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

A New Home for Deseronto’s Archives

Archives room in Deseronto Public Library Today the Deseronto Archives transferred 100 boxes of material from its former location in Deseronto Public Library to the Community Archives here in Belleville. The Community Archives [...]

Discover ‘Discover’!

Now you can explore the holdings of the Community Archives from home, if you have access to the internet. We are beginning to share descriptions of the materials we hold through a new service, which [...]

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: City Hall Meeting for British Red Cross Fund, Poster for British Red Cross, King’s Sympathy for Charles Barnett’s Mother, Sugar Not Plentiful, Poster for British Red Cross, Ad for Canada Victory Bonds

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 1)

“Organization Complete for Tomorrow’s Big Drive for British Red Cross Fund. Tomorrow morning the campaign for the raising of $12,000 for the British Red Cross Fund will be in full swing, and from the enthusiasm shown at last night’s meeting in the City Hall no doubt can be entertained for the success of the drive.

The several speakers pointed out to the assembled workers the necessity of energetic effort if the ground was to be covered in one day, and the co-operation of the citizens generally was asked for in order to exceed the amount, which it is our obligation to give. Belleville has always responded nobly to the many calls of patriotism and humanity that have been made since the beginning of the war, and there is no doubt that this latest and most worthy call will be answered generously. …

Mr. H. B. Stock was elected chairman of the committee to arrange a statement and list alphabetically for publication. Below is a list of the various captains of teams. There are a great many workers whose names do not appear on these lists, but who nevertheless will be found in the harness tomorrow to make the 1917 Red Cross campaign the most successful giving that has yet been undertaken in Belleville.

Foster Ward—L. P. Hughes. Samson Ward—C. M. Stock. Ketcheson Ward—L. C. Allen. Baldwin Ward—W. N. Belair. Bleecker Ward No. 8—Aubrey Lott. Bleecker Ward No. 9—Geo. Madden. Coleman Ward—W. E. McCreary. Murney Ward—Ald. W. A. Woodley. College Hill—C. B. Scantlebury. Avondale—W. A. Woodley. Foster Ward—R. Blaind, Sr. Bleecker Ward—Jesse Barlow.

Let Every Citizen of Belleville Take the Same Interest in the Success of the Campaign Tomorrow As These Loyal Workers and $12,000 Will Be Passed Before Breakfast.”

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 2)

Poster for British Red Cross“To-morrow is ‘OUR’ Day—To Give is ‘YOUR’ Duty. Our Glorious Wounded Expect Every Man To Do His Duty.

$12,000 for the British Red Cross! And we must get it.

Will Belleville Be Found Wanting? That is for you to say. Answer with your dollars.”

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 2)

“The King’s Sympathy. Mrs. A. Barnett of 17 Emily St., whose husband died in England received the following message from England:—’The King commands me to assure you of the true sympathy of His Majesty and The Queen in your sorrow.’ Signed Derby, Secretary of State. Pte. Barnett left here with the 80th Battalion and died in England.”

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 2)

“Don’t Worry About Sugar. While there is a considerable supply of sugar in Belleville the article is by no means plentiful and grocers are curtailing the selling of it. In answer to an enquiry from a representative of The Intelligencer, several grocers stated they were unable to sell the product in 100 pound lots at the present time. It can, however, be procured in 5, 10 and 20 pound lots and the retail price is 10 cents per pound.

It is anticipated by many dealers that there will be plenty of sugar just as soon as the new crop is harvested, and it is confidently expected that there will be a drop in price. Belleville dealers are optimistic and claim there is no need for any panicky feeling in regard to the supply of sugar.”

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 4)

Poster for British Red Cross“Our Day, To-Morrow November 1st. Belleville’s Objective $12,000. Help & Give—Do it Now!

Give and heal! British Red Cross.”

The Intelligencer October 31, 1917 (page 6)

Ad for Canada Victory Bonds“Why We Raise Money by Selling Canada’s Victory Bonds.

Why does Canada sell Bonds to help finance this war? Because that is the least burdensome, most expeditious and fairest way of raising money. Canada now has only two ways of raising money for the war:—

First—by taxation. Second—by borrowing from her people.

It is your patriotic privilege to help Canada win the war by loaning her your money through the purchase of Canada’s Victory Bonds.”

100 Years Ago: First Contingent May Get Furlough, Harry Alford to Be Invalided Home, Poster for Military Service, British Red Cross Meeting in City Hall Tonight

The Intelligencer October 30, 1917 (page 1)

“First Contingent May Come Back on Furlough. Ottawa. All Canadians who went overseas with the original First Division and who are still in France are to be brought back to Canada on furlough in a proposal now under consideration by the Government is found practicable by the military authorities.

