01 Oct 14
One of the ocean liners used as a troopship, October 1914.

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY, 01 October 1914 – By nightfall on 1 October the last of the thirty loaded transports had moved out into the St. Lawrence where sealed orders were handed to the captains of the ships and the commander of the troops on board.  The first of these orders directed the captain to proceed down river.  The second, to be opened after dropping the pilot off at Father Point, was to continue to Gaspé Basin where further instructions were to be received. [2]

The 14th Battalion history records – “Once Quebec had been left behind, the troops on both ships settled down to enjoy the comfortable quarters allotted to them.  Rumours of a rendezvous at Father Point aroused keen interest, but in the morning Father Point was passed and at night the destination of the vessels was still unknown.”  [3]

The press reported that “More than 30 Chaplains will accompany the Canadian expeditionary force to England, in charge of Major R.H. Steacy, Divisional Chaplain.  The duties of these men will by no means be confined to those of spiritual advisors, as they will be called upon to minister to the welfare of the troops to which they are attached in various capacities.  The following are the chaplains who will go with the troops to the front….”  [4] Amongst the 30 names mentioned in this article were the following from the Province of Quebec: Rev. Captains Scott, Quebec; Fortier, Quebec; Cornett, Buckingham, Que.; Almond, Montreal; Sylvestre, Montreal; McGreer, Montreal; O’Leary, Quebec; Workman, Montreal; and Jolicoeur, Valcartier.  The great majority of these chaplains were of the Anglican denomination. [5]


[1] Dodds, Brig.- Gen. W. O. H., C.M.G., D.S.O. (J.A.Millar) Photographs Relating to the Great War, 1914-1918.; Special Collections, University of Victoria Libraries.
[2] Col. A.F. Duguid, “Official History of the Canadian Forces in The Great War 1914-1919, Vol. 1, Part 1, King’s Printer, Ottawa, 1938, pg. 94
[3] R.C. Featherstonhaugh, The Royal Montreal Regiment 14th Battalion C.E.F. 1914-1925, Montreal, The Gazette, Printing Co., Ltd., 1927, pg. 12.
[4] Over 30 Chaplains Going With The Force,” falseSpecial Despatch to The Globe. The Globe (1844-1936),Toronto, Ontario, October 1, 1914,  pg. 3, col. 1.
[5] Ibid.

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