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100 Years Ago: Memorial Service for Lieut. Murray, Ad for Wrigley’s, Memorial Service for Marson Hitchon

The Intelligencer January 14, 1918 (page 6)

“Memorial Service for Lieut. Murray. A memorial service was conducted last evening at St. Thomas’ Church by the Ven. Archdeacon Beamish for the late Flight Lieut. William Douglas Gillespie Murray, son of Mr. John W. Murray, manager of the Dominion Bank branch at Belleville. The young aviator had barely passed his eighteenth birthday and was only overseas a short time on active service with the Royal Flying Corps when he was wounded, death resulting on January 3, 1918.

The young Flight-Lieutenant was a member of St. Thomas’ Church; he was born in June 1899, at Belleville, baptized in October of the same year and confirmed on Whitsunday, 1915. He started training as an aviator at Toronto last summer and went overseas in the fall. …

Fifty boys and girls from the High School, playmates and schoolmates of the aviator who has laid his young life on the altar of his country, attended the service, and at their comrade’s death, but proud for his achievement and heroic sacrifice.

The beautiful Anglican service for the dead was conducted with appropriate hymns and organ selections by Prof. Wheatley and the choir, while a Requiem solo was sweetly sung by Miss Mildred Fagan.”

The Intelligencer January 14, 1918 (page 6)

“Wrigley’s With the land forces and with the fleet. Wrigley’s gives solace in the long watch, it freshens and refreshes, steadies nerves, allays thirst, helps appetite and digestion.

‘After every meal’ The Flavour Lasts. Keep your boy supplied.”

The Intelligencer January 14, 1918 (page 7)

“Memorial Service. Despite the severe stormy weather prevailing on Sunday night a large congregation assembled at the John Street Presbyterian Church in this city, where a memorial service was held for the late Private Marston Hitchon, who recently died from wounds received while on active service. A number of the members of the Great War Veterans Association were present in addition to many in khaki.

The pastor, Rev. D. C. Ramsay, conducted the services and preached an appropriate discourse, referring to Pte. Hitchon, whose death removed a young man who was a member of the church, and took an active part in church and Sunday School work. His loss was deeply mourned by all who knew the brave young man. During the service the choir rendered in an effective manner the hymn ‘Crossing the Bar.’

Pte. Marston Hitchon was a son of Mr. Joseph Hitchon of this city, and enlisted and went overseas with the 155th Battalion. He had been in France but a short time when he was fatally wounded. Marston had the graceful manner of a true gentleman and also ability. He was a graduate of the Belleville High School, at which seat of learning he was a general favorite. In sports he excelled, capturing the junior championship in 1914 and intermediate in 1915.”

[Note: Private Marson Hosie Hitchon died on August 2, 1917. He is commemorated on Page 256 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

By | January 14th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Letter from Leslie Yerex, Letter of Thanks to Canadian War Contingent Association, Ad for Grand Masquarade Carnival

The Intelligencer January 12, 1918 (page 2)

“From Leslie Yerex 33rd Battery. Folkestone, Dec. 13, 1917. Dear Mother,—I was going to wait until I got back to France before writing, but as I have a little time to spare, here goes. I have had a swell time for fourteen days, the first leave I have had in London since going to France seventeen months ago. …

Do you remember a young girl named Beatrice Lily? She attended St. Agnes’ School and sang in the Palace Theatre in the evening. Well, she is making a great hit over here in the Variety Theatre on The Strand. She sings several songs of Canada and the papers here call her ‘our Canadian favorite.’ I went to hear her sing—and she’s pretty good. …

London is some town; you could walk around for a month and not see a quarter of it. …  Well, mother, I don’t think I realized what a life we lead and how hard it is until now, after being in civilization for two weeks, it seems like going out of the world altogether to go back. You should see the difference in the ‘leave’ trains. Coming everybody is as happy as a kid with a new toy and singing and laughing. Today we got on the train at Victoria station and I don’t believe there was a word said all the way. …

Now we are in Folkestone, waiting to cross to Boulogne. …  I will write again when I get across. Good-bye for now. LES.”

