Two postcards related to injured WW1 Canadian Expeditionary Forces soldiers. One is a postcard from a soldier in UK who was later seriously injured at the Ypres Salient in June 1916.
The second postcard refers to a soldier who is in Camp (Petawawa?) Hospital and will be crippled. Both were sent to the same person in North Bay Ontario.
1915, verse postcard from Shorncliffe UK to North Bay
Pre-printed verse postcard sent by soldier to his sister send back home. Front has lines of verse, back has his personal message.
On back, sent to Miss L. (Lizzie) Stockdale North Bay Ontario
W. Sandling Camp Aug 1 15
Postmarked ‘SANDLING CP 3 AU 15 SHORNCLIFFE’
1918 Petawawa postcard, Toronto to to North Bay
Front of postcard is photo of Petawawa Camp, with horses in stalls, soldiers in front of tents. Published by The College Bookstore, Kingston.
Slogan postmark ‘Support the Toronto Free Hospital for Consumptives’ TORONTO ONT, FEB 5 1918’ and addressed to Lizzy Stockdale North Bay Ontario.
Letter from Lilly talking about family matters and…”P.S. Freddy home from Camp Hospital this week, but afraid he will be crippled.”
William John (Jack) Stockdale (#57931)
He was born in North Bay Ontario on December 13th 1887. He lived on Worthington St. West with his family. He was a CPR brakesman, and single when he enlisted. He enlisted very early after the outbreak of war, signing his attestation paper in Toronto on November 12th 1914. He was almost 27 years old.
His Unit sailed from Montreal on May 16th 1915 on the S.S. Megantic, arriving in England on the 24th. He trained at the West Sandling camp.
He arrived in France on September 14th 1915.
He was a Corporal in the 20th Battalion when he was injured near Ypres on June 25th 1916. He suffered a serious leg injury, “a missile (shrapnel) penetrated his calf just below the knee from within outward fracturing tibia”
One of the operations at Shorncliffe “…wound enlarged and part of the head of tibia and fibula removed… a counter opening was made below to aid in drainage…”
He sailed back to home on February 19th 1917 aboard the S.S. Esquibo. Once back in Canada, he was in hospitals and rehab in Toronto until January 15th 1918. He received a pension of $15 a month.
The 20th Battalion (Central Ontario), CEF was a unit of the First World War Canadian Expeditionary Force. The battalion was composed of volunteers from militia units in central Ontario.
Upon arrival in France on 15 September 1915, the battalion was assigned to the 4th Brigade, 2nd Division, Canadian Corps and given a section of the front on the Ypres Salient, near Messines. Duty holding the line included: nightly patrolling in no man's land, endless repairs to wire and trenches, and almost continuous enemy shelling. The winter of 1915-16 was spent in a routine of 18 days on the front and 6 days in the rear, all the while battling lice, trench foot, and disease. In March 1916, steel helmets were issued to all ranks.
In the spring of 1916, the Commander of the British Second Army decided that it was essential for an enemy salient near the village of St. Eloi to be eliminated. Following attacks and counter-attacks, the 4th Brigade tried to retake the craters that the 6th Brigade was forced to fall back from. The 20th Battalion managed to retake one crater and held it through a month of concentrated shelling. In one month, the 4th Brigade suffered 1373 casualties.