Sarah Cozzi


This article examines the off–duty activities of Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) soldiers in Britain during the First World War. For many CEF soldiers abroad, Britain became their “home away from home,” with London serving as their main leave–time destination. Although thousands of CEF soldiers visited the English capital, Canadian federal and military authorities maintained a hands–off approach to the off–duty lives of the men. Fearing for the men’s well–being, Canadian philanthropist, Lady Julia Drummond, established the Canadian–only King George and Queen Mary Maple Leaf Club. Founded upon middle– and upper–class moral standards the Maple Leaf Club emphasizes the role of public patriotism at the time, while also highlighting a rising sense of Canadian nationalism and self–awareness at the time of simultaneous loyalty to the empire.