Site last updated: 19th July 2021   

  Welcome


This website is a place of remembrance dedicated to all who served with the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles in the First World War.


Being a respectful and honouring point of focus for those having relatives or research subjects who served at any time with the 4th CMR, the website has grown out of discovering that my great-grandfather's brother, Cpl. Frank Forsdike, served and died with the Regiment. As such, I do invite you to click on About to read the amazing story behind the incredible events that eventually led to Frank's previously unclaimed medals being presented to his daughter, 92 years after Frank's loss.


Pivotal to this website are the In Memoriam pages. There you will find the names of all of the men currently known to have served with the Regiment - some 4,521 in all - and the opportunity to remember and represent these men today, whether you are a relative, a researcher or just feel the need to step up in an act of remembrance. Please do make Contact and together let us honour their memories by adding our names to symbolically stand alongside theirs in remembrance and thanks for their service.


It is my hope to provide some tangible link to the men, the places and the Memorials associated with the Regiment. So, please, explore and enjoy the site (no costs are involved anywhere on this site), feel free to contribute, and do check the 'Latest News' panel at the bottom of this page and the News page for updates, as this website is most certainly a work-in-progress project.


Through this website let us come together and say that whilst they are gone, they are not forgotten. I feel very strongly about that.


With our common bond I do look forward to hearing from you soon, as together "We will remember them."


Best wishes


Ian






Featured pages


Demographic breakdown: this page provides a demographic insight into the real lives of the Regiment's full numbers (4,521). Data includes age at attestation, where attested, occupation, religion, place of birth / nationality of origin, prior military experience and height statistics. Also included are overviews of the most common first name, hair colour and eye colour. Other interesting facts are included, which will tell us how many pairs of brothers, and twins, signed up, marital status, and the youngest and oldest to sign up.


The culmination of several years of detailed research, using the regimental nominal roll, coupled with the material digitised in the Library & Archives Canada databases, the demographic breakdown provides an interesting insight into the social backgrounds of the men of the Regiment.


The Demographics page was last updated on 26th April 2021.







Medals awarded to men of the 4th CMR: between 1914 and 1919 some 217 medals (204 medals plus 13 Bars) were awarded to 190 men who had served with the 4th CMR at some point in the war.


This page shares the stories of many of these men, from a 15 year old who had lied about his age at sign up and had, by the age of 17, been awarded a Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM), to the 4th CMR's only Victoria Cross in action (another was awarded to a 4th CMR man who received it for actions with the unit he was subsequently transferred to).



Research is ongoing in this section, and was last updated on 19th July 2021.



Featured books


With the latest book released in October 2020, written by Canadian author, Darrell Duthie, the four book WW1 fiction series takes us on an intriguing and wholly captivating journey, following Canadian Intelligence Officer Captain Malcolm MacPhail's service through the First World War.


A smooth blending of historical fact with engaging fiction gives us a first-hand experience of the trials, tribulations, losses and victories of trench warfare in WW1, all through the eyes of Malcolm MacPhail. Strong characters, engaging action and sound story lines put us into the thick of the Canadian Expeditionary Force's action in the mid to final stages of the war. Darrell does a fantastic job of maintaining the pace and tension of action at the Front at that time, leaving us feeling we'd actually been there ourselves!


The extent of the research is breathtaking, as is evident in the locations, the command hierarchy and the detail of the actions described, made all the more captivating by the brief appearances of the 4th CMR in each of the novels. If you enjoy WW1 fiction, these books are for you, and would also make excellent gifts for somebody you know who is interested in the First World War.


More in-depth reviews of each of these books and purchase details (including a Kindle format), can be found on the Links > Bibliography page on this website.


Trial, by Christopher M. Briggs, is a WW1 story that centres on the true events of the Currie Libel trial of 1928, which saw General Sir Arthur Currie suing the Port Hope Evening Guide newspaper over a front page accusation that he was responsible for thousands of Canadian casualties on the last day of the war.


