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We Will Remember - War Monuments in Canada
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    We Will Remember - War Monuments in Canada

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  • It is doubtful if any community of its size in Canada acquitted itself more nobly in war work than did Shubenacadie, which gave its youth and money without stint and, at the end of the great conflict, did fitting honour to its 19 gallant dead by erecting a handsome granite and bronze monument, one of the best in the province.

    The call for troops was answered quickly. In all, about 80 young men and three nurses went overseas.

    Every appeal for money for war purposes received enthusiastic support.

    When the great struggle was over and on the evening before the day set apart as National Peace Day, in July 1919, a great gathering was held at the exhibition grounds in the main building. With appropriate ceremony sixty heroic men and three brave nurses were each presented with a handsome gold watch as a slight token of the community's appreciation. This presentation is believed to have had no counterpart in all Canada. Following the ceremony, all sat down to a turkey supper, following which came an enjoyable dance. At sharp midnight, fireworks were set off and an enormous bonfire was lighted. Shubenacadie believes it was the first place in Canada to celebrate National Peace Day. It, apparently, stole a march on the rest of the country.

    Later, the movement to erect a monument to the 19 gallant dead was started. The chairman of the committee having the matter in hand was Watson Smith and the secretary-treasurer was W.D. Bowers, manager of the Royal Bank. The monument cost about $5,000. It was unveiled this summer before an immense crowd. The granite base is surmounted by a life-size Canadian soldier in bronze, carrying a lighted torch. On the brass plate is the following inscription:

    Lest We Forget
    1914 - 1918
    Forest C. Benner
    Guy Brown
    William A. Courtney
    William H. Duff
    William Dodd
    Blanchard V. Gass
    James Graham
    Thomas Irving
    Wilbert Larabee
    Peter Maloney
    Cleveland McCabe
    Walter McKenzie
    James E. Noble
    George W. Robinson
    R. Arthur Pentz
    John A. Smith
    James H. Sutherland
    Haliburton Wallace
    Reginald L. Wile
    1939 - 1945
    Arthur Brimicombe
    Leo Cope
    Allen A. Nelson
    William R. Robb
    A thur MacL. Taylor

    The monument stands on the railway side of the main street, near the depot, on land 30 X 50 feet granted by the C.N.R. for the purpose. It is planned to build a low concrete wall about this land next year and put up concrete steps from the street.

    In the matter of the war memorial, Shubenacadie has set a shining example to many larger communities.