Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthApril 22, 1898
Place of BirthKenora, Ontario
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinMr. James Blyth, Detroit, Michigan
Trade / CallingMotor cycle rider
Service Details
Regimental Number2265530
Service Record Link to Service Record
BattalionPrincess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Place of EnlistmentWindsor, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentApril 9, 1917
Age at Enlistment18
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathOctober 30, 1921
Age at Death23
Buried AtBeechwood Cemetery, Ottawa

Archbold, Allan

Private Allan Archbold (aka Allan Clark Archibald) enlisted in April 1917, at age 18, and served in France and Belgium with Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. He returned to Canada in March 1919 and died of illness about two years later.

Allan was born on 22 April 1898 in Rat Portage, Ontario. His mother, Isabella Maud Dearden, was from Montreal and his father, John Leith Archibald, was born in Ottawa. John worked in Rat Portage as a bookkeeper and lumber scaler. Allan’s birth was registered as ‘A. Clark Archibald’ and two more sons were born after him: John Edward (18 October 1901) and Joseph Arthur (20 August 1903). Joseph’s late birth registration, issued in 1920, states that his father died in October 1904.

Isabella was married again in 1905, the same year that Rat Portage was renamed Kenora. Her second husband, James Elliott Sherman, was born in Pembroke, Ontario and worked as a locomotive fireman. Their son Charles Leslie was born in Kenora in November 1906. By 1910 Elliott and his wife had moved to Saskatchewan where he was employed as a locomotive engineer. At the time of the 1911 census they were living in Saskatoon and they had another child, daughter Laura, age one.

When he was about seven years old Allan was sent to Detroit, Michigan to live with an uncle and aunt, James and Mary Blyth. James was a bricklayer and he and Mary were both born in Canada. Allan returned to Canada in November 1913, at age 15, and spent about a year in Sutherland, Saskatchewan, where his family was living. He moved back to Detroit in December 1914, a few months after the war started.

The U.S. entered the war on 6 April 1917. On 9 April Allan crossed into Canada and enlisted in Windsor, Ontario, which is directly across the border from Detroit. His occupation was motor cycle rider and next of kin was his uncle James Blyth in Detroit. Allan’s medical exam made note of several accidents: scars on his arm and face (from dog bites in 1901), a fractured tibia in 1912 and scars on his leg from an auto accident in 1915. Allan was found fit for overseas service and he signed up with the Signal Training Depot. Six months later he was on his way overseas, embarking on the SS Megantic on 24 November and arriving in England on 7 December. He was assigned to the Canadian Engineers Training Depot but transferred a short time later to the 7th Reserve Battalion.

In February 1918 Allan was posted to the 6th Reserve Battalion and in April he was drafted to Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry and sent to France. He spent about two months at the Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp and joined his new unit in the field in mid-June. That summer the Canadians were given several weeks of intensive training in open warfare. The final period of the war started in August and they were heavily involved in operations up until the Armistice. Afterwards Allan’s unit stayed in Belgium for another three months. He returned to England in February 1919 and embarked for Canada on the SS Carmania on 3 March 1919, arriving in Halifax two weeks later. He was discharged on demobilization on 19 March in Ottawa.

Allan returned to Detroit in April and it was likely that same year that he was married. His wife, Annie Edna George, was born in February 1900 in Dundas, Ontario, the daughter of Edwin George and Emma Skuce. By 1911 her parents had separated and she was living in Ottawa with her mother and her younger brother Leonard. In 1915 Emma married Edward Everett Gilpin, a motor car driver who was born in New York.

Allan and his wife settled in Ottawa and he worked as a clerk for the civil service. They had one son, Allan Kaye Archbold, born on 18 July 1920 in Ottawa. Allan passed away the following year, on 30 October 1921, at age 23. The cause of death was endocarditis and nephritis and it was considered to be due to his military service. His funeral was held on 2 November and he’s buried in the veterans section at Ottawa’s Beechwood Cemetery.

When Allan’s medals were sent to Edna she was remarried (Mrs. Doome) and living in Los Angeles, California. Her mother and stepfather, Emma and Edward Gilpin, had also moved there. When the 1940 census was taken Edna was widowed and living with her parents. She died in August 1946, at age 46, and she’s buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California. Allan’s son Kaye also lived in California and he served with the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. Afterwards he had a long career with the Los Angeles Police Department, becoming a Captain and retiring in 1977. He passed away in 1982 and he and his wife are buried at San Jacinto Valley Cemetery in California.

Allan’s brother John Edward Archibald had enlisted in 1918 but he was discharged after three months due to being underage. He died in California in 1979. Their younger brother Joseph settled in Kenora and married a local girl, Harriet Howard. Two of her brothers served in the navy during the First World War, Clifford Howard and Frederick Howard. Joseph died in 1982 and he’s buried in Lake of the Woods Cemetery in Kenora.

By Becky Johnson

Gravemarker photo provided by Cliff Seibel.

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