Crowdsource: Valcartier 1914


A panoramic photograph, measuring 68″ long, of Col. Sam Hughes & Officers at Valcartier Camp, Aug 31 1914

First World War panoramic photographs are not unusual but this image, captured at Valcartier Camp at the end of August 1914, is exceptional in both its size and subject matter. In what other photograph will you find upwards of a thousand Canadian Officers, many sporting pre-war uniforms, posing in so casual a manner but on such a grand scale?

Photo 3 of 6

One of the six high-resolution scans to be used to crowdsource these Canadian officers

While a copy of this photograph exists at Library and Archives Canada I believe this is the first time high-resolution images have been made available online. I purchased this 68″ x 7″ photograph because it fascinated me and because I knew it would fascinate others as well. I’d like to identify as many of these officers as possible and so I’m launching a crowdsourcing project to solicit the help of experts from across the country and beyond. It’s an ambitious exercise but one I feel is worth the effort as we commemorate the centenary.

I’ve created a Valcartier Crowdsourcing Project page that includes more details and links to the six high-resolution scans. Whether you’re a military historian, an enthusiastic researcher or a descendant of one of these men I encourage you to participate. If you know of others who could help please spread the word. The Canadian Expeditionary Force was raised from citizen soldiers across the country and so it’s only appropriate that a century on these men will be identified and remembered by a team of citizen historians.

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