PLEASE NOTE: We are still in the process of re-cataloging our museum and archives collection, which includes recording more details about each artifact, entering this detailed information into a new collections management database, and taking digital photographs which will also be added to the database. During this process, it will be difficult for us to respond to inquiries about family service in the Queen’s Own Rifles.
However, we recommend you check our online catalogue under “People”. This will include the most up-to-date information we currently have in our database including any photographs in which they might be named. We also have dozens of riflemen profiles on our website.
We also encourage you to review the material that has been digitized in our Archives section and also military record holdings at Library and Archives Canada which can in some cases include individual service records.
The Queens Own Rifles of Canada
- QOR Regimental Diary 1860-1895, by General Otter and others. (Original owned by the City of Toronto)
- Illustrated Historical Album of the 2nd Battalion, Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada: 1856-1894, by Captain E. F. Gunther, VD – 1894
- The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada: A History of a Splendid Regiment’s Origin, Development and Services including a Story of Patriotic Duties Well Performed in Three Campaigns, by Captain Ernest J. Chambers, R.O., 1901
- Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada, 1860-1960: One Hundred Years of Canada, by Lieutenant Colonel W. T. Barnard, ED, CD – 1860
- Medals, Honours and Awards Awarded to QOR Soldiers – Library and Archives Canada holds medal registers, citation cards and records of various military awards. These records indicate the medal, honour or award to which an individual was entitled. This research tool provides the relevant archival references for those documents. There are no service files for the Canadian military in the 1800s, so these records often provide the only proof of service for 19th century conflicts. The names of the recipients of the Queen’s South African Medal are indexed in their South African War database.
The QOR Chapter of the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire (IODE)
The Fenian Raid 1866
- W.C. Chewett & Company, The Fenian Raid Into Canada (Fenian Raid at Fort Erie) compilation of newspaper articles on the Fenian raids, published August 1866.
- Denison III, George T. The Fenian Raid on Fort Erie with an Account of the Battle of Ridgeway, published August 1866.
- Somerville, Alexander. Narrative of the Fenian Invasion of Canada. Hamilton, C.W. [Ont.] : Joseph Lyght, 1866. investigative history, published September 1866.
- Macdonald, John A. Troublous Times In Canada: A History of the Fenian Raids of 1866 and 1870, including full transcripts of the Booker Inquiry, Toronto : Printed by W.S. Johnston & Co, 1910.
- Vronsky, Peter Ridgeway: the American Fenian Invasion and the 1866 Battle That Made Canada, Published by the Penquin Group, 2011.
South African War (1899-1902)
Before this war ended in May 1902, over 7,300 Canadians, including 12 Nursing Sisters, served in South Africa. The South African war marked the first occasion for which Canada dispatched troops to an overseas war. The first contingent arrived in South Africa in November 1899. From then on, Canadians participated in nine important battles. Thirty-three Queen’s Own Rifles soldiers volunteered to serve in this war. These men became part of “C” Company (representing Toronto), of the 2nd (Special Service) Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment. Three died in South Africa:
- 7301 Beattie, Sergeant Albert 14/04/1900 RCR- C Coy (Died of disease)
- 7319 Blight, Rifleman Walter Stansfield 5/04/1900 RCR- C Coy (Died of disease)
- 7500 Jackson, Rifleman Charles E.E. 18/02/1900 RCR- C Coy (KIA)
Library and Archives Canada has digitized many of the South African War military records.
The “English Trip” of 1910
- Mouriopoulos, Nikolas A. E. “A Serious Piece of Business”: Sir Henry Pellatt, The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada, and the “English Trip” of 1910, Toronto, M.A. 2000 Paper, 2014
3rd Canadian Infantry Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force, First World War
Thanks to Catherine Caughell for providing this WWI Pathfinder document that highlights websites and/or resources available for researching Canadian WWI military records online.
Attestation Papers and Service Records for Queen’s Own Rifles members who served in the First World War with the 3rd Battalion and other battalions are available from Library and Archives Canada and many are now available online.
Regimental War Diaries – Battalions kept daily records of the key activities each day. These mention some names particularly of those killed and of officers. Scans of 3rd Battalion, CEF War Diaries can be found on the Libraries and Archives Canada website:
- War Diary – October 10, 1914 to March 31, 1917
- War Diary – April 1, 1917 to May 31, 1917
- War Diary – June 1, 1917 to February 28, 1919 (see November 1918, p.6 for activities on November 11)
Through our War Diaries Transcription Project, you can now view and search on our website, the diaries which were transcribed from the L & A Canada scans linked above:
Service after 1918 including the Second World War and Korea
Library and Archives Canada have service records for those who served in the Queen’s Own Rifles during this period. Some of these are available online (those who died in the Second World War) and some are restricted access, the terms of which are clearly stated on their website.
The 1944 War Diaries of The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada, 1st Battalion have been transcribed and posted here. You can also find a pdf of the actual diary page images here (June to October 1944) which were prepared by the Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies at Wilfred Laurier University.
Second World War (1939-1945)
Research Paper: The Regiment’s “Toughest Scrap” February 26, 1945 Actions on and around the 26 February 1945 for which Sergeant Aubrey Cosens was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross. Researched and written by former Queen’s Own Rifleman, US Army Colonel William C. Ball (Ret’d).
Research Document: Listing of CO’s WWII (RG4 SG3 S1 F01-00608) Original document listing the Commanding Officers, Camps, Battles, Officers who served with the Battalion, Honours, Awards and Medals, and Officers who served in higher formations of the QOR of C during WWII.
Document: 1st (OS) Bn QOR WWII Intelligence Reports: Daily Log of the Queen’s Own Rifles Intelligence Section 11 to 31 August 1940 while stationed in Botwood, Newfoundland. Includes approximately 30 other loose papers relating to similar topics from June to December 1940.
The Rifleman Magazine
Beginning in 1978, the modern-day journal of The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada provides general information about the QOR and often highlights individuals and their achievements. You can download searchable PDFs here.
The Powder Horn
Beginning in 1998, a newsletter was issued between printings of the Rifleman Magazine. You can download searchable PDFs here.
(The Powder Horn was also an annual publication issued by the three battalion regiment during the 1960s. Those have not yet been digitized.)