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Canadian Soldiers - WW I

Canada posterThe Library and Archives of Canada have updated and placed additional scanned military registration forms for the soldiers who served during World War I (1914-1918) to their database. If you had searched before, try again.

Many of the forms completed were Volunteers for the Canadian Expeditionary Force and questioned at the place of enlistment to complete the two-sided Attestation papers which included the recruit’s name and address, next-of-kin, date and place of birth, occupation, previous military service, and distinguishing physical characteristics. Recruits were asked to sign their Attestation papers, indicating their willingness to serve overseas. So there is a good deal of information on these pages.

Use the search box to place either a full name of an ancestor or just the family name (surname). With just a surname you will have a listing with the full names, date of birth, rate and regiment number. If you believe you have a possible connection, click on that individual’s name.

A thumbnail (smaller version) of the first page of the scanned registration page will be shown. Click on the thumbnail image to enlarge it. Here more details are revealed. Information of present address, where they were originally from, next-to-kin, occupation, when they joined the military and their signature. For the second page go back to listing and at the top it has #1 and #2. Click on the #2 for the thumbnail of #2 then click on it to enlarge that page. This will provide details of the physical description of the person plus their overall health. Their religion is listed. Also if they were declared fit to serve overseas. Each page can be saved to your computer.  Canada-page-BRiggs Canada-page-BRiggs-2

Such a resource to learn more about an ancestor. However, remember, your ancestor if not have to have been a resident of Canada. Many citizens from the United States went to Canada early on during the war and before the US joined in April 1917 to help in the war effort. There were some Americans who were turned down later by the US Army but accepted in the Canadian Army. So it is worth checking. Reminder, those male ancestors born between 1870 and 1902 are worth checking if they are on those enlistment rolls.

Photos: Alfred Edward Briggs from England, birth 1893 – both sides.

Related genealogy blogs:

Americans Crossing into Canada

World War One


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