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. Call us at 613-967-3304.

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: Food Board Recommends Jam, Lieut. John Gordon Murray a Prisoner of War

The Intelligencer July 29, 1918 (page 1)

“Food Board Flashes For Feminine Folk. The latest reports from the British Ministry of Food indicate that there will be a serious shortage of jam in Britain this year. Here is a chance for Canadian women to help by using all the fruit they can and by making preserves of wild berries whenever they are able to secure them. The more jam used the more butter and canned goods will be saved for export.

Jam is on the soldier’s ration list and he must not be deprived of this what ever happens. Besides providing a sweet the sugar is extremely essential in his fare and adds to his energy and all-round efficiency.

Ordinarily too much sugar is used in the making of jam. A pound of sugar to a pound of fruit is the old-fashioned theory and it is a wrong one. Three-quarters of a pound of sugar to a pound of fruit makes better jam, while half a pound is sufficient where the fruit is extra sweet.”

The Intelligencer July 29, 1918 (page 5)

“A Prisoner of War. Some time ago a message was received in this city that Lieut. J. G. Murray, son of Mr. J. W. Murray, manager of the Dominion Bank in this city, was missing. In to-day’s casualty list his name appears among the prisoners of war.”

100 Years Ago: Women Like Railway Work, Ad for Purity Oats

The Intelligencer July 27, 1918 (page 3)

“Women Enthusiastic About Railway Work. Toronto. ‘I tell you as how we have a decent few around here, but we need them all if we are to send enough boys over to keep the old flag flying,’ declared a bright little Englishwoman as she stepped aboard Sir George Bury’s private car which arrived at the Union Station this morning.

When seen by The Star the speaker was attired in a trim uniform of khaki and carried her cleaning paraphernalia with her. She commenced to polish up the brass work with a will, while a veritable bevy of khaki clad women followed in her trail carrying mops, dusters, brushes and pails with which to clean the car. …  Several long trains had been thoroughly cleaned since the morning hour and were standing in readiness for their next trip. …

‘You see we clean up these cars every day. …  When we came to Canada we applied for these jobs but the men only laughed so we went into munitions work. It wasn’t long before they needed our assistance however, and now they have 52 women on the cleaning jobs.’ …

‘I believe they have about 15 girls in the engine repair department, too. The Grand Trunk haven’t been as aggressive as our company along this line, as they have only 21 girls in their employ and they are in the locomotive section.”

The Intelligencer July 27, 1918 (page 6)

Ad for Purity Oats

“Save Food for our Allies. Canadian Food Control. License Nos. Flour 15, 16, 17, 18. Cereal 2-009.

Bake Your Bread Cake and Pastry from Purity Oats. Wheat-Saving Recipes Mailed Free.

Western Canada Flour Mills, Co. Limited, Head Office, Toronto.”


100 Years Ago: Food Budget for Family of Five, Hastings County Crop Report, Soldiers’ Aid Commission Branch in Stirling

The Intelligencer July 26, 1918 (page 6)

Food budget for family of five

“One Week’s Budget for a family of five. 1. 40 lbs. Potatoes. 2. 10 lbs. Flours. 3. 14 lbs. Fruit. 4. 7 quarts whole milk. 5. 2 lbs. Butter or fats. 6. 3 lbs. Sugar. 7. Meat & meat substitutes.”

The Intelligencer July 26, 1918 (page 7)

“Hastings County Raising Clover. Hastings County has swung into the sweet clover column, says District Representative McIntosh of Stirling. This movement into Hastings began three or four years ago, and there are hundreds of acres in this crop there now. This has proved satisfactory both as a hay and pasture crop and as a soil builder. Hay crops are fair, but there will not be as many hay stacks in Hastings this year as there were last. Grain crops are looking splendid, and even corn is in a fair condition. Buckwheat shows a considerable increase in acreage. Spring wheat has also been more largely sown than usual. The fruit crop will be a very light one in the county, hundreds of apple and pear trees having been killed last winter.”

The Intelligencer July 26, 1918 (page 7)

“Branch Formed in Stirling. A branch of the Soldiers’ Aid Commission of Ontario, has been formed in the Village of Stirling. The chief object of the Association is to take care of and find employment for members of Canadian Expeditionary who have returned to our Municipality.

The officers selected were L. Meiklejohn, chairman; Geo. H. Luery, vice chairman; J. S. Morton, secretary treasurer; finance committee: Dr. Bissonette, J. S. Morton, R. P. Coulter, R. A. Elliott; employment committee: the chairman, vice chairman, Dr. Bissonnette, G. E. Kennedy, E. T. Williams.”

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