Principal characters are Sir Arthur Currie, Canadian Corps commander, who, finding his reputation thanklessly assaulted, seeks to find redress in a libel action against the newspaper. The fictionalised story woven around this actual trial concerns one of Sir Arthur's lawyers, Alfred Simpson. A wounded veteran, who had served as Captain with the 9th Canadian Mounted Rifles in the war, Alfred was invalided out of the conflict due to injuries sustained near Amiens in the late summer of 1918. Alongside him after the war is his wife, Sarah, who is struggling to deal with her husband's increasingly estranged behaviour, which only serves to push her away and into the arms of another.


During the court action, a time in which Alfred is battling his own injury induced demons as well as struggling with a failing marriage, the story switches well between the trial, which was seen as much as putting the Great War on trial as it was Sir Arthur's reputation, the front line action which Alfred saw right up to his war ending injuries, and Sarah as she seeks the attention and solace of another man in the burgeoning progressive society of the late 1920s.


Christopher Brigg's research of the trial was meticulous and holds the tension well for both sides of the argument. The wartime actions that Alfred saw (here based upon a fictionalised version of the 4th CMR - although the 9th CMR was authorized and sailed to England in late 1915, it was absorbed by other regiments in the divisional restructuring of January 1916 and never saw action in its own right), were riveting in their portrayal of the tediousness and horror of trench warfare. The depictions of late 1920s social life and the changing attitudes of the time were simply captivating.


The attention to detail in the novel is outstanding and I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in a unique take on the Great War. Tension and pace is maintained through to the end, where the inevitable questions as to whether Sir Arthur's reputation will be saved, or Alfred's battle to defeat his demons is won, or whether Sarah remains loyal to her husband, are answered in a well crafted conclusion.


The book (an eBook version will be available in due course) can be further reviewed and bought here at: Trial - The Soapbox Box Press.

Latest News: 26th April, 2021


A warm welcome is extended to Andrew Webb-trezzi, who, through his research of acquired 4th CMR photos, which includes a group shot of former 95th Battalion men, represents the following men of the 4th CMR:


Majors Walter Moorhouse and Wilfred Sifton, Lts. Lionel Clarke and Ernest Steer, Capts. Alex Lightbourn, William Muirhead, Harry Symons and Allan Taylor DSO.


And former 95th BN men: Sgts. 201593 William Garlick and 202218 William Loveys and Ptes. 139541 George Crane & brother 2017769 John Crane, and 202097 Harry Ferris.


The representation of the brothers Crane brought to my attention a sibling relationship which had not previously been recorded. This has resulted in a section update within the Demographics page. Many thanks Andrew.


28th February, 2021


Chris Harper is welcomed into the 4CMR family, representing his great great grandfather 633341, Pte.Willis Harper a former 154th Battalion man who was transferred to the 4CMR in November 1916. Willis survived the war. Welcome Chris.


21st February, 2021


A warm welcome is extended to Darren Prickett, who represents 401659, Pte. Alexander Oliver. Formerly of the 33rd Battalion, Alexander was one of the 4th CMR's 350 men taken POW during the conclusion of the opening morning of the 'Battle for Mount Sorrel', on June 2nd, 1916. Though held for nearly two and a half years, Alexander subsequently escaped in early November 1918.


19th February, 2021


A special warm welcome is extended to Deirdre Codd, who represents her great uncle 838741 Pte. John Hatton, a former 147th Battalion man, who was transferred to the 4th CMR in February 1917. Though victim of a gas shelling near Vimy Ridge in September 1917, John survived the war.


1st February, 2021


A warm welcome is extended to Andrew Innes, who represents his great grandfather, Lt. Leroy Carle Innes. Originally attesting into Lord Strathcona's Light Horse, Leroy was transferred to the 4th CMR at the end of November 1916, though was amongst eight men wounded in two separate rifle grenade accidents on the same day, 14th March 1917, during training exercises. Leroy was wounded in both legs and his injuries were sufficient to end his service. He was struck off strength in mid-December 1917.


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Site last updated: 19th July 2021