LAURELS

Perth Courier - World War I.

supplied by Christine M. Spencer of Northwestern University, Evanston, Il., USA.

  c-spencer3@northwestern.edu


Lanark County in World War I

Document #8


LAURELS

Killed at the front in Flanders—

(Reported as missing in June)

Number eight thousand and eighty

Dispatched from the 9th Platoon.

 

This was the length of the story

The brief little zero of fame

The miserly cipher of silence

They brought with the blank of his name.

 

Somewhere in thundering Flanders

Face front to the arrogant foe

They buried his bones with his glory

Under a stain in the snow.

 

His elegy written in numbers

Guard of the heroes he led

They left him alone and forgotten

One of the numberless dead.

 

But mother earth, mother-like, found him

And coming with flowers in her hands

Warmed with her tears and her blossoms

His valorous heart in the sands.

 

And lo! Where she sorrowed the laurels

Crept up to the grave of his fame

And wove a green chaplet of glory

Around the dull blanks in his name.

A.C.

Perth Courier

Perth Courier, January 19, 1917

Deputy Reeve Thomas Moffat of Pembroke on Tuesday of last week received a letter from his son Major W. J. Moffat advising him of his arrival at the Canadian base headquarters in France on his way to the front.  Major Moffat was second in command of the 130th Battalion which was absorbed by other battalions leaving the senior officers in England.  He has now come to the front but in what capacity is not stated.

Photo of Pte. Arthur Cooper

Pte Arthur Cooper is the son of Mrs. Jas. Cooper, town, and is a drummer with the 130th Bugle Band and is now in France.

Photo of Pte Edgar McKerracher

Pte. Edgar McKerracher is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel McKerracher of Fallbrook, and went overseas with the 130th and is now in the trenches in France with the 3rd Canadian Battalion.

Photo of Pte. Lloyd McKerracher

Pte. Lloyd McKerracher is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel McKerracher, Fallbrook and took part in the Battle of the Somme and was there for two months during which time he had two very narrow escapes from being wounded.  He went overseas with the Queen’s Battery and has remained with the unit throughout.

Perth Courier, Jan. 26, 1917

Nursing Sister Isobel M. Watts paid a short visit to her parents Mr. and Mrs. William Watts of town last week before reporting to the department of medical services at Montreal.  Miss Watts has just returned to America for a month’s leave after 15 months service overseas first with the American Ambulance of Paris, France, caring for French wounded and later with the Harvard University unit of Boston, Mass., at the 22nd General Hospital nursing our own wounded.  Sister Watts has received an appointment with the Canadian Army Medical Corps and returns oversea in early February.

Pte. Peter J. Roberts was invalided to Canada last week and arrived on Thursday at St. John, New Brunswick.  Pte. Roberts spent the weekend with Mr. and Mrs. P. J.. Kehoe in town.  He went overseas with the 1st Contingent being a member of the Strathcona Horse of Western Canada.  He saw nine months continuous service in the trenches before being wounded and this occurred while he was entering a trench.  He suffered at this time a severe bullet wound in the right knee and from the effects he lost his knee cap while in the right limb he received several shrapnel wounds.  After being wounded he lay for 48 hours on the ground before he received medical attention.  His knee cap has been replaced now by a silver one after a period of about a year and a half spent in hospitals in France and England.  In England he was in the same hospital as Pte. Arthur Chariton of Perth and speaks in a most praise worthy manner of the Canadian Red Cross nurses in general for the great work done for the wounded soldiers.  Before returning from the old country he visited his mother’s sister in Ireland who was a sister of Mrs. Mack Hogan, 3rd Line Bathurst.  Pte. Roberts left on Monday evening for Sarnia where he will spend some time with his father and sisters and will report at McCloud, Alberta before the 14th Feb. from which point he enlisted and where he will receive his honorable discharge from the Canadian Army.  Pte. Roberts having seen the war from its earliest beginning and through a period of nearly a year has a host of experiences to relate some of a decidedly gruesome nature.

Photo of Lt. William Miller

Lt. William Miller is the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Miller, formerly of Balderson and now of Sinclair, Manitoba.  Lt. Miller was killed in action on the 10th (?) January last.  He enlisted in Winnipeg with the Cameron Highlanders which later blended with the Canadian Battalion when going overseas.  Lt. Miller was one of the best shots in the unit before he advanced to the rank of lieutenant.  No particulars of his death have been received.  He was a most promising young man and before enlisting attended Manitoba College.  He is a grandson of Mrs. Donald McT--- of Balderson.

Photo of Pte. Stewart

Pte. Stewart is the son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Stewart of Sinclair, Manitoba, formerly of Balderson and brother (or brother-in-law, page is cut off) of the late Lt. Milton who went overseas in October with a battalion (additional words cut off).  He is now at Sandling(?) Camp in England and before enlisting(?) was studying medicine.

MOTHERHOOD OF CANADA!!!

Goodbye Mother!  Don’t Worry!

Goodbye!

Trusting in God to bring him home to her safely—if that is God’s will.

Goodbye!

Trusting in YOU and ME to see his mother through while he, her natural support and defender, is somewhere in France facing shot and shell FOR RIGHT and for native land!

IN THE NAME OF CHRISTENDOM, MEN AND WOMEN, WHAT SACRIFICE IS THIS?

What consecration to DUTY, what response to the call of the MOTHERLAND!

What clarion challenge to the world to “WATCH CANADA”

He goes---joy of his mother’s heart—idol of all HER DREAMS from the day she bore him—hope and bulwark of her declining years.

