Alfred "Alf" Tabram

With thanks to Bob Lalonde for additional family information, photos and research

May 7, 1877

Born in London, England to Stewart and Sarah Harriet (nee Cusick) Tabram


Dec 25, 1897

Married to Harriett Bowling in London, England




Aug 9, 1915

Attested into the 59th Battalion CEF in Cornwall, Ontario

Ø  Number 455327

Ø  Next of kin given as Mrs. Harriett Tabram, wife, Cornwall, Ontario

Ø  Previous occupation given as Labourer

Ø  Previous military experience given as 10 months in the Home Guard of the 59th Stormont and Glengarry Regiment in Cornwall

Ø  Religion given as Church of England

Ø  Posted to “B” Company

The battalion trained in the Kingston, Ontario area


Apr 1, 1916

Embarked the SS Olympic in Halifax, Nova Scotia



Apr 11, 1916

Disembarked in Liverpool, England and proceeded to the Bordon Camp

Appointed to the provisional rank of Corporal




Apr 23, 1916

Proceeded on course at the Field Engineering School at Bramshott


Jul 6, 1916

Transferred to the 39th Reserve Battalion in West Sandling


Aug 27, 1916

Reverted to the rank of Private at his own request in order to proceed to the front

Transferred to the 21st Battalion


Aug 28, 1916

Arrived at the CBD (Canadian Base Depot) in the Rouelles Camp, Havre, France as part of a draft of 150 reinforcements from England and TOS (Taken On Strength) the 21st Battalion


Sep 12, 1916

After leaving the base depot, Alfred Tabram joined the 2nd Canadian Entrenching Battalion in Albert, France


Sep 16, 1916

After leaving the entrenching battalion, Private Tabram joined the 21st Battalion and was posted to “B” Company.  The battalion was involved in heavy fighting at the sugar factory south of Courcelette, France and Alfred Tabram likely would have joined the rear details a short distance behind the actual fighting.


Mar 29, 1917

After being classified “TB” (Temporary Base, meaning he was temporarily unfit for combat duty), Alfred Tabram was transferred to the Canadian Base Depot in the Rouelles Camp, Havre, France.  No reason is recorded in the file as a reason for this medical classification


Apr 17, 1917

Classified “PB” (Permanent Base, meaning he was not fit for duty at the front) and attached to the Canadian Corps Composite Company for duty


Aug 8, 1917

Reclassified “A”, meaning he was now fit for full duty


Aug 29, 1917

Transferred to the 21st Battalion and joined the No. 2 CIBD (Canadian Infantry Base Depot) in Etaples, France as part of a draft of 48 reinforcements


Sep 18, 1917

After leaving the base depot, he joined the 2nd Canadian Entrenching Battalion in Hersin, France as part of a draft of 336 reinforcements


Nov 19, 1917

Private Alfred Tabram rejoined the 21st Battalion resting in Camblain L’Abbe, France having come out of the front lines at Passchendaele, Belgium


Nov 29, 1917

Attached to the 4th Field Company, Canadian Engineers for duty


Dec 11, 1917

Rejoined the 21st Battalion from the Canadian Engineers


Dec 14, 1917

Granted 14 days leave to England


Dec 30, 1917

Rejoined the battalion from leave


Jan 19, 1918

Attached to the 1st Canadian Tunnelling Company for duty


Jan 31, 1918

Rejoined the 21st Battalion from the tunnelling company


Aug 9, 1918

Awarded the Good Conduct Badge


Aug 27, 1918

During the 21st Battalion’s advance on the Sensee River south-east of Vis-en-Artois, France, Private Tabram received shrapnel wounds to his left hand and was evacuated to the No. 5 CFA (Canadian Field Ambulance) for first aid before being transported to the No. 42 CCS (Casualty Clearing Station) for treatment.

Transferred the same day to the No. 12 Stationary Hospital in St. Pol, France


Aug 28, 1918

Transferred via the No. 29 AT (Ambulance Train) and admitted to the No. 4 Canadian General Hospital in Camiers, France


Sep 1, 1918

Transferred to the No. 6 Convalescent Depot in Etaples to continue his recovery


Sep 2, 1918

Transferred to the No. 10 Convalescent Depot in Ecault


Sep 11, 1918

Discharged to the No. 5 Rest Camp to continue his recovery


Sep 14, 1918

Discharged from hospital care and joined the Canadian Infantry Base Depot in Etaples, France as part of a draft of 609 reinforcements and was Taken On Strength the 21st Battalion


Sep 18, 1918

After leaving the base depot, he joined the CC Rein C (Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp) in Aubin St. Vaast, France


Sep 20, 1918

After leaving the reinforcement camp, Private Tabram rejoined the 21st Battalion at the front just west of Canal du Nord


Nov 25, 1918

Granted 14 days leave

On completion of his leave, the 21st Battalion was moving daily, marching into Germany as part of the Occupying Force and it could not be determined where he could rejoin his unit.  For this reason he was held at the base depot awaiting instructions


Dec 23, 1918

Arrived at the Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp in Aubin St. Vaast, France


Jan 8, 1919

After leaving the reinforcement camp, Private Tabram rejoined the 21st Battalion in billets in Neunkirchen, Germany


Apr 3, 1919

Embarked the Western Australia in Havre


On arrival in England Private Tabram was posted to “P” Wing in Witley pending return to Canada


May 14, 1919

Embarked the SS Caronia in Liverpool



May 22, 1919

Disembarked in Halifax, Nova Scotia and proceeded to Kingston, Ontario by train


May 24, 1919

Discharged from the CEF in Kingston, Ontario

Ø  Rank on discharge Private

Ø  War Service Badge Class “A” issued number 277536

Ø  Proposed residence on discharge Cornwall, Ontario

Following his discharge, the British War Medal and Victory Medals were sent to him at Cornwall, Ontario

Post war, Alf Tabram was employed as a Gardiner at the government buildings in Cornwall.  In 1926 he was hired as one of the first Mail Carriers when door to door delivery was established in Cornwall.


Jul 16, 1936

Alfred Tabram embarked the SS Montcalm in Montreal, Quebec as part of the Canadian contingent of veterans proceeding to France for the unveiling of the Vimy Memorial that honours the Canadian soldiers who died in France during World War 1 that have no known grave



Jul 29, 1936

Following the ceremonies in France, the Canadian Veterans, 21st Battalion included, attended a reception at Buckingham Palace hosted by King Edward




During WW2, Alfred Tabram volunteered again to serve with the
Home Guard and was employed guarding the Cornwall Canal


Jun 11, 1945

The 1945 he retired as a mail carrier and the Canadian Voter List shows Alfred and Harriett Tabram living at 440 Victoria Ave., Cornwall, Ontario with their 2 daughters Anne and Grace




Aug 8, 1949

Alfred Tabram died while a patient in the Cornwall General Hospital of Cancer of the Stomach and was buried in the Woodlawn Cemetery in Cornwall


His obituary states: “Final military honors were paid Alfred Tabram, at his funeral, Wednesday afternoon, from McArthur Bros. & McNeil’s Funeral Home to the Church of the Good Shepherd and Woodlawn Cemetery. Former comrades of the 21st Overseas Battalion acted as pall bearers. The Canadian Legion service was conducted, and the Last Post and Revielle sounded at the graveside.  The casket was draped with the Union Jack.”


Return to Tribute list