Sunday, February 7, 1915

In Hutments, Lark Hill, Salisbury Plains

The Battalion War Diarist wrote for this day: “Outfitting draft from 17th Battn. as their clothing was in as bad shape as their documents.” [1]

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY:  “The 17th Battalion (Nova Scotia Highlanders) was authorized under P.C.O.2067 dated August 6, 1914 and raised in Nova Scotia, mobilization being authorized on September 22, 1914 at Camp Valcartier, Quebec, Military District No.5. The 17th were issued number block 46001-48000, and would get the additional block of 169001-171000. Over 600 men would be raised from Nova Scotia militia units.

The battalion embarked for England on September 29, 1914 and sailed on October 3, 1914 aboard the S.S. Ruthenia with a compliment of 39 officers and 717 other ranks, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel S.G. Robertson. They arrived at Plymouth October 14, 1914 and disembarked at Devonport on October 21. The 17th Battalion proceeded to Salisbury Plain and camped there from October 22, 1914 to January 15, 1915. On January 18th the decision had been made to disband the 4th Brigade. The 9th, 11th, 12th and 17th Battalions would join the 6th and form the Canadian Training Depot based at Tidworth Barracks, Salisbury Plain under the command of Colonel W.R.W. James.

On March 8, after the arrival of additional reserve battalions, consisting of the 23rd, 30th and 32nd Battalions, the training depot was moved to the Shorncliff area. The decision was made to reorganize the reserve battalion structure and the General Base Depot, Infantry Base Depot and the Training Depot were disbanded and the Canadian Training Division was formed with Major-General J.M. Babington in command. The battalion proceeded to Shorncliffe on March 15, 1915.

On April 29, 1915 the battalion was officially re-designated the 17th Reserve Battalion under the authority of C.R.O. 450.”   [2]

[1]   War Diary, 14th Canadian Battalion, The Royal Montreal Regiment, Feb 7, 1915.  Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa,


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