1920 – The Militia carries on

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On the 12th of February, 1919 the authorities at Ottawa had determined that the splendid wartime efforts of the pre-war non-permanent Militia units were strong grounds for re-establishing those units as a Non-Permanent Active Militia. Arrangements were made to supply units with funds as a recompense in some degree for their expenses during the war and to help carry out reorganization. In January 1920 Lt. Colonel P.J. Montague CMG, DSO, MC, took over the command of the Regiment and immediately proceeded to reorganize it as a Non-Permanent Active unit on a peace time basis.By the 2nd of August, 1920 Colonel Montague had completed the reorganization. The number “34” was dropped from the unit’s designation and the Militia unit was proud to carry the name that had been so prominent in the battles of the Canadian Cavalry Brigade in France: “The Fort Garry Horse”. The cap badges also were those that had been worn by the overseas Regiment.

A Regimental Headquarters and three squadrons were authorized and Headquarters and regimental stores were located at Minto Armouries. In addition to the City of Winnipeg, the Regiment was given a recruiting area north of the city, including Stonewall, Selkirk and Gunton. Annual summer camps were held at Camp Hughes, Tuxedo and St. Charles. In 1926, Colonel Bingham, the CO, organized a cadet corps as an auxiliary to the Regiment.

1930-1939 The Great Depression and Amalgamation

Gen R.W. Paterson CMG DSO

The Great Depression of 1929 hit the Militia hard as it did Canadians in all walks of life. Little money was available for training and equipment and turnover was high with members of the regiment on the move looking for work. Summer training was limited to local camps with strength less than 100 all ranks. In March, 1937 General R.W. Paterson, the founder of the Fort Garry Horse, died in his 60th year and was laid to rest with full military honours by his Regiment.

Badge of The Manitoba Horse, 1936

Also in 1937 the Militia underwent a major reorganization, resulting in a decrease in the number of Infantry and Cavalry units. The Manitoba Horse, formed on April 1, 1912, but claiming roots back to Boulton’s Mounted Infantry in 1885, was amalgamated with the Fort Garry Horse. With the amalgamation came the battle honours of “Fish Creek” , “Batoche”, and “North-West Canada 1885” won by Boulton’s Mounted Infantry, and “Hill 70”, “Ypres 1917” and “Arras 1918” carried by the Manitoba Horse as a result of their perpetuation of the 226th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force.

FGH inspection, Carberry Manitoba 1934