He goes—and Heaven bless his belief in his people he goes leaving his most beloved possession to OUR CARE and protection.

HE TRUSTS US.

Who will fail him?

What man or woman rich with the possession of the memory of a mother will fail HIS mother as a reward for her sacrifice?

This trust of our soldiers is a HOLY LEGACY.

Give to the mothers of our soldiers in the name of YOUR mother as a testimonial to Canadian motherhood.

Give to the Canadian Patriotic Fund.  $6 million must be raised in October for this fund in 1917.

Give as your own heart prompts to the Patriotic Fund.

Nursing Sister Violet Nesbitt, daughter of the late Rev. Canon Nesbitt of Smith’s Falls and Mrs. Nesbitt now in Ottawa has been given Royal Red Cross honors (first class) for meritorious service overseas.  Miss Nesbitt was one of the first Canadian nurses to offer her services in the war.  She was also engaged in military nursing services during the Boer War.

Pte. C. J. L. Rickwood, for many years organist and choir master of the Pembroke Methodist Church, and former organist at Knox Church in Perth and who enlisted as bandmaster of the 254th Batt. Has been sent home from England having failed a final eye test.  He has been instructed to p lace himself at the disposal of battalions in the organization of bands.  There is, he says, a superabundance of munitions being piled up and that Russia is being supplied and that in all walks of life there is confidence that by April the Allies will smash the Germans on all fronts.

Lt. C. H. Homes has been promoted to the rank of Captain in the 240th Battalion.

Lt. G. C. Graham of the 142nd (?) Regiment has been promoted to the rank of Captain in the 240th Battalion.

Capt. S.D. Powell of the 149th (?) Regiment has been promoted to the rank of Major in the 240th Battalion.

Pte. R. McLenaghan, nephew of Mrs. Nathaniel McLenaghan of Perth, has been in the trenches in France for the past 18 months, has written an interesting letter home.  He stated he had been buried three times but each time was dug out and is none the worse for his experiences.  He has been recommended for the Military Cross for some acts of bravery.

Photo of Gunner James A. Cuthbertson

Gunner James A. Cuthbertson is he son of Mr. and Mrs. John Cuthbertson of Bathurst who is in England with the Guelph O.(?) D.(?) A.C. Battery and enlisted in March of last year.

Photo of Lt. William H. Cuthbertson

Lt. William H. Cuthbertson is the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Cuthbertson of Bathurst who is in France with the Royal Engineers.  Lt. Cuthbertson is a graduate civil engineer of Toronto University and enlisted with the Toronto University Corps of the Royal Engineers.  He has been in France since the middle of December last.

A letter written by Lt. R. Kincaid, brother of Archie Kincaid of Perth, was received.  He went overseas with the 59th Brockville Battalion and went to the front in September of 1916.  He was in a hospital in France with a knee injury. (Transcriber’s note, this letter has not been transcribed, it was mainly dealing with his stay in the hospital.)

Perth Courier, Feb. 2, 1917

In the casualty list of Monday, the names of two district boys appear, Hugh J. Miller son of Mr. Samuel Miller of Burgess and W. S. Ashby of Fallbrook.  Thomas Cummings, son of Mr. David Cummings of Carleton Place, who went overseas with the 130th Battalion was reported wounded.

Capt. E. Consitt of town received letters from Captain Ed Wilson, Sgt. John Enright, Captain Crowe, Sgt. Philip McParlan and Pte. Tom Munday this week, all being overseas.  Sgt. John Enright is in France while the others are in England.  Sgt. John Enright, who went overseas with the 80th (Belleville) Battalion and has been in France over a year, in his letter, thanks Capt. Consitt, Mel Kennedy, Ed Enright and Mark LaPointe for a parcel received.  On Christmas Day he had a very narrow escape from a German shell.  He says:  “I received a Christmas gift on Christmas day in the way of a shell.  It blew up my shack on the line and my equipment and blankets were destroyed but I came through without a scratch.  It was a corn cracker”.  Sgt. Enright makes much of the tanks in use and has been in them and saw them traveling along but says to give any details would be against the Defense of the Realm Act.  He also says:  “I am still troubled by my shoulder and especially when carrying a pack and marching 7 or 8 miles to and from the trenches”.

Capt. Ed Wilson is at Wilby Camp, England and went overseas last fall.  At the time of writing he was engaged in the examination of the teeth of men going to France and that day had examined over 1,000 men.  If they are not able to pass the teeth examination they must stay in England and received dental attention before going to France and the dental examination is very strict.

Sgt. Philip McParlan went overseas with the 130th and was an assistant in the medical section of the 130th.  He has been transferred from the 12th (130th) to the Canadian Army Medical Corps and was attending the A.M.C. Training School at Dibgate and at New Year’s Eve time the class was moved to Westenhanger, Kent, England.

Capt. Crow, who went overseas with the 130th said he obtained leave to see his father and sister in England and spent five days altogether at his home town there.  He expected to be transferred any day to the 46th Battalion commanded by Col. Dawson, formerly O.C. of the 59th Canadian Batt.

Pte. Tom Munday, who was an assistant in the medical section of the 130th says there is a big difference between England and Canada.  There it rains nearly all the time.  He expected to be transferred to the Canadian Army Medical Corps.

