161st Huron Battalion Diary – January 25, 1916

Enlistments – January 25, 1916

On January 25, 1916, the following eleven men enlisted. Two of these eleven men did not return home at war’s end.

654327, COWAN, (Pte.) William Edgar, “Blyth’s Own” enlisted in Blyth, his home prior to WWI. His next of kin was Isaac Cowan of Blyth, ON. Pte. Wm. Edgar Cowan and Pte. John A. Cowan were brothers and both enlisted with the Blyth detachment of the 161st Huron Battalion. Pte. William “Ted” Cowan was photographed with Blyth’s Own seated in the front row, 9th from the left.

654336, DYE, (Cpl.) Harry Kenneth, “A” Company enlisted in Belgrave, where he lived, on January 24, 1916 and was declared medically fit on January 25, 1916. He was born on November 29, 1895 in Norwich, England and his next of kin was his father, Henry Dye of 3 Cross Trory St., Norwich, England. When he signed up, he was a 21 year old, Church of England farmer who had 2 years militia experience with the Territorials. He was 6’ tall with a fair complexion, grey eyes and blonde hair.

654329, FAY, (Pte.) Richard, “A” Company enlisted in Belgrave on January 24, 1916 and was declared medically fit on January 25, 1916 in Belgrave. His next of kin was his father, Henry Fay of Hornby, ON. He was born in Nether Haven, England on May 12, 1887, making him 30 years old when he enlisted. At the time, he worked as a Presbyterian labourer with no militia experience, lived in Belgrave, ON and was 5’ 6” with a fair complexion, brown eyes and bald.

In the photograph, Wingham/Brussels/Wroxeter Boys of the 161st, that was printed in the Wingham Advance-Times on April 6, 1967, he was identified as G. Ray, instead of  Richard Fay.

654330, JONES, Richard enlisted at a Belgrave recruitment meeting that was reported in the January 27, 1916 edition of the Brussels Post.

Presently, no attestation papers are available for Richard Jones at Library and Archives Canada, though his name and regimental number is present in the WWI database. See his individual biography for more information.

654333 SgtJamesMcCallum654333, McCALLUM, (Sgt.) James, “A” Company enlisted in Belgrave on January 24, 1916 and was declared fit on January 25, 1916. His next of kin was his brother, Duncan McCallum of Belgrave, ON.  He was born on July 30, 1886 and was 20 when he enlisted. He stood at  5’ 10” with a dark complexion, grey eyes and dark hair.

In the Huron County War Memorial book, under his photograph is the caption, “James McCallum (M.M) before the war, was engaged in the hardware business in Belgrave where he took an active part in all work connected with the Presbyterian church.”

654334, McCAULEY, (Pte.) Thomas Michael “D” Company enlisted in Seaforth. His next of kin was Annie McCauley of Toronto, ON.

654390, MEGAW (L. Cpl.) Francis Riggs, “B” Company enlisted in Goderich. His next of kin was Mrs. Emma A. Megaw.He was photographed with Goderich’s Own standing in the 4th row (Soldier No. 28). He was identified by R.W. Bell of Goderich, former Huron County jailor. Lance Corporal Francis Megaw was believed to be a member of the Megaw Family, who were once prominent in the ownership of a Goderich harbour industry, Western Canada Flour Mills.

654320, PERCY, (Pte.) Walter John, “A” Company enlisted in Wingham. His next of kin was James Percy of Kinlough, Bruce County, ON.Private Walter Percy was photographed with the “A” Detachment in the Wingham Advance-Times photograph (Apr. 6, 1967) in the front row, 25th from the left.

654335, SCOTT, (Pte.) William Elliott, “Blyth’s Own” enlisted in Belgrave, ON on January 24, 1916, but was not certified fit until January 25, 1916. His next of kin was his wife, Mrs. Alma Scott, of R.R. 1, Belgrave, ON.Private William Scott was pictured with the 161st B Company (Blyth’s Own) in the 3rd row, 5th from the left.

654339, SHADDICK, (Pte.) William John, “D” Company enlisted in Hensall.In the March 17, 1981 161st Battalion newsletter, there is a photo of the Shaddick family that was borrowed from retired Clinton policeman, Albert Shaddick, William’s brother.

654326, WESTLAKE, (L. Cpl.) William John, “A” Company enlisted in Wroxeter. He was one of the five Westlake boys to enlist with the 161st. His next of kin was Mrs. Elizabeth Mitchell of Wroxeter, ON. William Westlake had prior military experience with the 32nd Bruce Militia.He was photographed with Wroxeter’s Own, kneeling in the middle row, 7th from the left.