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  • WWI Memorial Cross to the 1st Cdn Machine Gun Co.

Item: C1597

WWI Memorial Cross to the 1st Cdn Machine Gun Co.


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WWI Memorial Cross to the 1st Cdn Machine Gun Co.

WWI Memorial Cross to the 1st Cdn Machine Gun Co. - GRV (414395 Pte. W. ANDERSON). Naming is officially engraved. Suspended from a bar hanger with pinback, contact marks, very fine. Accompanied by copies of his Index Cards, Attestation Papers, Service Records, Medical Records, Pay Records and Discharge Certificates. Footnote: William Oscar Anderson was born on July 9, 1895 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He signed his Attestation Paper with the 40th Infantry Battalion "Nova Scotia Battalion" in Halifax, on July 30, 1915, naming his next-of-kin as his mother, Mary Anderson of Halifax, stating that he had no previous military service, that he was Single and that his trade was that of Teamster. The Battalion was raised in Nova Scotia, under the authority of G.O. 86, July 1, 1915, with mobilization headquarters at Halifax (Aldershot). He was treated for Plurisy (an inflammation of the pleura, the lining surrounding the lungs) at Valcartier Camp in October, the first of many hospitalizations, before the Battalion left Canada on October 8, 1915 from Quebec City aboard the H.M.T. Saxonia, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel A. Vincent with a strength of 45 officers and 1,090 other ranks, arriving in Plymouth, England on October 28th. Early in the new year, he was declared Absent Without Leave from January 3rd to 5th, 1916 and sentenced to six days Field Punishment No. 2, forfeiting two days pay. The following month, he was attached to the 11th Brigade, Machine Gun Section at East Sandling on February 2nd. Anderson was admitted to Moore Barracks Hospital at Shoreham and designated "seriously ill" with Pneumonia on May 2, 1916, his medical records stating that he was "Well until two days ago when he had a severe chill with a pain across right chest - fever - headache - sore throat - cough  - felt very weak - lost appetite". After five weeks hospitalization, he was discharged on June 6th. Later that same month, he was transferred to the Canadian Machine Gun Depot on June 22nd, then taken on strength of the Canadian Machine Gun Company on June 26th. In the Spring of 1917, he was admitted to Camp Hospital at Crowboro on January 27, 1917 with a case of Herpes, treated, then discharged on February 7th. Later that same month, he was absorbed into the 1st Battalion, Canadian Machine Gun Corps on February 24th, then posted to the Machine Gun Pool at Crowboro on June 19th, preparing for action in the European theatre. Anderson arrived in Camiers, France on June 21, 1917 and was posted to the 1st Machine Gun Battalion, "G" Company on August 24th. Anderson was wounded during the Battle of Passchendaele (Third Battle of Ypres) and was admitted to No. 3 Canadian Field Ambulance on November 21, 1917 with "gas poisoning" from a shell gas, resulting in lung problems and pneumonia. He was treated and returned to duty one week later, on the 28th. Three days after his hospital discharge, he was placed on command for two weeks to the 172nd Tunnelling Company on December 1st, rejoining his unit on the 15th. In the Spring, he was transferred to the Canadian Machine Gun Corps on March 19, 1918 and that Summer, was granted permission to marry on July 25, 1918, marrying Elsie Grace Anderson in the United Kingdom in August 1918. He was hospitalized on January 28, 1919 with "N.Y.D." (Not Yet Determined), then transferred to No. 2 General Hospital at Wimereux on February 2nd, where it was determined that he had "V.D.S." (Venereal Disease Syphilis), contracted while he was with the the occupation forces in Cologne, Germany. After three and a half weeks, he was transferred to No. 3 Canadian General Hospital at Boulogne on February 27th for another two and a half weeks, before being discharged to duty on April 14th. He returned to England on April 27th and was posted to the Machine Gun Company Depot at Witley on May 7th. As he was Absent Without Leave again, he was declared a "Deserted" on May 30, 1919. He re-established himself and was posted to "H" Wing, "C" Company at Witley Camp. In his Medical History of an Invalid, dated July 18, 1919, in describes the irregularities in the left side of his chest: "Slight dullness, diminished breath sounds and vocal resonance over left side of chest below level of 7th rib. Complains of irregular acute pains left side of chest occurring frequently and at irregular times. Complains of slight cough." It also noted that the Canadian General Laboratory had conducted a Wassermann test (an antibody test for Syphillis) on July 16th, with the test coming back "negative". He proceeded on command to the Canadian Discharge Depot at Buxton on August 8, 1919 and was taken on strength August 10th, for return to Canada. He was struck off strength of the Overseas Military Forces of Canada, embarking Liverpool, England on September 4, 1919 aboard the R.M.S. Cedric, arriving in Halifax on the 12th. Anderson was discharged upon demobilization on September 12, 1919 at Clearing Service Command, Military District No. 6 in Halifax, entitled to wear the War Service Badge, Class "A", number 322202, credited with having served four months in Canada, eighteen months in the United Kingdom and twenty-three months in France, earning him the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. He died on April 29, 1944 in Halifax of lung problems, attributed to the poison attack he experienced during the war. His widow, Elsie Anderson of Canning, Nova Scotia received his Memorial Cross. A replacement cross is also documented as having been issued in October 1959.
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