Selected Chronology

Last updated on May 19th, 2022 at 05:44 pm

This selected chronology is derived from the genealogical records and correspondence history of Harry William Manchester. The photograph below is Harry William Manchester as a teenager in Essex County, Ontario, Canada, circa 1933.

April 3, 1918

Harry was born in Cottam, Ontario, Canada, to Jason and Sarah Catherine (Nee Hutzel) Manchester.

February 7, 1924

Death of Sarah Catherine Manchester from complications of childbirth.


1931


Historical Note

Narrowly Escaped Drowning

These sober-faced lads, Harry Manchester, 13, and Wilbur Rigg, 14, were saved from drowning at the Bridge Avenue Bathing Beach yesterday afternoon, a few seconds after another lad, Lloyd Rigg, 13, had sank to death. The boys had been playing on a raft. Almost exhausted, they were pulled onto the diving board by a male bather. Wilbur tried to rescue his brother, but his strength was not equal to the task.

Editor’s Note: Harry William Manchester is at left.

The Border Cities Star, July 16, 1931


July 31, 1931

Harry was orphaned by the death of his father, Jason Manchester.

Harry William Manchester, Circa 1932

1939

Harry William Manchester of Canada Bread, Windsor, Ontario, Canada, circa pre-WWII

September

On the outbreak of World War II, Harry enlists in the Canadian Army and is initially trained at Camp Borden, Borden, Ontario, Canada.


1940

January

After initial military training at Camp Borden, Borden, Ontario, Harry was posted to the Essex Scottish Regiment facilities vicinity Windsor, Ontario, Canada.

Late May

The Essex Scottish Regiment is re-located back to Camp Borden, in preparation for overseas deployment.

June

The Essex Scottish Regiment advance team is deployed overseas to England.

July-August

Harry and the Essex Scottish Regiment shipped from Camp Borden, Ontario, to Halifax, Nova Scotia via railroad, departing on July 14th; then aboard the RMS Empress of Australia to Scotland, late July:

  1. Departed Camp Borden, Ontario, Canada, by train on July 14th.
  2. Arrived Halifax, Nova Scotia July 16th.
  3. Departed Halifax aboard the RMS Empress of Australia  on July 23rd; Destination: England.
  4. Arrived Scotland August 2nd.
  5. Transported from Scotland to England.
  6. Arrived Aldershot, England August 4th.

The information cards shown above were distributed to Harry William Manchester and other passengers aboard H.M.T. (His Majesty’s Troopship) Empress of Australia during the Trans-Atlantic crossing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada to Scotland, in convoy “TC6.”


August 4th

The Essex Scottish Regiment arrived southern England; barracked at Warburg Barracks, Aldershot, England.

August 13th – At Aldershot, England

Harry William Manchester is assigned permanent military police (“M.P.”) duties with the Essex Scottish Regiment. In this M.P. role, he is exempt from normal parade duties and nighttime curfews.

Harry begins a five-day leave on August 14th.

October/November

Harry trained as a military policeman and transferred to Number Two Company (No 2 Coy) of the Canadian Provo Corps.

L-Cpl Harry William Manchester, Warburg Barracks, Aldershot, England, April 1941.

1941

Harry performed military police duties in various southern England locales, including security patrols and motorized convoy escort duty. The photograph below is L/Cpl Harry William Manchester on his motorcycle, Spring 1941.

Elm Craft House, Preston Road, Brighton, England

1942

Spring

Harry trained with the OPERATION RUTTER/JUBILEE combat forces on the Isle of Wight, in preparation for the Dieppe Raid.

August 19th

Harry participated in the Dieppe Raid, when he went ashore on RED BEACH with the Essex Scottish Regiment, and was severely wounded on the beach by shell fire (assumed to be from mortar fire). Because of the heavy enemy fire, the Royal Navy was unable to evacuate most of the raid survivors, and Harry was captured on the beach with the remnants of the Essex Scottish Regiment.

L/Cpl H W Manchester being evacuated from RED BEACH at the conclusion of the Dieppe Raid, August 19, 1942.

August/September

Letters sent from Canada to Harry are returned unopened and stamped “Missing.” This is the first indication to Harry’s friends and relatives that something has happened to him.

August 24th

Harry’s writes his first letter as a POW, written to his sister Frances, at Ruthven, Ontario. In the letter, Harry asks his sister to convey the message to their relatives that Doug Scratch and Bill Hizeman, also captured at Dieppe, were both alive and safe as fellow POWs.

This letter appears to have been written prior to Harry’s internment in a regular POW camp (i.e., a “Stalag”), and arrived at the Ruthven, Ontario post office on December 16th.

September

September 1, 1942

Dieppe POWs arrive at Stalag VIIIB . (Source: Clare Diary.)