The Intelligencer January 12, 1918 (page 6)

“The Canadian War Contingent Association have received the following acknowledgment of parcels of Christmas cheer sent overseas:

“16th Can. General Hospital, Orpington, Kent, Dec. 19. C. W. C. A., 62 West Bridge Street, Belleville, Ont. My Dear Friends,—Your boxes of Christmas cheer for the wounded boys in my ward have arrived, and I want to thank you for such generous gifts. I have taken a peep at them, and they are beautiful big Christmas stockings, and there will be fifty-four very happy boys.

Not only will they have lots of good things, but they will be able to get a pair of socks—a thing that has been almost impossible here for weeks. Will you believe when I say, we have had a sock famine here for two months? …  The ones we have I fancy were made of poor wool, for the first washing or two shrank them to infant’s size, so of course the poor men can’t get into them. …

We are having some very wintry weather at present, with the ground covered with snow. At present I am writing this letter, dressed as if for out of doors. Besides being swathed in wool I have on a warm sweater, a heavy coat and woollen gloves—so if you can’t read this scribble you will forgive me. …

Again let me thank you all for bringing so much pleasure into the Tommies’ Christmas and for giving me the pleasure of dispensing your generosity. Affectionately yours, Ethel Anderson.”

The Intelligencer January 12, 1918 (page 6)

“Grand Masquerade Carnival. Belleville Arena, under the auspices of the Women’s Red Cross and Patriotic Association, for wool and hospital supplies.

Monday, Jan. 21st, 1918. Tickets 25¢; Coffee and Sandwiches 10¢. Band in Attendance. Good Prizes.”

By | January 12th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Women’s Red Cross and Patriotic Association

The Intelligencer January 11, 1918 (page 3)

“The regular monthly meeting of the Women’s Red Cross and Patriotic Association was held in the new rooms on Campbell St. on Tuesday evening, Jan. 8th, Mrs. O’Flynn, acting President, presiding. The secretary’s report was read and adopted.

Letters were read from Capt. Mary Plummer, acknowledging a Christmas remembrance from the association, also comforts forwarded to the Belleville men in the trenches. Cards have been received from Belleville boys, prisoners in Germany thanking the association for food and clothing. About sixty letters have been received by different members of the association from Belleville boys in France, acknowledging Christmas parcels, also Christmas cards containing the names of the officers of some of the battalions.”

By | January 11th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Flight Lieut. William Murray Dies of Wounds

The Intelligencer January 10, 1918 (page 7)

“Another Belleville Soldier Makes Supreme Sacrifice. J. W. Murray, Belleville, Ont. London, Jan. 8th, 1918. Deeply regret to inform you No. 58 casualty clearing station reports 2nd Lieut. W. D. Murray, Royal Flying Corp., 1st squadron, died of wounds on January 3rd, 1918. The Army Council express their sincere sympathy. Secretary War Council.

The above sad message received last evening by Mr. J. W. Murray, of this city, Manager of the Belleville branch of the Dominion Bank, conveys the intelligence that another young and brave Bellevillian has sacrificed his life for King and Country. Whilst no details were given as to the nature of the wounds received, it is presumed that he was fatally injured by his machine being brought down.

Lieut. Murray was the youngest son of Mr. Murray, and was only 19 years of age. He was born in this city and had lived here all his life. When the war broke out he was anxious to enlist, but his youth was against him. Last year he, however, decided to join the Royal Flying Corp. and did so. He was at Camp Borden for a while and also at Camp Mohawk near Deseronto. He took an expert course, and owing to his capabilities and intelligence in six months was a Flight-Lieut.

He left for overseas but a few weeks ago and had only been in France almost a month. William was a studious young man and was exceedingly popular with his teachers and class-mates whilst at school. The news of his death will be learned with deep regret and to his father and other members of the family will be extended the heartfelt sympathy of all citizens.

Lieut. Gordon Murray, a brother of deceased, who went overseas some time ago is at present a prisoner of war, being confined in Fort Zorndorf in Germany, which is a celebrated fort in that country. He has made unsuccessful attempts to escape from his captors.”

[Note: Second Lieutenant William Douglas Gillespie Murray died on January 3, 1918. He is commemorated on Page 591 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

By | January 10th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Ad for Wallbridge and Clarke, Lieut. Ketcheson Returns Home

The Intelligencer January 8, 1918 (page 2)

“Letters from the Front. Wallbridge & Clarke have already received a number of letters from the Front acknowledging the receipt of parcels intended for Christmas. Much satisfaction is expressed regarding the selection of the goods and the perfect condition in which they arrived.

