James Gilbert Essex

Mar 16, 1878

Born in Lanark, Ontario to William John and Agnes (nee Sutherland) Essex


Aug 19, 1901

Married to Bridget Farrell in Arnprior, Ontario


Nov 17, 1914

Attested into the 21st Battalion in Kingston, Ontario 

Ø      Number 59304 (temporary number 424)

Ø      Next of kin given as John Essex, Arnprior, Ontario

Ø      Previous occupation given as Painter

Ø      No previous military experience given

Ø      Religion given as Presbyterian

Ø      Assigned to “D” Company

o       This was later reorganized into “B” Company 

The battalion trained in the Kingston area through the winter with headquarters in the Kingston Armouries


May 6, 1915

Embarked the RMS Metagama in Montreal, Quebec


May 15, 1915

Disembarked in Devonport, England and the battalion proceeded to the West Sandling Camp, near Hythe, Kent to continue training


Sep 14, 1915

Embarked the St. Seiriol in Folkestone


Sep 15, 1915

Disembarked in Boulogne, France and the battalion proceeded to St. Omer


May 23, 1916

Admitted to the 2nd Canadian Division Rest Station with a diagnosis that reads Acute Appendicitis


May 27, 1916

Discharged to duty from the rest station


Jul 1, 1916

Attached to the 2nd Division Headquarters for Division Guard Duty


Nov 17, 1916

Awarded the Good Conduct Badge


Nov 24, 1916

Granted 10 days leave


Feb 20, 1917

SOS (Struck Off Strength) the 21st Battalion and posted to the 2nd Division Train and attached to the 2nd Division Headquarters to be employed as a 1st Line Driver


Sep 14, 1917

Posted to the 2nd Division Headquarters and employed as a Heavy Transport Driver


Oct 26, 1917

His wife Bridget, passed away in Renfrew, Ontario from Typhoid Fever, leaving 2 daughters and a son to be cared for by their grandmother


Jan 14, 1918

TOS (Taken On Strength) the CGBD (Canadian Garrison Base Depot) in Etaples


Jan 16, 1918

Embarked for England


Jan 17, 1918

TOS the CASCD (Canadian Army Service Corps Depot) Shorncliffe, pending leave to Canada


Jan 25, 1918

Granted 8 weeks Compassionate Leave to Canada at personal expense


Feb 24, 1918

SOS the CASCD and to be retained in Canada for duty following his leave


Feb 27, 1918

Embarked the SS Corsican


Mar 17, 1918

Disembarked in Halifax, Nova Scotian and proceeded to Kingston, Ontario


Apr 26, 1918

TOS MD #3, Kingston


Jun 1, 1918

TOS #3 Casualty Company Kingston


Jun 30, 1918

TOS 3rd Battalion, Garrison Regiment in Kingston, Ontario


Aug 27, 1918

Discharged from the CEF in Kingston, Ontario 

Ø      Rank on discharge Private

Ø      War Service Badge Class “A” issued

Ø      Proposed residence on discharge Renfrew, Ontario

Ø      Reason for discharge – Compassionate Grounds 

Following the war the 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal were sent to 471 Queen St. East, Toronto, Ontario


Oct 31, 1918

Married to Elizabeth Kingswell in Kingston, Ontario


Feb 5, 1921

James Essex died at home in Toronto of Endocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle and valves.  This was determined to have been caused by his wartime service.  He was buried in the St. John’s Norway Cemetery, Toronto.

The Plaque (Dead Man’s Penny), Scroll and Memorial Cross were sent to his widow, Mrs. Elizabeth Essex, 471 Queen St. East, Toronto, Ontario


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