Day: February 12, 2013

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Soldiers’ hockey

Recent re-creations in Ottawa and Korea of a championship hockey game held during the Korean War got me thinking about the importance of hockey in wartime. When young, healthy lads take to frozen ponds to play their national game near foreign battlefields, it’s not just a relief from the tension of war, but an expression of irrepressible Canadian values. It’s an egalitarian game—anybody who wants to can play (and if they can't play, root for a team). What matters is skill, hard work and will to win, not lineage, wealth or connection to power. And it's a great leveller, with fans representing every facet of society. During the First World War the pro hockey teams were decimated as players signed up—but this meant there was a source of entertainment for soldiers in Europe, as soldier t...
Letters From The Bowes Brothers

Letters From The Bowes Brothers – June 18, 1916 Camp Hughes, Manitoba

James and Fred Bowes have arrived at the former Camp Sewell now called Camp Hughes. The Duke of Connaught is the Governor General of Canada. Dear Mother, Well Musie, here it’s Sunday and a most beautiful day at that. Fred got a letter from you today. At least I am sure it was your writing on the envelope. I trust that you and all the rest are well. Fred and I are both well and having as good a time as could be expected. I wrote to Dad, Cliff and Elliott yesterday morning. It started to rain early in the morning and we didn’t go on parade until 11 a.m. as Saturday afternoon is a half holiday in the camp, we didn’t have long on parade. Was at church this morning along with the rest of the battalion. Bill King got a month’s cookhouse fatigue for disobeying some order. Keep it quiet though...

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