Wallbridge & Clarke make a specialty of Overseas Parcels. Proper Packing. Desirable Goods. Reasonable Prices. No Extra Charges for Service or Material.”

The Intelligencer January 8, 1918 (page 7)

“Returned from War Zone. The many friends of Lieut. W. H. F. Ketcheson, son of Mayor Ketcheson, were pleased to welcome him home from the war zone, the young officer reaching Belleville yesterday, being on an extended leave while recovering from serious shrapnel wounds received on November 6, in the strenuous fighting at Passchandaele.

Lieut. Ketcheson was struck by a shrapnel shell and had several ribs broken besides sustaining other injuries. He had been twelve months in France without a day’s leave when he received his ‘Blighty’ and although his wounds still give him trouble appreciates the rest after the strenuous life at the front.

Lieut. Ketcheson left Canada with the 39th Battalion nearly three years ago, but was transferred overseas to a machine-gun platoon, of which he was second in command. He went through some of the hardest battles of the war at St. Eloi, on the Somme, at Vimy Ridge, Lens and Passchandaele, and was twenty-six months on the firing line. He says that the fighting now is the most severe of the entire war.”


By | January 8th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Bellevillians Honoured, Prayers for Allied Armies, Soldiers Arrive in City, Letter of Sympathy to Robert Bone’s Father, Contribution to Sailors’ Fund, Intercession at Christ Church

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 2)

“New Years’ honors were bestowed on four Bellevillians, who have done and are doing their duty at the front. The recipients were Lt.-Col. W. R. Riordon (artillery), serving as Major, who wins the D. S. O. Major Frank Lynn who previously secured the M. C. is now the winner of the Distinguished Service Order. Major Sills wins the D. S. O., as did also Capt. Mond, who left here with the 39th Battalion.”

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 2)

“Prayers for Allied Armies. Battles may be won by men and ammunition, but wars are won by spiritual forces. This was the conviction behind the King’s call to prayer which was responded to by the citizens of Belleville yesterday in unison with the whole of the British Empire. In all Christian churches the voice of prayer, fervent and insistent, prevailed throughout the services.

Old texts and ancient liturgies were clothed with new meaning and power as they were applied with urgent directness to the woes of war and the needs of the present crisis in the great struggle for righteousness and freedom.”

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 2)

“Soldiers Arrive in City. During Friday night and Saturday a number of recruits came to Belleville and have settled down in their quarters at the canning factory premises on Pinnacle Street. The place again presents a garrison appearance. About 200 have arrived here from various parts of Eastern Ontario, and many more are expected.

Capt. Leck is in command at present; but in a few days other officers will be in charge. The men are a fine lot of boys, and soldierly in appearance. There was no order for church parade yesterday, the men being allowed to attend the church of their choice. The boys are apparently well pleased with their location. In the near future it is expected that the Armouries will be utilized for drilling purposes.”

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 3)

“Mr. Richard Bone has received the following letter from the Minister of Militia: Minister’s Office, Ottawa, January 2, 1918.

Mr. Richard Bone, Herchimer Ave., Belleville, Ont. Dear Mr. Bone:—I desire to express to you my very sincere sympathy in the recent decease of your son, No. 636640 Pte. Robert Henry Bone, C.E.F. who in sacrificing his life at the front in action with the enemy, has rendered the highest services of a worthy citizen.

The heavy loss which you and the nation have sustained would indeed be depressing were it not redeemed by the knowledge that the brave comrade for whom we mourn performed his duties fearlessly and well as became a good soldier, and gave his life for the great cause of human liberty and the defence of the Empire.

Again extending to you in your bereavement my condolence and heartfelt sympathy, I am, Yours faithfully, (Signed) S. C. Mewburn, Minister of Militia and Defence for Canada.”

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 5)

“Contribution to Sailors Fund. Appreciation of the gift of a check for $130 recently sent by the local chapters of the Daughters of the Empire to the Navy League of Canada is expressed in the following letter:

The Navy League of Canada, Dec. 24, 1917. Mrs. Annie A. Dolan, Treasurer, Quinte, Argyle and St. Julien Chapters, I.O.D.E., 17 Victoria Ave., Belleville, Ont.

