Unless otherwise noted all photos and exhibits on this page were submitted by Don Merritt (ABSM), former crewmember of HMCS Algonquin.
This was the billet card issued to Algonquin's commissioning crew. Because Algonquin had bunks instead of hammocks and full size lockers, accommodation was assigned in writing. On other HMC ships where crew still slung hammocks, this type of information was passed verbally. The center panel is the front. At the left and right are two wings which fold rearward. This card measures 6 inches by 4.5 inches.
This is the back of the billet card. The two wings fold towards the centre panel.
It's February 25, 1953 and Algonquin's second commissioning ceremonies are about to begin in Esquimalt, British Columbia. The ship had just completed an extensive modernization at the Yarrows Limited shipyard in Esquimalt. The ceremony was held in the presence of the Honourable Clarence Wallace, CBE, Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia. A guard of fifty men from the ship and the band of HMCS NADEN were inspected by the Lieutenant-Governor at the beginning of the ceremony. (Photo #1600 taken by W. Atkins, Victoria B.C.)
Many of the ship's company assembled on the jetty and the remainder had fallen in on the quarter-deck while the official guests assembled over one of the Squid magazines. The forty-minute ceremony went off without any incident being greatly helped by the warm weather and bright sunshine. A reception was held afterwards in the ward room for the official guests and their wives. (Photo #1599 taken by W. Atkins, Victoria B.C.)
The inspection party scrutinizes Algonquin's commissioning crew. The gentlemen in the top hat is the Honourable Clarence Wallace CBE, Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia at the time. To his left is Algonquin's Commander P.F.X. Russell. At the right is the Officer of The Guard who was also the ship's Gunnery Officer.
Don Merritt, ABSM, is second from left in the row of sailors. (Photo #1601 taken by W. Atkins, Victoria B.C.)