Two letters came through this week from Lt. Clyde R. Scott, now an internal prisoner of war at Murren.  He and Capt. Hooper are room mates in the Palace Hotel at Murren.  The former is able to walk with a measure of comfort now although a further operation will be needed to restore him to a measure of use.  He is happy in Switzerland.  He has also joined a motor class with a view of becoming proficient in the handing of the auto.  The first information in detail about the lieutenant’s experiences after being made a prisoner of war two years ago is contained in the letter received this week at St. Andrew’s Manse and a considerable part of it is harrowing information.  Having fallen wounded on the field and his wounds having been of a virulent nature he was given no attention for nearly three weeks.  Without giving a bandage he was taken to a train and remained on it for the 4 days run to Pollarborn(?), Prussia.  The two weeks he was supposed to be in a dying condition in one hospital.  He was removed to another hospital where he received his first intelligent treatment.  The surgeons there first of all extracted two chunks of shrapnel from his body, 27 pieces of shrapnel bone were taken from one part of the wounded frame and 17 from another part.  After these operations he lay for some months with a 25 pound weight to his leg.  The wounds are now healed however and the results of the shattering are found only in the hip and knee.  He writes cheerfully and hopefully but longs to have some of his won near him.

In a letter received from Pte. Arthur Johnston, states that he is meeting many Perth and district boys in France who were formerly with the 130th Battalion.  He says that New Year’s Day and the week was spent in the trenches by himself and the first person he met from Perth this year was Major John Hope who was in the same division.  With the exception of the band practically all of the 130th are in France.

Perth Courier, February 9, 1917

Photo of Driver David Carson

Driver David Carson who enlisted at Edmunton and went overseas with the 51st Battalion has been on active service since December of 1915.  John Carson, Bathurst, is his brother.

A letter was received last week from Pte. Wilburt J. Jackson son of Mrs. Albert Jackson of Perth, who went overseas with the 130th and is now with the 12th Reserve Batt. In England.  He says England is a nice country, at present the grass being as green now as it is in the Spring.  He received a box from his mother for which he was grateful and especially for the Old Chum Tobacco and all the lads had a smoke of Old Chum as the Old Chum is not obtainable in England.  There is not any there of as good a grade as Old Chum which the Canadian boys are used to.

Perth Courier, Feb. 16, 1917

Photo of Pte. Thomas D. Nisbet

Pte. Thomas D. Nisbet went overseas in May last with the Saskatchewan unit of the 8th Canadian Stationary Hospital and has been stationed at Shorncliffe since then.  He is a son of the late William Nisbet of Elphin and brother to Mr. D.J. Nisbet of the homestead there.

Lt. N. U. Jones of Goderich, Ontario with the Royal Naval Air Service, spent Saturday and Sunday with Mr. and Mrs. Horace E. Robinson before leaving for overseas.

The following letter was received by Mr. George Stokes of town from Pte. Arthur Johnston in regard to the death of his son Pte. James Stokes on the battlefield:

France, 15th January, 1917

Dear Sir and Friend:

No doubt you will be surprised to receive a few lines from me but I feel it my sad duty to express to you my sincere regret at hearing of the news some time ago of the death in action of your son James or Jimmy as he was popularly known among his comrades.  Since the news reached me I have tried to find out all the circumstances and my efforts were rewarded today in having a talk with his chum Pte. Geroux of Pembroke who was with him when he fell and from what I have learned I can assure you Jimmy died the death of a hero.  He had assisted a wounded comrade Pte. Aitkin to the dressing station and was returning to duty with Pte. Geroux when a German sniper shot him through the right breast and the bullet passed out through the left breast.  He was instantly killed and suffered no pain.  Geroux knelt over his body and implored him to speak but the shot had caused instant death.  Jimmy held a German officer’s revolver in his hand when he was shot and he prized it greatly and said it was the only souvenir he wanted.  As Geroux told me all today, his grief was easily seen.  They had been close chums since their first meeting in Smith’s Falls.  Jimmy was buried on the battlefield and I hope I am spared some day to point out the location to you.  I had not known him so very well in Perth but I found out his true worth as an exemplary young man and soldier at Bramschott Camp in England last summer where over 30 Perth boys were in training and nearly every evening we would meet there for a reunion and good times.  He was always cheerful and he never seemed to worry over anything and when the time came to depart for France and the front he was in high spirits and anxious to do his bit.  I can assure you all his comrades, especially the Perth boys, are broken hearted at his loss and I know of one Perth boy who cried as if Jimmy had been his brother.  In your sorrow you can at least have the satisfaction of knowing that your son was among millions of others in the great allied armies fighting for all that is right, civilized and humanity against a power which is evil and which threatens the existence of all the rights we prize and the freedom we enjoy.

Yours Sincerely,

Arthur M. Johnston

Perth Courier, Feb. 23, 1917

Miss Josephine Armstrong, R.N., who returned to Perth from overseas Thursday of last week has been engaged as a nurse at Queen’s Canadian Military Hospital, Beachborbugh(?) Park, England, for the past 20 months and during this time has been most busily engaged.  Her health would not permit her staying for a longer period and she has returned home for a well earned rest. Her sister Miss Jessie Armstrong who is also engaged in the same hospital with the Volunteer Aid Detachment is remaining there.  The Queen’s Hospital at Beachborough Park is privately maintained by Canada (?) of London, England and is under the charge of Col. Armour or Canada.  Imperial Canadian and Australian soldiers receive treatment within its purview.  Miss Armstrong sailed for Canada on the Missanaba(?) just as the declaration of Germany was made in regard to the submarine warfare and the voyage was quite eventful inasmuch that within view of the passengers two steamers were seen to go down but happily the Missanaba(?) came through safely.

