HMCS RAINBOW

 

Apollo Class Protected Cruiser

 


 

HMCS RAINBOW "Cleared for Action"

This photograph shows RAINBOW, possibly on training exercises, in the harbour at Prince Rupert, British Columbia. "Clearing for action," the traditional term for preparing the ship for battle, involved clearing away flammable and fragile materials like hammocks and movable wooden bulkheads, removing equipment that could restrict the field of fire of the ship's weapons, and preparing to treat casualties. Despite the original caption on the photograph, it more likely shows RAINBOW preparing for firing practice, since only the ship's forward gun (right) appears to have a crew. George Metcalf Archival Collection CWM 19890167-003

 

Launched: 25 Mar 1891

Commissioned: 1893

Paid off: 1909

Transferred to RCN: 1910

Commissioned: 04 Aug 1910

Paid off: 08 May 1917

Re-commissioned: 05 Jul 1917

Paid off: 01 Jun 1920

Fate: Broken up

 

On 04 Aug 1910, at Portsmouth, England, RAINBOW was commissioned the first unit of the infant RCN. One of a class of 20 "protected cruisers," she had served in the RN since 1893. After commissioning, RAINBOW was assigned to the west coast of Canada and was the first Canadian ship to sail around South America by the Strait of Magellan. After a 12-week passage of over 15,000 nautical miles she arrived at Esquimalt, BC on 7 November 1910, and carried out training duties, ceremonial visits, and some fishery patrols until the end of 1912. She then lay largely idle until the outbreak of the First World War, during which, apart from two submarines, she was the sole defender of Canada's western seaboard.  The German threat in the Pacific ended with the defeat of Admiral Graf von Spee's squadron at the Battle of the Falkland Islands in Dec 1914, and thereafter RAINBOW patrolled the Pacific coast as far south as Panama. In 1916 and early 1917 she was used in the transporting of $140 million in Russian bullion between Esquimalt and Vancouver. By 1917 her crew was needed to man patrol vessels on the east coast, and on 08 May 1917 she was paid off. RAINBOW was re-commissioned on 05 July 1917 to serve as a depot ship at Esquimalt. Paid of again on 01 Jun 1920, she was sold to a Seattle ship breaker.

 


 

Photos and Documents          Ship's company photos

 


 

Commanding Officers

Cdr J.D.D Stewart, RN - 04 Aug 1910 - 23 Jun 1911

Cdr Walter Hose, RN - 24 Jun 1911 - 30 Apr 1917

Cdr Hugh Edward Holme, RCN - 01 May 1917 - 08 May 1917

LCdr John Harry Knight, RCN - 01 Jul 1917 - 21 Aug 1917

Cdr J.T. Shenton, RCN - 22 Aug 1917 - 12 May 1918

Lt Yvon Birley, RCN - 13 May 1918 - unk

Lt (Temp) Yvon Birley, RCN - 10 Jun 1918 - unk

Capt E.H. Martin, CMG, RCN - 15 Oct 1919 - 01 Jun 1920

  


 

     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     

 

 


 

     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten

A

 

Adams, William

Appointed to RAINBOW on 04 Jun 1918 as W. Op 4th Cl, RNCVR

Ashbourne, Elmo Linfield

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

 

 

 

B

 

Bannatyne, Ninian

Barber, Russell Adolph

Appointed to RAINBOW 23 Jul 1914 as LCdr, RNR

Birley, Yvon

Appointed to RAINBOW on 13 May 1918 as Lt, RCN, CO and on 10 Jun 1918 as Lt (Temp), RCN, CO

Breakey, Alexander Graydon

Appointed to RAINBOW on 04 Jun 1918 as W. Op 4th Cl, RNCVR

Brocklesby, John William

Appointed to RAINBOW on 22 Jun 1917 as Skpr (Temp), RCN, for training

Brown, Charles Henry

Drafted to RAINBOW on 15 Apr 1913 as A/Carp, RCN

Brown, Thomas Allsop

Appointed to RAINBOW D/S on 18 Jul 1918 as Lt, RNCVR

Burton, George

Bury, Roland, H.M

Appointed to RAINBOW on 21 Jun 1910 as Lt (E), RN

 

 

C

 

Cox, James E.

Critchley, Thomas Sandford

Appointed to RAINBOW on 06 May 1918 as Midshipman, RCN

 

 

 

 

D

 

Davies, John D.

