Welcome to the Community Archives of Belleville and Hastings County

The Community Archives of Belleville and Hastings County preserves the history of our community through the records of local governments, individuals, families, businesses and organizations. Find us in the Belleville Public Library building at 254 Pinnacle Street, Belleville, Ontario.

The archives is open Monday to Thursday, 9.30am to 12pm and 1pm to 4pm and on Friday and Saturday by appointment.

Archives News

Belleville in World War I

Follow the citizens of Belleville and Hastings County as they face the challenges of the home front during the First World War through excerpts from The Daily Intelligencer, August 1914 to November 1918.

100 Years Ago: Exemption Tribunal Appointments, Fuel Controller Warns Coal Dealers, Sergeant Hyland Not Wounded, Bert Post Dies of Wounds, Cheaper Coal Available

The Intelligencer September 12, 1917 (page 1)

“Exemption Tribunals Who Will Act Here. His Honor Judge Deroche has permitted the publication of his letter to the Department of Justice in regard to his appointments under the Military Service Act. The letter is as follows: Judge’s Chambers, Belleville, Sept. 11, 1917. E. L. Newcombe, Deputy Minister of Justice:

Dear Sir:—The names of those I propose to act on local tribunals for Hastings County under the Military Service Act are as follows:

Belleville—His Honor Judge Wills, Belleville. Trenton—T. A. O’Rourke, Police Magistrate, Trenton. Deseronto—Henry R. Bedford, Police Magistrate, Deseronto. Marmora—Thos. A. Laycock, Reeve Marmora and Lake Township, Marmora. Stirling—George A. Thrasher, barrister, Stirling. Madoc—William Cross, barrister, Madoc. Tweed—Philip K. Newton, druggist, Tweed. Bancroft—George L. Jarman, Police Magistrate, Bancroft.

I have not yet obtained the consent of all. If I find it is impossible for any of them to act will reserve the right to appoint a substitute. As soon as I hear from all I will wire you confirming these appointments or naming any substitutes.

I have personally not mentioned myself so I may be used to hear appeals if thought wise. Very Sincerely, G. E. Deroche, County Judge.”

The Intelligencer September 12, 1917 (page 1)

“Coal Dealers Warned Not to Increase Prices. Ottawa. C. A. Magrath, Canadian Fuel Controller, has issued a warning to coal dealers that they are not to increase prices, now that winter is approaching, without first making representations to him. …

‘I wish to appeal particularly to the dealers in our towns and cities where large quantities of coal are handled in small lots, to deal in a generous manner with the small users of coal, and add as little as possible to the heavy burdens they are now carrying. On the other hand the housekeeper should co-operate in laying in his supply as soon as possible.’ ”

The Intelligencer September 12, 1917 (page 2)

“Sergt. Hyland Not Wounded. Mrs. Hyland, of this city, a few days ago received a telegram from the Director of Records, which conveyed the intelligence that her husband, Sergt. T. E. Hyland had been wounded. This, it appears was an error, as the following telegram explains:

Ottawa, Sept. 12th. Mrs. Ellen Hyland, 162 Coleman St., Belleville. Referring to my telegram September 4th, reporting 219510 Sergt. Thos. Edward Hyland, infantry, wounded, cable from England states report now cancelled. Director of Records.

Mrs. Hyland also received a letter from her husband this morning written on August 17, and he had just come out of the trenches, and he was reported wounded August 16th. In his letter he said while waiting to go to England for his commission, he had been promoted Company Sergeant Major.”

The Intelligencer September 12, 1917 (page 2)

“Doubly Bereaved. The family of Mr. Daniel Post in this city, will receive the heartfelt sympathy of all citizens in the double bereavement which has overtaken them within a year, owing to the war. On September 13th, 1916, Private William Post was killed, and to-day a message was received here that a brother, Private Bert Post, died at Moore’s Hospital, England, as the result of wounds received in action on June 3rd, 1916.

The brave young hero had been in the hospital for some months. He enlisted and went overseas in October, 1915 with the 8th C.M.R. of Kingston. The brother, who was killed was also a member of the same corps.”

[Note: Lance Corporal William Post died on September 11, 1916. He is commemorated on Page 149 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

[Note: Private Bert Nelson Post died on September 9, 1917. He is commemorated on Page 310 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

The Intelligencer September 12, 1917 (page 7)

“Cheaper Coal Possible. To the Editor of The Intelligencer. Dear Sir:—In The Intelligencer yesterday you say that ‘coal is being sold for ten dollars a ton in Belleville.’

This morning the writer was shown first-class egg coal that was delivered to a consumer here less than three weeks ago for $8.75 per ton. This was not sold by a local dealer, but was brought here in a car lot. My informant bought ten tons and it was represented as being Scranton coal, and I may say that I have the utmost confidence in the information imparted to me as I am well acquainted with the purchaser from whom I obtained the information.

It looks to me as if the time has now arrived for our coal committee, appointed by the Council, to get busy. Yours, Economy. Sept. 12, 1917.”

