Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthAugust 18, 1971
Place of BirthSkipton, Yorkshire
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinJohn Core, brother, Bradford, England
Trade / CallingLabourer/Fireman
ReligionChurch of England
Service Details
Regimental Number1852/59201
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion21st Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Date of EnlistmentOctober 22, 1914
Age at Enlistment43
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of Death19490225
Age at Death77

Core, William

William Core was born on 18 August 1871 in Skipton, Yorkshire, England. His parents Joseph Metcalfe Core and Elizabeth Wheeler married during the last quarter of 1868 in Skipton. William had an older brother Arthur, born in Skipton in 1868 but by the time of the birth of Anne in 1874 the family was living in Bury, Lancashire. From there they moved to Bradford in Yorkshire where Harriet was born in 1878 followed by Ada in 1880. Over the years Joseph worked as a carter, labourer, and in latter years as a watchman at a worsted mill. Sadly, it appears that Elizabeth died in 1887 in Bradford and by the time of the 1891 census the family unit had disintegrated. Joseph was working as a labourer in Horton, Yorkshire, listed as a boarder in the home of Fanny Robinson, Anne was boarding with a family in nearby Bowling and working as a worsted weaver, Ada was living in a Girls Home in Bradford, and William and John were living with their widowed aunt Harriet Core and her family in the west end of Bradford. At the time William was working as a ‘machanic-iron turner’. Records were not found for Arthur and Harriet.

On 15 December 1891, William attested with the Royal Artillery at Sunderland in northeast England. His occupation was given as ‘machanic’ and his father Joseph in Bradford as next of kin. William served in England until 22 September 1892, in India for over 11 years (23 September 1892 until 29 January 1904), returning to England on 30 January 1904 and discharged on 3 February. For his service he was awarded the India Medal 1895 and clasps for his participation with the Tirah Expeditionary Force during the Punjab Frontier 1897-1898.

William was next found on the passenger list of the Empress of Ireland that arrived in Halifax on 23 April 1908. Along with another fellow, John Mathison (?, surname difficult to read) he was headed to Kenora, Ontario, both having occupations given as firemen and listed as returning Canadians. With the onset of the war, William was mentioned in a number of Kenora Miner and News articles in the late summer and fall of 1914 as having enlisted. He signed his first set of attestation papers on 22 October 1914 with the 28th Battalion in Port Arthur. His occupation was given as labourer, date and place of birth as 18 August 1876 in Bradford, Yorkshire, and next of kin as his brother John in Bradford as next of kin. William was discharged from service on 22 February 1915 in Winnipeg for ‘drunkeness’.

William signed his second set of attestation papers a short time later on 19 March 1915 in Lindsay, Ontario. His occupation was given as fireman, date of birth as 18 August 1874 in Bradford, and his next of kin as his brother John in West Bowling, Bradford, Yorkshire. As a Private with the 21st Battalion, William embarked from Montreal aboard the Metagama on 6 May 1915. While in training in England William spent time in detention and forfeited pay/pay restricted three times for being away without leave and drunkeness. In mid September he embarked for France.

Once in France William was punished a number of times, awarded Field Punishment No 2 for 10 days and forfeited pay in early October for being absent from Platoon, forfeited 2 days pay in mid October for being absent, 5 days Field Punishment No 2 for being absent from the trenches in early November, 28 days Field Punishment No 1 and stoppage of pay to the value of a cow he shot in mid November, 28 days Field Punishment for absence and being found drunk in mid December. In April of 1916 William was sentenced to 28 days Field Punishment No1 for being ‘absent from camp, drunk, and shooting’.

On 28 August 1916 William was admitted to the No 4 Canadian Field Ambulance with sore/flat feet. Classified as ‘C’ he proceeded to England on the 21st, discharged as being no longer fit for war service (flat feet and overage) on 19 October 1916.

Although a service record was not found, it appears that William’s brother Arthur served with the 16th Battalion, Prince of Wales’s Own (West Yorkshire) Regiment during the war. He was reported as killed in action 3 May 1917. With no known grave he is commemorated on the Arras Memorial, Arras, Pas-de-Calais, France.

After the war William remained in England where he was a labourer for the Corporation Water Works in Bradford. William died on 25 February 1949 at ‘The Park’ on Rooley Lane in Bradford. His brother John of Bradford was listed as informant on his death record.

By Judy Stockham

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