Chronology of Canadian Military History Canadian Military History, Colonial Period, New France, First Peoples, Seven Years War, French Indian War Canadian Military History, British North America, American Invasion, War of 1812, Dominion of Canada, Riel Rebellion, South African War Canadian Military History, World War 1 History, 1914-1918, Canadian Armed Forces, conscription Canadian Military History, World War 2, 1939-1945, Battle of the Atlantic, conscription, invasion, Dday, Normandy, Germany, axis, allies, Hong Kong, Dieppe 1946-today
Canada within the Empire
NAC/ANC C-18,737
British North America
The War of 1812: Invasion Repelled
The War of 1812: Canada Saved
Fortifying Canada
Rebellions in the Canadas
The Fenian Raids
Confederation and Expansion
Creating a Standing Army
Developing the Canadian Nation
The Northwest Campaign
Canada and Imperialism
The South African War
Military Reform



The South African War demonstrated the need to modernize and reform Canada’s military establishment.

In 1904, Ottawa, moved to ‘Canadianize’ the militia, replacing the British General Officer Commanding with a Canadian appointee. The army became more self-reliant with the addition of medical, signals, ordnance, service, and engineer elements. Canada formally standardized its military training and most equipment along British lines, although weapons remained few and often obsolete. With growing tensions in Europe, defence spending rose, militia training accelerated, and the authorized strength of the Permanent Force increased to 4000.

Canada also improved its coastal defences and, after much debate, in 1910 created the Royal Canadian Navy consisting of two training cruisers, His Majesty’s Canadian Ships (H.M.C.S.) Niobe and Rainbow.

South African War, Boer War, Royal Canadian Navy

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South African War, Boer War
Canadian War Museum
1 Vimy Place
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0M8