Tag Archives: 198 Bn CEF

Making Connections to the Past

I would presume that most people working in museums inherently believe that preserving history is important – I would certainly hope so at least. And while preservation can be a monumental task all on its own, it’s really only half of the challenge. The real value comes in being able to share this history – to make it accessible in some ways.

When we think of museums, the first method of achieving this that usually comes to mind is through exhibits.  Visitors can see – and in some cases touch – real artefacts and are provided with additional background, context and perspectives to better understand the history we present.

This might be considered the ideal approach and while over 350,000 people visit our museum’s exhibits each year, we also know that many people around the world with some link with our Regiment, may never get that opportunity. With that in mind, we’ve tried to digitize much of our collection and make it available online, here on our website, on our Flickr site (over 10,000 photos currently),  Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. And we’ve also made our collection catalogue available online as well with images and descriptions of almost 2,000 objects entered to date.

All of this takes an incredible amount of work and coordination, and most of our volunteer team have contributed to this effort in some way or another.  But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to occasionally wondering if anyone actually accesses any of this information, and if all this work is worth it.  The stats tell us that our Flickr site has had over 1,000,000 views and our website gets about 80,000 page views annually which is very exciting but still somewhat impersonal.

Occasionally though we get comments on our website about how the information helped them connect with a relative or letting us know they have more information to share – even objects to donate, and those always seem to make our efforts worthwhile.

Last month though, we received an email that couldn’t help but recharge the whole museum team:

“My name is Liz Grogan and I am the granddaughter of Sgt. J. Lutton 6164.

A couple of weeks ago, I was sitting with my 95 year old mom, John’s middle and only surviving daughter, Kathleen ( Kae) Smith who was browsing through a book I was reading for my book club called “The War that Ended Peace, The Road to 1914” by Margaret MacMillan.

Knowing that her father, my grandfather had been in WW1, I decided to google his name, and you can imagine my surprise and excitement to discover this:

John Lutton WWI Letter to Annie Deyell
This letter in our collection was written in 1917 in England by Sergeant John Lutton, 198th Battalion, to Annie …

I had researched his name prior to Remembrance Day on other occasions , but I had not seen this letter before!

So Mom and I sat together and I read the letter out loud as mom watched the screen. I had not scrolled through to see how long it was, so my thanks to WO Emily Kenny for her hard work!

I can’t express how magical this moment was, that I will never forget. We laughed, we cried and we were simply in awe of having this amazing opportunity to have a personal peek at the life and love between mom’s future mom and dad and my future grandmother and grandfather.

And to reflect that this letter is 100 years old is beyond magical!!”

When I read this email, I couldn’t help but smile and was clearly reminded that our efforts are definitely worthwhile!

Of course Liz was interested in how we came to have the letter.  In June a stamp collector in Nova Scotia contacted us because he had this letter in his collection and had found online that we perpetuated the 198th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force. We quickly accepted his offer and the letter was soon in our collection.  WO Kenny just happened to be directing staff on a music course at CFB Borden for the summer and offered to transcribe the letter in her spare time so we could put it online.  The letter is long and rather rambling, and proper punctuation was not Sgt Lutton’s strong point but she soon had it done and we posted it to our website.

While this was happening we also researched Sgt Lutton’s life and service.  While training in England he contacted meningitis and was hospitalized for 6 months before being found unfit for overseas service and returned to Canada where he was hospitalized for another three months. Though he never made it to the trenches of France or Belgium, his story does illustrate the other dangers many soldiers faced from diseases and poor health conditions they faced just getting to the front.

Lutton was lucky enough to recover from his meningitis and married Annie in 1919. He died in 1948 and is buried in Park Lawn Cemetery.

We’re very thankful that Liz took the time to share their experience and to send us the delightful family photo below of Annie and John.

Annie (nee Deyell) and Sgt John Lutton

Sports in the Regiment 1922-1923

As we kick off the 2014 Winter Olympics, we thought we’d share a few snippets of sports related regimental history.

The following is an excerpt from the 1922-1923 QOR Association Annual Report.

Sports in the Regiment

A phase of development in the life of every regiment that is, perhaps, one of the most essential to its success, and perhaps one of the most neglected, it in the world of sport. “Playing the game,” win or lose, must be inculcated in the mind of any who take a part, and this last devolves upon efficient leadership. It is such an ideal that the QOR has endeavoured to induce and maintain, that its part in the development of National life may not be confined to the discipline of the parade ground but to include self-discipline in the everyday life of its members. The Queen’s Own Rifles Athletic Association, therefore, became a reality on December 9th, 1922, and took over the work that had been carried on by Maj. F.H. Wood and his Committee through the difficult period of re-organization. The officers elected were: Hon. Pres. Col. A. E. Kirkpatrick; Pres., Capt. G.G. Emsley Raley, MC; Vice-Pres,. Sgt. L. Baker; Sec’y-Treas, Lieut. T. A. Laidlaw; Executive, Lieut. A. E. Williams, Lieut. A deL. Panet, CQMS G. Alexander, Sgt. J. A. Wilson.

Indoor baseball hockey and basketball were chosen as the sports for the Winder season, and on Jan. 4th, the Regimental Indoor Ball League opened…

Throughout the season matches have been played at the Armouries each Wednesday evening from 7:30 to 11:00 pm, one diamond being reserved from 9:30 to 11:00 pm for Cadets and members of companies and details not entered in the League. Hockey and baseball were innovations but the interest shown was encouraging to those on whom the work really fell. About 25 to 30 men turned out for hockey practice and games at Little Vic Rink and a team of league calibre was selected to form the nuclei of the 1923-24 teams; the season closed with a win of 11-3 over the crack B.A. Life aggregation. On Feb. 28 a well attended hockey and recruiting meeting was held at the Armouries and it was decided to enter the Regimental team in a Senior City league during the season of 1923-24 (see photo below. )

The Officers’ Baseball team is an organization apart for the Association but is an invaluable agent in training candidates: Capt. J.S. Beatty, Team Captain; Major H. Pepler, M.C. Manager; Capt. Ross Walker, Secy.-Treas.

1923-1924 QOR Hockey Team
1923-1924 QOR Hockey Team
198th Battalion, CEF Baseball Team Champions 5th Canadian Division Witley, England, August 1917
198th Battalion, CEF Baseball Team
Champions 5th Canadian Division Witley, England, August 1917
B Company 198th Battalion CEF Cross Country Team - 15th Brigade Champions (Click on the photos for team names)
B Company 198th Battalion CEF Cross Country Team – 15th Brigade Champions
(Click on the photos for team names)
198th Battalion Canadian Buffs, CEF Cross Country Team
198th Battalion Canadian Buffs, CEF Cross Country Team
QOR of C Officers Indoor Baseball Team  Garrison Champions - Eastern Canada 1965-36
QOR of C Officers Indoor Baseball Team
Garrison Champions – Eastern Canada 1935-36
The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada Baseball Team September 1945
The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada Baseball Team September 1945
Canadian Army Champions and Canadian Armed Forces Champions
(click the photo to see team member names)

First World War Perpetuated Battalions’ Nominal Rolls

You can now find the original nominal rolls for each of our perpetuated battalions of the Canadian Expeditionary Force on our Archives Page: https://qormuseum.org/archives/

These searchable nominal rolls issued with Militia Orders in 1915, includes service number, rank, name, previous military service, name of next of kin, address of next of kin, country of birth, and date and place taken on strength.