Canadian Highlanders

This is the general discussion area of the canadiansoldiers.com website; a forum in which issues pertaining to 20th Century military history from a British and Canadian perspective can be discussed freely. Posters are asked to please do others the courtesy of posting with their name rather than a pseudonym.

Canadian Highlanders

R. Joshua Myers
R. Joshua Myers

June 1st, 2011, 3:22 am #1

My great grandfather, Harry Morris,served in "the 173rd Battalion (Canadian Highlanders) CEF, based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, which sailed to England November 1916 and arrived at Bramshott January 17, 1917, where it became part of the 2nd Reserve Battalion of the 6th Reserve Brigade, which supplied drafts for the 125th and 116th Battalions." I do not know much about history and the military, but I need to write a short article about my great grandfather's experience in the First World War. I assume he fought the Germans somewhere in France. I assume the fighting took place in the trenches. Was there anything unique I should mention about the Canadian Highlanders and their contribution to the war effort, so as to do them justice? Feel free to e-mail me with your insights and suggestions. Thank you for your time, Josh
Quote
Share

Joined: September 23rd, 2003, 7:40 pm

June 2nd, 2011, 12:45 pm #2

When is this article due?

Ideally, you should order his service records from Library & Archives Canada. This will tell you what unit(s) he served with, if indeed he even got to the front.

Just because a man enlisted doesn't mean he got to France or even to England.

Does your family history indicate he "fought the Germans"?
Quote
Like
Share

R. Joshua Myers
R. Joshua Myers

June 2nd, 2011, 5:03 pm #3

My great grandfather, Harry Morris,served in "the 173rd Battalion (Canadian Highlanders) CEF, based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, which sailed to England November 1916 and arrived at Bramshott January 17, 1917, where it became part of the 2nd Reserve Battalion of the 6th Reserve Brigade, which supplied drafts for the 125th and 116th Battalions." I do not know much about history and the military, but I need to write a short article about my great grandfather's experience in the First World War. I assume he fought the Germans somewhere in France. I assume the fighting took place in the trenches. Was there anything unique I should mention about the Canadian Highlanders and their contribution to the war effort, so as to do them justice? Feel free to e-mail me with your insights and suggestions. Thank you for your time, Josh
My family history indicates he fought in the Canadian Army in WW1, and that he recieved a silver cross medal. That's it! The rest is government records. The names of the places the Canadian Highlanders went are all french, so I assume he fought in France, and to my limited knowledge, the Germans were the enemy in France. I will get the records later, when I can afford them. I'm just making ends meet now. Thanks, Josh
Quote
Share

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 2nd, 2011, 6:51 pm #4


The Silver Cross is properly known as the Memorial Cross:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_Cross_(Canada)

It was actually awarded to the next of kin of those killed in action, not the serviceman themselves.
Michael Dorosh
Webmaster
canadiansoldiers.com
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 2nd, 2011, 6:55 pm #5

My great grandfather, Harry Morris,served in "the 173rd Battalion (Canadian Highlanders) CEF, based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, which sailed to England November 1916 and arrived at Bramshott January 17, 1917, where it became part of the 2nd Reserve Battalion of the 6th Reserve Brigade, which supplied drafts for the 125th and 116th Battalions." I do not know much about history and the military, but I need to write a short article about my great grandfather's experience in the First World War. I assume he fought the Germans somewhere in France. I assume the fighting took place in the trenches. Was there anything unique I should mention about the Canadian Highlanders and their contribution to the war effort, so as to do them justice? Feel free to e-mail me with your insights and suggestions. Thank you for your time, Josh
The 173rd Battalion never fought as a unit. As you indicated, they were one of several dozen Canadian battalions created during the war and sent to England, but broken up on arrival in the UK for reinforcements, their manpower dispersed to units already in the field.

