Canada’s “Permanent Force” Annual Militia Report, Year Ending Mar. 31st, 1909.




  1. All officers of the Canadian Signalling Corps are now qualified with one exception.
  2. The garrison signalling classes were well attended and showed good results 231 officers, non-commissioned officers and men of the Active Militia (including the Permanent Force) obtained certificates.
  3. Excellent signalling work was carried out regimentally during the year by all units of the Permanent Force. This should ensure an efficient staff of assistant instructors for the training of the non-permanent militia.



Permanent Force.

  1. As regards the general efficiency in Signalling of the several units of the Permanent


  • The Royal Canadian Mounted Rifles.
  • ‘A’ Battery, Royal Canadian.
  • Horse Artillery.
  • No. 3 Company, Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery.
  • ‘G’ Company, Royal Canadian Regiment, took first place in their respective arms.
Royal Canadian Dragoons, 1891 Winnipeg, Man..

Royal Canadian Dragoons, 1891 Winnipeg, Man..



  1. The strength of the Permanent Force is well up to the limited establishment allowed, the several units being in a generally efficient condition, so far as administration is concerned.
  2. Confidential reports on officers, along the lines indicated in last year’s report, were made during the year. The result has been beneficial to the efficiency of the Militia.
  3. The Detachment of the Royal Canadian Engineers stationed at London has been moved to Stanley Barracks, Toronto, and that at St. Jean, P.Q., to Quebec.
  4. The Kingston detachment of the Permanent Army Service Corps has, in addition to its usual work, taken over the supplying and catering for the Royal Military College which have heretofore been done by contract. The results have been very satisfactory to the Commandant and Cadets.
  5. Barrack Officers have been appointed at Halifax, Quebec, Kingston and Esquimalt, and it is hoped to have others appointed as soon as accommodation for stores can be obtained.

52. During the year 15 officers were appointed to the several branches of the Permanent Force as follows:—

  • Cavalry. 1.
  • Artillery. 5.
  • Engineers. 3.
  • Infantry. 3.
  • Canadian Permanent Army Service Corps. 1.
  • Canadian Army Pay Corps. 2.
  1. The establishment of the several units of the Permanent Force were promulgated in April, 1908.
  2. The Officer Commanding the Maritime Provinces Command has again called attention to the necessity which exists for increasing the strength of the several units of the Permanent Force stationed at Halifax. The District Officer Commanding No.11 Military District also refers to the small strength of the units in garrison at Esquimalt.


  1. It is a pleasure to be able to report under this head that, in so far as the older corps, viz.: The Royal Canadian Dragoons, Royal Canadian Artillery and Royal Canadian Regiment, are concerned, their administration and discipline have been very good.
  2. The Departmental and more recently organized corps have, however, much to learn, and it may become necessary to have the more senior officers attend, from time to time, at stations where combatant permanent troops are stationed.


  1. On the whole, the administration of the Commands and Districts has shown fair progress, but before the ideal of complete decentralization can be realized, it will be necessary for the majority of Officers Commanding Commands and Independent

Districts to understand more thoroughly than they do now both their responsibilities and the powers placed in their hands. Complete appreciation of the duties of command, subject merely to the general supervision of Headquarters can only be attained gradually, and no doubt in the past considerable difficulties have faced officers in command, owing to defects in the formerly existing system of issuing and accounting for stores, and to. the lack of complete regulations for the different services. Consequently progress has been somewhat slow, and too many questions which ought to have been decided locally have been referred to Headquarters.

  1. Most of these defects have now been remedied, and up to date regulations complete for all branches of the Service have been drawn up. As Officers Commanding generally obtain more practice in Command and better knowledge of these regulations, decentralization will be more thorough and the administration of the Militia as a whole, especially as regards military law and discipline, will be considerably benefited.



  1. The following return shows the state of the Permanent Force on March 31, 1909:—
State Of Canada'a Permanent Force March 31st 1909.

State Of Canada’a Permanent Force March 31st 1909.


Ottawa, July 27, 1909.

  • From the Director-General of Medical Services.
  • To the Adjutant-Generalt Canadian Militia.

Sir,—I have the honour to report upon the Medical Services for the year ending March 31, 1909.


  1. The Permanent Army Medical Corps has now various functions to perform: not only to look after the sick of the Permanent Force, but also to act in an instructional capacity to the Active Militia; to care for and issue medical stores; to assume the direction of all methods of sanitation in garrisons or in camps; and the officers have to be ready to take up the important administrative posts when required. The personnel at present is much too small for all this work.
State Of Canada'a Permanent Force March 31st 1909.

State Of Canada’a Permanent Force March 31st 1909.





To His Excellency the Right Honourable Sir Albert Henry George, Earl Grey, Viscount Howick, Baron Grey of Howick, in the County of Northumberland, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom and a Baronet; Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael’ and Saint George, &c, &c, Governor-General and Commander-in-Chief of the Dominion of Canada.

May it Please Your Excellency: The undersigned has the honour to present to Your Excellency an interim report on the training of the Militia of the Dominion of Canada, during the season of 1908; to be embodied at a later date in the report of the Militia Council for the year ending March 31, 1909.

Respectfully submitted, F. W. BORDEN, Minister of Militia and Defence.


  1. Units of the Permanent Force are required to undergo, yearly, a progressive course of training, the instructions laid down for the Regular Army,* in the training manual of each arm, being followed as closely as local circumstances permit, as follows:—


  • September to March—Individual instruction.
  • March and April—Troop training.
  • May—Squadron training.
  • June and July—In camps of training.
  • August—Combined training in central camp, otherwise squadron training.

