Weaponry and Wartime Experience
An officer in the Canadian artillery, James Peters was also an adept amateur photographer. Mobilized for the North-West Campaign, he lugged his unwieldy camera nearly 9,000 kilometres and took 120 photographs. The 63 that turned out "are generally recognized as being the very first photographs ever taken on a battlefield." 32
Peters had a talented imitator in the person of Henry Woodside. While serving as an officer in the Non-Permanent Militia, Woodside was primarily a journalist. However, the experience he acquired in 1885 enabled him, six years later, to become an amateur photographer. We are indebted to Woodside for numerous shots of the militia on duty in Canada and of units departing for the Yukon and South Africa.
These two men, trail-blazers in an occupation they pursued on their own initiative and without pay, led the way for the many photographers and cameramen who would record Canada's military operations in the 20th century.
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