Historical Note

Initial POW Notification

The notification that Harry William Manchester was being held as a prisoner of war (POW) came through the International Red Cross in Geneva, Switzerland. The handwritten notes (below) were in Harry’s correspondence archive held by his sister, Mrs. Elton Newman of Cottam, Ontario.

The initial notification to Harry’s family that he is being held as a prisoner of war in Germany:

From the archive of Harry William Manchester correspondence held by Mrs. Elton Newman of Cottam, Ontario, Canada.




Historical Note

Newspaper Clipping – POW List Climbs Above 230

The Windsor Daily Star news article of Oct 1, 1942, listing additional known POWs captured on the Dieppe Raid. Acting L/Cpl Harry William Manchester, 783 Walker Road [Windsor, Ontario] is listed.

Transcription of News Article:

List Climbs Above 230

Number of Scottish Held Prisoner by Nazis Increases

More than 230 men of the Essex Scottish Regiment previously reported missing in action, following Dieppe are now listed as prisoners of war, according to information being received by relatives here from the International Red Cross.

Telegrams are continuing to arrive at homes in the Windsor district, bringing the glad news that a son or husband is alive—somewhere in Germany.

MANY PRISONERS

Over 500 members of the regiment were reported missing after Dieppe. Reports to date indicate that at least half this number were taken prisoners. In estimating the number of Scottish held as prisoners, allowance must be made for the fact that the families of some Scottish members do not live in this district and The Star as a result, has not yet been advised of word received through the Red Cross.

Relatives of men of the Essex Scottish Regiment who have received official notice of men who are now prisoners of war are asked to communicate by mail with Lieutenant-Colonel J. E McCorkell, commanding officer of the First Reserve Battalion of the Essex Scottish Regiment, at the Windsor Armories.

KEEPING LIST

For the purpose of maintaining a complete list of men of the regiment now prisoners of war, Lieutenant-Colonel McCorkell is anxious to have complete details of name, rank, regimental number, prisoner number and name of the prison camp.

Included in the list to date are 24 officers of the regiment. Major John A. Willis, reported “missing, believed killed,” and Lieutenant Alfred Douglas Green, reported missing, have not been reported prisoners to date. Another Scottish officer, Lieutenant James Palms, of Detroit, was reported killed and reports of the attack contained special mention of his bravery as he led his men up the Dieppe beach.

Other Windsorites who were with the Royal Canadian Engineers in the Dieppe raid were reported as prisoners today.

New additions to the list of prisoners are as follows:

LATEST REPORTED

Sergt. John Worth Henley, 1222 Argyle road
L Sergt. James William Scott, 1097 Moy avenue.
Pte. Clarence Judd, Tilbury.
Pte. Eugene Labonte, Tilbury,
Pte William Schramek, Tilbury.
Sapper Ernest Lafaive, 793 Parent avenue.
Sapper James Patterson Sheppard, 420 Church street
Pate George L. Browning, 1500 Francols road.
Acting L -Cpl. Harry William Manchester, 783 Walker road.
Pte. Alfred Greenwood, 925 Sandwich street east.

***End of Transcription ***

The Windsor Daily Star news article of Oct 1, 1942.


September 20th

First POW letter written by Harry from Stalag VIIIB, which would be his home for the next two years.

October 1, 1942


Historical Note

Newspaper Clipping – Initial POW Letter From Germany

Mrs. Elton Newman Forwards a Letter From War Prisoner Harry William Manchester to The Windsor Daily Star, printed September 14, 1942.

Initial POW Letter

 

The Windsor Daily Star, printed September 14, 1942.


October 8, 1942

Dieppe POWs’ are tied with rope at roll call, lasting from dawn to dusk, with the men confined to their compound; this process repeated daily for thirteen months. Manacles replaced the rope on or about December 1942. (Source: Clare Diary and Harry’s recollection.)


1943

Prisoner of War in Stalag VIIIB.


Historical Note

Mrs. Elton Newman Forwards Letter From War Prisoner

EDITOR, The Windsor Star,

Sir: I have copied a letter from Cpl. Harry William Manchester, Stalag VIIIB, Germany, to Miss Onnellee Rewis [Reive], Kingsville [Ontario]. I wonder if you would please print it in your paper, so everyone may be thankfuled for all they’ve done for our brother while he is in Germany

MRS. ELTON NEWMAN, R.R.2, Ruthven, Ont.

    Dearest Onnellee:

This is my first chance to write you this month, so you can imagine how anxious I am to get at it. I have received quite a number of letters this month, also four Christmas cards. A lot of letters from you. I also received 1,000 cigarets from the Windsor Smokes Fund and received my first personal parcel February 11.

Please thank your grandmother and everyone else who has helped to make my existence here comfortable and happy. I would like to write to them all individually but writing paper does not permit me. Things aren’t too badly now with our little group of 17, but being a new working party, the supplies have been short as it takes them quite a while to come from the Stalag. The wood is all pine and spruce and quite small, so it is not too hard, but healthy.

