I have always enjoyed reading about history and more recently, I became fascinated with the history of WWI. This was prompted by the discovery of pictures of my wife’s grandfather and great uncle, Thomas and Edward Medlicott, who were members of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) and who served gallantly overseas in the Great War. Another young man from Medicine Hat who joined the CEF and fought gallantly overseas became one of Medicine Hat’s most celebrated sons. His name is -Pvt. James Peter Robertson.
This is his story embedded in the greater context of the First World War for which many are unaware. READ ON
More than 2,800 nurses served in the Canadian Army Medical Corps, as fully-enlisted officers in the specially-created all female rank of “Nursing Sister”, during World War I. Nicknamed “bluebirds” because of their blue uniforms and white veils, Canada’s nursing sisters saved many lives by caring for wounded and sick soldiers during this horrific conflict in France and Belgium during the Great War (1914-1919). Their valour and dedication to the war effort, however, is often overlooked. One of these Nursing Sisters has a unique connection to Medicine Hat and her story is one that should be told as part of another interesting chapter in the history of Medicine Hat.
On June 16th, 1945 Major Mary Minor Mills, R.C.A.M.C was awarded the Royal Red Cross Medal by King George VI at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace. Major Mills has a unique and special connection to Medicine Hat and Southeastern Alberta and Southwestern Saskatchewan and her story is a story worth telling as it forms another interesting chapter in the history of Medicine Hat.
On Remembrance Day, we Canadians pause to honour the men and women who have served and continue to serve Canada during times of war, conflict, and peace. Many of us where a red poppy to symbolize our respect to those that served and paid the ultimate price in service to their country. Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae beautifully captured this symbolism of the blood-red flowers in his 1915 poem “In Flanders Fields.” The poem which has received international acclaim, was written to honour those who had fallen during the Battle of Ypres in WWI, as he noticed how quickly the poppies grew over the graves of soldiers who had earlier died during this battle. It is a moving tribute and a reminder that their sacrifice should always be remembered.
Here is my second article in my effort “not to break faith” but to REMEMBER…..
“If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields”
A recent genealogical discovery is worthy of being documented as I found that a distant relative in WWI was awarded the rare Victoria Cross for gallantry and bravery. As we approach November 11th, and honour those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for love of country, his story is worth sharing as we discover one of the many “real” moral tragedies of war. LEST WE FORGET
With the “opening of the border” to the U.S. for fully vaccinated Canadians, many Canadians including myself are contemplating and preparing for their extended trip down south. But the continuing global pandemic and the ever increasing travel restrictions and Government regulations intended to prevent the spread of COVID-19 (Delta variant) has caused much angst. Here is an article entitled, “I Have to Do What?” or “May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose” which is a slight departure from my usual “historical” offerings which many may find of interest. Please forgive me for this indulgence! And feel free to share with those who might find the information of value. READ ON
Ross Creek is a name very familiar to those who live in Medicine Hat. It is named after a well-known pioneer family whose patriarch was Walter Inkerman Ross, who established a huge ranch south of the Cypress Hills and west towards Lethbridge which in time, through three generations of ranchers, developed a rather unusual name given its location. It was called the “Lost River Ranch” and its story and the story of the Ross family and their unique connection to Medicine Hat is a story worth telling.
Many “Snowbirds” are anxiously preparing for their extended trip down south, while others are contemplating an extended holiday to Europe or elsewhere this fall or in the Spring. The emergence of the Global Pandemic and the spread of COVID-19 has caused many to re-evaluate their travel plans and assess the “risk” of leaving the country. Here is an revised and updated version of an earlier article which was written and posted on my blog in 2018, which was part of the series of articles on the Canadian Visitor to The United States. I hope you find it informative and of interest. READ ON:
The history of Medicine Hat is full of interesting characters but none were as colourful and had more “swashbuckling” adventures than that of Captain Horatio Hamilton Ross, who graced his presence in Medicine Hat at the turn of the century.
For anyone interested in the history of Medicine Hat, his story and his unique connection to Medicine Hat is a story, which for many reasons, ought to be told. READ ON
For anyone who grew up in Medicine Hat in the 60’s and 70’s, there was no more iconic symbol of the “Hat”, than the large neon sign that advertised the location of the Assiniboia Inn located at the corner of 3rd Street and South Railway.
No examination of the history of Medicine Hat would be complete without exploring the history of the Assiniboia Hotel, and those who had the foresight and imagination to build this “classic” hotel, and create an enduring sign or symbol of prosperity which became in its time a recognizable landmark and a symbol of success for the place I still call home… Medicine Hat. READ ON