Lieutenant Joseph Reed Sams enlisted in 1943 and fought with the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry. While he was on the front, his family kept a scrapbook of the major battles that they thought Sams may have been a part of. Throughout the scrapbook are items that are more personalized, such as the telegram informing the family that Sams had been wounded. Other interesting items are; Nazi insignia badge, Sams campaign ribbon, and a fifty Reichsmark bill. Post-war, J.R. Sams went on to become an insurance agent, and in 1963 was elected to be the Conservative Member of Parliament for Wentworth, Ontario .
This photo album comes from London, Ontario. It features several photos with handwritten captions on photos that depict various elements of life at this time. We see photos of Mr. and Mrs. Dechtro, Miss Frances McCabe as a child, Mr. Frank Lafleur, Mr. Thomas Cat, Mrs. Emma Seven Oaks and sister, Lydia Jahnke, Mrs. Grace Raubolt and son, Miss Agnes Davies, Mr. Nick Poulas, Sergeants McFee and Shaw, “Frenchy and Scotty,” Geo Latimer, Sergeant Major McDonald, Harriet and Isabell Raubolt, Mr. and Mrs. Higgivson, the “Riot Squad” in London, Ontario, Isabell Powell, Sergeant D. G. Powell, Jack Timney, Lance Corporal Borke, and Nellie Bronk. There are also photos in locations such as Dallas, Texas, Cleveland, Ohio, London, Ontario, Niagara, Hyde Park, England and Toronto, Ontario. Along with these photos, there are several shot so the Canadian Army Medical Corps which was founded in London, Ontario in 1916 and these photos depict various men in the CAMC camp in London. There are photos of troops aboard the STR Casandria, the 13th battalion of Canadian Engineers and an unidentified London nurse who was buried at sea. There are also several captioned photos that do not contain names or location, as well as some scenic shots including one of an iceberg taken off the coast of Newfoundland.
John Bridgman of Roseland, Ontario, joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1943 and qualified as a bomb aimer at #9 Air Observer School in St Johns, Quebec. Amongst his wartime souvenirs are a certificate indicating that he had completed a tour of operations and aerial photographs taken on some of the bombing raids in which he participated.
John “Jack” Smith was born in Scotland in 1906 and came to Canada as a teenager. He enlisted early in the Second World War, serving in the 5th Field Ambulance of the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps. While he was overseas, he sent snapshots and other souvenirs of his travels to his family in Hamilton, Ontario, to show them the more mundane parts of serving in the army: field exercises, barracks life, an inspection by the King and Queen, and the surroundings in Spitzbergen, Russia, where he was posted for a short time in 1941. Jack Smith returned to Canada after the war and died in 1985.
Patrick McDermott left his home in Woodstock, Ontario, to enlist in the Canadian Army, and eventually served with the Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada. He was killed in action in September 1944, and buried in Bergen-op-Zoom Canadian War Cemetery in the Netherlands. After the war, his family saved these few mementos of his time in uniform.
Harold Bailey was born in Perth County, Ontario, but was living in Melfort, Saskatchewan, when he enlisted with the 1st Contingent early in the First World War. Over the next five years, he sent a series of postcards to various family members, who carefully preserved them until his return to Canada in 1919.