Creighton Wilson son of Mr. and Mrs. John Wilson of town has joined the 229th Battalion in the west and is at Edmunton.  Four sons of Mr. and Mrs. Wilson are therefore in khaki, Tome at home and Clyde and Herb overseas.

The following letter was received from Lt. William McLean by his father David McLean.  Lt. McLean went overseas with the 130th Battalion and has been in France in the thick of the conflict for some time.

France, 18th Jan., 1917

Dear Father:

I must write this letter this evening for I may not have a chance again for some time.  We came out of the line today after a month’s stay.  I had a very hard time in the line for the weather was very bad most of the time.  I had a couple trips out of the trenches but just long enough to have a night’s sleep and a bath.  The trenches were in very bad shape and it was nearly impossible to sleep except when we were almost ready to drop.  As bad as the trenches were they had nothing on the German trenches.  Some of our recent prisoners seemed to think our trenches were just fine.  Just before we came out we saw some real fighting and things were warm for a day or two.  Quite a bunch of prisoners were taken.  Most of them were quite young chaps and seemed to be very happy to be taken.  Our boys were in a hurry and blew up many dugouts which were full of Germans and in all probability many were casualties.

21st Jan., 1917

Since I started this letter things have happened.  They were shelling while I was writing and a big one almost put us out of business.  A fragment came through the door and knocked things about a bit.  No one was hurt but we were busy a while and most of the time since we have been on the move.  We are now away from the line almost out of hearing of the guns and running a good chance here of living to a ripe old age if we are here long enough.  We marched out in full heavy marching order.  It was quite a hike with a 75 pound pack but the weather is cold now and we did not mind it much.  I expect we will be here for almost a month and then I am not sure where we go but probably into some “show”.  We are billeted in a little town.  The billets are not very good but I was lucky and got a good bed.  So once more I can get my clothes off.  For over a month I never took off my boots except to change my socks and wash.  I had a letter from Aunt Minnie the other day and a parcel with some maple sugar which was fine.  We had it on our porridge while it lasted.  Your loving son, William

Four sons and a father in the Canadian army for a distinction that falls to the lot of few families and such is the case with the family of Judge James G. Scott of McDonald’s Corners.  Mr. Scott has donned the khaki, enlisting with the artillery.  Three sons are now on active service in France while one son, Norman, has paid the supreme sacrifice only one son is left in the family and he too wants to enlist but must wait two years to be eligible.

Photo of Pte. Alphonse Murphy

Pte. Alphonse Murphy, son of Mr. and Mrs. James Murphy, 3rd Line Bathurst, is with the Queen’s Field Ambulance.

A memorial service was held in Portland Methodist Church on Sunday, 10th Feb., for the late Pte. Charles Cannon, killed by a trench mortar explosion in France.  His father and one brother are in England with the Canadian forces.

Pte. John F. P. Foster of Merrickville who was previously reported missing was again reported in last Friday’s casualty list, but as being killed.

Anxiety regarding the fate of Flight Lt. Randolph White, formerly of Pembroke, has been relieved by the announcement that he was wounded and is now a prisoner of war in Germany.  The first official news came in a cablegram to his brother Peter White, K.C., Toronto.  Lt. White was apparently wounded in a contest with an enemy plane and had to descent and give himself up.

Major W. J. Moffatt, son of Deputy Reeve Thomas H. Moffat who went overseas as second in command of the 130th Battalion arrived in Canada Sunday last on the steamer Missanible(?), says the Pembroke Observer.  He has not yet reached Pembroke and has probably been detained by military formalities in the east.  The objective of his return at this time is not known but it is surmised that it is in connection with the formation of an additional construction company or battalion of which it is understood a number are to be enlisted at once.

The following letter was received by John Russell of town from Sgt. Phillip McParlan, formerly of the 130th and who is now at Witley Camp in England which is one of the chief artillery camps there. 

(Transcriber’s note, this letter is not transcribed in full.)

At present I am attached to the artillery in charge of four men, to look after the water supply and see that it is properly “doped” and pure before using it.  When we get to the front I will try and put a little rum in it for some or the boys who are very dry, ha, ha.  Although I am in the artillery I am merely attached to them.  I still belong to the Canadian Army Medical Corps and we have to do first aid, etc., when necessary.  We are under the supervision of the medical officer.  This is a fine job and I hope I will be left to this unit until the scrap is finished.  They are a fine lot of men and all the Perth boys who joined the artillery are in this camp.  I am over 100 miles from Sandling so it will only be by chance that I will run across any of the old 130th boys in the future.  Most of them who have not gone overseas are at E. Sandling Camp now.

We are having a rather cold spell here now.  The ground is frozen but there is not a speck of snow.  In some places they are out skating.  They say it is the coldest snap experienced here in 36 years.  It is terrible in the trenches lately.  The boys have suffered terribly from frost and snow.  The autos are at a standstill over there.  When this bunch gets across with the Howitzer batteries and 18 pounders that should do some good work.  They will not go over for 6 weeks or more although they expected to go sooner.  I hope to go along with them.  Your sincere friend, Phillip McParland

Perth Courier, March 2, 1917

Photo of Pte. Everett Doyle

John Doyle, town, has received word from the Record Office of Ottawa that his son Pte. Everett Doyle who was seriously wounded on 1st Nov., in the limbs has had the honor of having the Military Medal conferred upon him for bravery on the battlefield.  Everett is the first Perth boy to sin military honors in this war. He went overseas in April last year with the Seaforth Olanders(?) of Vancouver and was in the trenches some three months when wounded.  These wounds are still confining him to a hospital in England.  The news of his receiving the coveted Military Medal will be learned with pleasure by all here.

