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By Ruby M. Cusack - Columnist

'The Skeleton Web' - A History of the Carleton & York Regiment

Published Saturday November 19th, 2011 in the Telegraph Journal

Cliff and I were at the kitchen table working on a pile of  homework. Ordinarily, Mum sat with us and was ready to help, but tonight there was company, so she left us to work by ourselves.

I was more interested in listening to the conversation than doing lessons.

It seemed a friend had come to alert Gramp that someone was cutting trees over his line.

The men were making plans to go deep into the woods to try to locate an old pole fence which would prove the location of the property lines.

Gram seemed quite concerned that tempers might be set to fly, as they did in 1837, when a dispute erupted over the unsettled border between Maine and New Brunswick. The trouble began when some New Brunswickers started cutting timber in the 1,300 square miles that both parties claimed. It went so far as many volunteers being called up in Maine to keep the men from cutting and the other army from New Brunswick to protect the men.

Even though the two countries were on the edge of war, many civilians attend celebrations and parties on both sides of the border.

Fortunately, the border line was settled peaceably by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty, which was signed on Aug. 9, 1842.

Sometimes troops were called out to help, such as to protect property and bank vaults from thievery in the days following the Great Fire in Saint John, on June 20, 1877.

"The Skeleton Web" - A History of the Carleton and York Regiment, published in 1986 by Major (Rev.) D.L. Giddings, CD, traces the evolution of an Infantry Militia Regiment from its early days through more than 150 years of amalgamations, reorganizations and training to the formation of the Carleton and York Regiment.

I didn't understand the title until I started reading the book.

"The Web," as it explained, "consisted of a belt and cross straps worn over the uniform jacket, to which a soldier attached his large and small packs, water bottle, ammunition pouches and bayonet."

The Carleton and York Regiment fought in Sicily, leaving behind in storage everything except basic equipment, with the water bottle attached being of great importance. "Skeleton Web" became a symbol of the Canadian soldier in the Central Mediterranean Theatre.

Appendix I is an "In Memoriam" which lists the names of the 28 officers and 294 other ranks who gave their lives in the service of their country while serving with The Carleton & York Regiment in the United Kingdom, Central Mediterranean Theatre and Northwest Europe during World War II.

World War II ended 66 years ago and World War I ended 95 years ago and, once again, the poppies have been removed from the lapels of men, women and children. But during the months ahead, many will stand at cenotaphs, read military history books, gaze at photos in family albums, remembering those we hold in proud and grateful memory for the sacrifices they made.

Query 1817
Saunders-Scribner: Who were the parents of James Aaron
Saunders (1857 - 1942), who married Althea Scribner (1865 - 1950) in 1890. They are buried at Trinity Church Cemetery, Kingston Peninsula, New Brunswick.
Contact Dianne Stackhouse at

Query 1818
Sussex: Looking for location of blacksmith shop in Sussex that was operating circa 1870. Some smiths who worked there were Thomas Howard born in Elgin, James Brophy of Saint John, James Stewart, and James Waltch. Would also like to know location of the old St Francois Church that burned in Wards Creek in 1897.

Contact Mary Michaud by email

Query 1819
Jewett - Booth - Stewart: Maggie Matilda Jewett, who, along with four other children, was adopted by Edward Darrel Jewett and Bethiah Jane (Booth). I am interested in the origins of these children who may have been siblings and somehow related to Edward and Bethiah. A newspaper account of Maggie's marriage to George Stewart Jr. in 1875 describes her as "accomplished niece" of Edward Darrel Jewett. I am also interested in the Booths. Can anyone steer me in the right direction?

Please e-mail

Query 1820
Saint John Midget Falcons-Richard Reid: I am trying to find a picture of the Saint John Midget Falcons, Maritime midget baseball champions, circa 1936. If anyone has information to share, I would appreciate it as my father, Richard Reid, was the pitcher for the team.

Contact Marlene Reid Hull at

Ruby M. Cusack is a genealogy buff living in New Brunswick, Canada. Send your New Brunswick genealogical queries to her at:  Please put "Query" followed by the surnames in your query as the subject. For more information on submitting queries, visit

New and Used Genealogical and Historical books of
New Brunswick for sale.

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