On February 3, 1916, a fire burned the Centre Block of Ottawa’s Parliament Buildings to the ground. The exact cause of the fire was never definitively determined. With the country at war, rumours quickly spread that the fire stemmed from enemy sabotage. Careless smoking and faulty wiring were also suspects.
Rebuilding started immediately, with the cornerstone laid on 1 Sep 1916.
On a snowy Easter Monday, 9 April 1917, the four divisions of the Canadian Corps fought together for the first (and only) time, in the Battle of Vimy Ridge, part of the Battle of Arras. Training and tactics won the ridge by 12 April, but at the cost of about 3,600 Canadian lives.Continue reading