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Posted March 11, 2015 by Miama Admin in Harrison history

Harrison Hot Springs – Canadian Army Newsreel No. 71

canadian army newsreel
canadian army newsreel

Wartime brought drastic changes to Harrison Hot Springs. Halfway through the war the hotel became a military convalescent hospital, when the Department of National Defense took over the building, leasing it for $32,000 a year to use as a center for wounded soldiers. The transfer ceremony took place on May 15, 1943, and was made into pleasant social occasion “Miss Margaret (the hostess) held the audience spellbound with her recital of the story of her arrival on the hospitable shores of England; thence to Canada,” reported the Agassiz Advance, and some of the village residents, including that ancient mariner, Captain Dick Warde, put on “a skit depicting life in the old days at the St. Alice Hotel

For the first fifteen months the hotel was used as a center for male patients; then it closed in this capacity, but re-opened a few months later as a convalescent home for female members of the armed forces; it was also a place where these women could spend their leaves. Officially termed No.1 Women’s Services Health Center, it remained given to this use for the rest of the war.      The People of the Harrison by Daphne Sleigh.

The Canadian Army Newsreels No.71  is showing 1 minute long clip starting at 2:45 mark which features 1944 footage of servicewomen from the Second World War biking, enjoying homemade food and playing golf at Harrison Hot Springs Hotel.


The Canadian Army Newsreels hold an important place in Canada’s military history. The newsreels were produced by the Army for soldiers serving overseas. The front-line cameramen were soldiers first and took guns into battle along with their 35 mm movie cameras to record the Canadian Infantry in action. Their heroic efforts enabled them to scoop the international press on the major events in Europe including the invasion of Sicily and the top story of the century — D-Day.

The War Amps launched the “Newsreel of the Week” project on October 21, 2013 with the aim to make all 106 newsreels available to the public for the first time online. A newsreel is being released every week, culminating in November 2015 to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

Source: War Amps YouTube channel




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