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Local historians honouring Northeastern Ontario's role in WWI

Laurentian prof signing books on 100th anniversary of Treaty of Versailles
Dieter Buse with the book he penned with fellow historian Graeme Mount. (File)

June 28 will mark 100 years since the signing of the Treaty of Versailles and the official end of World War I. 

Professor emeritus at Laurentian University Dieter K. Buse and Graeme Mount, retired professor with Laurentian University, have captured the untold accounts of northeastern Ontario soldiers who fought in World War I in their book “Untold: Northeastern Ontario's Military Past, Volume 1.”

It was through letters sent home that families and community learned of the horrors of the war and the fate of their family members. 

More than a month after Vimy, an account in the Sudbury Star on May 23, 1917 listed many of the wounded and stated, “no doubt Sudburians have read many vivid descriptions of how the Canadians did the impossible, but which naturally contained no record of the part played by those of the 159th.” 

The paper then quoted from a letter by M.J. Quinn (648533):

"Many of us were on the ridge and went over the parapet. Ed Clement was wounded and is in Blighty [England], also Claude Lockwood. George Allen was killed in action, also one of the Dole boys, while the other brother was wounded. The Friel boys are with me and come through safe. There were many others from various parts of the north, but who are not known in Sudbury … but the district may well feel very proud that it was represented on almost every part of the front by boys from Sudbury, Copper Cliff, etc. Yes, and some of our little fellows made the big Huns drop their rifles and call for mercy Kamerad. I’m afraid that some of the Germans will have to ask Higher up for mercy, for they got very little here below [did they decide not to take prisoners?]. I am sorry that big Andy Duncan, my old officer in the 159th was killed in action."

From “Untold: Northeastern Ontario's Military Past, Volume 1, 1662-WW1.”

Dieter Buse will be signing copies of the book at Chapters Sudbury on Saturday, June 29 between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.