1st Newfoundland Regiment Call for Recruits Poster
British Army Battalion Chart
Leaving for Europe
New Recruits
Newfoundland Regiment Enlistment Chart
Conscription: Pro or Con?

Following the First Five Hundred's departure in October, work continued on Newfoundland and Labrador's contribution to the war effort. To ensure reinforcements would be ready for the Regiment when required, the Reserve Force Committee of the
Patriotic Association of Newfoundland began its second recruiting campaign on November 30, 1914.

Its initial goal was to recruit 250 men. On the first night of the campaign, 182 men enlisted. This number rose to 514 by the end of the week and to 686 by December 21. However, only 193 of these men met all of the enlistment requirements and passed their medical exam.

It was noted that nearly ninety percent of new recruits came from St. John's. To help recruiting efforts in the outports, the Reserve Force Committee created a special recruiting team to visit some of the more isolated communities. The team's first trip yielded fewer than fifty recruits as many of the men they were targeting were away for the winter fishery.

This campaign was considered so successful, however, that while the goal of 250 recruits had not yet been reached, the committee recommended enough recruits be accepted to bring the contingent to full battalion strength. While future trips were more successful, St. John's continued to provide a higher proportion of recruits than other districts.

Recruiting efforts continued throughout the war. However, over time the number of recruits dwindled. In 1917, the newly formed Department of Militia expressed its concern that recruiting was not filling the Regiment's requirements for reinforcements.

By the beginning of 1918, more than 8000 Newfoundlanders and Labradorians had volunteered for the war effort. However, with declining enlistment rates, it was decided that the introduction of conscription would be the only way to ensure there would be enough new recruits to replace the Regiment's losses.

On May 11, 1918, the Newfoundland Government passed the Military Services Act to draft unmarried men between the ages of nineteen and forty. While 3629 men were conscripted under this Act, only 1573 were accepted into the Regiment. However, none of these conscripts reached the front before the end of the war.