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.                                                                                      Newfoundland Overseas Forestry Unit 
                                                                                                                 1939-1946 
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 This site is dedicated to the men of the Newfoundland Overseas Forestry Unit, who responded to a call for 
 volunteers to leave their families and work overseas in Great Britain during the second world war. This unit was a very 
 important part of the overall war effort, and it is felt by many that the men of the Unit did not receive the recognition   they deserved. The demand for local lumber in Britain was extreme due to restrictions to off-shore supplies as a result of 
 the conflict, and many of the local able bodied men were away in the armed forces.Unfortunately, there appears to be very little information available today regarding their story. Many of the original records were apparently destroyed by fire in Glovertown, B.B., a number of years ago. One source that I am aware of is a book by Tom Curran, entitled ' They Also Served', published by Jesperson Press in St. John's in  1987. This book is a fine record of the Unit, and contains many pictures and details of interest. Much of  the information contained here is documented in this book 
There were approximately 3,680 men in the group.  

 On November 17, 1939 the Commissioner for Natural Resources announced  by  radio the need to recruit volunteer  loggers to work in Great Britain. The men would be paid the sum of  $2:00 / day or $12:00 / week. Accommodation,  transport and medical requirements would be supplied. All personal needs such as clothing were to be supplied by the men themselves.  There would be a  $1:00 / day compulsory deduction from wages which was forwarded to the families back in Newfoundland. 

Our purpose here is to ensure that the history of the N.O.F.U. and it's members is not forgotten, and to 
 provide a venue in which to share information with others who also have an interest in such a goal. There are links to pages which contain some pictures from the Unit in Scotland. If you can help identify any of the men pictured we will add the names to the page. Also included is a copy of a plea from Caldecote, Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs, asking those men already overseas to extend their contract due to the pressing need  for  additional timber. 

.( The information posted at this site is based on current knowledge, and may in fact contain errors. Please let me know if you see anything misleading here, and I will make the necessary corrections) 

 

The Unit published a booklet entitled "Timber" in Scotland . A number of these booklets were shipped to Newfoundland for distribution there, but were destroyed by a forest fire at Glovertown shortly after their arrival. How many copies exist today?

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( September 1/2004))
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 Newfoundland Overseas Foresters Association
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Pictures, information  and even old memories are welcome. We would be honoured to include your details at this website, so that they may be
    shared with others who care, and value the sacrifice that the men of the NOFU undertook. Our goal is to keep the memory alive.
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site maintained by the Pike family
Guelph,  Ontario
   email: cpike@cpass.net
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site established January 3/2001                                                                                        last updated June 16, 2007

 
 
 
 
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