Erle Beavis Laing was born in Havelock, Ontario in August, 1895. He was recruited under the Military Service Act and served in England until his return to Canada in 1919. Laing was one of the correspondents to Reverend Arthur Mansell Irwin from Norwood, Ontario, whose collection is also contained in this project. The collection currently consists of one letter.
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.
Lakefield College School (or LCS or "The Grove") was originally a boy's preparatory school founded in 1879 near Lakefield, Ontario. During the war former students of the school corresponded with the headmaster, Rev. Alexander Mackenzie and his family. The collection consist of letters from student written during the war period, as well as numerous photographs.
Daniel Austin Lane was born in Pelham Union, Ontario in December, 1894, and enlisted in April, 1916. At the time of his enlistment he was a student at the University of Toronto and while there had studied Arabic at Victoria College. Due to his Arabic studies he was recruited to join the South Persian Rifles by the British and arrived in the Persian Gulf in August, 1917. Lane returned to Canada and practiced law in Calgary. He died in 1966. The collection consists of more than thirty letters written to his friend Helen Davis, as well as several photographs.
James Eldon Lane was born in Bruce County, Ontario in February, 1887. He later moved to New Westminster, British Columbia where he worked as a barrister. Lane enlisted in November, 1915 in Kingston, Ontario with the 50th Field Battery, Canadian Field Artillery. He was wounded in July, 1918 and invalided back to Canada in 1919. The collection currently consists of one letter, three photographs, and a newspaper clipping.
Robert Wallace Lane was born in Belmore, Ontario in September, 1887. He later moved to New Westminster, British Columbia where he worked as a barrister. Lane enlisted in Kingston, Ontario in January, 1916 and served overseas with the 50th Battery, 13th Artillery Brigade. Three of his brothers also served - James Eldon Lane, William Stanley Lane, and Walter Ross Lane. The collection currently consists of two letters, a newspaper article, and more than thirty photographs.
Walter Ross Lane was born in Belmore, Ontario in April, 1893. Lane was a medical student at his time of enlistment in Toronto, Ontario in March, 1915. He served overseas in France but was discharged on medical grounds in August, 1916. Three of his brothers also served - James Eldon Lane, Robert Wallace Lane, and William Stanley Lane. The collection currently consists of two photographs and one newspaper article.
William Stanley Lane was born in June, 1891. Lane was a law student at his time of enlistment in November, 1914 with the 29th Battalion. He served in France as signaller and was killed on April 6, 1916 in the Battle of St. Eloi. Three of his brothers also served - James Eldon Lane, Robert Wallace Lane, and Walter Ross Lane. The collection currently consists of seven photographs, four newspaper articles, and several miscellaneous items.
Gunner Walter James Lantz was born in Pinette, Prince Edward Island, on February 2, 1881, to parents Joseph T. and Bessie Lantz. Prior to WWI he served two years in the Militia with the 82nd Regiment (Abegweit Light Infantry).
Lantz enlisted with the 98th Canadian Siege Battery (C.S.B.) in Charlottetown, P.E.I., on October 6, 1915. Shipping for England on board the S.S. Lapland in late November, he proceeded to France in late May of 1916, where he continued to serve with the 98th C.S.B. until he was killed in action by a German shell on July 12, 1916. Lantz was buried at Dartmoor Cemetery, Becordel-Becourt, France.
After Lantz was killed, his old school friend and fellow 98th C.S.B. soldier Lieutenant James Parker Hooper (later promoted to Major) made a memorial photo album for Lantz’s parents with pictures of Walter and other members of the 98th taken in and around the front-line trenches in the Somme/Mametz region of France. The photographs were taken by Hooper and Lantz in the weeks immediately preceding Lantz’s death in July of 1916. Images of each page of the album, including both the text and photographs, have been posted with transcriptions in the Collection Contents “Album” section; additionally, larger views of each of the photographs have been posted separately in the Collection Contents “Photos” section.
More information about the album’s creator can be found on the WWI Collection page of Major James Parker Hooper, MC.
Several other members of the 98th C.S.B. who appear in the album’s photographs have been identified as: Gunner Ernest Franklin Kelly (page 4); Major William Stephen Trenholme (page 7); Major Temple William Faber MacDonald’s (page 8); Sergeant Percy Wilfred MacNevin (page 8). The crosses in the forefront of page eleven’s photograph of Dartmoor Cemetery mark the graves of two soldiers of the 4th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment, United Kingdom: Corporal B.A.G. Creasey and Private James Sharpe.
Gnr. Lantz’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# 92921) 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 Lantz can be visited online at the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.
Major James Parker Hooper’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# not assigned*).
Gnr. Ernest Franklin Kelly’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# 92875).
Major Temple William Faber MacDonald’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# not assigned*).
Sgt. Percy Wilfred MacNevin’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# 92891).
Major William Stephen Trenholme’s Service Record (Serv/Reg# not assigned*).
*[WWI officers were not routinely assigned Service/Regimental #s]
[Editor’s note: Collection reviewed/updated September 2022. Some additional materials have been added and some changes to categorization of Collection Contents have been made; transcription of the album’s written content has been added; photo descriptions have been reviewed and expanded.]
Private John Robert Lapsansky was born in Wellington, near Ladysmith, British Columbia, on April 17, 1893, to parents Joseph and Katharine Lapsansky. He enlisted in Valcartier, Québec, with the 7th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (British Columbia Regiment) on September 23, 1914, and sailed with his unit for England in October of 1914.
Lapsansky died at No. 50 Casualty Clearing Station on February 2, 1919, from broncho-pneumonia, and was buried at Huy (La Starte) Communal Cemetery in Belgium.
