Remembering the First World War – Archives Blog

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At Home and Away: Remembering the First World War through records at the Archives of Manitoba

Visit this blog for regular posts about records at the Archives of Manitoba that date from the time of the First World War. Visit the Archives of Manitoba to see the records in person.

March 2015 Posts:

2 March 2015

Smellie of the Nascopie

In October 1917, Captain Thomas Farrar Smellie became master of the Nascopie, taking over its wartime voyages from Captain Edmund Mack. At the time, Smellie had been in command of another HBC ship, the Bayverdun, which was also part of HBC’s fleet of supply vessels chartered by allied governments. He was stationed at Norfolk, Virginia, recovering from rheumatic fever. On the day that he received word from London that he was to assume command of the Nascopie, he also broke his arm. Weak from illness and with his arm in a sling, he travelled to Montreal to command the Nascopie on a voyage into the White Sea to Archangel, Russia. He arrived in Archangel in the spring of 1918 in the midst of Russian civil war. After this voyage, Captain Smellie had a long and celebrated career on board the Nascopie exploring the Arctic, for which he is best known. However, his contribution as one of two masters to sail the HBC’s most famous ship into war torn Russia cannot be forgotten.

photo of Captain Thomas Farrar Smellie

enlarge image

Hudson’s Bay Company Archives, Archives of Manitoba,
Lorene Squire photographs taken for “The Beaver” magazine,
“Captain Smellie” [aboard the Nascopie], HBCA 1981/28/50.

Search Tip: To learn more about Captain Smellie, consult the brief biographical sketch PDF on our website and use keyword “Smellie” to search for photographs of him in Keystone.

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