Nurses in England and France:

            1.         Miss Kathleen Shaw, R.N.—After 22 months spent in France nursing the wounded Kathleen returned home to Perth on the 21st June.  For upwards of a year she has been at a casualty clearing station in France and has taken a very strenuous part in caring for the wounded.  Miss Shaw speaks in most praiseworthy terms of the work the Red Cross is doing.  It is invaluable and would be next to impossible to get along without the assistance of the organization and that of the Daughters of the Empire.  The parcels sent to the boys are always received with delight.  Miss Shaw will return overseas at a later date.

            2.         Miss Isabel McEwen, R.N.

Miss McEwen has been overseas for the past year and is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. McEwen of Perth.  After a three year course in post graduate work in a hospital in New York, Miss McEwen was highly successful in her final exams.  Just after graduation she applied for and received a position in Queen’s University unit that was intended for service at Cairo, Egypt and left Perth a year ago this week but on reaching England on the way to Egypt the destination of the unit was changed to France where she has been engaged in the war hospitals for the greater part of the past year and is not at Etapes where the many hospitals connected with the British Expeditionary Forces are doing marvelous work in looking after the convoys of wounded and sick soldiers that are constantly arriving from the battle lines.

            3.         Miss Jessie Armstrong

She has been with the Voluntary Aid Detachment at Queen’s Military Hospital at Beachborough Park, England since November of 1915.  Miss Armstrong is the daughter of Mr. George Armstrong of Toronto, formerly of Perth and sister of Miss Josephine Armstrong, returned nurse.  Women engaged in the Voluntary Aid Detachment in English hospitals assist the nurses generally; that is, in the preparation of the food for the wounded soldiers and generally looking after their wants.  Miss Jessie has been engaged chiefly with the feeding branch of the work and is head of the pantry having it entirely in her charge.  Of course voluntary aid is also gained from those soldier patients who are up and about and are only to glad to do something as a change from their enforced idleness and be of assistance in the necessary work.  In Queen’s Hospital there are 130 beds and the building is usually quite full.  Miss Armstrong will likely remain there until the autumn.

            4.         Miss Josie Armstrong

Miss Josephine Armstrong, R.N., daughter of Mr. George Armstrong of Toronto and formerly of Perth, has returned from England where she has been engaged for the past twenty months as nurse at Queen’s Canadian Military Hospital Beachborough Park, England and during this time has been most busily engaged.  Miss Armstrong’s health would not permit her to stay for a longer period and she is now enjoying a much needed rest. 

            5.         Miss Annie McCann, R.N.

Miss McCann is the daughter of Mr. John McCann of town and has been in France for the past six months nursing in a hospital near Etapes and is now at Ontario Military Hospital, Orpington, Kent County, England.  She went overseas with the Chicago unit of nurses and after spending six months in France the American nurses returned to America while Miss McCann remained in England.  She joined the Canadian detachment of nurses there and was stationed at the Ontario hospital.  Miss McCann is a graduate of Mercy Hospital of Chicago.

            6.         Miss Annie McDiarmid, R.N.

Miss McDiarmid attended the schools in Kemptville and later St. Lamber’s Academy and McGill Normal School before taking her diploma as a qualified nurse from the Royal Victoria Hospital in Montreal and where she was engaged for some tome.  Miss McDiarmid went overseas with the McGill #3 General Hospital Unit composed of 100 doctors and 80 nurses and she has been on duty continuously with them near Boulogne, France.  Her brother Captain C.A. McDiarmid, is an Adjutant in the Canadian Convalescent Hospital, Bearwood, Workingham, Berkshire, England.

            7.         Miss Isobel Watts, R.N.

Miss Isobel has been home on leave for a month in Canada with her parents Mr. and Mrs. William Watts of town and at other points and returns overseas this week.  Miss Watts has spent 15 months overseas first with the American Ambulance of Paris, France.  She has received an appointment with the Canadian Army Medical Corps and is returning overseas as a member of that unit which is doing such great work for the wounded.

            8.         Miss Gladys Code, R.N.

Miss Code is the daughter of Mr. John Code of Perth, and has been overseas since May of 1915 and after spending some time in London and Shorncliffe she went to nurse at #1 Hospital in Boulogne, France and later to Etapes where she remained for three months until illness necessitated her returning to England.  Miss Code has lately been with the Westcliffe (eye and ear) Hospital in England where soldiers receive treatment but resigned recently and is expected to return to Canada following her marriage to Major Ferguson as her duties nursing have been a severe trial to her health.

            9.         Miss Ruth Craig, R.N.

Miss Craig is the only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Andrew F. Craig of Brightside and is a graduate of the Western Hospital of Toronto.  Miss Craig went to France in May of 1916 with the French Flag Nursing Corps.  They were sent by the Canadian National Association of Trained Nurses and their service might be called voluntary as they received only a small remuneration.  Before leaving this unit of nurses were taught the French language and infinite trouble was taken to accumulate a vocabulary of words and phrases which would be most likely to be required.  The time for teaching was short and it was a case of learning what would be most needed.  Besides this, a little booklet of words and phrases with their translation into French was prepared and through the generosity of John Ross Robertson these have been printed and given not only to the nurses for the French but to all Canadian nurses in military service.

Perth Courier, March 9, 1917

Arthur Eastman of Merrickville has received word from the military authorities that his step son, Pte. J. F. Foster, reported missing, is now reported killed in action.  This report was anticipated from private sources of information so that friends were prepared for the worst.  Pte. Foster enlisted with the 87th Grenadier Guards, Montreal Battalion, which went overseas last spring.  He was formerly with the civil service at Ottawa.

