Veterans Groups and Publications

Old Boys in Brantford

Toronto's 84th Battalion was broken up in 1916 to provide reinforcements for other units, but its members continued to meet for years after the First World War ended.

From soldier to veteran

When he was discharged in 1919, Leon Cantelon of Wingham, Ontario, almost immediately joined what was then Canada's largest ex-soldiers' group, the Great War Veterans' Association.

Six Bits

The 75th Battalion drew from the Toronto area, and its association newspaper celebrated its war exploits and the postwar achievements of its members.

View PDF: Six Bits.pdf

The Canadian Corps in Port Colborne

The Canadian Corps Association was founded after the Corps reunion in Toronto in 1934, and a few branches still exist in Canada, the membership rolls bolstered by descendants of originals of the Canadian Corps and veterans of later wars.

Entertainment, dancing and bridge

The Great War Veterans Association was the largest of Canada's ex-soldier groups that decided to remain independent when most others amalgamated into the Canadian Legion in 1926.

Bell's Bulldogs

This Calgary battalion took its nickname from its very popular first commanding officer. Among those listed in this directory is Prime Minister R.B. Bennett, an associate member of the organization.

View PDF: 31st Bn 1933.pdf

A voice for veterans

The Army and Navy Veterans in Canada was one of the few such organizations that decided to remain independent when the Canadian Legion was formed in 1926.

The 48th Battalion CEF Association

The 48th Battalion was mobilized in Victoria, British Columbia, in November 1914 and was redesignated the 3rd Pioneer Battalion before reaching the Western Front in the spring of 1916. Veterans of the unit continued to meet for annual events into the 1950s.

Passing the torch

As Canada went to war for the second time in a generations, the Legion president reflected on the meaning of the Vimy memorial and observed that the words "Remembrance" and "Duty" now carried even great meaning and obligation.

Calling all veterans

With the Second World War creating hundreds of thousands of potential members, the Canadian Legion took every opportunity to inform men and women in uniform of its goals and projects.

"For an hero's death no tears"

On the fifth anniversary of the beginning of the First World War, Great War veterans in Vernon, British Columbia, built this evocative display.

The Army and Navy Veterans in Canada

Although it traces its roots to the nineteenth century, the Army and Navy Veterans in Canada was not granted a federal charter until 1917. It was one of the few organizations that did not join the new Canadian Legion when it was created in 1926.

One of the originals

Charles Pocock of Montreal enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force at the beginning of the First World War, making him eligible to join the association of original members of the 13th Battalion.

Veterans of the 18th Battalion

On the back of this card were listed to most important events in the battalion's history - including the first issue of rum to the soldiers.

Veterans and their finances

This 1938 financial statement of the Canadian Legion has a curious hand-written notation on it: "Legion cigarettes."

View PDF: Balance sheet.pdf

A Legion celebration

Members of the Canadian Legion's Manitoba Command came together in 1938 to celebrate the wedding anniversary of one of their own. Amongst the speakers was Eli Spencer of Morden.

View PDF: Cairns dinner.pdf

Canadian ex-soldiers in Britain

Veterans of the First World War, including Hamilton Gault, the founder of Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, met in London to relive old times. The cartoons suggest that it was a convivial occasion.

View PDF: LACE 1940.pdf

Ex-soldiers gather in Vancouver

This reunion included everything from the RCMP Musical Ride to an egg-and-spoon race for amputees. The grand prize, of a trip back to the battlefields, must have represented a considerable expense for the organizers, and one wonders if it was actually awarded.

The Great War Veterans' Association

Founded in 1917, the GWVA was Canada's largest and most powerful veterans organization until it merged with other groups in 1925 to create the Canadian Legion.

For old and new veterans

His Majesty's Army and Navy Veterans was established in 1887, and made a concerted effort to draw members from the hundreds of thousands of First World War veterans in Canada. Its primary aim was "the protection, uplifting, comfort and welfare of every man who has taken up arms in defence of his country."

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