100 Years Ago: Sanitation in War, Separation Allowances

The Intelligencer February 27, 1915 (page 1)

” ‘Sanitation in War’ at Canadian Club by Prominent Physician. There was a slim attendance at the Canadian Club supper last night, which was fortunately increased by a considerable number of members dropping in after the supper to hear the address, including a delegation of officers from the local recruiting regiments.

The president, Mr. J.L. Hess, presided with his usual grace and introduced the speaker of the evening, Dr. McCullough, in a short but happily worded address. Dr. McCullough …  outlined the medical examination of a great body of recruits for active service, and told of the thoroughness needed to ensure a sound army both physically and mentally. He opined that too little attention was paid by the medical examiners during the formation of the First Contingent. This resulted in large waste of time, money and energy, all of which has been happily remedied in the gathering of the second and third contingents for Canada’s overseas forces.

The speaker spoke of the care necessary to keep the enlisted soldiers in A1 health while on active service. He must have good substantial clothing, special attention being given to his socks and shoes. Cleanliness is a sine qua non for an efficient soldier. He should bathe his feet daily and powder his socks. …  Cerebro-spinal meningitis was explained and also the methods of its eradication and prevention. …

In concluding his address the speaker paid a tribute to the Canadian soldiers, to the medical and hospital corps at the front, to the societies like the Red Cross, St. John’s Ambulance, and many others, who at home and at the seat of war are laboring to make the lot of our soldiers endurable and victorious. …  A vote of thanks was heartily passed on motion of Mr. R.J. Graham and Col. Ponton. The meeting adjourned by the singing of ‘O Canada.’ ”

The Intelligencer February 27, 1915 (page 7)

“Separation allowance has been granted by the Canadian government to the dependents of volunteers serving in the Canadian Overseas Contingent as follows: Privates $20 a month; sergeants $25 a month; warrant officers $30 a month; lieutenants $30 a month; captains $40 a month; majors $50 a month; Lieut. Colonels $60 a month.

‘Dependents’ include only:—(a) wives. (b) Children of a widower, if they are in the care of a guardian. Girls over sixteen and boys over fourteen years of age not eligible. (c) Widowed mothers, if the son is unmarried and her sole support. A certificate to this effect must be obtained from the local Patriotic Fund Committee or from a clergyman.

The allowance is not payable to the dependents of a soldier who is an employee of the Dominion or any Provincial Government and in receipt of a Government salary in addition to his military pay, or who is a member of the Permanent Force.”