OCdts. On Parade

Who am I? Researched by E3161 Victoria Edwards (RMC 2003)


  • I was born in 1874, one of 8 sons of the eleventh Chief Justice of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court. The family spent winters in Halifax and summers at the farm ‘St. Eulalie’ in King’s County, Grand Pré, in Horton.
  • I studied at RMC from 1892-6.
  • In 1894, a serious breach of discipline came to the attention of the Commandant, Major General D.R. Cameron. Cadets in my second year class had allegedly flogged/t-squared the recruits, one of whom had run away from the college. The newspapers got a hold of the story and the hazing practices were brought to the attention of the House of Commons. The cadets who admitted their guilt were sentenced to 28 days confinement to barracks. I was one of four cadets who denied the charges and were sent home from October 1894-January 1894. After an exchange of letters in which my father argued there was no flogging (merely caning) and no physical coercion (since the recruits didn’t resist) all four cadets were recalled to Kingston toward the end of November, 1894.
  • After a brief service in the British army, I devoted my life to engineering, travel and exploration. I was a member of the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers.
  • While living in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in February 1899, I attended a Carnival held in the South End Exhibition Rink in Halifax with two friends dressed as Geisha girls. I prepared the slides for “Rah, Wanderers”, which were shown through the stereopticon on November 4-6, 1899 during Wanderers’ Night at the Opera in Halifax, NS. [Stereopticon cards of outdoor scenes and scenes of people were available in black & white and in color.].On May 30th, 1903, I played a sailor in grands scenic production of the opera Siballa at the Academy in Halifax, NS.
  • I wrote ‘Recent developments with the calyx drill in the Nictaux [Nova Scotia] iron field’ (1901); ‘Report on the gold mines of the Province’ [of Nova Scotia for the Nova Scotia Department of Mines (1903)] and ‘Core Drilling in Nova Scotia. A Report for the Use of Drill Men, and for the Information of Those Interested in the Subject of Boring’ [for the Commissioner of Public Works and Mines (1904)]
  • I contributed ‘First Observations of the Catastrophe’ & ‘Affects of the Earthquake’ to ‘After Earthquake and Fire’, a book about the San Francisco earthquake of April 1906 and its aftermath. I wrote ‘Dredging For Gold In California’, [Kessinger Publishing (1907).
  • I was appointed provost marshal of Hong Kong. I had adventures with Chinese brigands, who captured me on July 15, 1923 in Chionchuan, Southern China. The two French priests of Huangchiaping provided supplies and in general tried hard to lighten the suffering of my captivity. When negotiations between the brigands and the French priests broke down in early August, 1923 I was transferred to another camp. At night of August 12th, I escaped from the brigands. In retribution, the brigands held one of the priests for 8 days before he too escaped.
  • I escaped from Russia during the October Revolution of 1917 with confidential documents and later returned there with Admiral Aleksandr Vasiliyevich Kolchak.
  • I wrote ‘Memorandum on the Kahilu Sanctuary’ (1939) and ‘Burma’s decreasing wild life’ (1940) in the Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society.
  • I kept open communications between Iraq and Iran in World War II (1939-1944).
  • I was in Kenya during the Mau Mau rebellion (1952 to 1960), an insurgency by Kikuyu tribesmen against British colonial rule.
  • I died in 1960. The R.M.C. Review 1961 described me as, “Probably the most noted traveler of the century. …Few men have had so varied and colourful a career”.

a) LCol D’arcy Weatherbe (RMC 1892-6)

b) LCol Frederick Harold Courtney, D.S.O. (RMC 1892-6)

a) LCol D’arcy Weatherbe (RMC 1892-6) – son of Sir Robert Linton Weatherbe.

Preston ‘A History of the Royal Military College’

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