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

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: Driver Flavian Caron Invalided Home, Eric William Wrightmeyer Returns, Mail Carriers’ Strike Ends

The Intelligencer July 25, 1918 (page 5)

“Invalided Home. Driver Flay Caron, son of Mr. and Mrs. Caron, residing on Lewis street, city, has arrived home. Driver Caron enlisted with a western battery and was for some months on active service. He was severely wounded, having been in a hospital for some time.”

The Intelligencer July 25, 1918 (page 5)

“Won His Promotion. Staff Sergt. Major Wrightmyer, who resides at 36 Wharf street, city, has arrived back from France. He left Belleville in May 1917 with the 155th Battalion as a Private, and won his promotion on the battlefield, where he was severely wounded in the right foot. The Sergt.-Major is only 18 years old.”

The Intelligencer July 25, 1918 (page 5)

“Local Mail Carriers Strike of Short Duration. The strike of the Belleville mail carriers was of short duration but long enough to cause some inconvenience and a rush of citizens to the general delivery at the Post Office. Yesterday it was unanimously decided to strike this morning and it went into effect. Shortly after the carriers were out they returned to their duties owing to the receipt of the following telegram:

Toronto, July 25. R. C. Andrews, Belleville. We are informed in the course of the conference that the Government has already decided that temporary employees of the Post Office department should participate in the bonus voted in the supplementary estimates. The Government is willing upon the men returning at once to their duties to accede to the proposal of a subcommittee of the Cabinet being appointed, which will confer with representatives of the men, hear, look into and discuss with them their representation relative to the matter of wages or salary and report to the cabinet, which will at once consider and decide upon that report.

We find this is the best that can be obtained and under the circumstances consider it acceptable and recommend that the men accept it and return to work in the morning. Alex. McMordie, Federated Secretary.”

100 Years Ago: Belleville Mail Carriers May Strike, Letter from Walter Morris, Women’s Home League

The Intelligencer July 24, 1918 (page 1)

“Belleville Mail Carriers May Go On Strike. Belleville mail carriers may follow the example of fellow carriers in Toronto and other cities and go out on strike. After the delivery of this morning’s mail a meeting of the carriers was held and the unanimous opinion was in favor of a strike tomorrow morning if the matter is not settled.”

The Intelligencer July 24, 1918 (page 2)

“Mrs. T. Morris, 94 Station St., Belleville, received the following letter from her son: France, June 27, 1918. Dear Mother and Father,—Just a line to say that I am well. Hope you at home are the same. I haven’t yet received this week’s letter so haven’t much to say until I do. We are having pretty fair weather here lately. When I get your parcel and J. Cocklyn’s I will let you know immediately.

The Belleville boys in my Company got a pair of knitted socks from the knitting circle yesterday—all but me again. I never bothered to tell you that before I was never among the list to get anything from Belleville. They all got 2 and 3 parcels donated by Belleville and Ontario at Xmas but I never got anything only what I got from you. I don’t mind though but it seems rotten to live in Belleville and come over with the boys from there and be left out like that but I hate to complain. I am none the worse for it but you can understand what I mean.

Well, you will have heard about the big Italian victory. We received it with joy. I expect mail from you in a few days …  so for now I will close. I remain, Your affectionate son, Walter. No. 636568, 10th Platt., 3rd Co. Canadians, France.”

The Intelligencer July 24, 1918 (page 5)

“Women’s Home League. The Women’s Home League of the Salvation Army, was addressed by Mrs. Major (Dr.) McCall. The ladies are busy preparing for a further special effort on behalf of the boys ‘over there.’ The next sale of work will be held in the Citadel on August 21st. All are planning to have a big display. Adjt. Trickey read some additional letters from those who have received comforts recently.”


100 Years Ago: Shellshocked Patient Asleep for Two Years, James D. Collip Sends Wreath by Aeroplane, Tabernacle Methodist Church Memorial Service

The Intelligencer July 22, 1918 (page 5)

“A Long Sleep. On Friday last fifty patients arrived at the Ontario Military Hospital Cobourg, direct from overseas, they being brought here by an escort from Halifax. One of the shell shocked patients has been asleep for over two years and is still in that state.”

The Intelligencer July 22, 1918 (page 5)

“Delivery by Aeroplane. Last Friday Mr. J. D. Collip, florist of this city, received an order for a wreath from the officers of the aviation camp at Deseronto, and requested same to be in readiness within a short time for delivery by aeroplane. Mr. Collip made the design and drove his car to the landing place near the Belleville cemetery and delivered the wreath to an aviator who alighted with his plane. The order, the making of the design, and the delivery at the camp was all accomplished in a record time.”

The Intelligencer July 22, 1918 (page 5)

“Memorial Service. Yesterday morning at the Tabernacle Methodist Church, Rev. Capt. J. Garbutt of Oshawa, rendered a strong stirring address on ‘The Work of the Military Chaplains Overseas.’ As an evidence of appreciation of the congregation the response to the appeal for the Army and Navy Fund was largely in excess of the amount asked for. Mrs. Laidman of Barrie and Mrs. Duff rendered an appreciated duet.

In the evening an impressive memorial service was held, conducted by the pastor, at which tender and timely tributes were paid to the memory of Flight Lieut. Frederick, Sergt. C. Asseltine and Pte. V. Asseltine. Rev. Thomas Wallace of Sidney spoke in a very appreciative manner of the character of Flight Lieut. Frederick, as a former pastor of the family. The Royal Templars were present in a body and also the Alpha Brotherhood as an expression of timely sympathy with Mr. Frederick and family.

Mrs. Laidman sang a very appropriate solo in splendid voice and with pleasing acceptance. The pastor delivered a timely address.”

[Note: Second Lieutenant Leonard Martin Frederick died on July 8, 1918. He is commemorated on Page 587 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

[Note: Sergeant Charles Nelson Asselstine died on February 28, 1917. He is commemorated on Page 193 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

[Note: Private Vincent Asselstine died on July 10, 1918. He is commemorated on Page 361 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.]

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