Veteran Stories:
John Frederick Mould

Army

  • John Frederick Mould (left) and a fellow soldier pose for a photograph in South Africa, where they were serving in the Boer War. 1902. Collection courtesy of C. Audrey Ball.

  • Card from John Mould to his sweetheart Edith at home, letting her know that he arrived safely in South Africa on January 5, 1902.

  • John Mould in his WWI Army uniform with a small circular photo of his wife Edith in the top left corner. John had this card made overseas. On the reverse he wrote: "France, February 8, 1917. From Jack With Love."

  • John Mould carved this pipe with the details of his war service. The pipe carries his initials, his service in Belgium, France and Germany, his adopted homeland of Canada, his service with the 19th battalion and his years of service, 1914-1918.

  • A postcard from John's wife, Edith, before he left for service overseas. He was stationed at the Exhibition Grounds in Toronto. The image shows a mother holding the hand of a departing soldier with the words: "Duty and Honour Bid Us Part."

  • A selection of the many postcards that John sent to Edith while he was overseas. These postcards are embroidered with messages like, Happy New Year 1918, Not Absent from Thoughts, Thinking of You and a scene from Ypres, France.

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"He received a very small pension, for he became deaf, caused by the shells, and he also suffered from gas poisoning. When he came home I guess he had trench mouth and he had to have his teeth pulled out. "

Transcript

My mother had died and my aunt, Edith Mould and her husband John, brought me up from age two and a half, but they had no children of their own and I called them mom and pop. John F. Mould was born in 1883 and he died in 1965. He was born in Birmingham, England and he came to Canada in 1910. He went to war in 1914. He went to the Toronto Exhibition. From there they were shipped to Folkstone, England and on to France, and he served as a cook. He also was on the battlefields. He had shellshock, but he remained active duty. He was demobilized in 1919 and he went in with the 10th Field Battery from St. Catharines, and the 2nd Expeditionary Force.

He kept excellent day-to-day diaries in the trenches. In 1936 we went to the opening of the Canadian war memorial in France and it was opened by King Edward who later abdicated, and I was seven years of age at that time. He received a very small pension, for he became deaf, caused by the shells, and he also suffered from gas poisoning. When he came home I guess he had trench mouth and he had to have his teeth pulled out.

He was a man who believed in King and Country, but also he was a very proud Canadian. As a matter of interest, he was in the Boer War in 1901/02 and he was a very young man at that time.

Mom sent him rubber boots to wear in France because they didn't have any. He complained about the mud and the water and he got them. Amazingly, they could send things through parcel post to a war zone.

As most soldiers were, they never talked about the war. By the time I was a teenager, World War II was on so nobody was interested in those days about World War I.

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