3rd Bn War Diaries 1914

This page is a result of our War Diary Transcription Project. While the transcriptions have been completed, we continue to add links and photographs.

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Monday, October 19, 1914 [This is the first entry in the Regimental War Diary]

Location: DEVONPORT
Weather: Fine and warm
Entry: Disembarked from S.S. “TUNISIAN”, marched to FRIARY Station, L. & S.W. Ry. At 7.55.P.M. Entrained for AMESBURY, 1st. train 10.45.P.M. 2nd. train 11.45. P.M.

[See the 3rd Bn CEF Nominal Roll in our online Archives]

RMS Tunisian on which the 3rd Infantry Battalion, CEF traveled to England in September/October 1914

Tuesday, October 20, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine and warm
Entry: Arrived AMESBURY, 1st. train 5.30.A.M. 2nd  train 6.45.A.M. Marched to BUSTARD CAMP, via “STONEHENGE” 6½ miles, arriving at 10.30.

[Note: The British Army Training area on the Salisbury Plains consisted of various “camps” located several miles apart. The 1st Canadian Brigade and the 1st Canadian Division Headquarters were located in Bustard Camp.]

Wednesday, October 21, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Cold-rain
Entry: Battalion paraded at 9.30.A.M. Brigade addressed by MAJOR GENERAL ALDERSON at 11.00 o’clock. Afternoon, Coy. drill.

Thursday, October 22, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Cold-rain in afternoon
Entry:  Short route march to WEST DOWN SOUTH CAMP.

Friday, October 23, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain all afternoon
Entry: Brigade duty Battalion. Men not employed on Brigade duties practised extended order in the the morning.

Saturday, October 24, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain all day
Entry: Brigade insepcted by FIELD MARSHAL EARL ROBERTS, V.C. at 1.30.P.M.

Sunday, October 25, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Sunday. Divine service attended by Brigade and P.P.C.L.I. MAJOR GENERAL ALDERSON present.

Monday, October 26, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine-warm.
Entry: Battalion paraded in new 4 Coy. organization, and practised Coy. drill, morning and afternoon.

Tuesday, October 27, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain in afternoon
Entry: Coy. drill. Paymaster made first payment to all ranks.

Wednesday, October 28, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine-warm.
Entry: Battalion practised platoon, Coys. in extended order. Route march in  afternoon.

Thursday, October 29, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Cold-fine.
Entry: Battalion practised Coy. attack, and platoon drill. Route march in afternoon.

Friday, October 30, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Heavy rain.
Entry: Heavy rain nearly all day, no training in morning. Coy. drill in late afternoon.

Saturday, October 31, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Showers. Farewell message from MAJOR GENERAL HUGHES, MINISTER of MILITIA and DEFENSE for CANADA read to all ranks.
[Transcriber Note: Not clear in the diary whether ‘Showers’ refers to the weather or shower parade.]


Sunday, November 01, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain.
Entry: Divine Service Parade cancelled

Monday, November 02, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain.
Entry: Rehearsed parade for the visit of H.M. the King, to take place Nov. 4.

Tuesday, November 03, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Queen Alexandra’s birthday. Holiday. No regular parades.

Wednesday, November 04, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine and warm.
Entry: 10.40 a.m. The camp was visited by Their Majesties the King and Queen, accompanied by H.R.H. Princess Mary, Field Marshall Earl Roberts, Lord Kitchener and other officers. The 1st Brigade was inspected by His Majesty on the Downs north of Bustard Camp.

Thursday, November 05, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain.
Entry:  Company training. A detachment of 30 men under Capt Ryerson proceeded to Flying Shed Camp, for the purposes of assisting in the erection of huts.

Friday, November 06, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 10 a.m. All officers attended a meeting addressed by General Alderson. 2 p.m. Bathing parade for all N.C.O.’s and men. 5.30 p.m. Battalion night march.

Saturday, November 07, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Cold, foggy, frost in early morning.
Entry: Company training practised. A party of one N.C.O. and six men, selected from the Battn., proceeded to London to attend the Lord Mayor’s Show on Monday, Nov. 9. Capt Muntz was detailed to take command of the detachment from the 1st
Brigade.

Sunday, November 08, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Divine Service Parade for 3rd and 4th Bns and 1st Field Ambulance, held on Downs north of 3rd Battalion camp. Service conducted by Rev. G.L. Ingles, and Rev. Mr. Pipher, 4th Bn Chaplain.

Monday, November 09, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Dull and cloudy.
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Extended order practised until noon. 2.00 p.m. Route march to Tilshead and West Down North. Distance about 10 miles.

