RMR Arrives in Valcartier

25 Aug 14
RMR troops arrive in Valcartier

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY – 25 August 1914 – “At 7:30 o’clock on the morning of August 25th, the Royal Montreal Regiment detrained at Valcartier Mobilization Camp, situated on a sandy plain sixteen miles north-west of Quebec City.  When war broke out Valcartier had been an area of small farms, covered in part with low bush. On August 8, 1914, transformation of the district began; when the Royal Montreal Regiment arrived on August 25th, roads and railway sidings had been laid, miles of rifle ranges constructed, water and drainage pipes installed, shower baths erected, electric light brought in from Quebec, a telephone exchange placed in operation and a great camp brought into being.” [2]

When the Regiment disembarked most of the troops wore their civilian clothes, suits and shoes, as uniforms were not available in sufficient numbers to outfit them before they left Montreal.  It is to be noted that many of the men pictured here on their arrival at Valcartier, although still in ‘civies’ had been issued some web equipment which they carried over their street wear.  The troops lined up in front of those in ‘civies’ appear to be members of the detachment from the 3rd Victoria Rifles. 

On their arrival one of the first tasks of the troops was to erect their bell tents.  Apparently after initially erecting these tents which would be their sleeping and living accommodation for the next several weeks, they were instructed to take the tents down and move them a short distance away. Then having moved the tents to the new locality, orders were received to move them back again.  Being new to the army the recruits were suitably perplexed, but they would soon learn worse was to come.


[1] Wartime Canada;  http://www.wartimecanada.ca/sites/default/files/documents/Camp%20Life%20-%20Valcartier.pdf
[2] R.C. Featherstonhaugh, The Royal Montreal Regiment 14th Battalion C.E.F. 1914-1925, Montreal, The Gazette, Printing Co., Ltd., 1927, pg 7.


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