Pte. Wilford Charleton who has been in the College Street Convalescent Home in Toronto since November of 1916, came home to Perth very quietly on Friday afternoon last.  It was his wish that no public reception be arranged.  Therefore, very few knew of his homecoming on Friday.  He is glad to be home once more after an absence from Canada of over 2 years, the better part of this time being spent in hospitals in France and England, during which he underwent treatment of his very serious wounds that of a bullet wound which first struck him in the shoulder and then taking a downward course lodged in his spine.  For some three or four days after his wounding he had no use of his limbs but eventually regained the use of his arms and for a period of none months his legs were paralyzed but under skillful treatment they are gradually assuming a normal condition.  A most advanced operation in the field of surgery was performed by Col. Bruce of Toronto which resulted in the removal of the bullet from the spine and therefore relieving its serious effects upon the nervous system.  In September of 1914 he went overseas with the Strathcona Horse, enlisting at Lethbridge, Alberta with the 10th (?) Battalion and later transferred to this unit in the 1st Contingent and after spending several months in training in England this unit went to France in April of 1915.  Wilford saw his first engagement at Festubert(?) soon afterwards following which the Strathcona Horse went to Givenchy and later moved up to the Belgium frontier.  They were located at Neuve Eglise in Belgium and on Sunday evening in July, 1915 about 9:30 while engaged with a working party he was struck by a bullet either a stray one or fired by a sniper which has since caused him many long days of patient suffering.  For three months after his wounding he remained in a Canadian hospital at Treport, France and then was taken to England where he received treatment in a Manchester hospital and in the hospital at Alterinchan, Cheshire for eight months.  He then went to hospitals at Shorncliffe and latterly at (unreadable word) where he spent the summer of 1916 and where he underwent an important operation upon his lower limbs performed by Major Smith.  In November of last year he sailed for Canada via the Mauretania and after spending four months in Toronto needless to say his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur L. Charlton are very glad to have their son with them once more.

Herb McCann, son of John McCann, town, has been attending the Royal Dental College in Toronto and has enlisted there and will go overseas with the Dental Corps this month.

Dr. and Mrs. McCallum, Smith’s Falls, received a message from the Record Office in Ottawa last Sunday stating that their son Harold McCallum, was in #18 Casualty Clearing Station dangerously ill from a gunshot wound in the left arm.  He has been at the front for nearly two years.  Harold is a nephew of Mr. and Mrs. G. B. Farmer of town.

Pte. Edward Doyle is now in Canada.  A telegram received on Thursday evening of last week from him by his parents in town stated that he had arrived at Halifax that day with the steamer Esquibo and expected to be taken to a convalescent hospital but just where he was not certain.  Pte. William Beatty, son of Mrs. William Beatty of Wilson Street, Perth, also came from England aboard the same boat.

Major H. E. Dale, Commander of Ft. Henry at Kingston, has left for northern Ontario to select a site for a new internment camp for the Germans now at Ft. Henry.  As the officers in charge of the guard three have had wide experience it is likely they will be transferred to the new camp.

Pte. Clifford S. Lette of Eganville has been killed in action.

Perth Courier, March 16, 1917

Casualty List:

            1.         Pte. Thomas Butler (photo accompanies article)

Sad news was conveyed to William H. Butler of Harper by telegram from the Record Office at Ottawa on Wednesday morning of the death of his only son Pte. Thomas Butler, on the battlefield in France.  The telegram briefly stated that by cable received at Ottawa Pte. Thomas Butler, infantry, was officially reported killed in action 1st March last.  Pte. Butler enlisted in Feb., of 1916 in Perth with the 130th Battalion and went to England with them.  He has been in France for the past two months with the 12th Battalion and a letter was received from him on Sunday which had been written in the trenches.  In the letter he stated that Pte. Herbert Gibson, son of William Gibson, 8th Line Bathurst, was with him in the trenches.  On Wednesday Pte. Gibson was officially reported to have been slightly wounded in the arm.  This Saturday would have been the 21st birthday of Thomas Butler who was very well known throughout the district where he spent his lifetime previous to going overseas.  He has made the supreme sacrifice and the loss of one so young in life will be heard of with deep regret by all who were acquainted with him.  His father and three sisters Misses Beatrice of Toronto and Pearl and Mildred at home survive him.

            2.         Pte. Edgar McKerracher, son of Mr. and Mrs. David McKerracher of Fallbrook was incapacitated from a fall while digging a trench in France.

            3.         A telegram from the Record Office Wednesday morning stated that Pte. Herbert Gibson, son of Mr. William Gibson, 8th Line Bathurst, had been wounded slightly in the arm.  He went overseas with the 130th Battalion.

            4.         George Noonan, Christies Lake, received a telegram from the Record Office of Ottawa on Saturday stating that his son Pte. Orville Noonan had a wound in the left knee.  He went overseas with the 130th Battalion and has been in France since December.  The telegram said he was suffering from a contusion of the knee.

            5.         Tuesday’s casualty list contained the names of the following from this district as wounded:  James Traill of Lanark; Hector Miller of Renfrew; Herb Kennedy of Snow Road; D.C. McFarlane, R.R.#2, Lanark; Norman Turner of Almonte; James Joss and Robert Naismith of Almonte, died of wounds; and T. H. Cashmore of Cobden.

