54th Bn Canadian Infantry 1915 - 1919

Discussion in 'Regiment Histories' started by liverpool annie, Jan 14, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    54th Bn Canadian Infantry, 1915 - 1919

    The 54th Kootenay Battalion, C.E.F., was authorized by the Militia Department at Ottawa on the 1st of May, l915. Up to this time there had been no battalion recruited in the interior of British Columbia for overseas work, and as many men had already gone from the interior and there were many more likely to go, it was felt that here should be an overseas battalion to represent them. This was the origin of the "Cinquante-Quatre."

    To those readers who have not the benefit of knowing the interior of British Columbia it may be said without any prevarication that it is the most magnificent country in the world. The original home of the Battalion - Nelson - is set in the midst of the grandest scenery - mountains (Rockies, Selkirks and Cascades), lakes (Kootenay and Arrow), forests and beautiful farming lands, all being visible or within easy distance.

    The main industries of this part being lumbering, mining, prospecting and farming, it stands to reason that the men of the Battalion were remarkable for their physique and personal vigor.

    Command of the Battalion was given to Lieut.-Col. Mahlon Davis, a civil engineer by profession, and one of the few surviving members of the first graduating class of the Royal Military College at Kingston, Ontario. He made his headquarters at Nelson and very soon gathered around him some notable men as his officers, namely: Lieut.-Col. (then Major) A. G. H. Kemball, C.B., as Second in Command; Major C. H. Pollen, Major Gilbert Anderson, Lieut.-Col. (then Captain) R. D. Davies, Captains W. Neilson and W. Garland Foster, and Lieuts. F. D. Smith, D A. McQuarrie, F. M. Raphael, Ridgway Wilson, and others. The Kootenay was divided up into districts, the principal towns of each district being Revelstoke, Kamloops, Cranbrook, Trail and Fernie.

    http://www.54thbattalioncef.ca/WARPAGES/Ops1915.htm#Koots as a cub

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