After the War: Black Soldiers Return to Canada

As many of you are probably aware, February was Black History Month. In the past, we’ve taken this opportunity to write about the No. 2 Construction Battalion- Canada’s first and only all-black non combatant battalion during the First World War. This year, however, in keeping theme with our “After the War” travelling exhibition, I wanted […]

Travelling Exhibition 2019: After the War

Coming home and fitting in at the end of the Great War Fifth and Seventh Batteries, CFA, arriving in Montreal PQ for demobilization, 1919. Dept. Of National Defence/Library and Archives Canada/PA-022997  

The Paris Peace Conference, 1919

One hundred years ago, delegates of the victorious Allied nations arrived in France at the Paris Peace Conference. In the following six months, they would take part in some of the most critical negotiations and decisions to reestablish peace and a new international order. With nearly 61 000 war dead, Prime Minister Sir Robert Borden […]

Travelling Exhibition: After the War

The First World War not only devastated Europe, but also the dominions, colonies, and countries abroad who took part in the conflict. With more than 60 000 Canadians killed, billions of dollars spent, and life-long physical and mental scarring, the war’s ramifications extended well beyond the battlefields. Our new travelling exhibition After the War: Coming […]

“Christmas in Canada as Usual”: Celebrating on the Home Front

Earlier this week, we shared an episode from the Imperial War Museum’s Voices of the First World War series that looked at the various ways Christmas was experienced during conflict. While we are often reminded of how Christmas was celebrated on the Western Front, perhaps most famously through the Christmas truce of 1914, we are […]

Beyond November

I did a double take when I first saw the poppy dish. It is small, fragile and looks like an object that demands my attention and care, just like a poppy. When I finally had the opportunity to talk to the artist who created it, I realized it was called a pin dish. It was […]

The Liberation of Mons and the Signing of the Armistice

The hundred days campaign had forced the German army into full retreat. German morale hit a new low as death, starvation, and sickness eroded motivation to carry on. Nevertheless, German rear-guards continued to show strong pockets of resistance as it retreated towards the city of Mons. On 7 November, the Canadian Corps crossed into Belgium […]

Valenciennes and the Pursuit of the German Army

Following the allied victory at Cambrai, the Germans continued their retreat and made their final stand at Valenciennes. With the Canal de l’Escaut to their west and Mount Houy to their south, Valenciennes offered a strong natural defensive landscape where the Germans could slow their enemy’s advance. This would be where the Canadians would fight […]

The Canadians and the Fall of Cambrai

Following their success at the Canal du Nord, the Canadian Corps could now turn their attention to Cambrai. Situated in the Nord-Pas de Calais region, Cambrai was a key logistical centre that was surrounded by an elaborate network of canals. The area was heavily occupied by a retreating German army who showed no signs of […]

Crossing the Canal du Nord: the ‘linchpin’ of the Hindenburg Line

After crashing the Drocourt-Quéant Line on 2 September, the Canadian Corps could take a well-deserved rest and begin preparations for their next obstacle: The Canal du Nord. While allied forces continued their operations throughout September, Lieutenant General Sir Arthur Currie needed to develop a strategy to cross the heavily fortified canal where enemy positions were […]