William Hart

HART, William

1st World War
Date of Birth
Date Attested
Attested at
Seaforth, Ontario
Original Unit
Regimental Number
Date of Death
Age at Death
39 years 10 months
Biographical Summary

DIVISIONAL UNIT:        2nd Canadian Infantry Division
                                             2nd Battalion Machine Gun Corps.
                                             Canadian Machine Gun Corps
SERVICE NO:                   654150
RESIDENCE:                    Egmondville – Ontario 
DATE OF BIRTH:            November 17, 1878
                                             Govan – Lanarkshire – Scotland.
DATE OF DEATH:           September 23, 1918.            39 years     10 months
CEMETERY:                     Sunken Road Cemetery – Contalmaison –
                                             Somme – France.
                                             II     F     5
WIFE:                                 Mrs. Jane N Hart – Egmondville – Ontario.
Occupation:                        Labourer.                             Religion:     Presbyterian.
Enlistment:                         Seaforth – January 1, 1916 – 161st Huron Battalion.
Enlistment Age:                 37 years     1 month

After he enlisted and prior to leaving Canada he was appointed to the rank of Corporal and following his arrival in England on November 11, 1916, Corporal Hart then transferred to the Canadian Machine Gun Depot based in Seaford – Sussex on March 7, 1918. He arrived in France at the Canadian Machine Gun Pool on March 28, 1918. From there he transferred to the 2nd Battalion of the Canadian Machine Gun Corps and joined them in the field on March 31, 1918. On the same day he was officially promoted to the rank of Corporal.
In September of 1918 each Division had a Battalion of machine guns. This amounted to 96 machine guns, 63 Officers and approximately 1,495 men. Each Company would be broken down to 24 machine guns, approximately 15-16 Officers and about 375 men.
We do not know positively if Corporal Hart was attached to a machine gun Company or if he was with horse transport.
The Machine Gun Battalion would have had approximately 326 horses / mules with each Company having about 82 animals. 
Horse Transport was responsible for moving the machine guns from place to place, bringing up ammunition, spare parts and supplies to the front. They used limbers and wagons to move everything with the animals having pack saddles.
During the night of September 21 / 22, Corporal Hart had finished delivering the daily rations to the men on the front lines when he was severely wounded from the shrapnel of enemy fire. He received wounds to his forearm, his left hand was fractured as was his right thigh. He was on his way back to the rear horse lines. His unit was located at that time near Arras. From this information we are assuming he was with horse transport.
He was immediately given aid and his wounds were dressed and then he was taken to taken to No. 19 Clearing Station but died two days later from his wounds.

Note that this letter was written before family was aware Cpl. Hart was deceased.

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