Dear Madam:—Will you please convey to the Quinte, Argyle and St. Julien Chapters, I.O.D.E., the very best thanks of the Executive of this league for their cheque of $130.00, which is applied to the fund for the relief of British and Canadian sailors and their dependents, for Sailors’ Homes, Institutes and Hospitals in Canada and throughout the Empire.

Some time in March we hope to show in Belleville a very fine film, of the navy, which is owned by the Navy League and I am sure you will all be very much interested. Again thanking you, we remain, Yours faithfully, (Sgd.) Cecil G. Williams, Secretary-Treasurer.”

The Intelligencer January 7, 1918 (page 5)

“Intercessions at Christ Church. There were large congregations in Christ church yesterday to take part in the intercession services which were by the King’s request universal throughout the Empire. It was a great day for God among British peoples, and will mean much for His great kingdom and for our righteous cause.

There was a choral communion at 11 o’clock, at which service as well as at evensong special prayers, some prepared by the Archbishop of Rupert’s Land, and some taken from the time of Elizabeth, were used.

In the evening the late Robert Henry Bone, killed in action on November 6th was remembered. ‘He has paid the great price, and to the father, mother and sister at home, as well as to the surviving brother in France our most sincere sympathy goes out,’ said the Rector. The complete list of the honor roll was re-read and the present condition of each one given of a list of 146 men seventeen have gone over to the great majority, 29 have been wounded, some of whom are again on the firing line, the rest are discharged or still in France. The dead march was played by the organist, Mrs. Campbell, after the service, for Pte. Bone.”

By | January 7th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Plenty of Coal for Belleville, Day of Special Prayer to Be January 6th

The Intelligencer January 5, 1918 (page 1)

“Plenty of Coal in Sight for Belleville. The fuel famine situation which is causing so much concern in Canada and the United States at the present time looks decidedly better as far as Belleville is concerned.

Ten days ago Mr. Belair, Manager of the Schuster Co., purchased for his company sixty cars, approximately 3,000 tons. This consignment is Mine Run Anthracite in large chunks and not prepared in regular sizes. The reason for this being purchased was because there seemed to be no other available coal in the market at the time, that is no prepared sizes. This coal is coming along now and six cars have already been received with sixteen more this side of Bridgeburg, Ont. If the railroads are not blocked and do their part the entire sixty cars should be here in the course of the next thirty days.

The city crusher has been obtained to crush this coal, but new jaws had to be secured from the Greenleaf Co. for the purpose, creating a delay of about a week. In a nutshell this shows that Belleville will not suffer for the want of coal, and prepared sizes will be furnished the public as required.”

The Intelligencer January 5, 1918 (page 3)

“King Appoints Day of Special Prayer. Sunday, January 6th, has been fixed by proclamation as a special day of prayer throughout the Dominion. The proclamation cites the following message from the King:

To My People: ‘The world-wide struggle for the triumph of right and liberty is entering upon its last and most difficult phase. …  We have yet to complete the great task to which more than three years ago we dedicated ourselves. At such a time I would call  upon you to devote a special day of prayer that we may have the clear-sightedness and strength necessary to the victory of our cause. …  Let us seek to be enlightened in our courage in facing the sacrifices we may yet have to make before our work is done.

I therefore hereby appoint Jan. 6th, the first Sunday of the year, to be set aside as a special day of prayer and thanksgiving in all the churches throughout my dominions and require that this letter be read at the services held on that day.’ “

By | January 5th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Belleville Fuel Controller

The Intelligencer January 4, 1918 (page 4)

“The City Council acted very wisely at their final meeting in appointing Thomas F. Wills City Fuel Controller. The appointment was made as the result of recommendations made by the Dominion Fuel Controller, C. A. Magrath, and there is no doubt that with the co-operation of the local dealers great good will result.

Any citizen in need of coal or having any complaint to make in regard to the fuel situation or information to impart as to people buying more coal than their needs for the immediate future warrant, should see Mr. Wills. …  The appointment of a city fuel controller is no reflection on the local dealers, who no doubt are doing their best to cope with a difficult situation.”


By | January 4th, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Penalties for Men Who Evade Draft, Ad for Sinclair’s, The Fuel Situation

The Intelligencer January 3, 1918 (page 1)

“Drastic Measures Against Men Who Evade Draft. Ottawa. With the calling up of the first draft, strong measures will be taken against men who have failed to register under the Military Service Act. Announcement of a reward ‘to any civil police or peace officer for the apprehension and delivery into military custody of a deserter or absentee without leave,’ is the forerunner of further steps to ensure that all members of Class 1 comply with the law.

