Christmas at the Front – 1st Cdn Tank Battalion

This wonderful die-cut 1918 Christmas card was sent by one of the 92 officers that made up the 1st Canadian Tank Battalion in 1918. The officer, whose initials were either “I.H.J.” or “V.H.J.”, extended his best wishes for the season and thanked the recipient for the socks.

The officers, recruited entirely from Canadian Universities, and 716 men arrived in Britain aboard the S.S. Cassandra on June 21, 1918 and eventually made their way to the Imperial Tank Training Camp at Bovington in Dorset. The Battalion was preparing to leave for France when the Armistice was signed and so the 1st Canadian Tank Battalion never did see action on the Western Front. The majority of men, along with those from the 2nd Canadian Tank Battalion that had recently arrived from Canada, would remain in England until May 1919.

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