Researching Our History

Veterans Affairs Canada

The Vimy Memorial is managed by Veterans Affairs Canada. To take a virtual tour of the memorial, please click here.

To research the registry of information about the graves and memorials of more than 118,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served valiantly and gave their lives for their country, visit the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.

The Canadian Military History Gateway

The CMHG is a free, bilingual online portal providing authoritative and in-depth information on Canada’s military history and heritage, from earliest times to current day. The Gateway works much like a virtual library by providing access to web sites and digitized resources of federal government departments, museums, libraries, archives as well as other heritage organizations. Users can easily explore an array of documents by gaining instant access to images, video, audio and interactive resources about Canada’s military history. Click here to access the Gateway.

Library and Archives Canada

Over 600,000 men and women enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) during the First World War (1914-1918) as soldiers, nurses and chaplains. The CEF database is an index to those service files, which are held by Library and Archives Canada, to find diaries and military collections of soldiers and War Diaries.

From the start of the First World War, CEF units were required to maintain a daily account of their “Actions in the Field.” This log was called a War Diary. The War Diaries are not personal diaries, rather they are a historical record of a unit’s administration, operations and activities during the First World War.

Canadian Letters and Images Project

The Canadian Letters and Images Project is an online archive of the Canadian war experience, from any war, as told through the letters and images of Canadians themselves. Begun in August 2000, the Project is located in the Department of History at Vancouver Island University. Click here to access the First World War collection.

Canadian War Museum

The Canadian War Museum has a number of valuable resources for researching Canada’s involvement in the First World War, both in person at the museum and online. Click here to check out their virtual exhibition on Canada and the First World War, including lesson plans, photograph and document packages, and book lists of recommended reading for Canadian youth organized by age.

Bibliography

Canada And The First World War: A Select Bibliography

Great books on the First World War for youth

The Canadian Children’s Book Centre has put together a thorough bibliography of books recommended for grades 1 through 10. Click here to view.

 

Books on the Battle of Vimy Ridge 1917

Barris, Ted, Victory at Vimy: Canada Comes of Age: April 9-12, 1917, Toronto: Thomas Allen, 2007

Berton, Pierre, Vimy, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1986.

Christie, N.M., The Canadians at Vimy, April 1917, v. III, Nepean: CEF Books, 1996.

Christie, N.M., Winning the Ridge: The Canadians at Vimy Ridge, 1917, Access to History Series, No. 3, Nepean: CEF Books, The Canadian History Series, 1998.

Douglas, T: Valour At Vimy Ridge: Canadian Heroes of World War I: Altitude Publishing, 2007

J.L. Granatstein, “Without Peer [Canadians at Vimy Ridge 1917],” Legion Magazine (Feb.-Mar., 2007).

Greenhous, Brereton & Stephen J. Harris, Canada and the Battle of Vimy Ridge, 9-12 April 1917, Ottawa: Department of National Defence, Directorate of History, 1992.

J.R. Grodzinski, “The Use and Abuse of Battle: Vimy Ridge and the Great War over the History of the First World War”

Hayes, Geoffrey et al., eds., Vimy Ridge: A Canadian Reassessment, Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2007.

Macintyre, D.E., Canada at Vimy, Toronto: Peter Martin, 1967.

Macksey, Kenneth, Vimy Ridge 1914-18, London: Ballantine, 1973.

McKee, Alexander, Vimy Ridge, London: Pan, 1968.

Sheldon, Jack, The German Army on Vimy Ridge 1914-1917, London: Pen and Sword, 2008.

Turner, Alexander, Vimy Ridge 1917: Bynh’s Canadians Triumph at Arras, Botley, U.K.: Osprey, 2005.

Wood, H.F., Vimy!, London: Corgi, 1972.

Histories of Canada and the First World War

Adamson, Agar, The Letters of Agar Adamson, 1914-1919.

Bashow, David L., Knights of the Air: Canadian Fighter Pilots in the First World War, Toronto: McArthur, 2000.

Bernier, Serge, Le Royal 22e Régiment 1914-1999, Montréal: Art Global, 1999.

Brown, Robert Craig & Cook, Ramsay, Canada. 1896-1921: A Nation Transformed, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1974.

Christie, N. M., Gas Attack! The Canadians at Ypres, 1915, Access to History Series, No. 1, Nepean: CEF Books, The Canadian History Series, 1998.

Christie, N. M., Futility and Sacrifice: The Canadians on the Somme, 1916, Access to History Series, No. 2, Nepean: CEF Books, The Canadian History Series, 1998.

Christie, N. M., Slaughter in the Mud: The Canadians at Passchendaele, 1917, Access to History Series, No. 4, Nepean: CEF Books, The Canadian History Series, 1998.

Christie, N. M., The Canadians on the Somme, September-November 1916, v. II, Nepean: CEF Books, 1996.

Christie, N. M., The Canadians at the Canal du Nord and Cambrai, September-October 1918, v. VI, Nepean: CEF Books, 1997.

Christie, N. M., The Canadians at Amiens, August 1918, v. VII, Nepean: CEF Books, 1998.

MacMillan, Margaret, Paris 1919 (entitled “The Peacemakers” in the UK)

Cook, Tim, Canadians Fighting the Great War, Vol. I: At the Sharp End; Vol. II: Shock Troops, Toronto: Viking, 2007-8.

Cook, Tim, Clio’s Warriors: Canadian Historians and the Writing of the World Wars, Vancouver: UBC Press, 2006.

Cook, Tim, The Madman and the Butcher [Hughes and Currie], Toronto: Allen Lane, 2010.