Tuesday, November 10, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Mild, very foggy.
Entry: 9.00 to 10 a.m. Company in attack. 10 to 12 Battalion practised Night  Advance. 2 p.m. Outpost Work. 5.30 p.m. Night Advance on Newfoundland Farm,
returning at 8 o’clock.

Wednesday, November 11, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Cold, frost in early morning.
Entry:  Battalion proceeded to Shrewton Folly Ranges for Musketry practice. D Coy. fired at 200 yards. Owing to heavy rain and wind blowing a gale, other companies returned.

Thursday, November 12, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Very cold, clear, bright.
Entry: Very cold in early morning, clear and bright. Battalion proceeded at 7.30 to Ranges for Musketry all day. Duty Battalion.

Friday, November 13, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry practice cancelled. Companies practised by Captains in attack and defence work.

Saturday, November 14, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Route March to Shrewton and Tilshead. About 10 miles.

Sunday, November 15, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Divine Service Parade cancelled owing to heavy rain. Battalion learned with deep regret of the death of Field Marshall Earl Roberts, Honorary Colonel of the
Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada.

Monday, November 16, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Company in platoon drill. 10.30 Battalion drill. 2 p.m. Route March to Greenland Farm, Tilshead, Keeper’s Farm and East Down South. About 7½ miles.

Tuesday, November 17, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Company practised extended order and night advance. 2.30 p.m. Lecture by Col. Fawkes, of Royal Army Temperance Union. Duty Battalion. Departure of P.P.C.L.I. to Winchester.

Wednesday, November 18, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Battalion practised Outposts. 2.00 p.m. Route March to Rolleston Camp, Stonehenge and Shrewton. Distance about 11 miles.

Thursday, November 19, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Heavy rain.
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Inspection of arms by Ordnance Officers. Afternoon: Heavy rain; parade cancelled. A detachment of 18 men, under Lieut. George, proceeded to Salisbury, to attend memorial service to the late Lord Roberts. Lieut.-Col. Rennie, as representative of the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada, officially attended the service in connection with the funeral of the late Earl Roberts, in St. Paul’s Cathedral, London.

Friday, November 20, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Route March to Shrewston and Tilshead. Distance, ten miles. 2.00 p.m. Two companies engage in constructing entrenchments. Other companies prac-
tised “Attack.”

Saturday, November 21, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Clear and cool.
Entry:  Duty Battalion to-day. Company training only. 356,000 rounds S.A. ammunition taken over by Q.M.  Reposting of officers to the eight company organisation published in Battalion Orders to-day.

Sunday, November 22, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Divine Service Parade 10.00 a.m., in Y.M.C.A. tent, conducted by Major Pipher, Chaplain 4th Battn. The eight company organisation re-adopted to-day.

Monday, November 23, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 8.30 to 1.30. Company training. Companies practised attack and defence. E and F Coys. attended Musketry Instruction by officers detailed by Col. Sir Charles
Ross. 3.00 p.m. Outposts practised by all companies.

Tuesday, November 24, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 8.30 to 1.30. Company training. Companies practised Advance and Rear Guards.

Wednesday, November 25, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  8.30 to 1.30. Companies practised Encounter Battle. 3.00 p.m. Company drill.

Thursday, November 26, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 8.30 to 1.30. Flank guards and reconnaissance.

Friday, November 27, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: 9.00 a.m. Battalion paraded in marching order, with transports, and participated with Brigade in Divisional Exercises, conducted by General Alderson.

Saturday, November 28, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Rain.
Entry:  Companies practised Coy. Drill. Capt. J.H. Lyne-Evans, R.C.R., transferred from 12th Battalion, C.E.F., reported for duty to-day.

Sunday, November 29, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine and cool.
Entry: Divine Service 11.15 a.m., in Y.M.C.A tent, conducted by Rev. Mr. Pringle.

Monday, November 30, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Heavy rain all day, severe windstorm.
Entry: No parades.


Tuesday, December 01, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Weather fine in the morning, heavy wind in the afternoon.
Entry:  Coy. Training.  Report received to-day of an accident which occured in the
evening of November 30th in which Pte. Raney of the transport was severely injured and admitted to Salisbury Hospital.

Wednesday, December 02, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Dull and windy with rain.
Entry:  Coy. Training. coy. practised encounter battle. The lines were visited by the Brigadier Col. Mercer at 8.45 A.M.

Thursday, December 03, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Weather: Fine, with rain in the evening
Entry:  Battalion was Brigade duty battalion.

Friday, December 04, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  No parade of the Battalion to-day owing to the heavy rain.

