This is Hamilton Gault. (More about him here) Not a man to fool with and a born warrior. Look at his eyes!
In this perid from August 4th to September 24th 1914, he was maybe the busiest man in Canada. For he personally financed and raised a new regiment. He offered $100,000 of his own money – about $2 million in today’s currency. (More here)
This is Princess Patricia inspecting the regiment. The caption says that this is in 1914 but no one wore a helmet then - so my guess is that this is later in the war.
(Correction - As my sister Diana and I looked further at this picture it is 1919 and the officer escorting the Princess is Gault himself - look at the way he projects his left leg - he is wearing a prosthesis - when I blow the image up, I can see the DSO ribbon - he has his rank on his shoulder - in WWI they had them on the sleeve. I have only ever seen him at full face so it took a woman's eye to see him.)
(PPS - He signed up again in WWII and like Alec my grandfather ran a large part of the Canadian reinforcements. So he served in 3 wars Boer and WWI and II)
Still one of Canada's finest regiments, the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, was raised mainly from ex regular soldiers and, in 1914, mainly from men who had been born in Britain. It sailed with the First Contingent but was separated in England and attached to the British army. It was the first Canadian unit to see action.
Gault's wife Marguerite Stephens was the sister of my great Aunt Frances (Stephens) Ballantyne (My maternal great grandfather C C Ballantyne, Aunt Frances father in Law, was the only other individual to finance the raising of a regiment that I know of too.)
Here she is (The McCord) in 1915.
The cap badge of the new regiment had at its centre a flower called the Marguerite in honour of Marguerite.
The regiment was named after the Governor General's daughter, Patricia. Partly because this was a clever thing to do politically but, as importantly, also because the Princess was one of his wife's best friends.
(A family aside - Her father, the Duke of Connaught, a son of Queen Victoria, who had served as a 20 year old in the Army in Canada in the 1880's, was now the Governor General. Before his marriage, he had a 7 year affair with my great great great Aunt Phoebe Allan. (I told you that this was complicated!) By 1914, she was dead and only memories remained.)
So we see that much of the romantic passion in raising the regiment was rooted in Gault's love for his glamorous wife. It was like a Knight going off to war in the 14th century with his lady's favours on his lance. The Icon of the regiment was all about her. The name was all about her best friend.
But sadly all this romantic attachment and energy would turn to hate.
Here he is later in the war. He has lost a leg and most of his friends and worst of all, his marriage has collapsed.
But all this is in the future. In 1914, it was all such an adventure.