Film archivists see so much footage of parades that they can quickly lose their novelty. However, this particular example is full of interesting and unusual sights. It’s a wartime military parade in Vancouver, showing Canadian and U.S. troops, women’s military units, civil defence personnel, and propaganda floats — as well as tanks, armoured vehicles, artillery pieces, and examples of munitions.
The above clip consists of edited excerpts from the source film. Some of the highlights include:
0:17 A military band –- not marching, but riding in jeeps!
0:36 American M3 Medium Tanks zip through the frame.
0:51 A large mobile searchlight, no doubt used in Vancouver’s anti-aircraft defences.
1:10 A women’s military unit, probably from the Canadian Women’s Army Corps.
1:54 Trailers bearing various types of aerial bombs.
2:02 Another women’s unit –- possibly “WDs” from the Royal Canadian Air Force Women’s Division, or “Wrens” from the Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service.
2:11 Propaganda floats with portraits of Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
2:20 Banner for “North Vancouver Shipyard Workers”. (Are they the musicians in blue coveralls in the next shot?)
2:28 ARP (civil defence) personnel, followed a Victory Loan banner.
The film ends with a very brief shot (at 2:35) of a propaganda display. Led by a banner that reads “Do you want this?”, the display depicts “slaves” towing a chariot marked with a swastika and guarded by “German soldiers”. (In this edited version, the shot has been repeated in slow-motion, so these details can be better seen.)
The footage excerpted here was shot by local photographer and filmmaker Thomas W. Whitefoot (1891-1986). To see descriptions of other Whitefoot films and footage at the RBCM/BC Archives, please follow this link: Whitefoot films