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The Great War

Men must fight, women must reapLooking out from their mud homesWhen the assassination of a distant Archduke and the breakdown of diplomacy of the European Powers led Great Britain to war in 1914, the people of the Kawarthas answered the call for King and Country. One young girl planted a prize potato patch to support the war effort, others knitted socks, while many young men waved goodbye from the train station as they set out on the adventure.

Boys from the Kawarthas served in all services of the British Military. Three Lord brothers, sons of Fenelon's Presbyterian minister, flew in the newly formed Royal Air Force. Many sailed trying to pass supplies across the Atlantic, or in the trenches of Northern France and the Low Countries. Most servicemen from the Kawarthas did not see action until the later years of the war, but their harrowing experiences soon made the patriotism of the early years fade in place of a more sombre, cold reality. Having been part of such a cataclysm, which killed ten million men, life could never be the same again.

Maryboro Lodge tells the story of the Great War from enlistment and the propaganda that the Crown unleashed on its people, to the experiences of local families, and the tremendous cost of the war. It illustrates the contributions and sacrifices made across society, the experience of service, including Mark Fell's poetry from the trenches, and the relief of knowing that the war was finally over.