Topic: Canadian Militia
Compensation; circa 1880
From the Orders-in-Council documents archived on line by Library and Archives Canada, we find this memorandum on the payment of compensation in regards to the death of a soldier following a training accident. (17 May 1880)
Various online calculators place the value of $300 in 1880 at about $7000 in 2015. (1) (2) (3)
$300 in 1880 was, however, 600 days (1 yr, 7 mos, 3 wks) pay at a soldier's rate of 50 cents per day.
"On a report dated 17th May 1880 from the Honorable the Minister of Militia and Defence, stating that Trumpeter Harry Leslie, late of "B" Battery, while employed at mortar practice at St. Helen's Island on the 23rd July 1875 (sic), was accidentally wounded in the leg by a fragment of a shell, that in consequence of this wound, his leg had to be amputated and that he died subsequently from the effects of the injury thus received in the discharge of his duty.
"The Minister, therefore, recommends that the compensation to which Trumpeter Leslie would have been entitled, had he lived, be now granted to his mother who depended on him for support and that a sum of three hundred dollars ($300) be paid her in full of all claims against the Government in this case.
"The Committee submit the above recommendation for Your Excellency's approval."
Signed by the Prime Minister, John A. MacDonald, the memorandum was approved and counter-signed by the Governor-General, the Marquess of Lorne.
Montreal Daily Witness; 31 July 1875
"A soldier by the name of Harry Leslie, while engaged at shell practice yesterday afternoon, received a severe injury on the knee from the explosion of one of the shells, a fragment of which bounded from a stone, inflicting the wound. He was conveyed to the Montreal General Hospital."
Montreal Daily Witness; 28 December 1875
"Leslie—[Died 27 December 1875] At the Montreal General Hospital from a wound received at mortar practice on St. Helen's Island, July 30th. Trumpeter Harry Leslie, B Battery, Canadian Artillery, aged 23 years and 10 months."
Harry Leslie is buried in Montreal's Mount Royal Cemetery.