Posted 04 March 2009 - 11:03 am
There are long memories regarding the camp! I'm not sure where you are refering to in neither StAsaph nor Trefnant; very interesting, and I would appreciate any further info you may have.
Weather was fantastic - BBC equipment crashed 4 minutes before live link. We recorded a piece for tonight instead. Gillan , the 'faithful guard'; and Tarasavitch and Young , two rioters; and Haney the 'innocent bystander' are there. The other innocent bystander - Hickman, was disinterred and taken to Canada. As you saythe 83 other Canadian graves are those who died from November 1918 (when the whole Kinmel camp was handed to the Canadians as their main transit camp). DoWs are also located there, as well as the flue pandemic victims of spring 1918. One nurse amongst them. From a Welsh point of view Clive, te Clynnog lad is intriguing. In fact the whole Welsh Canadian contribution is a fascinating topic of which I know very little. I have five Ruthin names who went and served with the Canadians.
It's the same man Myrtle. He was Sapper William Tarasavitch, of the Canadian Railway Troops, his surname appears mis-spelt on numerous occasions.
The paragraph you quote comes from The Times, 7th March. The report was an extremely dubious and machiavalian piece of reporting reliant on a single source - the War Office. It contained deliberate lies (A Brunswickian Major and VC holder trampled to death, a hundred casualties, civilian women molested, drunken sprees, fires uncontrolled, a mob of 5000 advancing on Rhyl, 15 civilians arrested, Bolshevick ring- leaders) All of them lies.
On March 10th, The Canadian Camp Commandant and authorities wrote protesting against such inaccuracies, and a small print full-retraction was printed on that date in The Times. But it was too late, as the country had absorbed the original report to such a degree that the seeds of confusion sown are still believed today.
What can be believed, is that Tarasavitch was of Russian origin, who embraced Canada his new country with enough fervour as to volunteer to serve in the war. There was a strong anti-emigre feeling in Canada (not unlike the 'Poles are taking our work' feeling here.) He was present in the initial meeting in Montreal Camp and was elected a spokesman, and was in the front line of poorly armed mutineers (stones and broken rifles used as clubs) when he was set upon, singled out, and stabbed to death 'his stomach ripped and bayoneted by persons unknown' (Coroner).
That initial Times report mudied the waters most greviously - which is what it was intended to do!