Instructions for dealing with deserters and absentees without leave have been issued and the general policy determined.”

The Intelligencer January 3, 1918 (page 2)

“Sinclair’s Mid-Winter Early Closing. Help Win the War. Save Coal and Light.

Store Closes Saturdays at 6.30 p.m. Other Days at 5.30 p.m. Beginning Wednesday, Jan. 2nd, and continuing until Saturday, March 9th, we will close our store as above.

This means a real saving of Coal and Light. It also means the saving of long walks for our staff on Saturday nights to and from their homes; and above all, this means a Better Service for our customers from 8.30 a.m. until 6.30 p.m. on Saturdays, during which time our entire staff is at your service with no interruptions at the Tea Hour.

We Want You to Help Us. We believe our action in this matter of Early Closing will appeal to our citizens in general, and for this reason we ask the co-operation of our friends in order that we may successfully promote the Early Closing Movement.”

The Intelligencer January 3, 1918 (page 4)

“The Fuel Situation. The conservation of coal movement is spreading; and the fuel famine will be of service in one way at least as showing that there has been a reckless waste of fuel in the past with no provision for emergencies.

Railways are cutting off surplus passenger service which can be dispensed with without hardship during the winter months. Churches are amalgamating services, municipalities are cutting down their White Way illuminations and reducing street lighting to a minimum. Large business places are adopting early closing hours for the balance of the winter and even cutting out Saturday night shopping in some instances, and Belleville merchants are blazing the way in this respect.

The present fuel scarcity seems ridiculous in view of the fact that Canada is a wooded country and much good firewood is allowed to go to waste through forest fires, decay and lack of attention to reforestry. …  The forests of Canada have been sacrificed to a large extent by inefficient methods which should be replaced at once with a policy of conservation which will check the terrible waste of national resources which has been going on for years.”

By | January 3rd, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments

100 Years Ago: Drastic Cuts Considered by Government, Belleville to Be Mobilization Centre

The Intelligencer January 2, 1918 (page 1)

“Canada, which since the war commenced has curtailed few of its pleasures and enjoyments is to feel the heavy hand of war in the near future if regulations now under consideration by the Government are carried out. …  in future money must be conserved for the war funds of the Dominion, which, though but recently replenished by the Victory Loan, will have to be further replenished before the New Year is many months old. …

A curtailment of individual consumption of tea, coffee, sugar and other essential commodities is also anticipated in the near future as a complement to the regulation at present under consideration in the United States. …

Probably one of the most serious problems which the Government now has to face is that of coal supply. Despite the fact that Canada imported more coal this year than last there is a real and alarming shortage even at this early period of a hard winter due primarily to hoarding on the part of individuals during the summer.

Householders should not be surprised if before long they find their bins inspected to discover whether they have accumulated more than their just share. If they have they may be gently requested to distribute their bounty at a price to their more needy but less provident neighbors.

A further restriction is expected in the use of gasoline for pleasure purposes. Luxuries are to be discouraged. The production and conservation of essentials are to be encouraged.”

The Intelligencer January 2, 1918 (page 1)

“Belleville Will Be Mobilization Centre. An unannounced number of men, physically fit and between the age of twenty and thirty-four will report for military service on Thursday. They have been given transportation which will bring them to Kingston. …

They will be examined by doctors, equipped with uniform and supplies and signed up as recruits in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. Selections will be made of these men to all vacancies in the artillery, army medical corps, army service corps, etc. …  At the conclusion of this distribution 800 will be selected. Half of this number will go to Brockville, the remainder to Belleville. …  the officers who will have the administration of this new army know the conditions that have brought about the enlistment of these men.

There is no such word as coward known to the language of Canadians. It is rather only a frame of mind. The public have decided that these men should make the sacrifice and deeming the public right the majority wins. …

The message that is sent to all the men affected by the Military Service Act seems to be best quoted in the language of one headquarters staff officer who said, ‘Tell the boys that we will use them right and consider them as potential soldiers who are coming in to keep up the work that the first contingent started.’ “

By | January 2nd, 2018|Intelligencer WW1 Local News|0 Comments