Kenora Great War Project


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The People


These are the stories of Kenora participants in the First World War.

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White, William Gregory

Birth date: William was born in Aylmer, Ontario, September 6th, 1896 to William Robert White (born October 1, 1869, Elgin County, Ontario) and Ethel Elizabeth Gregory (born November 4, 1870, Belmont, Middlesex, Ontario). They were married in Aylmer, Ontario June 1, 1893. William is descended from and related to historic families in early Ontario and… Read More »

Murgatroyd, Sydney

Private Sydney Murgatroyd was the son of Benjamin John Murgatroyd and Harriet Ann Taylor. Benjamin and Harriet were both born in England. They were married in 1894 in Rat Portage, Ontario, where Benjamin worked for the Canadian Pacific Railway. They had at least five children: Jessie May (1894), Bertram (1896), Sydney (1898), Harriet Edith (1904)… Read More »

Ross, John Alexander

John Alexander Ross, known as Jack to many and as Oley to his closest friends, was born in what was then Rat Portage (later renamed Kenora) in October 1893 to Walter and Grace Ross. His parents had married in 1888 in Windsor, Ontario and moved to Rat Portage a short time later. Their first child,… Read More »

Lajeunesse, Antoine Armand

Antoine ‘Armand’ Lawrence Lajeunesse born August 10, 1891 was the first of at least 6 children of Antoine Baptiste Lajeunesse and Olive Lacombe.   He was born  in Montebello, Quebec, the town where his parents married   in 1889.   By the census year of 1901 the family had moved to Rat Portage (known later… Read More »

Gold, Ephraim

Private Ephraim Gold enlisted in Winnipeg in March 1918 and served in Canada for six months. He was discharged for medical reasons in September 1918. According to his attestation Ephraim was born in Massachusetts on 11 June 1896, although other records give his birth date as January 1896. For the 1900 U.S. census, at age… Read More »

Patterson, David Malcolm

Sergeant David Malcolm Patterson enlisted in August 1915 and served in France and Belgium with the 52nd (New Ontario) Battalion. He suffered gas poisoning in August 1918 and returned to Canada in April 1919. David was the son of Alexander Patterson and Mary Ann Hendry of Rainy River, Ontario. Alexander and Mary were both born… Read More »

Lavery, John

Joseph Pierre Jean Baptiste (John) Lavery was born on 7 January 1893 in the RM of St Francois Xavier in Manitoba. His parents Joseph Arsene Lavery and Marie Demerise St Armand were both from Quebec, marrying on 16 July 1888 in St Aubert, L’Islet. Arsene had previously been married to Beatrice Pelletier who died in… Read More »

Fife, Ashton Thomas

Ashton Thomas Fife was born on 6 January 1871 in Hastings, Peterborough  County, Ontario. His father Doctor Joseph Alexander Fife was the son of Scottish immigrants Thomas and Janet (née Becket) Fife. Thomas Fife  had arrived in Canada  in 1820 with his parents and siblings, settling in Otonabee as true pioneers. Thomas married Janet, cleared… Read More »

Houghton, Fred

Ordinary Seaman Fred Houghton joined the Naval Service in October 1917 and served in Canada for four months. He survived the horrific explosion in Halifax harbour on 6 December and he was discharged in February 1918. George Wilfred Houghton, known as Fred, was the son of John Houghton and Sarah Elizabeth Guest. John and Sarah… Read More »