            6.         Edward McAfee of town, received word on Tuesday of the death of his brother Harold McAfee in England.  He had been overseas six months with the 155th Battalion of Trenton and was wounded in France ten days previous to his death and spent this time in hospitals.  The extent of his wounding was not learned by his brother here.  A memorial service will be held in Deseronto Methodist Church on his behalf next Sunday, which is the town of his late home and where his mother Mrs. J.G. McAfee, resides.  Pte. McAfee was a young man of 24 years and was born in Napanee.  Edward McAfee of town is attending the memorial services in Deseronto Sunday.

Capt. Ronald R. Scott, M.D., has received military honors from the French Republic in the form of the Croix de Guerre a coveted  military honor in recognition of his services as medical officer in France.  Capt. Scott has done exceptional work as medical officer in the 1st Royal Scots Fusiliers.  His particular bravery, efficiency and fidelity has been rewarded most honorably.  The work in which he is engaged takes him right up to the trenches and while he was home on a brief visit last October, 14 of the 16 stretcher bearers serving under him had fallen on the field which serves to point out the dangerous position in which Capt. Scott has been while on duty.  He is the third eldest son of Rev. and Mrs. A. H. Scott of St. Andrew’s Manse, Perth, and brother of Lt. Clyde Scott, prisoner of war in Switzerland and Gordon Scott with the artillery in France.  Previous to going overseas Capt. Scott was superintendent of the Western Hospital in Montreal.  He is the second Perth boy to receive military honors.

Sgt. William J. Young of the 240th Battalion, Renfrew, died from pleuro-pneumonia on Saturday, 3rd March, aged 24 years.

Lt. George W. Dailey, 41st Brockville Regiment, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Dailey, has been appointed to command a draft to the 21st Battalion.

Perth Courier, March 23, 1917

Photos of Pte. A. T. Bell and Pte. Raymond Bell

They are sons of Thomas Bell of Millerfield, Alberta and formerly of Balderson and brothers of Messrs. Alfred and Christopher Bell of Balderson.  Pte. A. T. Bell went overseas with the 187th Battalion of western Canada and Pte. Raymond Bell with the 100th (Winnipeg) Grenadiers.  These young men have many relatives in this district.

Sgt. Roy Wilson, who trained all last winter with the 130th Battalion and went overseas with the local unit was reported missing in action on Friday last and on Thursday morning Mrs. Wilson received a telegram from the Record Office in Ottawa conveying the sad intelligence of her husband’s death having been officially reported killed in action on 1st March last.  He had been in France for the past 4 months with the 75th Battalion.  He was 29 years of age and was born in Perth, a son of Albert T. Wilson of Toronto and formerly of Perth.  He had lived in Perth until some four years ago when he went to Toronto with his parents.  He is survived by his wife whose maiden name was Helen Hartney of Perth and one daughter, his father, one brother Dr. Arthur Wilson overseas and a sister Mrs. (Dr.) William McLean of Toronto.  He is the second member from Perth of the 130th to pay the supreme sacrifice.

Three Returned Soldiers Welcomed to Perth

(transcriber’s note, partial transcription only)

Pte. Everett Doyle and Pte. Herbert White were returning soldiers to their homes in Perth on Saturday last.  Pte. White came in on he early morning train while Pte. Doyle arrived on the afternoon train.  He was met at the station by the Citizens’ Reception Committee, representatives of the Red Cross Society and the Perth Upon Tay Chapter of the International Order of Daughters of the Empire and the Citizens’ Band.  The party then proceeded to the town hall where a formal reception of Ptes. Doyle, White and Wilfred Charlton took place the hall being filled to the doors.  Pte. Charlton arrived quietly some two weeks ago previous.  The reception opened with the singing of the national anthem with band accompaniment.  Major Hands then read an address to the young men who have all been through heavy engagements in France and have all suffered serious wounds.

Pte. Everett Doyle, first of Perth’s sons to win the Military Medal for bravery on the battle line, you have set your fellows a find example and are worthy of congratulations that are being showered upon you.  Going overseas in April of 1916 with Vancouver’s ‘Seaforth’s Highlanders’ and being in the trenches three months when you received the wounds which have made you an invalid since that time, we rejoice to know that you have good prospects for soon regaining your former health and vigor and we trust may still be able to serve your country that will add greatly to the excellent record you have so worthily won.”

Pte. Wilfred Charlton, you had a long and trying experience since you enlisted with the 10th Battalion at Lethbridge on 10th August, 1914—immediately after the war was declared.  You accompanied your unit to France in April of 1915 and had your place in the battles of Festubert and Givenchy, showing mettle that proved you would have the stern kind of stuff requisite for the model soldier.  Being severely wounded while on duty in Belgium it fell to you to spend long turns in several of the hospitals in France and England before being invalided home to Canada and we are all pleased to note that in spite of your great suffering you are making gradual progress toward recovery and the hope of all your fellow citizens is that you may be soon fully restored to health”.

“Pte Herbert White, as one of our near neighbors we are glad to have the privilege of welcoming you home with the other boys and you have done your bit for the Empire and have paid the price so many others have had to pay.  Like your fellows to whom reference has already been made, you were far from home when you heard the call of King and country but like them you saw your duty and you did it nobly and well.  Enlisting with the 28th Battalion at Winnipeg on the 25th October, 1914, you went overseas in May of 1915 and to the trenches in France the same autumn.  After undergoing bombardment and trench fighting for some time at Kemmel, south of Ypres, you were wounded on the 4th Jan., 1916 and like your fellows you have had to undergo hospital treatment since that time in France and England.  Now that you are back to your home we trust you may speedily recover your former excellent health and strength and be again fitted for the activities that lay ahead.”

