The Opposition

Lieutenant Colonel Thomas B. Welch
99th (Essex) Battalion Welch

We recruited more than three thousand men here, and could have gotten as many more had not the Government put an end to voluntary enlistment by throwing a political monkey wrench into the machinery.

It was for the same reason that the county battalions, one of which I took to England, were broken up into drafts for other unit.

(Welch’s Speech, Toronto Globe, 7 Dec 1917, 12)

Thomas Baird Welch was a chemist and commanding officer of the 26th Middlesex Light Infantry. He was born on 10 April 1867 in Kilwinning Scotland. He went overseas with the First Contingent in October 1914 and served as a major with the 1st Battalion in France from April to May 1915. He joined the 1st Division command staff until he returned to Canada in December 1915 to raise the 99th Battalion.

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The Heavyweight Champ

Lieutenant Colonel Ernest S. Wigle
18th (Western Ontario) BattalionWigle

Mayor E. S. Wigle today had more than his 78th birthday to celebrate. He could also boost of a one-punch knockout…

Mayor Wigle, 220 pounds of brawn on a still-athletic frame, felled his former pupil with a straight right to the face as they mixed after a few minutes of exhibition sparring. When he came to the admiring Campbell declared “There isn’t a man in the house could have withstood that wallop.”

(Ottawa Citizen, 9 Dec 1937, 2)

Ernest Solomon Wigle was a prominent Ontario lawyer and former mayor of Windsor (1905—1909). He was born on 5 March 1859 in Essex County, Canada West. The six-foot Wigle was active in football and cricket but his sporting speciality was boxing. In 1884, he won the intercollegiate heavyweight championship and was undefeated as the Essex County championship.

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