Served in RAINBOW from 04 Jul 1916 to 17 Apr 1919

Dresser, James Sherwood

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

 

 

 

E

 

Earl, Edward Lawrence

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RCNVR, for training

Edwards, Richard Lloyd

Appointed to RAINBOW on 18 Jun 1910 as Lt, RN

Euburne, Goldwin Roy

Appointed to RAINBOW on 01 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

 

 

F

 

Foulds, Frank Bertram

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

 

 

 

 

G

 

German, Albert W.T.

Gilbert, Joseph

Grute, Harry

Drafted to RAINBOW 01 Jul 1917 as A/Head Stwd, RCN

 

 

 

H

 

Haddon, Gerald Phillip

Appointed to RAINBOW 01 Jul 1917 for Inst/Duty as an A/Staff Paym, RCN

Haines, Ernest

1876-1965

Hallifax, Ronald H.C.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 17 Jun 1910 as a Lt (N), RN

Hawkeswood, Ralph

Appointed to RAINBOW on 01 Mar 1918 as A/W. Op 2nd Cl.

Hindle, John Thomas

Drafted to RAINBOW on 05 Feb 1918 as Art (E), RCN

Holme, Hugh Edward

Appointed to RAINBOW on 19 Jun 1914 as LCdr (N), RN and on 01 May 1917 as Cdr, RCN, CO

Holt, Reginald Vesey

Appointed to RAINBOW on 17 Jun 1910 as Lt, RN

Hose, Walter

 

 

 

 

J

 

Jehan, Edgar M.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 11 Jul 1910 as a Gunner

Jenkins, John Cauntor

Appointed to RAINBOW on 04 Jul 1914 as Cdr (E), RN

Jinkin, Robert Alfred

Appointed to RAINBOW on 15 Jun 1910 as Staff Paym, RN

Jones, Bertram E.

 

 

Julian, Charles Otis

Appointed to RAINBOW on 02 Mar 1915 as Lt (Temp), RNCVR

 

K

 

King, Cornelius Walter

Appointed to RAINBOW on 17 Jun 1910 as Gnr (T), RN

King, Frederick

Appinted to RAINBOW 04 Jul 1914 as Gnr (T), RN

Knight, John Harry

Appointed to D/S RAINBOW on 05 Jul 1917 as LCdr, RCN, CO

Knight, Robert Foley

Appointed to RAINBOW on 30 Jan 1914 as Lt, RN

 

 

L

 

Laing, Robert Cecil

Appointed to RAINBOW on 05 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

Lake, Geoffrey

 

Lambert, David Sidney

Appointed to RAINBOW on 04 Jul 1914 as A/Paym, RN

Livesay, Edward H.

 

 

 

M

 

MacKenzie, David Leslie

Appointed to RAINBOW on 08 Mar 1917 as Head School Master, RCN

Martin, E.H.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 15 Oct 1919 as Capt, RCN, CO

McDonagh, William

Appointed to RAINBOW 01 Jul 1917 as Lt, RNCVR

McLean, Norman Angus

Appointed to RAINBOW on 04 Jun 1918 as W. Op 4th Cl, RNCVR

Mitchell-Carruthers, John Erskine

Appointed to RAINBOW on 01 Jul 1916 as Lt, RCN

Mock, Herbert O.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 10 Jan 1910 as Gnr, RN

Moore, Aubrey Edward Ducombe

Appointed to RAINBOW on 14 Jun 1910 as a Lt, RN

Moore, John Richard

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

Mordan, Thomas J.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 22 Mar 1910 as Cdr (E), RN

Munro, Alexander E.P.

 

Murray, Frederick

Murray, Leonard W.

 

 

 

 

P

 

Phillimore, Frederick W.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 18 Feb 1911 as Gnr, RN

Pilcher, Henry B.

Appointed to RAINBOW Jul 1913. Served in RAINBOW as A/Senior Naval Officer Esquimalt 1914

Plant, Leslie Albert

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

Poling, Joseph

Drafted to RAINBOW on 17 Jun 1910 as a Carpenter, RN

 

 

R

 

Reid, Howard E.

Robson, Arthur Noel

Appointed to RAINBOW on 10 Jan 1918 and 18 Jan 1918 as W. Op 4th Cl, RNCVR

Ross-Ross, Donald De Courey

Appointed to RAINBOW on 20 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR

 

 

 

S

 

Scott, Harold Hugh

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

Shenton, John Thomas

Served in RAINBOW in 1917 as CO as a Cdr, RCN

Sinclair, Andrew

Appointed to RAINBOW on 28 Jan 1918 as Mate, RCNVR, for training

Smyth, Thomas A.

