David Stanley Bernhardt signature

On this day in 1917 David Stanley Bernhardt (sometimes written Barnhardt), a machinist, signed up in St. Catharines, Ontario. He was born in Deseronto on January 25th, 1880, the son of Robert James Barnhardt and Catherine (née Maracle), who were both Mohawks. In 1901 the family were still in Deseronto, but they had moved to Midland, Ontario by 1911. Robert died in Midland in 1913. David was living in Port Dalhousie when his daughter, Beatrice Catherine Bernhardt, was born in July 1913. Beatrice’s birth registration states that David married Jennie Gordon in Penetanguishene in 1907.

David joined the 256th Battalion with the regimental number 1099026. He was a quarter of an inch over five feet tall, with a dark complexion, grey eyes and black hair. His service record shows that he arrived in England in April 1917 and was transferred to the 10th Battalion, Canadian Railway Troops, joining them in France in June.

Bernhardt survived the war, travelling back to Canada on the RMS Celtic in March 1919. He was demobilized in Toronto on March 21st.