Kenora Great War Project

 

  • 94th Battalion on Laurenson’s Lake, Kenora.

  • Local members of the 98th Regiment, Kenora, n.d.

  • The members of the 3rd Contingent train on the ice in the bay off Kenora’s downtown, 1915.

  • The local training ground for the 3rd Contingent was the ice-covered bay just west of Kenora’s downtown, 1915.

  • The members of the 3rd Contingent train on the ice in the bay off Kenora’s downtown, 1915.

  • A contingent of Kenora soldiers with the 98th Infantry Regiment, the local militia, new recruits and South African war veterans pose for a group photograph in front of the Vereker Block on Matheson Street, Kenora, in November 1914.

  • The 94th Battalion was an infantry battalion recruited in Northwestern Ontario, including Kenora. They embarked for Britain on 18 June 1916 and once there were absorbed by the 17th Reserve Battalion CEF and the 32nd Battalion CEF, providing reinforcements for the Canadian Corps in the field. Here they are pictured in front of the King Cash Grocery on Matheson Street, Kenora.

  • Waves and handshakes were offered to the young men of the 3rd Contingent as they depart the Kenora Train Station. They were headed for Valcartier, Quebec for military training before being shipped overseas to the front lines.

  • Photographer Carl G. Linde captured this crowd at the Kenora Train Station on 17 June 1915 for the send-off for the 3rd Contingent.

The Kenora Great War Project

In 2012, three community organizations in Kenora, Ontario joined forces on a project which became known as The Kenora Great War Project. The three partners – the Ancestor Seekers of Kenora (ASK), the Lake of the Woods Museum and the Kenora Public Library – pooled their resources, their expertise and their knowledge to tell the story of Kenora’s involvement in World War I.

The starting point was to commemorate those men whose names were listed on the town’s war memorials. The hope was that by researching, recording and telling their stories, they would become more real to the community where they had lived. Early on in the process the scope of the project was extended to include not only those who were killed in action but all World War I veterans who lived in Kenora and the area (including Keewatin, Norman, Jaffray and Melick, Minaki, Redditt, Sioux Narrows, Lake of the Woods and the surrounding First Nations Reserves). The scope has since been extended to include all local folk who attested, were conscripted and served so that the full local story of The Great War could be told.

THE PEOPLE

To that end a database of local individuals and their stories was developed (The Stories). It includes stories of heroic acts, of separated families, of friendship, of loss and we share them with you here. Please note that while over 1,800 stories are included in this database, it continues to be a work-in-progress. More stories will be added as the research is completed.

HUSBANDS, SONS AND SWEETHEARTS

The second element of the project was the production of an exhibit which was displayed at the Lake of the Woods Museum from August 1, 2014 – November 15, 2014. The exhibit highlighted some of our local stories told within the greater context of the Canadian’s part in The Great War. A virtual version of that exhibit is available on this site.

We hope that this research, the exhibit and additional resources provided here make this world event more real, more personal and more meaningful to you.

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