100 Years Ago: Distribution of Pledge Cards Organized, Height Limit for Artillery Reduced, Poster for Food Service Pledge, Herbert Willerton Recovering

The Intelligencer September 11, 1917 (page 2)

“Distribution of Pledge Cards. A meeting of the Executive of the Women’s Auxiliary of Resources Committee and Presidents of all Womens’ Societies of this city was held in the City Hall on Friday, Sept. 7.

After the report of the meeting held in Toronto the previous week was read by the Chairman, Miss Falkiner, the matter of distributing the Pledge Cards sent by the Government was taken up; after some discussion the plan adopted was to divide the city by wards and each society to take a certain number of cards to divide between the members for distribution. The Executive would be glad if a representative of every society would call at the Library between 3 and 4 o’clock any day this week as the canvass of the city must begin Sept. 17th.

There will be some one in charge to give out the cards and give any details as regards the proper distribution of the same. The representatives of the different societies who were present gave their reports and all signified their wish to help in this Win-the-War movement and make the thrift and economy campaign in Belleville a success.”

The Intelligencer September 11, 1917 (page 2)

“Height Limit Reduced. Camp Borden. The standard of height for the artillery has been changed. For heavy and siege artillery, gunners will now be taken from 5 feet 7 inches, and drivers from 5 feet 4 inches. For horse and field artillery the standard will be, gunners 5 feet 6 inches, drivers 5 feet 2 inches.”

The Intelligencer September 11, 1917 (page 6)

“Vision Your Sons, Mothers of Canada! Picture them at breakfast, the meal that must bring them the bodily sustenance to carry them through the strain of another day. Then think of what might happen if, one morning, there was no breakfast—no food to be had, and the word went down the lines that Canada had failed them.

Canada must send to Her Own, and to the Allies Fighting Forces, more wheat, more beef, more bacon, and more of such other foods as are non-perishable and easily exported.

All we ask of you is, that instead of buying so much white flour (if you do your own baking) you vary your baking by using one-third oatmeal, corn, barley or rye flour. Or, if you buy your bread, that you order a certain proportion of brown bread each day.

Second, instead of using as much beef and bacon as formerly, you vary your family’s diet, by substituting for beef and bacon such equally nutritious foods as fish, peas, lentils, potatoes, nuts, bananas, etc.

Third, and this is most important—positively prevent the waste of a single ounce of food in your household.

Sign the Food Service Pledge.”

The Intelligencer September 11, 1917 (page 7)

“Corp. Willerton Recovering. Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Willerton, 115 North Front Street, have received a letter from their son, Corp. Herbert Willerton, who was wounded on August 18, in the face, knee, and side with shrapnel, and is in a base hospital in France.

Corporal Willerton writes a very cheery letter, and says he is very comfortable, and well cared for in the hospital. He writes of strenuous times in the firing line, and hard and continuous fighting. The shell which gave him ‘Blighty’ also wounded four other Belleville soldiers who were with him firing from the trench parapet.”

100 Years Ago: Forestry Battalion Soldiers from Belleville Mentioned in Despatches, Former Bellevillian Wounded, Ad for Wrigley’s, Requests for Tobacco

The Intelligencer September 10, 1917 (page 2)

“Mentioned in Despatches. Among those ‘mentioned in despatches’ for gallant conduct, and especially valuable services to the Empire, were the following members of Forestry battalions from Belleville: Lt.-Col. B. R. Hepburn, M.P., Major D. B. Campbell, Lieut. A. S. Fleming. The latter is a son of Capt. Fleming of the Fishery Department residing at Belleville.”

The Intelligencer September 10, 1917 (page 2)

“Former Bellevillian Wounded. Flight-Lieut. George E. Howard of the R. N. A. S. was wounded in the leg on Monday last. It is presumed that he received the wound while flying in France. The Lieut. went overseas with the University Training Company at the end of January. He is a graduate of the University, this year. Howard, who is twenty-one years of age, is the son of Mrs. E. T. Howard of 3 Vermont Avenue, Toronto.

Flight Lieut. Howard was well known in Belleville, where with his mother he resided for some time. He was a graduate of the High School here, and had many friends.”

The Intelligencer September 10, 1917 (page 4)

“Wrigley’s. To Somebody Somewhere at the Front— Every day boxes from home are going to the boys in the trenches. And of the things they get, a great prize is Wrigley’s—the Gum with Lasting Flavour.

It takes the place of food and drink in case of need—which is often. It keeps spirits up—gives vigour and vim. A packet in the pocket lasts a long time. The Flavour Lasts!”

The Intelligencer September 10, 1917 (page 6)

“Canadian War Contingent Association. The following cable has been received from Mr. J. G. Colmer, Honorary Secretary of the Canadian War Contingent Association, London, Eng. ‘Should welcome regular supplies Canadian smoking, and chewing tobacco. Remember we have large number of men to look after.’

Any contributions of tobacco or money to purchase same will be gratefully received by the Belleville Branch of C.W.C.A., 62 West Bridge St. Phone 600. Miss Eve Panter, Ass’t. Sec. for further information.”

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