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WWI

These collections contains any material relating to Canada from 1914 to 1918 from either the home front or the battlefront. External links in collection descriptions are either to online attestation papers at Library and Archives Canada or casualty and burial information at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

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Charles Gordon Shaw was born in Ottawa, Ontario in 1895 He later moved to Peterborough, Ontario, where he enlisted with the 247th Bn. C.E.F. in October, 1916 and served overseas with the 3rd Canadian Reserve Battalion. The collection consists of two letters.

Russell Shaw was born in Arthur Township, Ontario in July, 1894. He was a farmer before his enlistment in Arthur, Ontario in March, 1916. Shaw served with the 47th Battalion in France. The collection consists of one letter and one photograph of Shaw.

Terence Sheard was born in Toronto, Ontario in February, 1898. Sheard enlisted at Cobourg, Ontario with the Cobourg Heavy Battery and served overseas in France until his return to Canada and discharge in 1919. The collection consists of two letters and five photographs.

Robert William Shirley was born in 1897, and enlisted in February, 1916 at Swan Lake, Manitoba. He served overseas in France and was killed August 11, 1918. The collection consists of one letter from his commanding officer to his mother, and an undated obituary from the local newspaper.

Robert Shortreed was born in Guelph, Ontario, on 26 January 1891. A salesman, he enlisted with the 64th Depot Battery, Canadian Field Artillery, in Guelph on 6 November 1916, transferring to the 12th Canadian Siege Battery after arriving in England. The collections consists of letters written to his parents and sisters Elizabeth, Evelyn, and Isabel (Bell), and covers his early training in Canada to his return to England to await return home.

Gordon Merritt Shrum was born in Smithville, Ontario in 1894 and enlisted in April, 1916 while a student at The University of Toronto. He served overseas and returned to Canada to teach in 1919. The collection consists of two letters written to Helen Nickle of Smithville. Other correspondents to Davis include the Bill Grassie Collection, the Daniel Austin Lane Collection, the Fred Nickle Collection, and the William Grassie Collection.

Albert John Simpkins was born in Walthamstow, London, England in November, 1878. He was a mineral water manufacturer. Prior to the war he had travelled and worked in Canada, living for some time in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Simpkins was back in England during the war, and enlisted at Seaford Sussex in May, 1918. He served overseas with the 8th Battalion, and was killed in action on September 29, 1918, age 39. The collection currently consists of numerous letters, photographs, postcards, and digital images of his personal effects returned to the family after his death.

Harold Henry Simpson, MM, was born in March, 1897 in Bayview, Prince Edward Island. Simpson enlisted in September, 1915 in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island and served overseas in France, Belgium, and Germany until his return to Canada at the end of the war. The collection consists of more than one hundred forty letters from 1915 to 1919.

Sergeant Thomas Nesbit Simpson, MM, was born in Northfield (present day Nanaimo), British Columbia, on August 16, 1890, son of William and Elizabeth (neé Good) Simpson. He enlisted with the 31st Regiment British Columbia Horse on August 13, 1914, followed by a transfer that September to the 5th Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade, and three weeks later shipped for England.

The following February of 1915 he arrived in France where he continued to serve with the 5th Battalion. Simpson was awarded the Military Medal “for bravery in the field” one month prior to his being killed in action while taking part in the Somme offensive at Courcelette. The date of his death is anomalously recorded throughout official records as September 26/27, 1916. He was buried at the Courcelette British Cemetery, Courcelette, France.

Simpson’s name is listed on the Ladysmith Cenotaph along with forty other soldiers who were born, lived, or worked in Ladysmith, B.C., and who died during the First World War. Seven of these soldiers, including Simpson, had wartime letters published by The Ladysmith Chronicle newspaper (see links below).

The complete list of soldiers in the can be found in the Ladysmith and District Historical Society collection.

External links:
Sgt. Simpson’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# 13306) can be viewed/downloaded in pdf format through Library and Archives Canada.
Burial information is available at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
A memorial page honouring him can be visited online at the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.
Simpson’s name is inscribed on the Ladysmith Cenotaph, Rotary Memorial Peace Garden, Ladysmith, B.C.
The awarding of Simpson’s Military Medal was published in The London Gazette on August 23, 1916 (# 29719, p. 8365).
A collection of WWI soldiers' letters published in The Ladysmith Chronicle was undertaken by the Ladysmith & District Historical Society through their work with the Ladysmith Archives.

