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Sgt Arthur Hammond  Regt #79
(Donated by Tammy Hammond

Arthur Hammond was born on July 3, 1894 in St. John's, Newfoundland to Thomas James Hammond and Mary Elizabeth (Whitten) Hammond.

In 1911, Arthur took his initial First Aid Course from Dr. Cluny MacPherson, the founder of the St. John Ambulance Association in Newfoundland. When WWI broke out in 1914, he joined the St. John Ambulance Unit led by Dr. MacPherson. Arthur Hammond was one of the members of the First Contingent, engaged for service abroad, who left St. John's on board H.M.S.Transport Florizel on Sunday, Oct 4th, 1914. They served on the front from Gallipoli and Egypt, to the Western Front. He survived the July 1, 1916 decimation of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment at Beaumont Hamel. As a medic he was exposed to the worst human tragedy of the battle. As noted in Colonel G. W. L. Nicholson's book, The Fighting Newfoundlander, Ambulance Sergeant Arthur Hammond and his staff did what they could to alleviate the suffering of the wounded before turning them over to the Royal Army Medical Corps. Later in the war, Battalion Ambulance Sergeant Arthur Hammond and 3 of his stretcher bearers *Ptes Thomas Meaney, Herber Spurrell & Patrick O'Neill were awarded the Military Medal for bravery at the Battle of Steenbeek.

In 1923 **Dr. Kerr had a contract to provide medical services at the Paper Mill construction site in Corner Brook & the power plant in Deer Lake. Upon recommendation from Cluny MacPherson, Dr. Kerr hired Arthur Hammond to provide First Aid at a station set up outside the Mill gates in Corner Brook, Dr. Kerr was stationed in Deer Lake. **Dr. Franklin Fisher supervised First Aid Station, his medical practice extended from Lark Harbour to Howley a distance of 80 mines, so he only came to the First Aid site when called in by Mr. Hammond. If you lived in the Corner Brook area during the mid 1920's and needed a cut sewn or a limb set, chances are it was Arthur Hammond who looked after you.

Meanwhile, a general hospital was under construction in Corner Brook to be owned and operated by the paper company. It was opened August 25, 1925 by Lady Allardyce, the wife of the Governor of Newfoundland, at that same time, the mill was officially opened. Arthur not only supplied First Aid services at the mill but also worked at the hospital where he was the X-ray technician. A new hospital was built in 1951 and Arthur Hammond was it's first Administrator, a job he held until 1960.

In 1952, Arthur was instrumental in the formation of the Humber Branch of the St. John Ambulance Association in Corner Brook, a uniformed brigade was set up in 1959. His services to the St. John Ambulance were recognized by his appointment to the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. In 1951 he was admitted to the Order as a Serving Brother, promoted to Officer in 1955 and to Commander in 1964. Arthur Hammond is mentioned in the White Cross in Canada, on page 59, It states:

"Throughout the war Ambulance Sergeant Arthur Hammond and his men tended the wounded on many a field of battle -- he won the Military Medal for his heroic work in the swamps of Flanders".

On November 7, 1981, Arthur Hammond was inducted into the Newfoundland Sports Hall of fame for his excellence as an athlete. As a youth and a member of the Church Lads' Brigade, he became actively involved in the denominational inter brigade of sports competitions which flourished locally prior to WWI. He participated in most sports but was most proficient at wrestling. In 1914, Arthur Hammond won the featherweight wrestling championship of Newfoundland. While undergoing his military training, it was noted that he excelled as a gymnast, wrestler and cross country runner. He was chosen as an instructor of recruits. In 1919, he was a member of the St. Andrews soccer team which captured the St. John's championship. The same year, he was a member of the winning Army crew which captured the Veterans' race at the annual Regatta. He was a competitor in the swimming races across Quidi Vidi Lake. In 1920, he was the champion of both the welterweight and middleweight wrestling classes.

Arthur Hammond was married to Winifred Andrews and had 2 sons, Derek and David. He did not wish to talk about his remarkable war record and the other achievements of his lifetime, he was a very humble man as were most of his generation. Arthur Hammond passed away on January 25, 1982 in Corner Brook, Newfoundland.

*Stretcher bearer's names from "The Fighting Newfoundlander"
**Information about Dr. Kerr & Dr. Fisher believed to be from the late Dr. Noel Murphy


Arthur (on the left) and two comrades after receiving their medals.


Arthur (on the left) and comrades in Egypt.
Click here to see the original photo.


Arthur (right) and brother Thomas (left) posing with their parents.


Arthur receiving his Commander of the Order of St. John from Governor General Vanier.


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Military Records Contact: Daniel B. Breen

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