Demobilization

Welcoming the Westies home

British Columbia's Westminster Regiment fought in Italy and north-west Europe during the Second World War. It returned home to New Westminster in January 1946, having lost 134 men to enemy action.

Sold by an unemployed war veteran

A combination of high unemployment after the First World War and insufficient programs for veterans forced many ex-soldiers to turn to other means to support themselves - such as selling patriotic song cards like this one.

Return of a soldier

This sentimental song was one of many that looked forward to the day when Canada's soldiers would return home.

Reuniting the family

This conventional welcome-home song is most remarkable for the cover illustration - the terrible strain of war is clearly visible on the faces of the soldier and his wife.

You Are Welcome.pdf (36.91 MB)

"Stalwart sons of khaki"

One of Canada's most prolific songwriters and music publishers, Thompson wrote this song in anticipation of the parades that would be held to welcome Canada's soldiers home.

Welcoming war brides to Canada

A British woman who married a Canadian soldier during the First World War faced a host of complications in relocating to a new country. This pamphlet was intended to answer some of the most basic questions.

Soldiers from the wars returning

Harry Rose was working as a waiter in Toronto when he enlisted in 1914 - after serving with the 3rd Battalion at the front, he enjoyed minor success as a songwriter with songs like this one, which was written to welcome other Canadian soldiers home.

Victorious.pdf (25.26 MB)

News on the voyage home

This mimeographed newsletter was produced on a transport ship, possibly the SS "Pasteur," that was bringing home Canadian soldiers at the end of the Second World War. It was evidently printed on the day that the ship was due to arrive in Halifax, and its poor condition suggests that it passed through many hands.

Homeward bound.pdf (44.61 MB)

Moncton welcomes its veterans

This proclamation was handed out to men and women from Moncton, New Brunswick, as they returned from overseas after the end of the First World War.

McMaster ex-soldiers return

These five undergraduates were lucky to return to Canada before the war ended, and before the mass demobilization of 1919 made special dinners difficult to organize.

McMaster.pdf (8.3 MB)