Lieutenant Thomas O Farnsworth

Photo from: Men of Today in the Eastern Townships, 1917.


Date of Birth: 22 June 1877

Place of Birth: Eaton Corner, Compton, Quebec

Residence: Bulwer, Quebec

Nok: Elizabeth Farnsworth, Bulwer, Quebec (Wife)

Trade: Farmer

Attestation date: 23 December 1915

Previous military service: 7th Hussars

Unit: 5th Canadian Mounted Rifles

Status: Survived - died 03 May 1948

Cemetery: Cookshire Cemetery, Quebec

Details of Service:

Thomas Oughtred Farnsworth attested with the 117th Battalion on 23 December 1915. At time of attestation he was residing in Bulwer, Quebec. He was married to Elizabeth Farnsworth. They had two children: Esther L Farnsworth, aged 15, and Donald A Farnsworth, aged 11. Lt Farnsworth sailed to England with the 117th Battalion on 14 August 1916.

Lt Farnsworth was transferred to 5 CMR on 15 December 1916 and immediately proceeded to France. He joined 5 CMR in the trenches on 24 December. On 02 February 1917, Lt Farnsworth was sent to hospital with a case of Influenza. He was hospitalized in Rouen and Etaples until 17 March. He rejoined 5 CMR on 31 March. He was wounded slightly at Passchendaele on 30 October but remained with 5 CMR in the trenches.

On 24 April 1918, Lt Farnsworth was injured when a horse accidentally stepped on his right foot. He was evacuated from the field on 01 May and transferred to 1st Quebec R.D. in Bramshott. On 22 June 1918, a Medical Board was conducted to determine if he was fit for duty. In actuality, Lt Farnsworth was suffering from three ailements that would be discovered during this Board.

First, it was determined that Lt Farnsworth was overage and his actual date of birth was 22 June 1868 vice 1877. At the time of the board he was aged 50.

Secondly, Lt Farnsworth was suffering from "three large protruding hemorroids each about the size of a marble". Lt Farnsworth refused to be operated on to relieve the discomfort.

Finally, due to being stepped on by a horse, had a painful contusion on his right foot causing severe pain and general Myalgia throughout his body.

The Board found that "this officer is an old man, rheumatic and corpulent. He is organically sound. Complains of pains in legs and thighs - more or less constantly present. The injury does not present any disability now. The Board considers that this officer is too old in every way for front line work and recommend permanent home service."

Lt Farnsworth was discharged from the CEF on 29 June 1918. He sailed to Canada aboard the HMT Olympic on 27 July 1918. He was struck off strength on 07 October 1918 by reason of being medically unfit.

Lt Farnsworth was the oldest member of the 117th Battalion to serve in the front lines. He passed away on 03 May 1948 at the age of 80.