Saturday, December 05, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Route march through Tilshead and Shrewton under Capt. Allan, distance about 7 miles. Weather fine in the morning, in the afternoon heavy rain, hail, and sleet.

Sunday, December 06, 1914
Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Divine Service at 9 A.M. in the new recreation tent. Weather fine.

Monday, December 07, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Battalion was Brigade duty Battalion. Rain and heavy wind all day.

Tuesday, December 08, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Camp shifted to an area about half a mile east of Divisional Headquarters. In the afternoon Brigade tactical exersices for senior officers in which the C.O.  attended. Weather fine with wind and showers in the afternoon.

Wednesday, December 09, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Coy. training, usual half holiday observed. Weather fine all day, but rain in the evening.

Thursday, December 10, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Coy. training. Coys. practised formation for a night advance by day. Battalion turned out at 6 P.M. for night advance. Weather fine, but very misty. The advance was carried out in  three parties under Major Kirkpatrick, Capt. Ryerson, and Capt. Allan.

Friday, December 11, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Battalion took part with the Brigade in Divisional exercises, [but] which had to be abandoned [(illegible) under] prematurely owing to the rain, sleet and storm.
The Major General Campbell, G.O.C. of the Southern Command was present. Weather very wet all day.

Saturday, December 12, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Battalion went for route march to Tilshead and Shrewton and return. Weather fine in the early part of it, but rain in the latter part of the day. Bugle Band made its first appearance, playing the Battalion out of the lines.

Sunday, December 13, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Divine Service parade. Fine weather in the forenoon, hail, rain in the afternoon and evening.

Monday, December 14, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Coy. training. Christmas leave commenced today, first allotment of men departed at noon. Weather fine.

Tuesday, December 15, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Coy. training. Lectures and foot inspection in the afternoon. Weather fine and dry.

Wednesday, December 16, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Musketry commenced to-day. News of the bombardment of Scarboro came to the lines about 8 P.M. Orders received to remain in touch with the Brigade H.Qtrs. all night. Permission received from G.O.C. commanding Division to  designate 3rd Bn. as 3rd. Canadian Battalion, Toronto Regiment. Weather fine all day.

Thursday, December 17, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry practise continued. Weather fine and dry.

Friday, December 18, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Officers attended lecture by Col. Williams at H.Qtrs. Rain in the morning clear in the afternoon. Musketry practise continued. C.O. proceded to Haling Isl. to attend the special musketry course.

Saturday, December 19, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry continued. Rain in the morning, but clear in the afternoon. Major Higinbotham [took] went sick to-day.

Sunday, December 20, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Divine Service parade at 10 A.M. at Theatrical tent. Weather fine and cold.

Monday, December 21, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry continued. Weather fine and cold.

Monday, December 21, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry continued. Weather fine and cold.

Tuesday, December 22, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Musketry continued, casuals completed to-day and remaining portion went for route march under Capt. Allan.

Wednesday, December 23, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Coy. training. Commanding Officer returned to Camp from Haling Isl. this evening. Weather fine and cold.

Thursday, December 24, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry: Battalion paraded at 9 A.M. went for route march under Capt. Allan, returned at 11 A.M. and practised advance guards. Weather fine and cold.

Friday, December 25, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Christmas Day, a holiday, no parade of the Bn. Sergt’s Mess was visited by C.O. at 12.30. The Brigadeer Col. Mercer called upon the Officers at 2 P.M. In the evening a bon-fire for all ranks and an open air concert was arranged and enjoyed by all members of the Battalion. Special dinner provided for the men by City Council of the City of Toronto.

Saturday, December 26, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Rained very hard all morning. No parade of the Battalion. In the afternoon the C.O. and four senior officers rode to Bulford to inspect Trenches.

Sunday, December 27, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Divine Service 11 A.M. Weather clear and dry

Monday, December 28, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Battalion training. Bn. paraded at 9 A.M. and practised Bn. in attack under C.O. Rained in the afternoon, snow and sleet later. At 6.45 P.M. a slight blizzard struck the camp and the orderly Room and three other marquies were blown down. Some stationary and Battalion records disappeared in the gale.

Tuesday, December 29, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Duty Battalion. Weather fine.

Wednesday, December 30, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Battalion training, practised advance guards. Rained heavily all night.

Thursday, December 31, 1914

Location: BUSTARD CAMP
Entry:  Battalion training, practised attack on convoy with about 300 men. Rained early in the morning, but cleared and was fine during the day. The members of the Battalion observed the ceremonies in connection with the passing of the year 1914.

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