Another Horseman

Lieutenant Colonel J. C. L. Bott
2nd Canadian Mounted RiflesBott

In Feb. 1916, he began to cough and felt pain in the left chest; he coughed badly until Nov. 27, 1916, when he was sent to Hospital for treatment.

Present Condition: Still suffering from bronchitis, cannot walk any distance without exertion.

(“Proceedings of Medical Board,” Seaford, 21 Mar 1917)

Born in Marden, Wiltshire, England on 24 August 1872, John Cecil Latham Bott was a professional British soldier and cavalryman. He was a member of the 20th Hussars from 1895 to 1909, and served in Egypt and South Africa. He immigrated to Vernon, British Columbia after the Boer War and helped to organize the 30th Horse.

2CMRBottIn November 1914, Bott set out to raise a mounted battalion from British Columbia. The Victoria Daily Colonist praised his appointment as commander of the 2nd CMR, noting that Bott “is generally considered a most efficient officer and there can be no question as to the respect in which he is held by his men as well as his popularity among them.”

Although Bott had selected the best horsemen from the province and was eager to see action in France, everyone soon realized that it would be an infantry war. The battalion landed in France in September 1915 but the mounted rifle regiments were quickly reorganized as dismounted units.

Bott led the 2nd CMR for nearly eleven months through the battle of the Somme. In June 1916, Bott assumed temporary command of the 8th Canadian Infantry Brigade after Brigadier General Victor Williams was taken prisoner at Mont Sorrel. Suffering from chronic bronchitis, Bott relinquished command of the 2nd CMR to Major G. C. Johnston in November 1916,. He took command of the 16th Reserve Battalion before returning to Canada in 1918.

After the war, Bott resumed his ranching in Vernon. He died on 21 May 1926.

Digitized Service File (LAC):
http://central.bac-lac.gc.ca/.item/?op=pdf&app=CEF&id=B0904-S007

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