Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthJanuary 28 1894
Place of BirthJeddore Oyster Ponds, Halifax County, Nova Scotia
Marital StatusMarried
Next of KinBeatrice C Hartlen, wife, 5 Falkland Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Trade / CallingElectrician
Service Details
Regimental Number2098341
Service Record Link to Service Record
BattalionSt Lucia Detachment, BWI
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchRoyal Canadian Engineers
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Address at Enlistment5 Falkland Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Date of EnlistmentMay 9, 1918
Age at Enlistment24
Theatre of ServiceCanada, British West Indies
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathAugust 9, 1945
Age at Death51
Buried AtMountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, British Columbia
PlotABRAY/*/10/048/0009 (677)

Hartlen, Ernest Norman

Ernest Norman Hartlen was born on 25 January 1894 in Jeddore Oyster Ponds, Halifax County, Nova Scotia. The original spelling of the surname was Hartling, shortened to Hartlin, and modified by some family members to Hartlen. Within Jeddore Oyster Ponds is an area known as the Hartlin Settlement. Both of Ernest’s parents, fisherman George Hartlin and Lydia Mitchell, were from Jeddore and married there on 26 March 1877. Ernest had at least five older sisters, Margaret, Bertha, Mary, Anna, and Martha, and six older brothers, William, Harris, Avery, Marcus, Leonard, and Clarence. He also had two younger brothers, Josiah and Judson. It is possible that other children were born to the family as well.

On 7 September 1915, in Boston, Massachusetts, Ernest married Beatrice Cauldwell. Living in Halifax, at the time Ernest was working as a waiter and Beatrice as a domestic. Born in 1893 in Nova Scotia, Beatrice was the daughter of William and Emma (née Naugle) Cauldwell.

Ernest served with the 1st Fortress Company, Royal Canadian Engineers from 1 January to 31 March 1918. With occupation given as electrician and his wife Beatrice in Halifax as next of kin, Ernest signed attestation papers with the Royal Canadian Engineers on 9 May 1918 and arrived in St Lucia, British West Indies on the 25th to serve as a Lance Corporal.

In March and April of 1915 detachments of the Royal Canadian Artillery and Canadian Garrison Artillery had landed in St Lucia to protect the Castries Harbour, the Castries coaling station, and the Royal Navy Station in the southern Caribbean. The force, at the Armistice of 1918, consisted of 14 officers and 204 other ranks of the Royal Canadian Artillery, and 2 officers and 28 other ranks of the Royal Canadian Engineers (one of which was Ernest), and one officer and 8 other ranks of the Canadian Army Medical Corps.‘(from the Voice newspaper, St Lucia, 6 February 2016 edition)

Ernest returned to Canada in May of 1919 and was discharged from service in Halifax on 18 June. He and Beatrice moved to northwestern Ontario where Ernest found work with the Ontario-Minnesota Pulp and Paper Company in Kenora. He was a former past master of the Grand Orange Lodge Kenora LOL. In the early 1930’s the couple moved to Vancouver where Ernest worked as a cook at the Vancouver General Hospital.

Ernest died on 9 August 1945 in the Vancouver General Hospital. He was predeceased by his mother Lydia in 1932 and his father George in 1941, both interred in the Oyster Pond Baptist Cemetery in Nova Scotia. At the time of his death he was survived by his wife Beatrice, three sisters and five brothers. Ernest is interred in the Mountain View Cemetery in Vancouver. In 1953 Beatrice was living with her brother in Vancouver but further trace of her was not found.

Two of Ernest’s brothers served during the war. Josiah enlisted in August of 1915 and went overseas with the 40th Battalion, serving with the 26th Battalion in France and Belgium. He was hospitalized for shell shock and a gunshot wound to his arm. Josiah returned to Canada in August of 1919. Ernest’s brother Judson signed recruitment papers in August of 1918 and served in Siberia with the 260th Battalion. He returned to Canada in June of 1919.

by Judy Stockham

Vancouver obituary: courtesy of Mike Melen
Grave marker photo: provided by Islandergirl on

Hartlen-Ernest-Norman-2 Hartlen-Ernest-Norman-3 Hartlen-Ernest-Norman-4 Hartlen-Ernest-Norman-5


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