Mark Maracle signature

On this day in 1915 Mark Maracle joined up in Belleville. He was born on May 15th, 1900 in Tyendinaga, the second son of Daniel Maracle and Charlotte (née Bardy), who were Mohawks. His older brother Goldie had signed up in October 1915.

Mark joined the 80th Battalion with the regimental number 220323. He was five feet four and a half inches tall, with a dark complexion, black eyes and black hair. His service record shows that he arrived in England on May 30th, 1916. The army realized in July 1916 that he was under age and decided to keep him in training until he was nineteen. He was thought to be eighteen at the time, but was actually only sixteen years old.

Mark Maracle under age

Maracle was transferred to the 21st Battalion in August 1917 and suffered a shrapnel injury to the left side of his face at Passchendaele on November 4th, 1917. As a consequence, he lost most of the sight in his left eye, but this did not stop him from joining the army again during the Second World War. The photograph below (loaned for scanning by Shirley Maracle, Mark’s daughter-in-law) shows Mark and his wife Vellis (née Brant). They got married in Deseronto on October 15th, 1919.

Mark and Vellis Maracle

Mark and Vellis Maracle, early 1940s, courtesy of Shirley Maracle