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Virtual Tour: World War I

Peter Cobley Welsford Campbell

Peter Cobley Welsford Campbell served in the LC Draft, 2nd Siege, and Heavy Artillery in World War I. He served with the Canadian Engineers as part of the Signal Platoon. His uniform is displayed here. Peter Cobley Campbell’s brother, Arthur Prentice also signed up for war duty. Within the same month both brothers were awarded the Military Medal for bravery in the field (a special and rare honour for two members of the same family to receive). Arthur Prentice Campbell was killed in action in Cambrai, France, in October of 1918, only one month before the end of the war. Peter Cobley’s medical was signed April 8th 1916. He survived the war and returned home to the Gaspe. He organized the local reserve army unit in New Richmond and during the Second World War he served as an air plane identifier; as the Gaspe is located along the polar route many planes flew over it during the war years. Peter Cobley Welsford Campbell operated a General Store in Grand Cascapedia for 35 years.

Women in Service

The uniform (pictured right) belonged to Wanda J. McLellan, who served as a nurse with the American Red Cross during the war from 1918 to 1919. Many young women enlisted for service nursing at the front during the war years.

Nursing at the Front

Mary K. Nelson, an American nurse, kept a journal while she served at the hospital in Yvetot, France during the War:

“I scrubbed up shortly after three p.m. and had my gloves off only about half an hour for a bite of dinner in the sterilizing room about eight that evening. It was four–thirty the next morning before we finished, only to begin again that afternoon. As ever so many of our ‘grands blessés’ are bad joint wounds, the work in the wards does not lighten.” (Mary Nelson, October. 26, 1915)


Click the next button to go to World War II: Europe.