Horse Artillery—

  • September to March—Winter training (including battery manoeuvre).
  • April and May—Battery training.
  • June and July—In camps of training.
  • August—Combined training in central camp, otherwise battery training.


  • September to March—Individual instruction.
  • April and May—Company and battalion training.
  • June and July—In camps of training.
  • August—Combined training in central camp, otherwise company and battalion training.
  • F. JARVIS, Secretary, The Militia Council.
A Battery R.C.H.A.  Jun. 3rd 1907, Renfrew, Ont.

A Battery R.C.H.A. Jun. 3rd 1907, Renfrew, Ont.


Ottawa, January 26, 1909.

  • From the Inspector-General, Canadian Militia,
  • To the Secretary, Militia Council, Ottawa.


  1. It is a matter of much regret to me that, owing to various circumstances beyond my control, I have not been able to make as thorough an inspection of the Permanent Force as I could have wished.
  2. The principal duty of the Permanent Force is the instruction of the Active Militia, and, as this is carried on at the schools of instruction mainly in the winter months, and as, in consequence of shortage of funds, it has been found necessary to stop, temporarily, the attendance of Militia officers at schools, I have been unable to test properly the manner in which instruction is imparted there. The instructional work of the Royal Canadian Horse Artillery and the Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery at Petawawa Camp, however, was decidedly good, while, judging by the results of the practice of the 1st Regiment, Canadian Artillery, which I witnessed at Halifax, N.S., the instruction imparted by the Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery at that station must have been excellent.
  3. It is, of course, obvious that, before the Permanent Force can instruct the Militia, it must itself be efficient, especially at manoeuvre and work in the field. Mere drill, though it has its value, can only occupy a secondary place, but in the regular stations of the Permanent Force there is hardly room for anything else.
  4. The only way to train the Permanent Force properly, and to gauge its efficiency, is to assemble its units at Petawawa, as was done in the summer of 1907, and let them work together there, where there is ample space for manoeuvre of all kinds.
  5. Unfortunately, owing to the celebration at Quebec and difficulties in regard to expense, it was not found possible to bring the permanent units together for training this summer.
  6. From what was seen of them at Quebec and at their own stations, it can be reported that, in barrack duties, interior economy and drill, the Force, as a whole, is very fairly efficient, though the drill has a tendency to be too much of the “barrack square” type—owing, no doubt, to the small amount of training ground available at their permanent stations and the smallness of the cadres. The several units turned out smartly at Quebec. The Cavalry were well mounted and rode well. The Royal Canadian Mounted Rifles did excellent work as instructors at the Western Camps.
  7. The Royal Canadian Horse Artillery shows great improvement of late years, and the Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery companies at Halifax, N.S., and Esquimalt, B.C., and the Heavy Artillery Company at Quebec, are well up in their work.
  8. The Royal Canadian Engineers have done good work at all stations, but especially at Halifax, N.S., and Petawawa.
  9. The Royal Canadian Regiment was well turned out and did good work at Quebec during the celebrations. The headquarters at Halifax, N.S., are in a satisfactory condition, and have made progress since last year.
  10. The Canadian Army Service Corps, the Permanent Army Medical Corps, the Canadian Ordnance Corps and the Army Pay Corps have all made progress, and amply justified the policy of organizing them. Their main value and utility lie in the services they render to the Militia at large, to whose comfort and efficiency they greatly contribute at the annual training camps, and who, without them, would not be able to take or keep the field.


  1. The barracks occupied by the several units of the Permanent Force are not generally in a satisfactory condition.
  2. There is no one station, with the possible exception of Esquimalt, where the barracks are up to the standard of modern requirements, while the barracks at Kingston, Toronto, St. Jean and Quebec, are distinctly discreditable to the Dominion. They are all old and out of date, often out of repair, the men are unhealthily crowded at the two former places, the drainage is faulty and the medical officers of the Department have frequently brought to notice the serious sanitary risks which are run.
  3. The troops do their best to keep their quarters clean and sanitary, but the Department cannot avoid grave risks while it allows the present state of affairs to continue.

I have the honour to be, sir, Your obedient servant, PERCY H. N. LAKE, Major-General,


Officers, B Sqdn, 12th Man. Dragoons, July 1895, Portage La Prairie, Man..

Officers, B Sqdn, 12th Man. Dragoons, July 1895, Portage La Prairie, Man..


Ottawa, March 23, 1909.

  • From the Officer Commanding the Canadian Militia, Quebec Tercentenary Celebration.
  • To the Secretary the Militia Council, Ottawa.
  • Sir,—I have the honour to submit a report for the information of the Honourable the Minister in Militia Council, on the part taken by the Canadian Militia in the Quebec Tercentenary Celebration, on which occasion close on 14,000 men of all arms (excluding naval contingents) were collected together at Quebec, the largest concentration of Canadian troops ever yet effected.
  1. I assumed command on the 14th July, and with the following Staff, established my Headquarters at the Court House, which had been kindly lent for the purpose:

(II) Corps Troops.

  • Royal Canadian Horse Artillery.—Lt. Col. H. E. Burstall.
  • Royal Canadian Dragoons.—Lt. Col. V. A. S. Williams, A.D.C.
  • Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery.—Lt. Col. C. E. English.
  • Royal Canadian Engineers.—Major J. Houliston.
  • Royal Canadian Regiment.—Lt. Col. R. L. Wadmore.
  • Canadian Permanent Army Service Corps.—Capt E. C. Dean.
  • Permanent Army Medical Corps.—Lt. Col. C. W. Belton.
  • Canadian Ordnance Corps.—Lt. Col. J. A. Morin.
  • Canadian Army Pay Corps.—Major S. J. R. Sircom.




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