing age forced his retirement. Incidentally in 1938, he was invited back to Rossland by the Sisters of St. Joseph to attend the dedication of a building expansion of the Mater Misericordia Hospital. Cap had been their first patient at the opening of the hospital in June 1897.

Upon his death in 1948 at age eighty-six, a large funeral was held at St. Saviour’s with his flag draped casket borne through the Church by members of the Canadian Legion. The service of burial was conducted by Rev. Thomas Leadbeater, who at ninety-seven years of age is still with us living in Nelson’s Mountain Lakes Seniors Community. He was assisted by Major Turner Lee of the 54th Battalion who read the lesson. A Legion graveside service followed at the Nelson Cemetery, after which poppies were deposited on the casket. This past November 11th, during the annual decorating of the Soldier’s graves, it was the Legion’s privilege to again place poppies on John “Cap” Carruthers’ grave, this time on his headstone.  Lest We Forget!

*Lord Byron “On my Thirty-Sixth Year” st. 10

Contributed and written by Greg Scott in Nelson BC.

Greg wrote earlier on Mobilisation of the Nelson News Boys

The Nelson Cemetery remembers many servicemen

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cap Carruthers

Major Gilbert Anderson

Maj Gilbert Anderson

Major Anderson was the A Company Commander on the Somme and his letters home provide an idea of the battles they took part in. It references Maj Lucas’s injury.

Detail on Major Anderson’s background will go here

The Letter

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Major Gilbert Anderson


16 May 2011
With all the recent Remembrance Day activity, I remembered that my wife had an uncle who was killed in action in WW1, and decided to do a little digging in our old treasure chest of family keepsakes.

I remember finding some information one time that related to a Charles Williamson from the ‘ 54th Kootenay Battalion’.

So I dug this up and thought I should pass along to whoever may be interested.

We do not know much about Charles, other than a barely readable letter he wrote to his mother in Guelph from ‘somewhere in Belgium’ before he was killed. I would have sent the letter along also, but as I said, it is in poor condition, written in pencil and difficult to read. I believe Charles is buried in France and as the shell states; he was killed on March 1st, 1917.

If you know of any more information relating to Charles, and the circumstances leading up to and after that day, we would appreciate hearing about it.


Claus Christiansen
Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on CHARLES WILLIAMSON

Spring Cleaning 2020

We publish this web site in WordPress. After a lull that began the day after the Vimy Ridge Celebrations in 2017 we have taken up the reins once again to push everything from previous versions of the site to the New Site

These changes as of 24 Feb 2020 are:

Added (pending connection)

Charles Williamson KIA 1 Mar 17

Joe Roundhill – believe he was from Seattle – TBA….

Maj Gilbert Anderson

Cap Carruthers

Norther BC Men (by Brian Milthorpe)

George Millar – a life in pictures

“HC Smith’s War” -Still in progress as of 24 Feb —- need a grave marker picture

“Before the 54th” – Status in progress — Completed 23 Feb

Lt JLL Evans — Completed 23 Feb

Centotaph names — Completed 22 Feb

Send in any material you wish to post to <— clip into the “to” box on your email.

Please have a look at the press clippings at bottom of the main page

If you’d like to see where the 54th Bn was at Vimy Ridge look at image below then click this link – There are several maps of what the entire battle looked like, and modern maps to orient yourself.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Spring Cleaning 2020