100th Anniversary of Royal Canadian Navy

April 30, 2010


This year we celebrate with all Canadian naval veterans to recognize the 100th Anniversary of the Royal Canadian Navy. The theme of the centennial is “Bring the Navy to Canadians” and thanks to the Guelph Civic Museum, we will have ample opportunity to participate in this national event.

For those of you who are unaware, Guelph has a strong connection to the Navy as the HMCS Guelph was named after the City when it was commissioned on May 9, 1944. She participated in the Battle of the Atlantic making notable and remarkable contributions to the War effort until the end of World War II when she was de-commissioned on June 1945.

For the dog lovers out there, as a commissioning gift, the City gave the ship a black Cocker Spaniel named “Rags” who bunked with the Captain and was beloved by crewmembers. Later Rags was to become the centre-piece of Guelph’s ship’s crest, leaving the City’s mark on the ship forever.

Finally, Guelph’s own Charles E. Kingsmill (July 7, 1855- July 15, 1935) would go on to become the first Admiral of the Royal Canadian Navy. Among his many commendations and medals of service over the years, he was awarded for outstanding service as the Director of Naval Services of Canada.

The Guelph Civic Museum has organized the following public events to commemorate the celebration:

  • Military lecture series in partnership with the Laurier Centre for Military, Strategic, and Disarmament Studies. 
  • An annual Kingsmill Lecture in recognition of Guelph’s son, Admiral Sir Charles Kingsmill. 
  • One of the spirits in this year’s Spirit Walk will be Admiral Sir Kingsmill (September 12)
  • Museum staff have installed a ship and information about the Navy and Admiral Sir Kingsmill in the Children’s Museum
  • Grade 7 and 8 students, in partnership with Wellington County Museum and Archives, will learn more on the Navy and Admiral Sir Kingsmill through the annual “Canada at War” program (May 20)

Keep checking the Guelph Museum website for up-to-date information http://guelpharts.ca/guelphmuseums/index.php

About Karen Farbridge

An unwavering change maker seeking a just, democratic and sustainable world.

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