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First World War (1914-1918)
The Merchant Navy

From 1914 to 1918, Canadian and Allied merchant ships and mariners transported personnel, munitions, weapons, and food to Great Britain and Europe as part of the Allied war effort. German U-Boats (submarines) and mines claimed tens of thousands of Allied lives and thousands of ships.

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Bridge, RMS Megantic
Bridge, RMS Megantic

This is a rare photograph of the bridge of the RMS Megantic, one of the ocean liners that transported Canadian troops across the Atlantic in October 1914.

The Megantic, a White Star Line ship, was a troop transport for much of the war, and could accommodate several thousand soldiers. On the bridge, a lookout with binoculars (left) watches for enemy ships or submarines, while a guard with a rifle stands nearby. On the right, a number of control and navigational instruments, including the ship's wheel (centre) are protected from wind and spray by canvas screens.

George Metcalf Archival Collection
CWM 19900346-183_13

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Convoy of the First Contingent
Bridge, RMS Megantic
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