Alexander George Parlby

Service file

Alexander George Parlby (1898-1917) was an eighteen-year-old rancher from Alix, Alberta, when he enlisted at Red Deer, Alberta, in November 1916. He went missing in action on the August 25, 1917, while serving with the 50th Battalion. His body was never recovered, and he is commemorated on the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in France. His older brother, John Francis Hall Parlby, was drafted to serve in the war, although he never saw action. The men's aunt, Irene Parlby, became president of the United Farm Women of Alberta in 1916 and emerged as one of the most prominent women in Canadian political life. In 1921 she was elected to the provincial legislature as a member of the United Farmers of Alberta and was appointed the province's first female cabinet minister. In 1929 she was one of the Famous Five whose court case resulted in women being recognized as persons under Canadian law. The story of the Parlby family shows how Canadian society was changed fundamentally by the war, as many women seized opportunities to enter the workplace and public life for the first time, taking on roles traditionally performed by men.

Service Record Details

Attestation paper 1

Date of Birth: March 12, 1898 (Alix, Alberta)

Date of Attestation: November 13, 1916

Age at Enlistment: 18 years, 10 months

Height: 5 feet, 8 1/2 inches

Weight: 135 pounds

Description: Medium complexion, blue eyes, light brown hair. Church of England.

Home Address: Alix, Alberta

Trade: Rancher

Married: No

Details of Family: Father, Edward McKenzie Parlby, and mother, Ann Morison Parlby, both living in Alix, Alberta, Canada.

Next of Kin: Father (Edward McKenzie Parlby)

Theatre of War: France

Casualties / Medical History

Attestation paper 2

1917 to 1918 – Parlby is reported missing from the field on August 25th, 1917, and is presumed to have died. (Page 6)

Interesting Details from the Service Record

  • February 15, 1917 – In his will he bequeaths his entire estate to his father. (Page 4)
  • April 1, 1917 – His assigned pay is to be sent to John F.H. Parlby of Alix, Alberta. (Page 23)
  • April 7, 1917 – He arrives in England on the SS Saxonia. (Page 6)
  • August to September 1917 – His assigned pay is cancelled. His account is closed and the pension office notified that he is missing and presumed to have died. (Pages 24-25)
  • June 17, 1918 – A form titled “Missing Man. (Acceptance of Death for Official Purposes.)” states that he has been missing since August 25th, 1917. (Page 5)
  • June 25, 1918 – A red ‘D’ indicates that he has died. His father’s address is listed as Long Valley Ranch, Box 10, Alix, Alberta. (Page 12)

The London Gazette

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Military Medals Honours and Awards

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Census Records

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