Explore History

Second World War
The Navy Ashore  - The Navy and the Home Front

The Royal Canadian Navy became a strong presence on Canada's home front during the Second World War. Naval imagery appeared in fundraising and propaganda materials, while Canadians built equipment for the navy, or were encouraged to support it through volunteer work.

Bedford Magazine Explosion, 1945
Bedford Magazine Explosion, 1945

Canadian sailors aboard the destroyer HMCS Iroquois (foreground) watch a large explosion at the Bedford Magazine near Halifax, Nova Scotia, in July 1945.

On 18 July 1945, a fire aboard an ammunition barge at the Bedford Magazine near Halifax, Nova Scotia, spread to the magazine itself and led to a larger fire and series of explosions that lasted until the 19th. James Grant took this photograph from the deck of the Tribal class destroyer HMCS Iroquois, which along with HMCS Haida and HMCS Huron had arrived in Canada the previous month and was being refitted for service in the Pacific against Japan.

George Metcalf Archival Collection
CWM 20020039-001_p53d

$90 Killed this U-Boat!
Fifth Victory Loan, 1943
Seventh Victory Loan, Halifax, 1944
Careless Words may cause Disaster!
Censored Photograph, HMCS Wentworth
What would you do if I quit?
Manufacturing Naval Guns and Mountings
Torpedo Depth and Roll Recorder
Send the boys good Books and magazines
Knit for the Navy and Merchant Navy
Ditty Bags for Sailors
Sailor's Fur Vest
"Meet the Navy" Program
"Meet the Navy" Program
Royal Canadian Navy Certificate of Acknowledgement
Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve Pillow Cover
Cut-Out Allied Naval Units
The Canadian Navy Paint Book
V-E Day, St. John's, Newfoundland
Bedford Magazine Explosion, 1945