Canadian Military Heritage Project - Find your military ancestors!

Canadian Military Heritage Project
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PHILIP EDGAR PEER

Philip Edgar Peer, WW1 soldier

Philip Edgar Peer
1896-1918
2nd Battalion
Canadian Expeditionary Force

by Lorine McGinnis Schulze

Edgar Peer was born in Guelph Ontario in 1896, the son of Stephen Edward Peer and Mary Elizabeth Vollick. Stephen died when Edgar was 4 years old, leaving the family destitute.

Mary Elizabeth Vollick raised her family of 9 children alone, and died May 24, 1914, one year and two days before Edgar enlisted. Edgar, as the youngest child and the only one left at home, may have been the one to minister to her in her last days -- and her death was not an easy one, as she died of starvation - unable to eat due to a cancerous growth in her stomach. He was 17 years old and an orphan. He enlisted in the army in May of 1915

Edgar, age 18, arrived in England on Nov. 1, 1915 on the SS California. From there he was sent to Bramshoot then West Sandling, England as a member of the 23rd. Battalion. On 25 May 1916 he was sent to France.

By the 3rd of September he was in the front line with the 2nd Battalion along Pozieres Ridge. Over the next few weeks his Battalion was to endure heavy shelling and frequent small attacks from the enemy. It is interesting to note that on the 9th of September 1916 Corporal Leo Clark, also of the 2nd Battalion, won the Victoria Cross only to die of his wounds a month later. One year later, on the 28 Sept. 1917 Edgar was promoted to Corporal. He had just celebrated his 21st. birthday.

Edgar was shot in the left thigh on Nov. 6 1917 in the battle of Passchendaele and hospitalized Nov. 7 at Abbeville. He was sent to a convalescent depot in Cayeaux on the 19th of that month and discharged on the 28th. He was given 14 days leave in Paris from the 25 Jan. to 9 Feb. 1918, then he was sent back into action in the 2nd Battalion. In April he was promoted to Sergeant and on 8 Aug. 1918 he was killed in action. At 4:20 a.m. on Aug. 8, 1918 the Battle of Amiens began so it is assumed he was killed during this battle. The Canadians lost 4,000 men that day.

Edgar would have celebrated his 22nd birthday on August 31, just 23 days after his death.

Philip Edgar Peer is one of the soldiers found on Veteran's Affairs Canada Virtual War Memorial

He is also found on Page 483 of the First World War Book of Remembrance.

Submitted by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of The Olive Tree Genealogy Homepage. Please contact Lorine if you wish to exchange information on the Peer family in Ontario, Pier in New Jersey or Peer in Illinois.

Ref: National Archives of Canada WW1 Military Records; Personal research of Lorine McGinnis Schulze

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Ancestry.com Databases

1851 Census of Canada East, Canada West, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia
1901 Census of Canada
1906 Canada Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta
The Naval Service of Canada: Its Official History
Ontarian families : genealogies of United-Empire loyalists and other pioneer families of Upper Canada
Rebellion of 1837, Upper Canada
War of 1812: Miscellaneous Canadian Records
Smith's Canadian gazetteer
The Canadian biographical dictionary

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Soldiers of the South African War, 1899 - 1902
Second World War Service Files: Canadian Armed Forces War Dead

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