Lapsansky’s name is listed on the Ladysmith Cenotaph along with forty other soldiers who were born, lived, or worked in Ladysmith, British Columbia, and who died during the First World War. Seven of these soldiers, including Lapsansky, 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.
Pte. Lapsansky’s Service Record (Serv/Reg#16662) 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 Lapsansky can be visited online at the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.
Information and photos of the Ladysmith Cenotaph, Rotary Memorial Peace Garden, Ladysmith, British Columbia.
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.
Private Frederick John Latter was born in Tonbridge, Kent, England, on June 18, 1895. He was a member of the Canadian Army Service Corps in Winnipeg prior to his enlistment with the No. 11 Overseas Field Ambulance at St. Vital, Manitoba, on May 1, 1916.
Shipping for England on board the S.S. Adriatic in May of 1916, he was called-up to action in France later that August. He stayed with the 11th Field Ambulance throughout the majority of the war until his demobilization in May of 1919.
Pte. Frederick Latter’s Service Record (Reg/Ser# 531798) is available online through Library and Archives Canada [please note – the archive record has included several pages by mistake belonging to soldier Gordon Hall Latter (Reg/Ser# 1017)].
John William Law, MM, was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1892 and enlisted in Toronto in November, 1914. He served overseas until his discharge in 1919, first with the 19th Battn. and then later transferred to the Royal Flying Corp in 1917. The collection consists of more than fifty letters written between 1915 and 1919.
Alfred Lawson was born in South Shields, England in December, 1880. Sometime prior to the war he emigrated to Canada and enlisted in July, 1915 in Winnipeg, Manitoba with the 90th Battalion (Winnipeg Rifles). Lawson served overseas with the 27th Battalion and was awarde the Military Cross in July, 1917. He returned to Canada in May, 1919 with demobilization. The collection currently consist of one memoir of the attack on Vimy Ridge. While undated it was written either in 1917 or 1918 given the reference to his use of a camera.
Melville Thomas Lean was born in Camborne, Ontario in October, 1895. He enlisted in Cobourg, Ontario in December, 1915 and served with the Cobourg Heavy Battery. The collection currently consists of seven letters.
Thomas James Leduc was born in Cache Creek, British Columbia in February, 1882. In 1911 he joined the B.C. Horse, and then enlisted in December, 1914 in Victoria, British Columbia. Leduc served overseas with the 2nd C.M.R. and returned to Canada at the end of the war with the rank of Major. The collection currently consists of five letters.
Hart Leech enlisted in Winnipeg in 1914 and served as a lieutenant with the 61st Battalion in France. He was killed in September of 1916 and is commemorated on the Vimy Memorial.. This collection currently consists of four letters. Three of the letters were written by Leech in 1916 and one by his commanding officer in 1928. The last letter written by Leech to his mother in September, 1916 was not found until 1928. There are also two clippings and a photograph.
Arthur Leighton was born in Wakefield, Yorkshire, England in 1880, and later moved to Manitoba where he found work as a farmhand. In 1901 he enlisted in the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles and saw action in South Africa during the Boer War. Following the war he attended the University of Manitoba and was called to the Bar in 1908. In 1908 he married Alice Sophia Wright, born in Brittania Ontario in 1887. In 1912 they moved to Nanaimo where he practised law. In 1915 Arthur joined the 72nd Seaforth Highlanders in the 2nd Canadian Infantry Brigade as a commissioned lieutenant and was later promoted to captain. Alice followed Arthur to Europe, arriving in England in 1916, where she became a volunteer at St. Dunstan's Hostel for Blind Soldiers and Sailors. Arthur was wounded in the knee and spent some time in England recovering before returning to France. They returned to Nanaimo in 1919 where Arthur continued to practise law and Alice became involved in many charitable societies. The collection consists of 125 letters, a large proportion of which are letters from Alice to Arthur. References in Alice's letters indicate that Arthur wrote to her everyday while in France from 1916 to 1918, but unfortunately that portion of the correspondence has not survived. Included as well are many non-correspondence items such as receipts and certificates directly related to their wartime experience. The original letters are held by the Nanaimo Community Archives and are used with their permission
John McCallum LeRoy was born in Quebec in October, 1886 and later moved with his family to Bogend, Saskatchewan. LeRoy enlisted in January, 1915 in Humboldt, Saskatchewan. He served overseas with the 5th Battalion Canadian Infantry until his death on April 28, 1917. The town of LeRoy, Saskatchewan, formerly Bogend, is named after him. The collection currently consists of six letters, two photographs, a postcard, a note from the Red Cross, his Circumstances of Death record, and a report regarding his death from a soldier.
Walter Liddiard was born in Montreal, Quebec in May, 1894. He moved to Victoria, British Columbia and was recruited in 1917. Liddiard served overseas as a Gunner with the No. 5 Coy, Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery. The collection currently consists of nearly forty letters, as well as several letters and postcards.
James Arthur Lindsay, MM, was born in Lochwinnoch, Ontario in March, 1893. He enlisted at Ottawa in July, 1915 and served overseas with the 23rd Battery, C.F.A. Lindsay was awarded the Military Medal in October, 1918 during the fighting at Cambrai. He was discharged in May, 1919 and returned to Canada. The collection consists of three letters, a Christmas 1918 program and menu, a letter of appreciation from the Lochwinnoch Branch of the U.F.O., and one photograph.
Harold Hartley Littler was born in Liverpool, England in December, 1881. Littler enlisted in Port Alberni, British Columbia and then was later sworn in at Victoria, British Columbia in November, 1915. The collection consists of a short memoir written by Littler in the 1920s which describes his time from enlistment until his return home.