Appointed to RAINBOW on 11 Jul 1910 as Surgeon, RN

Stevens, Reginal Garnet

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

T

 

Taylor, Cuthbert R.H.

Talbot, Maurice

Appointed to RAINBOW on 07 Jan 1918 as Mate, RNCVR, for training

 

 

 

 

W

 

Walker, Wilfred Tyrrel

Drafted to RAINBOW 11 Feb 1915 as LCdr, RN

Watson, William Harvey

Appointed to RAINBOW on 01 Jul 1917 as SLt, RNCVR

Watts, George

Appointed to RAINBOW on 01 Jul 1917 as Asst Paym, RNCVR

William, James

William, Norman Trenholme

Appointed to RAINBOW on 17 Jun 1918 as P/Surg, RNCVR

Wingate, Walter

Wood, Reginald Henry

Drafted to RAINBOW 25 Jul 1910 as Ch Art (E), RN

 

 

 

 


 

Photos and Documents

 

Walter Hose, Commander of HMCS RAINBOW

Walter Hose, seen here aboard HMCS RAINBOW, became a significant figure in Canadian naval history. After extensive experience in the British navy, Hose recognized the opportunities for advancement in Canadian service and transferred to Canada to command RAINBOW in 1911, formally joining the Royal Canadian Navy a year later. Hose was instrumental in creating both the Royal Naval Canadian Volunteer Reserve and its successor, the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve. As Director of the Naval Service from 1922 to 1934, he fought to keep the RCN a viable institution in an era of meager budgets.

George Metcalf Archival Collection CWM 20020045-2180

HMCS RAINBOW

Source: Trident Magazine

HMCS Shearwater (left) welcomes HMCS RAINBOW to Esquimalt - 07 Nov 1910

Source: Library and Archives of Canada

Edward Horace Livesay, HMCS RAINBOW, Victoria, BC - 1914-1915

From the collection of Sam Sunter

Courtesy of Brian Dobing

HMCS RAINBOW

Written on back of photo: E.H. Livesay, First Ship 1914

From the collection of Sam Sunter

Courtesy of Brian Dobing

HMCS RAINBOW, Esquimalt, BC

From the collection of Sam Sunter

Courtesy of Brian Dobing

 


 

 

FP01

ES01

ES02

Unknown HMCS RAINBOW Sailors

 

FP01 - Courtesy of Fred Proctor

 

ES01 & 02 - Courtesy of the CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum

 

If you can identify any of these sailors please send an EMAIL so I can update the captions

 


 

VA01

VA02

VA03

(VA01) HMCS RAINBOW leaving Portsmouth, England for Canada. August 1910  (VA02-VA03) HMCS RAINBOW 1910

 

VA04

VA05

(VA04) HMCS RAINBOW - c1912  (VA05) HMCS RAINBOW - c1914

 

Source: City of Vancouver Archives

 


 

Sailors of HMCS RAINBOW

Note that all are wearing sashes and collars of the Orange Order

Courtesy of the CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum

Click on the above photo to view a larger image

 


 

ES06

ES07

ES08

(ES06) HMCS RAINBOW - postcard  (ES07) Pte Edward Smith (back, standing, on right) on HMCS RAINBOW  (ES08) Pte Edward Smith (back, 2nd from right) with sailors of HMCS RAINBOW and HMS NEWCASTLE.  Note: HMS NEWCASTLE numerous ports of call in Esquimalt for 1914 to 1916

 

From the collection of Pte Edward Smith, Royal Marine Light Infantry

 

Courtesy of Geoff Smith

 


 

AG03

AG04

AG05

AG06

AG07

(AG03) Ship's movements for HMCS RAINBOW for Jan 1916 - recorded by Bert German  (AG04) Gunnery drills aboard HMCS RAINBOW  (AG05) HMCS RAINBOW in the graving dock, Esquimalt, BC  (AG06) Unknown Royal Marine and ratings aboard HMCS RAINBOW  (AG07) RAINBOW sailors going ashore - location unknown

 

From the collection of Albert German, CPO, RNCVR

 

Photographs and Documents / Courtesy of Peter German

They are not to be reprinted, republished or sold without permission of Peter German

 


 

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