Flag Day in Canada

Today is National Flag Day for our neighbors to the north (no, not Virginia). On 15 February 1965, Canada unfurled its new Maple Leaf flag, replacing the unofficially official Canadian Red Ensign. Sometime during wartime in the 1940s, Hugh Morton made his way to the Canada–United States border and (surprise!) stopped to make a photograph or two. In the picture above, an unidentified fellow stands in front of the border crossing. Above the building is a distinctive “Welcome to Canada in Wartime” sign displaying the British Empire’s Royal Union Flag (also known as the Union Jack), which was Canada’s official flag until 1946.  The Royal Union Flag served as the canton (upper left corner) of all the variations of Canada’s Red Ensign flags.

The license plate on the car to the left is unfortunately out of focus just enough to prevent reading any details that might yield what year Morton made the photograph, but it likely predates 1946.

5 thoughts on “Flag Day in Canada

  1. Your postings don’t usually surprise me a whole lot, but this one is out of left field; I don’t think Hugh ever mentioned a visit to Canada. It has got to have been taken between, say, 1939 and 1942. I’ll bet someone of our older friends in Linville might recognize the gentleman, and the border crosssing might be Detroit. Emphasis on “might”, but I am guessing it was taken when Hugh was part of the State of NC Rifle Team which went to the national matches held annually at Camp Perry, Ohio, because 1) Hugh didn’t have a car to get there by himself, and 2) he didn’t have much time or opportunity to make trips like that.
    Regards, Julia

  2. Captain Rooney? He was the head of the NC Rifle Team of which Hugh was a member for three years before he went to War.

  3. Those are some excellent guesses, Julia and Jack. The closest border crossing to Camp Perry would be the Detroit/Windsor crossing at the Ambassador Bridge, which was built in 1929. Take a look at this historic “real photo” post card on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/aiw/3328053307/. Looks like the very same structure. The license plate “seems” to have letters shapes that spell “ONTARIO.” And the grill work for 1938 and 1940 Chevrolet models are very different from the 1939 model.

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