It happened this week in 1916

July 9 - 15: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers held at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

July 9 – 15: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers held at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives


Sam Baldwin missing … Searching parties have been out for several days along the Moyie River in the neighborhood of Swansea trying to locate Samuel Baldwin, who wandered away from camp on Friday night last, but so far without success. His tracks were found leading from the camp and along the river for a short distance, and no further trace of him has been discovered.

The river is very high just at present, and with several large log jams it is a difficult problem to drag for the body, as it seems reasonably certain that Baldwin has wandered into the river and been drowned.

Baldwin left Cranbrook on Wednesday, July 5th, to work on the Government road at Swansea. He had been drinking heavily and was hardly in a position to work but was desirous of cutting out the booze and straightening up.

Friday afternoon he was taken with an epileptic fit while in the camp, and Friday evening between eight and nine wandered away from the camp in his sock feet and without a hat. From that time to the present the only trace found of him has been his footprints for a short distance along the banks of the Moyie River.

The late Samuel Baldwin was one of the proprietors of the Auditorium, and was unmarried, living with his aged mother. There are three brothers surviving, Dave, Robert and George, and one sister, Mrs. Smith.

Burglars make haul … Friday night last burglars entered John Manning’s grocery store from the rear opened the safe, and made their get-away with nearly $100 in cash. Entrance was affected through the back door, which was broken open with an axe.

Either the safe had not been locked or the combination had been worked, as the safe was open in the morning and the money missing while nothing else had been touched. No clue has been found so far but the police are working on the case.


Cartoonist … J. W. Bengough, the world-famed Canadian cartoonist, is billed for Cranbrook on Sunday and Monday next.

Mr. Bengough has an international reputation as a popular lecturer and clever cartoonist, and has delighted large audiences all over the continent with his amusing and instructive entertainments. He is a lucid and able lecturer and with the assistance of his cartoon work can keep an audience interested for a whole evening.

He will give a lecture in the Rex Theatre at 9 o’clock on Sunday evening next and in the Edison Theatre on Monday evening commencing at 8 o’clock. Silver collection.

Bad wind storm … A severe wind storm approaching a hurricane developed very suddenly Wednesday night about midnight and did much minor damage around the city and vicinity. Awnings were blown off, branches of trees snapped asunder, poles blown down, and W. H. Wilson’s plate glass window was blown in. No reports of serious damage have reached the city, but many householders got quite a scare and many buildings could distinctly be felt to rock so strong was the wind.

The big fight … Mr. Wm. Marshall of the McBride Hardware can truly feel that the Marshall family are doing their full share in the Empire’s fight for Liberty, four of his brothers being in uniform.

His two brothers Kenneth and Jack have both been wounded, Kenneth losing his leg below the knee. His brother Crosbie is in the artillery and Tom in the infantry.

Mr. Marshall recently received a letter from his brother Kenneth written from the hospital describing the big fight in which the Canadians took part, extracts from which we publish. The letter makes exceptionally good reading all the way through but there is frequent mention of places and units which had to be deleted by the censor. After describing the landing in France and entraining for the front, he says:

“After our long journey and march with about 100 lbs. of equipment we felt very worn and tired and we were mighty glad to get some grub and roll up in our overcoats and get some sleep.

Early next morning we realized that we had at last actually arrived in the ‘war zone.’ A heavy bombardment was going on and great activity in the air. Our machines were certainly chasing German craft off our territory and we saw a great many duels, although none were brought down. At one time we saw as many as eight machines firing at one another with their machine guns and to see the fire breaking around them it seemed marvellous that none were brought down.

That night our Company was detailed as a working party to repair trenches. We started off in London busses but before we had got more than ten minutes on the road we came under very heavy shell fire and had to leave the busses and take to the fields. Being the first time under fire we felt rather curious but not nervous. We scattered as widely as possible and watched the shells bursting on the road. What the object in shelling that particular part of the road was, we could not see till later, when we discovered we had a battery of our own artillery in the field just opposite us on the other side of the road and Fxxxz was trying to put them out of business. They kept up the firing till dark and then we were able to proceed to the trenches.

We went through ruined Ypres and I cannot describe to you the terrible destruction this large town has suffered. There is hardly a building left standing. I may say without exaggeration there is practically not one stone left standing on another, except the bare walls of the Cloth Hall, which must have been a magnificent building and except for our men the whole town is empty.

Well, we proceeded along in the darkness towards our trenches and presently arrived at the point where we were to rebuild the parapet of the trench for a distance of about 200 yards. A number of us were detailed to fill sand-bags and the rest of us to carry and lay them. The only danger we ran was from stray shots and snipers as we were behind our own first line, and although the bullets were singing past us all night we had no casualties and we reached our base again at three-thirty a.m. and every man received a double ration of rum, which quickly sent us to sleep.

The next morning it was very evident that something was doing as a terrific bombardment was going on and sure enough after breakfast orders came along to pack our kits, leave behind what we did not require at once and proceed to the front who called for reinforcements. It was noon when we moved off, every man ready for anything. Each of us carried 120 rounds of ammunition besides five in our rifle chamber.

We soon came under a deadly fire and could only proceed in a single file 30 paces apart, the idea being, if a shell fell in our route it would possibly only hit one instead of a bunch. On arriving at our communication trench we began to realize the more what we were up against. The killed and wounded were being brought out by the dozen.

We were here informed that the Germans had occupied our front line trenches for several hundred yards, that our Brigade-General was killed and General Williams taken prisoner. We were to make a counter attack. Our artillery was going to concentrate their fire in the trench and immediately they ceased their bombardment we were to charge into them with our bayonet.

We felt this was going strong for the first, but not a man gave a hint to his neighbor that there was any funk in him.

We examined our bayonets and said our rifles were ready for business. I asked Jack if he felt nervous and he said “Not a darn bit”, and I was sure he was not, although he was very excited—as I suppose we all were although I remember I was perfectly calm and ready to stand up to anything that happened.

At eight o’clock we started to make our way along the communication trench and at the same time our artillery opened up with such a fire it is hard to describe. Then Fxxxz opened up on us and from every direction the shells flew. Shells of all kinds and sizes. The bombardment was terrific and continuous. We hugged the side of the trench and crept along, but men were dropping fast as shell after shell burst over us.

They used the tear shells on us. They are filled with a chemical which burns the eyes like red pepper and we had to wear our goggles. Then there was a “gas alert” and we donned our gas helmets. They however did not put the gas over and I thank God for it.

We worked our way up until we were within bomb throwing distance of the Germans and still the bombardment continued with greater force if possible, and it was just here about 10 p.m. we got laid out.

A big shell burst right over us and laid a dozen of us flat. Our Corporal was first to shout he was hit and I knew I was hit but not sure to what extent until I felt my foot and found it missing, boot, sock and foot. Jack shouted “Are you hit Ken?” and I shouted back “Sure thing, I lost my foot.”

I did not suffer any awful pain but of course could do nothing but lie helpless. Jack was some yards behind me and all I could get out of him was that he was hurt in both arms and legs. Other boys lay dead and torn all along the trench and the first aid men were very busy.

I called for assistance as I was very badly damaged and a first aid man stopped my bleeding by binding a puttee around my thigh and twisting it tight by means of my bayonet. Another shell burst over us and knocked the parapet off the trench over us so that we were almost buried alive.

Like this we lay all night and the bombardment never let up a bit. Every second was likely to be our last. I kept my head however and protected myself as much as possible from being walked over in the dark, also from falling debris.

I frequently shouted to Jack how he fared and he always answered “I’m alright”.

At daybreak the bombardment became intermittent and the stretcher bearers were able to take chances on moving the wounded, but so many of them had been put out of business that it was six o’clock before Jack and I were picked up and conveyed to the dressing stations. It took about half an hour to carry us from where we dropped to the first dressing station. Here I got my foot dressed and received inoculations for tetanus and after a horrible shaking up in ambulance and train arrived at Boulougne at 8 p.m.

It was here I lost track of Jack. I was under the impression he was put on the train with me, but apparently he was taken elsewhere. I have never heard or seen him since, although I have done everything possible to locate him.

This ends my story, well, you know the rest. They cut off my leg just below the knee and am getting as well as possible.


Rex Theatre … The enterprising management of Cranbrook’s popular picture playhouse —the Rex — comes to the fore once again, this time with the announcement of a complete change of film service, to commence at an early date. After carefully scanning the moving picture industry for a service that would be both a credit to the policies of the theatre and a source of continued satisfaction to its patrons, arrangements have been made whereby the pioneer firm of Pathe Freres will supply The Rex with its service for an indefinite period.

Little need be said of Pathe. This company has a world-wide reputation, and is enjoying popularity which has only been gained by “delivering the goods.”

Of the films themselves it may be pointed out that they are running to crowded houses at this moment both at the Coast and in the larger cities of the Dominion.

That wonderful serial “The Iron Claw” which will be shown at the Rex, has the whole continent guessing.

Besides this feature, the service will consist of the regular Pathe single reel subjects, three and five part dramas, Rolin Phunphilms—the funniest line of comedies yet shown here —and the ever popular Pathe Weekly News.

Also for the Saturday matinees, a special travel, educational or scenic film will be provided, together with short, snappy comedies, thus taking due care for the tastes of the kiddies.