Lawrence Charles Sinclair was born in Quebec in April, 1895.  He enlisted June 5, 1915 in Winnipeg, Manitoba with the 61st Battalion, CEF.  Sinclair served overseas with the 3rd Battalion until his death on April23, 1917 at age 22.  He is remembered on the Vimy Memorial.  The collection currently consists of more than fifty letters, photographs, postcards, and other miscellaneous items.

Frank Skeet was born in Yorkshire, England in October, 1897. Skeet enlisted with the 226th Battalion in Swan River, Manitoba in January, 1916. He served overseas with the 16th Battalion until his death in August, 1918. The collection currently consists of more than seventy letters written by Skeet.

Andrew Hurst Skidmore was born in Areola, Saskatchewan in 1894. Skidmore enlisted in September, 1914 and served overseas during the war with the 1st B.C. Regiment, being wounded several times. The collection currently consists of three newspaper clippings, three postcards, and one photograph from his time in hospital in England.

Laurence William Webster Slack was born in Kings County, Nova Scotia in February 1891.  Slack served overseas as a Lieutenant with the 60th Battalion.  The collection consists of one letter written to a Miss McCammon informing her of the death of Joseph William George Robinson, also a Lieutenant with the 60th Battalion, who was killed September 16, 1916.  Robinson is commemorated on the Vimy Memorial.  See also the Joseph William George Robinson collection which contains one letter of condolence from Robinson's commanding officer to Robinson's mother.

Malcolm David Sloan was born in Norwood, Ontario in 1896 and was recruited in 1917 under the Military Service Act and served in England in 1918.  Sloan was one of the correspondents with Reverend Arthur Mansell Irwin from Norwood, Ontario whose collection is also contained in this project.  The collection currently consists of one letter.

William John Smallacombe was born in Clinton, Ontario in August 1896.  He originally enlisted with the 81st Battalion in St. Catharines, Ontario  in September of 1916, and then transferred to the 4th Machine Gun Company with whom he served with in France.  Smallacombe returned to Canada and was demobilized at the end of the war.  The collection currently consists of one photograph and one letter written April 10, 1917 at Vimy Ridge.

Arnold Smith was born in Carholm, Ontario in November, 1892.  He enlisted with the Canadian Grenadier Guards in December, 1915 in Montreal, Quebec and served overseas with the 87th Bn., and then returned to Canada at the end of the war.  The collection currently consists of several letters, postcards, and his diary from 1917.

Arthur Calvin Smith was born in Dunnville, Ontario in April, 1897. Smith enlisted in February, 1916 in Dunnville, Ontario with the 114th Battalion, Brock's Rangers. While overseas he was transferred to the 19th Battalion. He was wounded in the Battle of Lens August 16, 1917 and died the same day. The collection currently consists of more than forty letters, photographs, postcards, and other miscellaneous items.

Henry Crozier Smith was born in Scotland in 1875. Sometime prior to the war he emigrated to British Columbia, Canada where he worked as a rancher. Smith enlisted in Vernon, British Columbia in May, 1915 and then served overseas in France until his death in November, 1916. The collection currently consists of seventeen letters.

Joseph Handley Smith was born in Lincoln, England in November, 1890. He emigrated to Canada prior to the war and enlisted in September, 1914. Smith served overseas until he was demobilized in 1919. The collection currently consists of his paybook, postcards, and miscellaneous personal items.

William Forder Smith was born in Bassingstoke, England in August, 1874. Prior to the war he emigrated to Armstrong, British Columbia where he was a rancher. Smith enlisted at Vernon, British Columbia in October, 1917 and served with the 29th Battalion in France. He was killed in action on September 6th, 1918. The collection consists of two personal letters, official reports and letters concerning his death, and three photographs.

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Latest Readings from World War One collections

James Moore

Reads a 09/21/1916 Letter by Drader, Eugene Robert from World War One collections. View full Letter

RH Thomson

Reads a 07/06/1917 Letter by Mayse, Amos William (Will) from World War One collections. View full Letter

RH Thomson

Reads a 07/05/1917 Letter by Mayse, Amos William (Will) from World War One collections. View full Letter