~ St. Catharines' Wartime Neighbourhoods

The Armed Forces

Lincoln and Welland Regiment No 4. Platoon "Bren Gun Carriers" 1941

Lincoln and Welland Regiment No 4. Platoon "Bren Gun Carriers" 1941

St. Catharines, like most cities across the country, had thousands of men sign up for duty and who served at home and overseas.  More than 4,000 men and 150 women from St. Catharines,  joined the Army, Navy and Air Force.  Many joined the local Lincoln and Welland Regiment, as well as the 10th St.Catharines Field Battery.  Of the men who joined the fighting, 215 were killed in action and hundreds more were injured.  St.Catharines had its share of remarkable individuals, who displayed both daring and bravery during battles on land, sea and in the air, including Air Commodore Leonard Birchall – The Saviour of Ceylon and Japanese P.O.W., Flight Lieutenant Gordon Kidder – executed member of ‘The Great Escape’  from Stalag III and Admiral Herbert Rayner – winner of the Distinguished Service Cross including a bar for service on the Western Approaches and during the Normandy Invasion.

On the Home Front, to feed and entertain the troops, there was an Army service canteen set up on St. Paul St. and the Air Force, who were training at the No. 9 Elementary Flying Training School at the airport on Niagara Stone Rd., enjoyed their off time at the renovated stable at the back of Mrs. Jory’s house on King near Carlyle.

Our local fighting forces included:

Photo credit – The McArthur Family