Private Clancy of the CEF

A question for fellow blogger Medic:

He was born in New York and named for Benjamin Franklin — how and when did he move to Canada, I wonder? (And what did he do to get busted down from lance-corporal?)

3 thoughts on “Private Clancy of the CEF

  1. I have absolutely no idea when did he moved to Canada. He was back in Canada by 1911 but living with his uncle and aunt. It’s is also possible that his parents were Canadian, immigrated to the USA and Benjamin came back to Canada. During 1880-90 a lot of Canadians, mostly from the province of Quebec, emigrated in the north-east part of the USA for work. After a few years they came back to Canada because the economic situation was getting difficult there too.

    As for the Lance-Corporal rank, as I mentioned I saw that rank only one time in his file so it’s either a mistake made by the clerk or he was a Lance-Corporal for a very short period because he replaced someone who went on a short term leave. Unfortunately those military files do leave some unanswered questions from time to time.

    I always thought he had a cool name, imagine someone asking him “What’s your name son” and to that he replied “Benjamin Franklin sir”


    • He does have a cool name! Maybe he was orphaned and that’s why he lived with his aunt and uncle. We’ll never know, but at least, thanks to you, someone remembers him, even though we don’t know much about him.I didn’t know they promoted soldiers because they were filling in for someone else — was that common?


  2. When he enlisted his father was still alive and residing in New York State, but no information on his mother.
    Sometime soldiers were sent on course or permission for a few days or a few weeks, so they needed to be replaced if they were in charge of a group. Also it was not everyone who wanted or liked the promotion. The sergeant had to run from one shell hole to the other, much exposing themselves to enemy fire, many soldiers preferred to stay with the rank of private.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s