Sorrow has come to the home of George Weedmark in Montague, whose son Pte. Gordon Weedmark has been officially reported died of wounds.  A short time ago he was reported in the hospital suffering from gun shot wounds in the thigh and leg.  On Wednesday last week word officially came of his death on the 10th March.  He was a fine young fellow of 19 years whose death will be heard with keen sorrow by many friends.  He went overseas with the 130th Battalion.

Photo of Pte. Henry S. McNaughton

Pte. Henry S. McNaughton is the son of Mrs. William McNaughton of Balderson, who enlisted with the (unreadable words), Collingwood Battalion while principal of King George Public School at Colllingwood.  He went overseas in February last.

Photo of Signaler Kenneth McEwen

Signaler Kenneth McEwen is the son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. McEwen of Perth and is about to go overseas with a draft of signalers from Ottawa.

A letter received form Fred Adams this week by his parents Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Adams states that he had finished a course in signaling in France and had passed as a first class signaler and had returned to the 38th Battalion.  He had had several visits lately with Harmon Warren, formerly of Perth and when they first met Harmon Warren was on his way to see Clarney Cameron of Perth, who was about 8 kilometers from the 38th Camp.  Fred also saw Jack Hartney of Perth but was not able to talk to him outside of calling out “hello, Jack”.  Fred Lappin of Perth was about to pay the writer and George Dittrick a visit at the time of his writing, the battalion Fred Lappin was with having just come out of the trenches.  Coming from breakfast that morning he met John Hope of Perth who was going up the street of the village in France where they were stationed.

A letter from Stuart Wilson to his sister Annie Wilson, children of Mr. Samuel Wilson of the Scotch line, has not been transcribed.  He wrote from a camp in England, Crowboro, 25ht Fe

Perth Courier, March 23, 1917

A letter received from Fred Adams this week by his parents Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Adams states that he had finished a course in signaling in France and had passed as a first class signaler and had returned to the 38th Battalion.  He had had several visits lately with Harmon Warren, formerly of Perth and when they first met Harmon Warren was on his way to see Clarney Cameron of Perth who was about 8 kilometers from the 38th camp.  Fred also saw Jack Hartney of Perth but was not able to talk to him outside of saying “hello, Jack”.  Fred Lappin of Perth was about to pay the latter and George Dittrick a visit at the time of writing, the battalion Fred Lappin was with having just come out of the trenches.  Coming from breakfast that morning he met John Hope of Perth who was going up the street of the village in France where they were stationed.

A letter from Stuart Wilson to his sister Annie Wilson, children of Samuel Wilson of the Scotch line is not transcribed here.  He wrote from a camp in England, Crowboro, on the 25th Feb., 1917.  He joined the Western University’s Corps at Edmunton, the 19th Batt.  He left for overseas in October of 1916.  He describes the camp conditions and some sightseeing he had done.

Many in Perth will regret to hear of the death of Private Clifford Noble who was killed in action on the 1st March.  He spent last winter in Perth with the 130th Battalion and was in his 24th year—a young many of good physique and splendid character for whom the future held forth every promise.  He enlisted first with the Guards at Petawawa and in the spring of last year transferred to the 130th Battalion with which he went overseas in September.  In England he was drafted into the 75th (?) 76th(?) Battalion and he crossed to France last fall.

Pte. Charles Thomas O’Gorman, son of Mr. Thomas O’Gorman of Bromley who was a member of the 130th Battalion, was wounded in action.

Lt. Joseph H. Elmsley, son of Major (Rev.) W. H. Elmsley, pastor of the Pembroke Methodist Church, until he went overseas as a chaplain for “leading a successful raiding party in daylight against the enemy’s posts and trenches, showing marked initiative powers and leadership” has been rewarded with military honors.

Miss Evelyn M. Wilson, daughter of Mrs. Robert Cavanagh, Carleton Place, has been decorated a second time.  The second decoration appeared in the New Year’s honors as receiving the Royal Red Cross and first class honors for her work in France where she is a matron of the #3 Canal Stationary Hospital.  In the King’s Birthday honors she also received honors

Perth Courier, March 30, 1917

Mrs. Charles Samways, 398 Parliament Street, Ottawa has received word from Ottawa that her son Pte. Wilfred J. O’Brien, was wounded in the head by a gunshot wound on the 2nd March.  Pte. O’Brien enlisted in August of 1915 and went to the front in August, 1916.  Before enlisting he was employed as a printer by Mr. C. M. Gilchrist Co., of Toronto.  He was born in Perth and is well known here but had lived in Toronto for bout 5 years.  He is 22 years of age.

Sgt. A. Gibbons of the 3rd (Toronto) Battalion who was a prisoner of war in Giesen Camp, Germany for four months, will tell the story of his experiences while a prisoner in Germany in the town hall of Perth on Wednesday evening at 8:15 p.m.  Sgt. Gibbons has spoken at over 150 public meetings under the auspices of the Perth branch of the Canadian Rec Cross Society.

Lt. P. S. D. Harding, formerly agriculture representative here who went overseas with the 130th  Battalion has been appointed agriculture specialist in a certain territory in France.  An effort is being made to stimulate agricultural production in France and even quite close to the territory in which the war is being prosecuted.  It is in this territory that Lt. Harding’s new duties will be performed among the farmers.  His duties will be to assist by instruction in the cultivation by all available land.  Lt. Harding has been in the trenches for over three months lately but recently received the new appointment.


Posted: 14 May, 2004