Transcribing the War Diaries of the 85th Heavy Battery on Yorke Island into a Digital Format has been a project sitting on the shelf for a considerable period of time. It seemed to be such a daunting task. I tried simply transcribing the war diaries and enlisted Bdr Halstead to give it a go as well. There seemed to be just too much material and no way of simplifying the task. Unfortunately the age of the paper made OCR unfeasible.
Recently I discovered the capability of "Voice Typing" in google docs. Reading the documents provides a useable collection of digitized material ready for formatting and significantly reduces the amount of time required to do the War Diaries.
The project is in its infancy as I have only reached 10 September 1939. Any volunteers willing to give me a hand?
Gunner Wallace Reece Brunt
Paul Rochler, the Danish collector who parted with his Gunner Brunt memorabilia, has received his regimental coin and button as a gesture of our appreciation. Thanks Paul! And thanks to Ross Keller for his devotion to all things Yorke!
Are you interested in assisting with the Regimental Museum? Willing to be a member of the Museum and Archives Society? Joining the reenactors team with the FAT and 25 pounder? We have many opportunities for you to get involved. It might be somewhat restrictive at this time due to COVID but it also gives many of us an opportunity to do some back ground research. Check out the latest museum references I've placed on our reference page:
CFP 266 - Canadian Forces Museums - Operations and Administration
Guidelines: Roles and Responsibilities of Museum Boards of Trustees
Enjoy the read!
Uploaded a pdf copy of a Royal United Services Institution Lecture presented by Lieutenant-Colonel T.B. Strange, Dominion Inspector of Artillery on The Military Aspect of Canada on 2 May 1879. The lecture provides information on the:
1st. Strategic Geography of Canada.
2nd. Militia, Active and Reserve.
3rd. Permanently Embodied Militia and Educational Establishments, i.e., Schools of Gunnery and Royal Military College.
4th. Armament and Supply.
5th. Canadian Contingent for Imperial Service and Military Colonization.
Find the copy in the Pre-World War I section of our reference page here.
Enjoy the history from 1879!
The Queen's South Africa Medal (QSA) has been added to our Honors and Awards page. This medal had been awarded to Gunner Stewart Isley Howard Wylie for his service with the Imperial Yeomanry prior to emigrating to Canada and enlisting with the Vancouver Volunteer Reserve and serving overseas with the Canadian Field Artillery..
The medal was a British campaign medal awarded to British and Colonial military personnel, and to civilians employed in an official capacity, who served in the Second Boer War in South Africa. Altogether twenty-six clasps were awarded, to indicate participation in particular actions and campaigns.
Gunner Wylie was entitled to wear Transvaal, Orange Free State and Cape Colony. For more details on his service, check out his nominal roll entry here.
The Guns of the Regiment
Doug Knight has written a detailed history of the guns used by The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery since its earliest days. The book is illustrated with a history and specifications of each model of gun and includes all the ordnance used by the 15th Field Artillery Regiment. It is available for purchase online from Service Publications. The author was kind enough to provide us a powerpoint presentation of all the guns illustrated in the book, which has been placed on this page.
British Columbia Magazine - Forgotten Yorke Island, History From The Second World War
Story by Michaela Ludwig, photos by Kevin Krogstad
A short story on Yorke Island, it's history and a link to our Vancouver Gunner's website. Shared 245 times on Facebook as of 11 Jan 2020. Check out the story here.
The Vancouver Artillery Association has reached out to The Royal Westminster Regiment, their Associations and knowledgeable howitzer restorers across Canada. Seems to be considerable interest in the plight of the guns! In order to keep you up to date, I've started compiling a page with relevant information here.
The first entry for 2021!
Dustin Porter from Destination Adventure discovered Yorke Island last year and made a great little video of his adventure. We'll have to invite him down to the Museum once COVID ends and fill him in on some of the Yorke Island background as well as some of the other artillery sites in BC. In the meantime we can play a game of: Identify the errors in the video!
1. 3.50 "so they assumed they would fly around the north end of Vancouver Island and they wanted a strategic spot where they could shoot at these airplanes." Yorke Island was actually intended as a deterrent to enemy ships. The anti-aircraft capability on the island was strictly to protect the guns, Vickers machine guns in the early years followed by two 40mm Bofors guns. Enjoy the video!
Recently received a series of photos taken by Colin Blackburn, a former brigade photographer. Problem is that there are no dates or names with many of the photos! Can you identify any of them? send me an email to email@example.com
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