Peeling back the layers of history in an attempt to arrive at the origins of 15th Field Artillery Regiment RCA and its sub-units. I came across this valuable book "Officers who served Overseas in the Great War with the Canadian Artillery" which I’ve placed in the reference page. It was produced by the Royal Canadian Artillery Association in 1922.
31st Battery first appears as a sub-unit of the 8th Brigade when this Howitzer Brigade was formed on 15 September 1915. It disappears in November of the same year when the Battery is designated the 23rd Battery.
31st Battery reappears when the new 8th Brigade CFA arrives from Canada in February and March of 1916 as part of the 3rd Divisional Artillery. Major F.A. Peacock is the Battery Commander.
Major F.T. Coghlan is also part of the 3rd Divisional Artillery as he is the acting commander of the 11th (Howitzer) Brigade until being replaced by LCol A. G. L. McNaughton and reverting to Battery Commander 29th Battery.
In June 1916 the 3rd Divisional Artillery lands in France with 31st Battery still a sub-unit of 8th Brigade and Major Peacock still the Battery Commander. There has been a reorganization of all the Brigades with each Brigade now having a battery of 4.5” howitzers rather than having all the howitzer Batteries in one Brigade. Major Coghlan’s Battery is the designated howitzer battery for the 11th Brigade.
The 5th Divisional Artillery was stationed in England in March 1917. It had been designated the 4th Divisional Artillery but this title was changed as a new 4th Divisional Artillery had been created in France during another reorganization. This Division contained the 15th Brigade with the 60th, 61st, 62nd and 79th Batteries as sub-units and commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel A.T. Ogilvie. The 58th Battery was a sub-unit of the 14th Brigade under the command of Major CMP Fisher. A reorganization that same month had 15th Brigade now commanding the 54th, 81st and 82nd Batteries with Lieutenant-Colonel Count de Bury and de Bocarm as Commanding Officer. The 15th Brigade and Its batteries were then split up with personnel and equipment being absorbed by other units. The 58th Battery remained a part of the 14th Brigade with the Battery Commander now Major WMJ Martin.
At this time Major Peacock was still Battery Commander of the 31st Battery in the 8th Brigade while Major Coghlan had taken over the 43rd Battery (How.) in the 10th Brigade.
In June of 1917 another reorganization saw the formation of the 8th “Army” Brigade, CFA with Major Coghlan’s 43rd Battery (How.) as one of its sub-units. Major Coghlan was subsequently promoted Lieutenant-Colonel and took over the 9th Brigade with Major Peacock’s 31st Battery as one of the sub-units.
This is the final organization shown for the Canadian Field Artillery in World War 1. Both 14th and 15th Brigades have been split up and it’s unit personnel absorbed by other units. While the 31st Battery is still commanded by Major Peacock, the 58th Battery has disappeared from the organization.
The 5th Canadian Siege Battery is shown in the final list on demobilization as a sub-unit of the 2nd Brigade, Canadian Garrison Artillery with Major N. P. MacLeod, M.C. as the Battery Commander and Lieutenant W. A. Beecroft as second in command or adjutant. Some familiar names include, Lieutenant F.C. Underhill, shown as the second in command or adjutant of the 2nd Canadian Heavy Battery in the 2nd Brigade, Canadian Garrison Artillery, Lieutenant H.R. Bray shown as the second in command or adjutant of the 10th Canadian Siege Battery and Lieutenant J.G. Chutter’s entry as the second in command or adjutant of the 3rd Brigade, Canadian Garrison Artillery which is misspelled as “Shutter”.
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