Transforming IWM London

Flag, Red Ensign, Canadian

IWM Non Commercial Licence

The media for this item are free to reuse for non-commercial purposes under the IWM Non Commercial Licence. Video, sound and images can be embedded with the code we offer here, and images can also be downloaded.

By downloading any images or embedding any media, you agree to the terms and conditions of the IWM Non Commercial Licence, including your use of the attribution statement specified by IWM. For this item, that is: © IWM (FLA 5361)

  • Download this item

    Embed HTML

    Embed BBCode

  • Download this item

    Embed HTML

    Embed BBCode

  • Download this item

    Embed HTML

    Embed BBCode

  • Download this item

    Embed HTML

    Embed BBCode

  • Download this item

    Embed HTML

    Embed BBCode

Catalogue number
  • FLA 5361
Materials
  • bunting
Dimensions
  • general: 122 cm
  • general: 244 cm
Alternative Names
  • FULL NAME: Flag, Red Ensign, Canadian
  • SIMPLE NAME: Flag, Canadian
Object Type
flag
Category
equipment

Label

This flag was flown during the First World War at Vimy Ridge, Lens, Hill 70, and Passchendaele, 1917. One other 'Red Ensign' with Vimy Ridge associations survives in the museum at Penticton, British Columbia, but that is a simple Red Ensign without the Provinces' coats of arms. This version of the Red Ensign, with the arms of four provinces, was the national flag of Canada from 1868 to 1870. It is not clear why this 'old' flag was carried by the Battalion - it may have simply been 'souvenired' from the flag locker of the merchant ship that brought the battalion to Europe. The Imperial War Museum's Red Ensign was donated to the Museum by Lieutenant Colonel Lorn Paulet Owen Tudor DSO and Bar, an Englishman who emigrated to Canada before the First World War and served in the Canadian Army : specifically the 5th Canadian Infantry Battalion (Western Cavalry), Canadian Expeditionary Force, raised in Saskatchewan. He commanded the battlaion from June 1917 to March 1918, and from April 1918 to demobilization in 1919. He was awarded the DSO and bar and mentioned in despatches. The Canadian experience at Vimy Ridge has come to be recognised as a pivotal event in the emergence of Canada's national identity, and this flag is believed to be a unique survivor in this form. The Red Ensign, originally the British merchant flag, a red flag with the Union Flag in the upper left quarter, was adopted in this form as Canada's national flag in 1868. It bears the coats of arms of Canada's four founding provinces, and was superseded in 1870 when Manitoba was added, so is a very early example. The Canadian Red Ensign continued as the national flag until 1965.

History note

This Red Ensign was flown at Vimy Ridge, Lens, Hill 70, and Passchendaele, 1917. It was donated to the Imperial War Museum by Lieutenant Colonel Lorn Paulet Owen Tudor DSO and Bar. Tudor, an Englishman, emigrated to Canada before the First World War. In England he had served in the Berkshire Yeomanry. During the First World War Tudor served in the Canadian Army, specifically the 5th Canadian Infantry Battalion (Western Cavalry), Canadian Expeditionary Force, raised in Saskatchewan. He commanded the battalion from June 1917 to March 1918, and from April 1918 to demobilization in 1919. He was awarded the DSO and bar and mentioned in despatches. The Canadian experience at Vimy Ridge has come to be recognised as a pivotal event in the emergence of Canada's national identity, and this flag is believed to be a unique survivor in this form. The Red Ensign, originally the British merchant flag, a red flag with the Union Flag in the upper left quarter, was adopted in this form as Canada's national flag in 1868. It bears the coats of arms of Canada's four founding provinces, and was superceded in 1870 when Manitoba was added, so is a very early example. The Canadian Red Ensign continued as the national flag until 1965. Loan out to Canadian War Museum wef 5/Apr/2005 - returned 11/Jan/2008

Physical description

A Union Flag to the upper hoist, with the heraldic arms of Canada's founding provinces - Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia - within a shield to the centre right fly, the whole on a red field.

Comments (0)

Comments are the user's own and in no-way express the opinion of the IWM. Read our community policy for more details.
Please note that we cannot reply to comments made here. Find out how to ask questions or tell us something.

Add a comment

Add a comment

Please stay polite and on-topic: