Book cover image for: Frontier of Patriotism

The Frontier of Patriotism: Alberta and the First World War

Edited by Adriana A. Davies and Jeff Keshen

$49.95 CAD / $49.95 USD

608 pages, 241 illustrations

978-1-55238-834-1 (Paperback)

978-1-55238-836-5 (Institutional PDF)

978-1-55238-837-2 (ePub)

978-1-55238-838-9 (mobi)

September 2016

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About the Book

The Frontier of Patriotism is the most comprehensive treatment of Alberta during the critical, transformational years of the First World War, drawing on comprehensive archival research, personal accounts, and primary sources to explore experiences of the Great War on the battlefield and the home front.

Communities across Canada memorialize the service members who, through their triumphs and sacrifices in the First World War, are remembered as laying the foundation for a free and independent country. Often overlooked are the triumphs and sacrifices of those who supported these soldiers, and the war effort in general, on the home front.

The Frontier of Patriotism provides an in-depth look at all aspects of Alberta’s involvement in the First World War, reflecting Albertans’ experiences both on the battlefield and on the home front. Drawing on national and local archival resources the letters, diaries, and memoirs of individuals who lived through the conflict, and accounts in local newspapers, a wide variety of experiences are explored in depth.

For many, the tumultuous years of the First World War represented a time of individual valour and of communities pulling together and sacrificing for a noble cause. Yet, for others, the war left disillusionment and anger. Exploring regional and local stories, The Frontier of Patriotism helps us to understand the many different ways Albertains experienced the First World War, and through their stories, to understand what it means to be Canadian.

About the Editors

Adriana A. Davies is a well-known researcher, writer, editor and poet. She was the Executive Director of the Alberta Museums Association for thirteen years and founding Executive Director of the Heritage Community Foundation.

Jeff Keshen is Dean of Arts at Mount Royal University. He is also an adjunct professor in the Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies at the University of Calgary.

With Contributions By:  Rod Macleod, Juliette Champagne, John Matthews, Patricia Myers, Kathryn Ivany, L. James Dempsey, Duff Crerar, Brett Clifton, Michale Lang, Ryan Flavelle, Juliette Champagne, David Borys, J. Robert Lampard, Antonella Fanella, Allan Kerr, Doug Styles, Aritha Van Herk, Norman Knowles, David Joseph Gallant, Stephen Greenhalgh, Jeff Keshen, Alvin Finkel, Catherine C. Cole, Peter McKenzie-Brown, Ken Tingley, Robert Rutherdale, Michael Dawe, Sean Moir, Anthony Worman, Donald B. Smith, Chris Hyland, Paul Stortz, Jarett Henderson, P. Whitney Lackenbuaer, Kassandra Luciuk, Amy J. Shaw, Mark Osborne Humphries, Donald G. Wethrell, Allan Row, and Rory Cory 

Praise for The Frontier of Patriotism 

Adriana A. Davies and Jeff Keshen have created a compelling collection of essays that provides a more regional view of the Great War, illustrating in great detail the many ways it changed Alberta and Albertans . . . The Frontier of Patriotism is a terrific addition to scholarship on the Great War and a welcome companion to the many broader histories that have previously been written.

—Mark Collin Reid, Canada’s History Magazine 

Table of Contents


Section One – Albertans at War: The Military

An Old Soldier Fades Away: Major General Sir Sam Steele in the First World War
Rod Macleod

Raymond Brutinel and the Genesis of Modern Mechanized Warfare
Juliette Champagne and Major (Retd) John Matthews

While You Were Away: Alberta’s First World War Aviation History
Patricia Myers

Building on the Home Front: Armouries and Other Infrastructure
Kathryn Ivany

Aboriginal Alberta and the First World War
L. James Depsey

Scattered by the Whirlwind: Alberta Chaplains and the First World War
Duff Crerar

The Experience of Lethbridge Men Overseas, 1914-1918
Brett Clifton

Sid Unwin’s War
Michale Lang

Alberta Remittance Men in the Great War
Ryan Flavelle

The Effects of the First World War on the Franco-European Immigrants of Alberta
Juliette Champagne

The Little Institution the Could: The University of Alberta and the First World War
David Borys

The Gospel of Sacrifice: Lady Principal Nettie Burkholder and Her Boys at the Front
Adriana A. Davies

Medical Contributions of Albertans in the First World War: Rising to the Challenge
J. Robert Lampard

Harold and Emma McGill: A War-Front Love Story
Antonella Fanella

Private Stephen Smith and His Trench Art Belts

Allan Kerr and Doug Styles

Section Two – The Home Front: Context and Meaning

Enthusiasm Embattled: Alberta 1916

Duff Crerar

Ordinary Life n Alberta in the First World War

Aritha van Herk

"O valiant hearts who to your glory came": Protestant Responses to Alberta’s Great War

Norman Knowles

Alberta Women in the First World War: A Genius for Organization
Adriana A. Davies

Armageddon: Alberta Newspapers and the Outbreak of the Great War, 1914

David Joseph Gallant

Edmonton’s Local Heros
Stephen Greenhalagh

Voices of War: The Press and the Personal

Jeff Keshen

From Local to National: pictorial Propaganda in Alberta during the First World War
Jeff keshen

The Great War and Labour in Alberta
Alvin Finkel

The Great Western Garment Company during the First World War
Catherine C. Cole

The Bosworth Expedition: An Early Petroleum Survey
Peter McKenzie-Brown

Section Three – Communities at War

Edmonton and the Great War

Ken Tingley

The First World War as a Local Experience: Mobilization, Citizen Voluntary Support, and Memorializing the Sacrifice in Lethbridge, Alberta
Robert Rutherdale

Red Deer and the First World War
Michael Dawe

Thread of Life: The 1917 Waskatenau Signature Quilt
Adriana A. Davies, Sean Moir, and Anthony Worman

Calgary’s Grand Theatre in the Great War

Donald B. Smith

Student Life on the University of Alberta Campus during the First World War
Chris Hyland and Paul Stortz

Mobilizing Mount Royal: Capturing Campus Contributions to the Great War
Jarett Henderson

Under Siege: The CEF Attack on the RNWMP Barracks in Calgary, October 191

P. Whitney Lackenbauer

Canada’s First National Interment Operations and the Search for Sanctuary in the Ukrainian Labour Farmer Temple Association
Kassandra Luciuk

Conscientious Objectors in Alberta in the First World War
Amy J. Shaw

Section Four – Aftermath

War, Public Health and the 1918 "Spanish" Influenza Pandemic in Alberta
Mark Osbourne Humphries

Applying Modernity: Local Government and the 1919 Federal Housing Scheme in Alberta
Donald G. Wthrell

Soldier Settlement in Alberta, 1917-1931
Allan Rowe

First World War Centennial Commemoration in Alberta Museums
Rory Cory

Appendix: Alberta Formations Raised in the First World War

List of Contributors


GOLD MEDAL, PubWest Design Awards, Historical or Birographical Book | 2017

WINNER, BPAA Alberta Publishing Award for Book Design | 2017