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Date > 1800

Subject > Armed Forces > Military Life > Education and Training

Resource Type > Image

Officer cadet, Royal Military College of Canada, 1954

Type: Image

Except for a few details, the full dress uniform of officer cadets at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario, remained essentially the same since the college was founded in 1874. As shown in this 1954 photo, only the shakos and pith helmets worn on parade by first-class officer-cadets disappeared, replaced by pill-box caps. (Canadian Department of National Defence, ZK-2049)

Site: National Defence

Royal Military College cadet, 1876

Type: Image

This was the uniform of a Royal Military College cadet at the time of the opening of the college in 1876. The graduates of RMC enlisted in both the Permanent and Volunteer Militia, as well as the North-West Mounted Police. Print after Henri Julien in the 'Canadian Illustrated News' (Montreal), 17 June 1876.

Site: National Defence

Officer's riding school, circa 1840

Type: Image

Not all officers knew how to ride properly and so had to be trained. During the late 1830s and early 1840s, the British army also had facilities for training cavalry units in Chambly.

Site: National Defence

Aspects of a summer training camp for volunteer militia units, 1875

Type: Image

Each summer, a part of the Canadian Militia was gathered to spend 12 days at a training camp. The camps were supposed to supplement regular drills at each unit's home base. Lack of money meant that regiments outside the cities could go for long periods without attending a camp. This 1875 illustration shows scenes taken from one such camp.

Site: National Defence

Examination for the post of Acting Major, Montreal, 1866

Type: Image

This vignette of military life was painted by Captain Francis G. Coleridge of the 1st battalion of the 25th (the King's Own Borderers) Regiment of Foot. The seated figure is an officer in a blue frock coat, worn by officers as an undress uniform. The work detail (with shouldered brooms...) is made up of common soldiers wearing red shell jackets or shirtsleeves. Note that even indoors, hats were commonly worn. Coleridge's entire album of 90 paintings is now in the collection of the Library and Archives Canada. (Library and Archives Canada, C-102547)

Site: National Defence

B Battery, Garrison Artillery, 1873

Type: Image

B battery was part of the first permanent unit of the Canadian army, the Garrison Artillery. Raised at Quebec City in 1870, B Battery acted as a gunnery school for the volunteer artillery batteries of the Canadian Militia. This print from the 'Canadian Illustrated News' of 19 April 1873 shows a competition in the firing of field guns held on the ice of the St. Charles River. The weapons are obsolete smooth bore muzzle loaders, mounted on sleigh-carriages for winter use. The gunners are in winter uniform.

Site: National Defence

Infantry Arms drill, 1863

Type: Image

This British infantry arms drill for Canadian volunteers was translated into French for francophone units by Major Louis Timothée Suzor and published in 1863. The words of command were in English with the explanation of the drill in French.

Site: National Defence

Officer at summer training camp, Canadian Artillery, 1890s

Type: Image

This is an officer of the Canadian Artillery, seen relaxing in his tent on the western end of Ile d’Orléans in the 1890s. The tent pole is used to hang this officer's sword, sabretache, round ‘pill box’ cap and binoculars. The city of Quebec can be seen in the distance. For many decades, Volunteer Militia units such as the 1st Quebec Field Battery and the Garrison Artillery batteries held their summer militia camps on Ile d’Orléans. They received artillery practice with gunners from the Permanent Force then stationed in the Quebec Citadel. The Volunteer Militia's Garrison Artillery included both independent batteries and brigades including several batteries. (Royal Canadian Artillery Museum, CFB Shilo)

Site: National Defence

Cadet Corps, Quebec City High School, 11 June 1890

Type: Image

Many cadet corps were established in schools during the latter years of the 19th century. This 11 June 1890 photograph is of the corps from Quebec High School, an English-language secondary school founded in Quebec City before Confederation. Note the corporal (probably from the Quebec City garrison unit, B Battery, Regiment of Canadian Artillery) who acted as drill instructor in the centre. (Library and Archives Canada, PA-99974)

Site: National Defence

Members of the Ladies School Cadet Corps in St. Catharines, Ontario, in 1891

Type: Image

As early as the 1880s, a few volunteer militia regiments had auxiliary companies consisting of women like these members of the Ladies School Cadet Corps in St. Catharines, Ontario, in 1891. Since they were unofficial, there is very little information about these formations. (Ontario Archives, Toronto, S-4821)

Site: National Defence