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Remembering World War I Yarmouth Connections
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James Harvey Eldridge Regiment: Canadian Infantry Battalion: 85th Battalion Regimental Number: 222947 Rank: Corporal Date of Birth: April 20, 1893 Place of Birth: Yarmouth, Yarmouth County, Nova Scotia Date of Enlistment: November 1, 1915 Place of Enlistment: Halifax, Nova Scotia Address at Enlistment: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia Age at Enlistment: 22 Height: 5 Feet 3 1/2 Inches Trade: Mechanic Marital Status: Single Religion: Baptist Next of Kin: (Mother) Mrs Cerlina Eldridge , Yarmouth, Nova Scotia James was the son of Alfred E. S. Eldridge and Cerlena G. Eldridge, of Porter St., Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Before enlisting he was a mechanic at J.M. Trefry’s Garage. After enlisting he helped with recruiting. He was killed in action when the German army bombarded the June 14 captured trenches with artillery in the area before Lens. Lieutenant Nathan Chipman, also from Yarmouth, was killed on the same day and at the same location. Date of Death: June 16, 1917 (killed at Lens) Age at Death: 24 Cemetery: Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez, Pas de Calais, France (XXIX. A. 6.) Commemorated on Page 233 of the First World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on May 25 Listed on the Nominal Roll of the 85th Battalion. Cabaret Rouge British Cemetery Caberet Rouge was a small, red-bricked, red-tiled café that stood close to this site in the early days of the First World War. The café was destroyed by shellfire in March 1915 but it gave its unusual name to this sector and to a communication trench that led troops up the front-line. Commonwealth soldiers began burying their fallen comrades here in March 1916. The cemetery was used mostly by the 47th (London) Division and the Canadian Corps until August 1917 and by different fighting units until September 1918. It was greatly enlarged in the years after the war when as many as 7,000 graves were concentrated here from over 100 other cemeteries in the area. For much of the twentieth century, Cabaret Rouge served as one of a small number of ‘open cemeteries’ at which the remains of fallen servicemen newly discovered in the region were buried. Today the cemetery contains over 7,650 burials of the First World War, over half of which remain unidentified. Many different Commonwealth units served in this sector during the war and the cemetery contains the graves of British, Irish, Australian, New Zealand, Indian and South African soldiers. It is also the final resting place of over 70 officers of the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force. Cabaret Rouge has a particularly close connection with the Canadian Infantry, however, as hundreds of Canadians who were killed at the Battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917 were ultimately laid to rest here. In May 2000 the remains of an unknown Canadian soldier were taken from this cemetery and buried in a special tomb at the foot of the National War Memorial in Ottowa, Canada. A focal point for remembrance, he represents more than 116,000 Canadians who lost their lives during the First World War. A headstone in plot 8, Row E, Grave 7 marks his original grave. Sources: Library and Archives Canada (Attestation Paper) Commonwealth War Grave Commission Commonwealth War Grave Commission (Cemetery Information) Canadian Great War Project Veterans Affairs Canada Additional Information: “A Monument Speaks” A Thurston; 1989 (pp 154-155)
Corporal James Harvey Eldridge
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Attestation Paper (click to enlarge)