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Remembering Those Who Served Yarmouth Town and County 1914 - 1918
Name: Service No Rank Battalion/Service Date of Birth: Place of Birth: Date of Enlistment: Age at Enlistment: Place of Enlistment: Address at Enlistment: Trade: Next of Kin: Additional Information:
Amos Hilton Forbes 114315 Private 9th Regiment Canadian Mounted Rifles March 1, 1890 Argyle Head, Yarmouth Co., NS January 8, 1915 24 North Battleford, Saskatchewan Farmer William Henry Forbes (Father) Argyle Head, Yarmouth Co., NS Volunteer; Discharged at Regina, Saskatchewan February 27, 1918; Previous Military Experience - 22nd Saskatchewan Light Horse Died: December 11, 1940
At the age of 24, Amos Hilton Forbes enlisted with the 9th Regiment Canadian Mounted Rifles at North Battleford, Saskatchewan on January 8, 1915. He was five feet, ten inches in height and weighed 170 lbs. He had a dark complexion, grey eyes and brown hair. He departed Canada on November 23 and arrived in England on December 3, 1915 where he served for two months. On transfer to France on January 29, 1916, he was taken on strength with the 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles on January 29, 1916. The Battle of Mount Sorrel (June 2 -13 1916) The 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles, along with the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles, were manning the 3rd Division's front on June 2, 1916, when the German army launched an assault to take the last dominating observation position in front of Ypres and keep as many British units as possible pinned down in the area, to avoid them assisting the obvious build up on the Somme or relieving more French units to go to the defence of Verdun. At approximately 10:00 am on June 2, the Germans began an intensified bombardment on the front lines and half a mile behind them. The shellfire continued and intensified yet again at 12:30 pm, as the British front line, trenches, wire defences, and dugouts were destroyed. The British artillery responded, but gradually it became less effective as telephone lines were cut by shellfire, and all of the forward observation officers in the front lines became casualties. At just after 1pm, the German pioneers blew a small number of mines just short of the destroyed British fire trench at Mount Sorrel. The German infantry now advanced. The main strength fell against the 4th and 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles. Despite efforts to halt the attack the fight for the shell holes of the old front line was dogged, with much hand to hand combat. The Germans overran the British line, capturing the heights at Mount Sorrel and Tor Top and advancing some way down the slope to take a number of strong points. As the defenders recovered and the enemy came into view on the downward slope, fire intensified and the Germans halted, consolidating their gains. Between June 2 and June 14, the Canadian Corps lost a total of 73 officers and 1053 other ranks killed; 257 officers and 5010 other ranks wounded; 57 officers and 1980 other ranks missing, a total of 8430. On June 2, 1916 Amos Hilton Forbes was reported missing in action. Wounded and buried by a shell explosion in the field he was taken a prisoner of war. It was unofficially reported that he was a prisoner, at Wahn, Germany (June 13, 1916) wounded, and having sustained burns to his neck and face. It was then officially reported he was at Aachen, Germany (August 12, 1916) and transferred to Julich, Germany (September 6, 1916). He was then reported to have been moved to Stendal Sachsen (November 25, 1916) and then reported to be held at Palace Hotel, Murren, Switzerland (January 11, 1917) and was part of an exchange in September, 1917. An agreement between the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Swiss government with the warring parties was signed in 1914. Prisoners of war who were too seriously wounded or sick to be able to continue in military service were to be repatriated through Switzerland, with the assistance of the Swiss Red Cross. Groups of Swiss doctors visited prisoner of war camps to select potential internees. Once a prisoner of war had been selected, he would be brought before a board comprising two Swiss Army doctors, two doctors from the country holding him captive, and a representative of the prisoner’s own nation. By the end of 1916, some 27,000 former prisoners of war were interned in Switzerland. By the end of the war, nearly 68,000 men had been interned in Switzerland. Amos Hilton Forbes was part of an exchange in September, 1917. With his release from Switzerland Amos Forbes was transferred to 1st London General Hospital at Camberwell on September 11, 1917 and to the Canadian Convalescent Hospital on September 19, 1917 suffering from shell shock and deafness resulting from the shell explosion in June 1916. It was decided to discharge him to Canada and he sailed on the H.S. Araguaya from Liverpool, England to Halifax, Nova Scotia on October 17, 1917 arriving in Canada on October 25, 1917. He was transferred to a convalescent hospital in Regina until his discharge in February 1918. Amos Hilton Forbes died on December 11, 1940 Sources/Additional Information:
Hospital Ship Araguaya
Mount Sorrel Photo: Dept. of National Defence/Library and Archives Canada
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