Collection 2017-034 - Alexander P. Deroche Halifax Explosion photographs

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Alexander P. Deroche Halifax Explosion photographs

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    • Attributions and conjectures: Found in the family home, attributed to Colonel Deroche.

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    • December 1917 (Creation)
      Deroche, Alexander Pierrepont

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    Physical description

    29 photographs: b&w; 10 x 15 cm.

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    Biographical history

    Alexander Pierrepont Deroche was born 12 October 1881 in Napanee, Ontario, Canada to Hammel M. Deroche and Sarah Ann Pile. He graduated from the Royal Military College in Kingston, ON in 1903 and became an engineer with the Canadian Army. In September 1908 he married Bessie Campbell Bogart in Toronto. He had a successful military career, rising to the rank of Colonel by March 1917. He served as Director General of Works and Buildings during the First World War, stationed in Quebec. He was called in to help with the reconstruction of Halifax, Nova Scotia after the Halifax Explosion of 6 December 1917. After his service in the First World War, he joined Bate McMahon Construction company in Ottawa, as manager until 1940, then became manager with Dominion Arsenals, Lindsay, ON until his retirement in 1947. He died in Kingston, ON, 4 Dec 1950 at the age of 69.

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    Scope and content

    Fonds consists of 29 photographs of the destruction of military buildings, ships, and waterfront piers caused by the Halifax Explosion of 6 December 1917. Images include the Wellington Barracks and other buildings at Wellington (became CFB Stadacona military base) on Gottingen Street, the ship “Imo” beached on Dartmouth shore, the steamship “S.S. Old Colony” which became a temporary hospital, railway line along the shore, the deep-water military terminals at Pier 2, the market at Duke and Brunswick Streets (became Scotia Square), and the garrison chapel at corner of Brunswick and Cogswell Streets. Photographs bear sequential numbers A1 toA6, B1 to B6… to E1 to E6. Missing from the set is B3.

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    Immediate source of acquisition

    Donated to Nova Scotia Archives by maternal grandson William Roger of Halifax in 2017.


    Based on sequential numbers on the prints.

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