Some of the Stars who will be seen on the new program are as follows: Miss Jackie Saunders, “the Maude Adams of the Screen”; Miss Anna Nilson, Tom Moore, Octavia Handworth, Lina Cavalier (the most beautiful woman in the world), Harold Lloyd and Bebe Daniels (principles in the Lonesome Luke Phunphilms), Florence Reed, Robert Edeson, Pearl White (heroine of the Iron Claw), Edwin Arden, Lillian Tucker, and a host of other front rank artists.

The management is to be congratulated upon the change, which commences Monday, July 17th. It is understood that the new service will cost the theatre just double the present service, and will be far ahead by comparison.

This is just another evidence of the fact that the management is keenly alive to the needs and wishes of its patrons.

Another large donation from Kimberley … Another generous donation of $50 has been received from the Sullivan Mine Relief Association at Kimberley for the starving Belgians. This makes a total of $125 received from this society during the past month, which will do a great deal to alleviate the suffering of the poor starving refugees. The sum of $2.50 has been received from Misses Ida and Stella Johnson, and $1.00 from Mrs. Leslie, making a total received to date of $252.85. Parcels containing clothing for the Belgian Relief have been received from Mrs. J. D. Murray and Mrs. Harry Clayton. An official receipt for $142.10 has been received from the central committee at Montreal. Further donations will be thankfully received and acknowledged through the Herald. Money may be left either with Mrs. King or at the Herald office.


Perry Creek … A force of men is now engaged in putting in a tunnel on the Homestake Group of Perry Creek with a view to cutting what is called the Middle Ledge on the property. This ledge will be encountered in from 500 to 600 feet from the portal of the tunnel at a depth of about 400 feet below the present tunnel and cross-cuts which demonstrates that it is over 28 feet in width with values in free gold from $6.50 to $9.00 per ton. This piece of work is the one thing needed to finish the positive proof to the capitalists that the property is a really great one. It takes money to do it, but the money will be found. The Cranbrook people are finding out, and showing the practical proofs that they are coming to the true knowledge, that the best investment they can possibly find for their spare coin is to help to build up the local industries. Every dollar spent in this way is the best kind of an advertisement for our district. Now that we are giving practical proof of our belief in our own resources, it is easy enough to ask the fellow from the outside, who knows little or nothing of our minerals, to have some faith in our statements that we have the raw material for the foundation of an enormous industry, employing thousands of men and representing millions of invested capital.

Farewell presentation … At the conclusion of the session of the Methodist Church Sunday School last Sunday afternoon Miss Ada Hickenbotham, who has been identified with the school for many years, was the happy and proud recipient of a beautiful mounted folding umbrella. In a short speech the pastor eulogized the character and work of Miss Hickenbotham as a teacher and regretted that her approaching marriage necessitated her removal from the city but bespoke a warm welcome for her on any subsequent return to the city. Mr. G. W. Patmore, Superintendent of the School, then made the presentation also adding words of appreciation and good wishes. Miss Hickenbotham, who briefly expressed her thanks, expects to leave for Scotland about the 20th of the month.


School by-law … Friday, July 21st, the ratepayers of the city will be called upon to vote on a by-law to raise the sum of $6,000 by debentures for the purpose of purchasing, repairing and equipping the present St. Mary’s Separate School building, which it is proposed to use for High School purposes. For some time past the School Board has been urged by the Inspectors to separate the public school and the high school pupils, on the ground that better results could be obtained by so doing. The present proposition is a result of the effort of the School Board to solve the problem, and no hasty judgment should be formed based on prejudice or partial knowledge of the situation. The building known as the St. Mary’s School, with heating plant, equipment and real estate, represents an investment of $20,000. It is a two storey frame school building with cement basement. In the basement there are two large rooms, one for boys and one for girls, two lavatories, and the heating plant in a separate portion. The first floor contains three classrooms, two of which are equipped with school seats and desks, and a teacher’s desk, with the necessary blackboards. There is also a cloak room for each class room. On the second floor there is a large auditorium with a stage at one end, also a smaller room and two small cloak rooms. The school was closed some time ago and the pupils have since been attending the public school. An agreement has been made between the trustees of the St. Mary’s school and the Cranbrook school board for the purchase of the school contents and grounds for the sum of $11,000. The government has agreed to make a grant of $9,000 towards the cost of the school on the condition that the city pass a by-law for the sum of $6,000. The balance of the $15,000 so raised will be used for repairing the heating plant, for painting and improving the school as required. There may be some who believe that the time is not opportune for incurring additional expense even for school purposes while some may have conscientious objections on other scores, but in any event each and every rate­payer should make it a point to get all the information available, decide the question for himself and then go to the polls and mark his ballot accordingly.

Mayook news … Miss Irving Leask and brothers went out to their ranch at Mayook last Sunday but were compelled to return on account of the cannibalistic nature of the Mayook mosquitoes.