Cook, Tim, No Place to Run: The Canadian Corps and Gas Warfare in the First World War, Vancouver: UBC Press, 1999.

Cooke, O.A., The Canadian Military Experience 1867-1995: A Bibliography (en francais: Bibliographie de la vie militaire au Canada, 1867-1995), 3rd ed., Ottawa: Directorate of History and Heritage, Dept. of National Defence, 1997.

Dancocks, Daniel G., Welcome to Flanders Fields: The First Canadian Battle of the Great War: Ypres, 1915, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1988.

Dancocks, Daniel G., Legacy of Valour: The Canadians at Passchendaele, Edmonton: Hurtig Publishers, 1986.

Dancocks, Daniel G., Sir Arthur Currie: A Biography, Toronto: Methuen, 1985.

Dancocks, Daniel G., Spearhead to Victory: Canada and the Great War, Edmonton: Hurtig, 1987.

Granatstein, J.L. & Hitsman, J.M., Broken Promises: A History of Conscription in Canada, Toronto: Oxford Univ. Press, 1977.

Granatstein, J.L., Canada’s Army: Waging War and Keeping the Peace, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004, 2011.

Granatstein, J.L., Hell’s Corner: An Illustrated History of Canada’s Great War 1914-1918, Vancouver: Douglas and McIntyre, 2004.

Granatstein, J.L. & Oliver, Dean, The Oxford Companion to Canadian Military History, Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Gwyn, Sandra, Tapestry of War, A Private View of Canadians in the Great War, 2004.

Hadley, Michael L. & Sarty, Roger, Tin-pots and Pirate Ships: Canadian Naval Forces & German Sea Raiders, 1880-1918, Montreal: McGill-Queen’s Univ. Press, 1991.

Harris, Stephen, Canadian Brass: The Making of a Professional Army 1860-1939, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1988.

Haycock, Ron, Sam Hughes: The Public Career of a Controversial Canada, 1885-1916, Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 1986.

Humphries, Mark, The Selected Papers of Sir Arthur Currie: Diaries, Letters, and Report to the Ministry, 1917-1933, Waterloo: LCMSDS Press of Wilfrid Laurier University, 2008.

Hyatt, A.M.J., General Sir Arthur Currie: A Military Biography, Toronto: Univ. of Toronto Press, 1987.

Iarocci, Andrew, Shoestring Soldiers: The 1st Canadian Division at War, 1914-1915, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008

Keshen, Jeffrey, Propaganda and Censorship During Canada’s Great War, Edmonton: Univ. of Alberta Press, 1996

Mackenzie, David: Canada and the First World War: Essays in Honour of Robert Craig Brown, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005.

Marteinson, John, et al., We Stand On Guard: An Illustrated History of the Canadian Army, Montreal: Ovale Publications, 1992.

Miller, Ian, Our Glory & Our Grief: Torontonians and the Great War, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2002.

Milner, Marc, Canada’s Navy: The First Century, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2010.

Morton, Desmond, Album of the Great War, Toronto: Grolier Ltd., Grolier Album Series, 1986.

Morton, Desmond, A Military History of Canada, Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2007.

Morton, Desmond & Granatstein, J.L., Marching to Armageddon: Canada and the Great War, 1914-1919, Toronto: Lester & Orpen Dennys, 1989.

Morton, Desmond, Silent Battle: Canadian Prisoners of War in Germany, 1914-1919, Toronto: Lester Publishing, 1992.

Morton, Desmond, When Your Number’s Up: the Canadians in the First World War, Toronto: Random House of Canada, 1993. (Translated by Andrée Laprise as “Billet pour le front”.

Morton, Desmond & Wright, Glenn, Winning the Second Battle: Canadian Veterans and the Return to Civilian Life, 1915-1930, Toronto: Univ. of Toronto Press, 1987.

Nicholson, G.W.L., Canadian Expeditionary Force, 1914-1919, Ottawa: Department of National Defence, 1962.

Rawling, Bill, Surviving Trench Warfare: Technology and the Canadian Corps, 1914-1918, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1992.

Ruck, Calvin, W., The Black Battalion, 1916-1920: Canada’s Best Kept Military Secret, Halifax: Nimbus Publishing, Ltd., 1987.

Schreiber, Shane B., Shock Army of the British Empire: The Canadian Corps in the Last 100 Days of the Great War, Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1997.

Swettenham, John, To Seize the Victory: The Canadian Corps in World War I, Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1965.

Thompson, John Herd, The Harvests of War: The Prairie West, 1914-1918, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1978.

Vance, Jonathan, High Flight: Aviation and the Canadian Imagination, Toronto: Penguin, 2002.

Vance, Jonathan, Objects of Concern: Canadian Prisoners of War Through the Twentieth Century, Vancouver: UBC Press, 1994.

Williams, Jeffery, Byng of Vimy, London: Leo Cooper, 1992.

Wise, S.F., Canadian Airmen and the First World War, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1980. (Also published in French under the title: Les aviateurs canadiens dans la Première Guerre mondiale.)

Wood, James, Militia Myths: Ideas of the Canadian Citizen Soldier, Vancouver: UBC Press, 2010.

General First World War Histories

Gary Sheffield, Forgotten Victory: The First World War: Myths and Realities, London: Headline Press, 2001.

John Keegan, The First World War, London: Vintage Books, 2000.

Martin Gilbert, The First World War: A Complete History, London: Henry Holt, 1995.

Tim Travers, The Killing Ground: The British Army, Western Front & Emergency of Modern War, 1900-1918, London: Pen & Sword Books, 2003.

Hew Strachan, The First World War Vol 1: To Arms, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Hew Strachan, Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, Oxford, 2000.