I have had a lot to do for myself, being the senior N.C.O. and commander of the party. It makes extra. It seems that every night I have to get the interpreter and get something thrashed out which takes lots of brain work in a place like this. But I must not complain though, as it is such a relief to be unchained. I guess I will have to bring this to a close for this time, so again please than everyone for their kindness.

CPL. HARRY WM. MANCHESTER

In Camp Stalag VIIIB, Germany.

The Windsor Daily Star, May 13, 1943.


December 26, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag VIIB.


1944

Prisoner of War in Stalag VIIIB. About this time, the Germans reorganized the POW camps in the Lamsdorf area, and Stalag VIIIB was designated Stalag 344.

January 22, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag 344 . Stalag VIIB designation was changed to “Stalag 344.”

January 26, 1944

Prisoner of War parcel receipt postcard sent to Miss Marjorie Newman (Harry’s niece) from Stalag 344.

February 13, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mr. Jimmie Woods (Harry’s nephew) from Stalag VIIIB . The Stalag designation was changed to “Stalag 344.”

February 19, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag 344 . Stalag VIIB designation was changed to “Stalag 344.”

Late February 1944

Canadian POWs from the Dieppe Raid are transferred from Stalag VIIIB/344 to Stalag IID in the Stargard area. (Source: Clare Diary.)

April 23, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

May 21, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

June 15, 1944

Prisoner of War parcel receipt postcard to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

June 19, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Asa Sweetman from Stalag IID.

June 24, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

July 9, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

July 15, 1944

Prisoner of War parcel receipt postcard sent to Miss Marion Newman (Harry’s niece) from Stalag IID.

July 25, 1944

Prisoner of War parcel receipt postcard to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

August 6, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

September 13, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

September 20, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

October 15, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

December 7, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.

December 31, 1944

Prisoner of War letter to Mrs. Elton Newman from Stalag IID.


1945

January 14, 1945

POW letter written by Harry from Stalag IID. This is the last POW letter in the correspondence collection.

February 25, 1945 – The March

The POWs in the east (including the Stargard area) are marched west through Germany to avoid liberation by approaching Russian troops. This movement was part of what is now known as the The March.

Harry and fellow POWs negotiated hourly rest breaks of 10 minutes with their German guards during their movement westward. The political prisoners also being marched westward at that time were not given rest breaks.

April, 1945 (probably April 17, 1945)

POW camp liberated by British forces (probably Stalag XIB near Fallingbostel in Lower Saxony ) with the arrival of  British forces during the night. The prisoners awoke to a British tank parked outside of the POW camp main gate. (Source: Harry’s recollections and the Clare Diary.)

May 7, 1945

The Toronto Daily Star reports 325 Canadian POWs have been liberated, including Acting L-Cpl Harry William Manchester.

May 9, 1945

The Windsor Daily Star reports that twelve Canadian POWs, including L/Cpl Harry William Manchester have arrived safely in England.

May 16, 1945

Telegram from Red Cross in Ottawa, Ontario to Mrs. Elton Newman advising A-21723 L-Cpl H. Manchester “arrived safe and well England” (from Europe).

June 2, 1945

Telegram from Harry Manchester in England to Mrs. Elton Newman requesting that she send twenty five dollars to A-55190 Cpl S.B. Knight No 6 CDM Provost Coy. C.A. England (i.e., number 6 Canadian Military Provost Company – military police – Canadian Army in England). This was probably to reimburse Cpl Knight for advancing the money to newly liberated Harry Manchester.

June 13, 1945

Telegram from Harry Manchester in England to Mrs. Elton Newman advising stop all mail to England.

July, 1945

Harry is repatriated to Canada aboard the RMS Queen Mary.

July 20, 1945

The Essex Free Press (Essex, Ontario, Canada) announces that Harry arrived home during the week prior to July 20th.

September 1, 1945

Harry William Manchester is discharged from the Canadian Army at Wolseley Barracks, London, Ontario, Canada, just shy of six years total service.

October 15, 1945

Harry marries Onnellee Marguerite Reive, of Kingsville, Ontario, Canada, daughter of Lawrence and Ida Reive, at Epworth United Church, Kingsville, Ontario, Canada.


1946

June 2, 1945

Birth of first daughter.

1948

July

Birth of first son.

1950

February 2, 1950

Birth of second son.

December 13, 1950

Harry and family enter the United States as immigrants, and move into a rental duplex on Field Street, Detroit, Michigan.

1951

June

Birth of second daughter.

1957

Summer

The Manchester family buys and moves into a home on Carlin Street in Detroit, Michigan.

1971

Harry divorces his first wife and marries Margaret Mary Croll. Harry and Margaret move to St. Clair Shores, Michigan.

1974

Harry passes away in the early morning hours of February 25, 1974, as a result of bone cancer. He is buried at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Detroit, Michigan.