Category Archives: Kitchener

Dr. Mayor George Herbert Bowlby’s Tragic Death


George Herbert Bowlby

George Herbert Bowlby

George Herbert Bowlby

Well-Known Kitchener physician Meets With Sudden and Tragic End of Seaford, England – Was Assistant Director of Medical Service

“Dr. Herbert Bowlby is dead,” was the shocking information which was circulated throughout the city with great rapidity on Sunday morning, after the message had been received by relatives in the city about 10:30 o’clock announcing that Capt. G. Herbert Bowlby, M.D., had been found dead at the foot of a cliff near Seaford. Within a few minutes of receiving the news in the city a number of the civic flags were lowered to half-mast out of respect to the memory of the deceased.

The message was sent from Ottawa by the Officers in charge of Records, and was addressed to Mrs. Adin S. Bowlby, 11 Weber St., W., wife of the deceased officer, who is also in England. Mr. Reinhold Lang, who is occupying the Bowlby residence, telephoned to Capt. T.W. Seagram, Paymaster of the 118th Battalion; informing him that a message was received announcing the death of Dr. Bowlby. The relatives of Dr. Bowlby were immediately notified and the news came as a severe and unexpected shock to all. The message was as follows: – “Deeply regret to inform you that Deputy Assistant Director of Medical Service, Seaford, reports November 11th, 1916, Captain George Herbert Bowlby, A.D. M.S. Embarkation, Shoreham-in-Sea, was found dead at foot of cliff near Seaford. Further particulars will be sent when available.”

Late in the afternoon a brief cablegram was received by relatives from Mrs. Bowlby with this information “Herbert dead.” It is expected that further information as to the tragic death of the late Dr. Bowlby will be received direct from England today.

The Late Dr. Bowlby

The late Capt. G. Herbert Bowlby, M.D., L.R.C.P., A.D.S.M., was born in this city in July fifty-one years ago, and has lived here the greater portion of his life. He was a son of the late Dr. D.S. Bowlby and is a direct descendant of the United Empire Loyalists who came to Canada at the time of the revolutionary war in the United States. His ancestors originated in Nottingham, England. Richard Bowlby, of whom the doctor is a direct descendant, came to America with the celebrated William Penn, the founder of the state of Pennsylvania. Dr. Bowlby was educated at the Public and High Schools in this city, and also took a course at St. Jerome’s College. He was a graduate of Toronto University, where he received his degree in medicine. He had since become a member of the Royal College of Surgeons in London and also was a Licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians.

During his school days he was prominently identified with the athletic activities of the student and was goal keeper for the famous High School football team of 1877 to 1882. He was also identified with various cricket clubs in this city and in Toronto.

Dr. Bowlby was medical officer of the grey’s Home and at the last encampment attended the lectures on army hospital work and field ambulance work, and after passing the necessary examinations took the rank of Captain, which was recognized by the military authorities when he offered his service with the Army Medical Corps with the Canadian Expeditionary Forces. He left this city in July of 1915 to assume his duties and since arriving in England has been on duty in the large military Hospitals at Shorncliffe and more recently at Bath. He was recently appointed Assistant Director of Medical Service.

Since he has been on hospital duty in England, Dr. Bowlby has written many interesting letters to his aged mother, Mrs. D.S. Bowlby, 57 Margaret Avenue, in which he gave vivid descriptions of the scenic beauties surrounding the tow institutions at Shorncliffe and Bath. It is supposed that while taking a walk to view the scenery around the Hospital at Bath that he met with an accident which resulted in his death as reported by the military authorities.

Kitchener,BowlbyG.H.Dr.-residence-busyberlin1897During his residence in the city Dr. Bowlby took an active interest in municipal affairs and served several years in the Council and was Mayor of the town in 1901. He always took a keen interest in the welfare of the K-W Hospital and at the time of his death was a member of the Medical Advisory Committee. He was also a former Medical Health Officer. Since the commencement of the war he was active in the various patriotic enterprises of the city.

The late Dr. Bowlby is survived by his wife, who is a daughter of Jos. E. Seagram, ex-M.P., his aged mother, two sisters, Mrs. E.P. Clement, and Mrs. J.P. Fennell, and one brother D. Shannon Bowlby, all of Kitchener. It is not definitely known whether the remains will be brought to this city for burial.

Berlin Daily Telegraph 13 Nov 1916 pg 1, 5