The 116th Battalion was apparently one of those units; it was part of the 3rd Canadian Division and saw action in the last two years of the war.
Michael Dorosh
Webmaster
canadiansoldiers.com
Quote
Like
Share

Robert Joshua Myers
Robert Joshua Myers

June 3rd, 2011, 10:43 am #6

The Silver Cross is properly known as the Memorial Cross:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_Cross_(Canada)

It was actually awarded to the next of kin of those killed in action, not the serviceman themselves.
Thanks, Michael. Can you tell me what a person did to recieve a silver cross? In America, we have a purple heart you receive for being wounded in action, and a medal of honor for bravery beyond the call of duty. I think my aunt still has the medal, but she has no idea of why her grandfather was awarded it, and to my mind, it's just a trinket if you don't understand the meaning behind it. Josh
Quote
Share

R. Joshua Myers
R. Joshua Myers

June 3rd, 2011, 10:52 am #7

The 173rd Battalion never fought as a unit. As you indicated, they were one of several dozen Canadian battalions created during the war and sent to England, but broken up on arrival in the UK for reinforcements, their manpower dispersed to units already in the field.

The 116th Battalion was apparently one of those units; it was part of the 3rd Canadian Division and saw action in the last two years of the war.
It sounds like getting a hold of those service records is especially important in this particular case, and I have all the information I need to get them. I wrote all the numbers down, so that when money is less tight, I can get these records and store them safely for my grandchildren. Maybe Harry Morris will be an inspiration for them, as they face the wars and troubles of their day. Thanks, Josh
Quote
Share

Joined: September 23rd, 2003, 7:40 pm

June 3rd, 2011, 11:55 am #8

Thanks, Michael. Can you tell me what a person did to recieve a silver cross? In America, we have a purple heart you receive for being wounded in action, and a medal of honor for bravery beyond the call of duty. I think my aunt still has the medal, but she has no idea of why her grandfather was awarded it, and to my mind, it's just a trinket if you don't understand the meaning behind it. Josh
It's unlikely he received a silver cross. The two standard service medals were the British War Medal (silver) and the Victory Medal (bronze).

Besides the memorial cross Michael mentioned, the other possible silver cross would be the Military Cross, a gallantry award only to officers.

Your ggfather's service records will only set you back about $30; are you sure you can't stretch to that?
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 3rd, 2011, 12:53 pm #9

Thanks, Michael. Can you tell me what a person did to recieve a silver cross? In America, we have a purple heart you receive for being wounded in action, and a medal of honor for bravery beyond the call of duty. I think my aunt still has the medal, but she has no idea of why her grandfather was awarded it, and to my mind, it's just a trinket if you don't understand the meaning behind it. Josh
I provided a link the the Memorial Cross page in my last post. You asked "what did a person do to receive a silver cross?"

The short answer?

Die.

As I said, it isn't awarded to soldiers. It goes directly to next of kin.
Michael Dorosh
Webmaster
canadiansoldiers.com
Quote
Like
Share

Clive Law - Service Publications
Clive Law - Service Publications

June 3rd, 2011, 1:06 pm #10

It sounds like getting a hold of those service records is especially important in this particular case, and I have all the information I need to get them. I wrote all the numbers down, so that when money is less tight, I can get these records and store them safely for my grandchildren. Maybe Harry Morris will be an inspiration for them, as they face the wars and troubles of their day. Thanks, Josh
I assume that you have been to the Archives site?
A quick look there finds this person;
Name: MORRIS, HARRY
Regimental number(s): 690306
Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 6389 - 11
Date of Birth: 31/12/1881

A search of the Archives medals and honours database shows a 'nil' return so he did not get the Military Cross (in case he was a Warrant Officer)

A search of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission shows a 'nil' return so he was not a fatal casualty of the war and no Memorial Cross would have been issued.

I believe that the 'silver cross' may be a welcome home medal that some municipalities provided. Go to your local library and ask them to locate the book on this which they could obtain through Inter Library Loan (ILL)

The War Diaries for all of the battalions of the CEF are on-line and you could certainly find out what the unit did as a whole. This would provide you with some material. If you get lucky you may find Harry mentioned.

If you go to the Canadiansoldiers website you will find a guide to researching your military ancestors. You can also find good info on the regimentalrogue site.

I won't provide links as you should be capable of doing some work on your own.

Good luck
Clive


Quote
Share