Great War 100 Reads

Commemorating the centenary of the First World War in books


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Memorial Hall, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB

About 300 University of New Brunswick (UNB) graduates and students enlisted in WW1. Of these, 35 did not return. They are remembered on the campus in Memorial Hall.

The cornerstone was laid on 23 July 1923 by Governor General Byng, and the brick building opened in May 1924. Over the door entering the auditorium, a bronze plaque lists 35 names. Stained glass windows were installed in the auditorium starting in 1926. These have recently been restored. Continue reading

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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Cenotaph, Oro-Medonte Township, ON

It’s not often that a cenotaph is in the middle of a World’s Fair. But if you visit the Oro-Medonte Old Town Hall cenotaph on a mid-September weekend, you will find yourself at the Oro World’s Fair.* The cenotaph (and fairgrounds) are at the corner of Sideroad 15 & 16 E and Line 7 N in Oro-Medonte Township, Simcoe County. The fair has been a fixture since 1852. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Bank of Montreal, Montreal

It’s Labour Day in Canada and the US … a day to celebrate workers. Like other groups in society, many financial institutions saw fit to memorialize their employees who had served in the war.

The Bank of Montreal is the oldest bank in Canada (founded in 1817). The Montreal main branch at 119 rue Saint-Jacques – built when banks were temples – dominates one side of Place d’Armes, the centre of the city’s financial district in the early 20th century. Tributes to the fallen employees of three banks are inside: the Bank of Montreal, as well as the Merchants Bank of Canada and Molsons Bank that the Bank of Montreal acquired in the 1920s. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Room of Remembrance, Parliament Hill, Ottawa

 

For a few weeks this August, Great War 100 Reads is revisiting some sites, to explore additional or altered elements of remembrance.

The Memorial Chamber in Ottawa’s Peace Tower has been a star feature in several Monday posts, for its architectural details and as home of the Books of Remembrance. The 24-foot square chamber soars up 47 feet to a fan vaulted ceiling. The 17 niches in the walls around the room are decorated with elaborate stone carvings. Three stained glass windows depict the Call to Arms, the Assembly of Remembrance and the Dawn of Peace. Architect John Pearson envisioned the space as a sacred grove with a central altar surrounded by design elements that rise to protect it. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Ebenezer United Church, Milton, ON

For a few weeks this August, Great War 100 Reads is revisiting some sites, to explore additional or altered elements of remembrance.

Nine names are on the WW1 Honour Roll of Ebenezer Church, on Guelph Line in Nassagaweya Township (now part of the Town of Milton), Ontario. Orville Fletcher, Laughlin (Lachlan) Kingsbury, Stanley Fletcher, John Locker, Normal S Marshall, Ivan Noble, Herbert Oldfield, Harley Clifton Elsley and Charles Norrish were all sons of local farming families. Three were killed in the course of their service. All three are remembered in the adjacent cemetery and on the Nassagaweya cenotaph.

Orville Fletcher was killed at Courcelette on 18 November 1916, during an attack on Desire Trench made from Regina Trench. His name is on the Vimy Memorial. The family gravestone in Ebenezer cemetery lists Orville O Fletcher, killed in action, Battle of Somme, France.

Lachlan Kingsbury was killed accidently at Camp Borden on 12 September 1916. He is buried at Ebenezer cemetery.

Harley Clifton Elsley was on HMHS Llandovery Castle when it was torpedoed by a German submarine off the Irish coast on 27 June 1918. His name is on the Halifax Memorial. The family gravestone in Ebenezer cemetery lists Harley Clifton Elsley, lost at sea on the sinking of hospital ship “Llandover Castle” June 27, 1917, aged 28 years. Only “goodnight” beloved not “farewell.” (Name of ship misspelled and erroneous year of death.)


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Memorial Plaque, St Andrew’s Church, Ottawa

For a few weeks this August, Great War 100 Reads is revisiting some sites, to explore additional or altered elements of remembrance.

On a sunny morning, the memorial window in St Andrew’s Church throws colourful light throughout the sanctuary. On the opposite wall, a bronze plaque lists those with some attachment to the congregation who were killed and those who served. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Vespra Boys, Springwater Provincial Park, Midhurst, ON

Conservation and commemoration come together at Springwater Provincial Park, in Springwater Township near Midhurst, Ontario. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – Soldiers’ Memorial, Charlottetown, PEI

Charlottetown’s Province House, home of the Prince Edward Island legislature in Queen Square, hosted the Fathers of Confederation in 1864, one of the key meetings that formed the terms of Canadian confederation. On the north front, where Great George St meets Grafton St, the Soldiers’ Memorial was dedicated in 1925. Continue reading


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An Interview with Great War 100 Reads

As the centenary of the Armistice approached last November, friend and Great War 100 Reads follower Vicki Schmolka turned the tables on me: “I have really enjoyed your posts, especially learning more about the role of women in the war and the interviews with authors. Made me think that it might be interesting for your loyal readers for you to answer a few questions.”

An excellent idea. To mark the fifth anniversary of Great War 100 Reads, here is our interview. Continue reading


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Monday Monuments and Memorials – War Memorial, Mildmay, ON

In a small park in Mildmay, on Absalom St W, just SW of Elora St S (Hwy 9), a war memorial honours the men of the village of Mildmay and surrounding township of Carrick who were killed in WW1. Continue reading