Returning

Help an old soldier

To make ends meet, ex-soldiers (and probably con artists impersonating ex-soldiers) sold postcards, booklets, trinkets - and calendars.

Proof of veteran status

The War Service Badge, and this certificate, which verified that the holder had the right to wear it, was intended to combat the problem of the fake veteran after the First World War. Henry Whyte of St George, Ontario, served with the 19th Battalion.

Payments from a soldier-settler

British immigrant Percy Thomas enlisted in Toronto in 1916 and, after he was demobilized, received land from the government's Soldier Settlement Board. Receipts show him repaying the debt into the early 1930s.

Getting them back to work

The First World War left in its wake an unprecedented number of disabled ex-soldiers, and the Canadian government struggled to provide meaningful job training for them. Later renamed the Invalided Soldiers Commission, the Vocational Branch published a circular with book reviews, reports on training initiatives in different cities, and lists of jobs that might be suitable for a retrained veteran.

A smooth transition

These instructions, for military personnel from the Hamilton and Niagara regions, dealt with practical matters such as pay, clothing, and transportation, but also warned returning soldiers, "Don't take V.D. home."

A tailor looks for work

To assist ex-soldiers in finding work, the federal government provided introduction cards to be given to prospective employers. Henry Royle of Vancouver was interested in resuming his prewar trade: tailoring.

To all who served

Part of the Veterans Charter that emerged from the Second World War was low-cost life insurance for veterans and their families - as explained in this short booklet.

View PDF: What's Ahead.pdf

Thanks from the Netherlands

A Canadian soldier brought this home to Canada in 1945, a keepsake from a grateful Dutch civilian.

Coming home to the lakehead

This image of the women's pipe band was given to veterans in Fort William, Ontario, as they returned from service during the Second World War.

Peace rules the Day

This card, featuring John McCrae's poem "In Flanders Fields," was preserved by a soldier of the Royal Munster Fusiliers serving in Rangoon, Burma.

Canadian Affairs: Learning for Living

This last issue in the Canadian Affairs series describes the value of education for Canadians in the post-war world.

Looking Ahead: Canadian Hurdles

The Wartime Information Board released a series of pamphlets, as a supplement to Canadian Affairs, informing Canadians about post-war reconstruction and urging discussions of "the most positive approach to some of the outstanding problems of Canada's future."

Returned Soldier's Handbook

This booklet told soldiers what to expect as they returned home to Canada, including what travel arrangements and services were available to veterans.

Our Next Job

The Wartime Information Board released a series of pamphlets informing Canadians about post-war reconstruction. This booklet provides information about the job prospects for all Canadians after the war, and includes questions to spur discussion among readers about post-war issues.

To Civvy Street: The Common-Sense of Re-Establishment

Canada's Re-Establishment Program offered many programs to help returning soldiers reintegrate into civilian life, through grants, vocational training, education, and help starting a new job.

Vocational Training on Civvy Street

The Canadian government provided grants, training classes, and apprenticeships to help returning soldiers get a job in civilian life. Pamphlets like this one told veterans of all of the opportunities available.

What is Democratic Socialism?

This booklet provides a general introduction to the Democratic Socialism endorsed in the nations of the British Commonwealth. It was written specifically for the Co-operative Commonwealth Youth Movement, Saskatchewan Section.

Homeward Bound

This pamphlet tells soldiers what they need to know to get back home from overseas, now that the war is over.

View PDF: Homeward Bound.pdf

Dismiss, but what of a job?

This booklet describes the governmental services available to soldiers once they return home, including training programs, social services, and tips on how to find employment.

Canada's Merchant Seamen

This booklet describes the contributions of Canada's Merchant Seamen to Canada's war effort, and describes the compensation they received from the government for their service.

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