The idea of the Government is that if adequate reinforcements can be provided and the change that might be necessitated in the ranks and among the officers of the battalions would not interfere with the military requirements and efficiency of the 1st Division as now constituted, the three thousand or more men who have survived the hardships and fighting from the first terrible conflict at Langemarck down through the sanguinary battles of Givenchy, Festubert and Sanctuary Wood to the Somme, Vimy Ridge and Lens, should be brought back to Canada in a body and given a well deserved rest.”

The Intelligencer October 30, 1917 (page 2)

“Invalided Home. Mr. Walter Alford has received a telegram from his son, Capt. Harry Alford, that he has arrived in Montreal from England. Capt. Alford is being invalided home on account of the frequent relapses of Malaria fever, which he contracted while on active service one year in the Dardanelles region. During the last year in England the dampness of the climate was the cause apparently of many recurrences of the disease.”

The Intelligencer October 30, 1917 (page 3)

Poster for military service“The National Interest. In their enthusiasm to serve Canada, a number of men in Class One—bachelors and widowers without children (not otherwise excepted) who were 20 years old on the 13th October, 1917, and whose 34th birthday did not occur before January 1st, 1917—will desire to report for service, when in fact it is in the national interest that such men should continue in their habitual occupations.

The purpose of the Military Service Act is to select the authorized 100,000 reinforcements in such a way that the industries essential in the national interest will not be handicapped unnecessarily.

Issued by The Military Service Council.”

The Intelligencer October 30, 1917 (page 6)

“Everyone Should Attend British Red Cross Mass Meeting in City Hall Tonight. A largely attended meeting is looked for to-night at the City Hall, when all those interested in the work of the British Red Cross are expected to be on hand to cheer along the workers who are organized for the big drive for $12,000 to be collected on Thursday.

Many prominent speakers have signified their intentions of being there and giving short addresses upon the necessity of subscribing to this glorious Fund. The aims and objects of the Fund will be explained to any who are not acquainted with the absolute necessity of the British Red Cross. Without this organization thousands of our own boys would be left to the most horrible of deaths, and sufferings which are worse than a thousand deaths.

Without the assistance of these voluntary contributions the British Red Cross would cease to exist. So, surely, no sane citizen of this community can help but realize the duty that faces him on Thursday, Nov. 1st, and it is to be hoped there will be none who will shirk this duty.

The British Red Cross is the only institution to which our own Belleville boys can look to for aid in their sufferings. The British Red Cross has taken care of hundreds of our brave Belleville boys since the outbreak of the war, and it is up to us as citizens of Belleville to assist with the up-keep of this noble organization. The British Red Cross work now costs $16,000,000 per year. Your contribution must be part of this huge sum. How much will it be?

Let all good citizens of Belleville come to the City Hall tonight, and show by their presence that they are with the British Red Cross heart and hand, and pocket-book, which is more substantial.”


100 Years Ago: Praise for Nursing Sister Hambly, Ad for Canada Victory Bonds, New Rules for Sending Parcels

The Intelligencer October 29, 1917 (page 2)

“Tribute of Praise For Nursing Sister. A medical officer in Ottawa, who has recently returned from active military medical duty overseas, pays an enthusiastic tribute to Nursing Sister Hambly of Belleville, who was recently singled out for royal honors in recognition of her very valuable services as a military nurse. The medical officer in question writes as follows:

‘It was with great pleasure we learned of the honor of the Royal Red Cross having been given Nursing Sister Hambly of Belleville. Great credit is due Sister Hambly for her loyal work while in France, especially during the frequent heavy rushes.

Several reports have been given for her ability in emergency work and untiring attention, for ‘The Boys’ while acting as night matron for the past year at the Duchess of Connaught’s Hospital, Taplow, England. Being the daughter of Col. P. H. Hambly, so well known in military life, and who has served his country in time of need before this, it is not surprising that this Sister has shown her true British spirit.

Her many friends of Ottawa, who know personally of her work overseas, only wish she could spare the time in which they might give a reception in her honor, but knowing of her call for return sailing, which takes place soon, as they can only extend their hearty congratulations by letter and wish her a Bon Voyage.’ “

The Intelligencer October 29, 1917 (page 4)

Ad for Canada Victory Bonds“ ‘Every man and woman in Canada can help win this war by practising self-denial’—From an Address by Sir Thomas White, Minister of Finance.

Four hundred thousand of the finest and bravest of Canada’s young men have swept aside their home ties and friendships, their private interests, their own pleasures, their own inclinations, and volunteered to serve for Canada and the Empire.

Issued by Canada’s Victory Loan Committee in co-operation with the Minister of Finance of the Dominion of Canada.”

The Intelligencer October 29, 1917 (page 7)

“Rules for Oversea Parcels. The department has issued new rules in regard to sending parcels to the Canadian Expeditionary Forces overseas. They should bear the name and address of a second addressee to whom they may be forwarded and delivered if delivery to the first addressee is found impossible. The original address should be written on front of parcel where stamped and declaration as to contents is affixed. The second and alternative address should be written on back of parcels.”

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