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CREATING THE CANADIAN ARMY 65

 

and C.E.F. on guard duty in Canada; discharges; work relating to the pay and military discipline of returned invalid soldiers; discipline and military law; administration and command of corps of military staff clerks and Staff Orderly Service; administration—with other branches—of training camps, questions of furlough, etc.

In the Adjutant-General's Branch are also the Director-General of Medical Services, the Assistant Director of Dental Services, and the Chief Clerk in charge of the Record Office.

This last office was organized at the beginning of the war under the title of the Casualties Division, and, with the exception of the Director, the whole of the staff has been engaged from time to time to meet the requirements of the work. On the departure of the troops from Valcartier Camp a dozen clerks sufficed to begin the work of writing an index card for each officer and man, and in completing nominal rolls for each unit as the attestation papers came in. By the time these had all been received for the First Contingent, the staff had been increased to twenty. Then the troops proceeded to France and the casualty lists began to come in—principally by cablegrams arriving after 6 p.m. This entailed the engagement of a special staff of typists for night work.

The next-of-kin are informed of the casualty by telegram in every instance, and the telegraph companies report to the Record Office when delivery is made. This is to obviate the chance of any next-of-kin hearing of a casualty through the public press before receiving notification of the same. After St. Julien and Langemarck the staff were working till 3.00 and 4.00 a.m. each day and handling not less than 500 messages per diem.

As other contingents proceeded overseas the personnel has been still further augmented until to-day it numbers over six hundred. Enquiries come in from all parts of the Dominion at the rate of two hundred per diem and these have to be promptly answered. This is exclusive of special enquiries about casualties. Over three hundred


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