Person:Robert Riddell (2)

m. 1836 (OR 1838)
  1. Francis W Riddell1839 -
  2. Mary Riddell1840 - 1936
  3. Isobella Riddell1842 - 1931
  4. Walter R Riddell1844 - Abt 1931
  5. Elizabeth Riddell1846 - 1921
  6. John Riddell1848 -
  7. James Riddell1850 -
  8. Honourable William Renwick Riddell1852 - 1945
  9. Dr. George Riddell1854 - 1905
  10. Herbert Riddle1856 - 1860
  11. Jessie Riddell1856 -
  12. Dr. Robert Riddell1859 - 1938
m. 6 Sep 1912
Facts and Events
Name[1][3][4] Dr. Robert Riddell
Alt Name[7] Bob Riddell
Gender Male
Alt Birth[1] 1854 Hamilton, Northumberland, Ontario, Canada
Birth[2][4][10] 12 Sep 1859 Canada West, United Province of Canada
Other[11] 7 Jun 1881 joined the North West Mounted Police
Graduation[3] 1884 Toronto, York, Ontario, CanadaOntario Veterinary College (Toronto)
Military[11] 2 May 1885 North-West Territories, Canadaveterinary surgeon at Battle of Cut Knife hill, service in Col. Otter's column.
Other[11] 1 Jul 1886 promoted to Veterinary Surgeon, but this seems a late date considering his service in the rebellion, and his 1884 graduation.
Retirement[3] 1887 Calgary, Alberta, Canadaretired from RNWMP and took up veterinary practice in Calgary.
Marriage 6 Sep 1912 Spokane, Spokane, Washington, United Statesto Anna M Dillon
Military[4] 9 Dec 1918 Vancouver, British Columbia, Canadaenlisted as Captain in Noll Sect. C.A.V.C.
Census[13] 1 Jun 1921 Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Immigration[6] Jul 1922 Seattle, King, Washington, United States
Census[12] 3 Apr 1930 Centralia, Lewis, Washington, United States
Death[9][11] 11 Feb 1938 Seattle, King, Washington, United States
Burial? Seattle, King, Washington, United States

In his WWI Attestation papersS4, signed in Vancouver, B.C. on Dec 9, 1918, Robert Riddell testifies that his previous military experience included the following:

  • Royal Northwest Mounted Police 1881 to 1887, (although technically the "Royal" designation was not applied until 1904.) He was in Battleford at the time of the outbreak of the North-West (Riel) Rebellion, and was at the Battle of Cut Knife on May 2nd, 1885.
  • South Africa (Boer War) 1899-1902, and
  • Militia 1902 to date.

His memorial page in the RCMP GravesS11 database indicates he served in Siberia in the "B" Squadron ("B" Squadron, Royal North West Mounted Police, Siberia 1918/12/01-1919/05/26) but his name does not appear in on-line resources related to this service. The squadron was part of the Canadian Siberian Expedition Force (CSEF.)

According to his Attestation form he was found to be unfit for duty due to his being 59 years old. He lists his wife Anne M Riddell as next of kin. It is not clear to me why he was going through this process in Dec 1918 since the war was over, although it could have been related to the Siberia force mentioned above.

From several sources we learn that he was a Veterinary Surgeon, and an early letter to the editor of the Toronto Daily Mail S5 indicates that while with the NWMP he was promoted from the rank of Staff-Sergeant to Veterinary Surgeon (an officer.)

In the above WWI Attestation Papers, he indicated he was in the RNWMP from 1881 to 1887. In the biographical sketch included in the Canadian Veterinary Journal S3 he was reported to have joined in 1884. With the advent of the Riel Rebellion in 1885, he was "rushed" to Calgary where he served until 1887.

He married late in life and changed residency between Canada and the US several times.

Even though there is a photoS7 of a NWMP reunion in July 1901 that includes "Bob" Riddell, I have been unable to find his enumeration in the 1901 census in the same month. He may have been living in the U.S. at the time of the reunion. However, the Glenbow Museum has another photo of a Bob Riddell with his Clydesdale team which notes he was ranching where Sheep Creek runs into High River (in southern Alberta)in the same period. This may be the same person.

  1. 1.0 1.1 Family Tree, in Renwick, Donna. Descendants of Walter Riddell. (Sept 7, 2005).

    Robert Riddle b: 1854 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Residence:Calgary, Alberta, Canada

  2. Walter Riddell household, in Northumberland, Canada West, United Province of Canada. 1861 Census of Canada West. (Library and Archives Canada)
    14 Jan 1861.

    Enumerated as a farmer. They had a son who died in 1860 of "putrid sore throat," that I assume was Herbert. His son Francis was enumerated as a laborer.

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Gender: Male
    Age: 2
    Birth Year: 1859
    Birthplace: Upper Canada
    Marital Status: Single
    Home in 1861: Hamilton, Northumberland, Canada West
    Religion: F C Of S
    Household Members:
    Name Age
    Walter Riddell 47 Farmer
    Mary Riddell 43
    Francis Riddell 23 Laborer
    Mary Riddell 21
    Isabella Riddell 19
    Walter Riddell 17
    Elizabeth Riddell 15
    John Riddell 13
    James Riddell 11
    William Riddell 9
    George Riddell 7
    Janet Riddell 5
    Robert Riddell 2

  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Veterinarians of the North-West Territories and Alberta, in Canadian Veterinary Journal
    24(11)/Page 358 & 359, Nov 1983.

    by B.I. Love

    Dr. Robert Riddell is featured in one of the 5 biographical sketches included in this article.

    The full book from which these extracts were taken is available at

  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Robert Riddell, in Canada. Soldiers of the First World War. (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Library and Archives Canada)

    Officers' Declaration form - Captain Robert Riddell - front

    Rank: CPT
    Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 8265 - 48
    Date of Birth: 12/09/1869 [I read Sep 12, 1859]

  5.   The North-West Mounted Police, in Toronto Daily Mail. (Toronto, Ontario)
    Page 5, 19 Aug 1887.

    To the Editor of The Mail.
    Sir, -- My attention having been called to a letter signed "Mounted Police," which appears in your issue of the 3rd inst., and being somewhat interested in the North-West Mounted Police Force, I should like co correct one of the statements therein contained.

    Your correspondent says " from the organlzation of the force in I873 to the present time, there have been only four promotions from the ranks 'pure and simple.'"

    The following; have been made:—Sergeant- Major Griesbach, Quartermaster-Sergeant Neale, Sergeant-Major Steele, Corporal Autrobus, (now Superintendents) ; Sergeant-Major Wattam, Sergeant-Major Baker, Staff-Sergeant Norman,Sergeant Piercy, Staff-Sergeant Harper, Sergeant Brooks. Staff-Sergeant Routledge, (now Inspectors) ; Staff-Sergeant Riddel (now Veterinary Surgeon); Staff-Sergeant Burnet, (now Assistant Veterinary Sergeant); Sergeant Macdonell. (now Superintendent); Sergeant Howe, (now Inspector). Ten other officers have obtained commissions from the ranks, but as outside influence may have been used, I do not count them.

    Yours. etc.,
    REGIMENTAL No. 2 (1873).
    Macleod,N.W.T., Aug. 12.

  6. Robert and Anne D Riddell, in Seattle, Washington, United States. Seattle Passenger & Crew Lists
    Jul 1922.

    Departed from Victoria, B.C. They gave his brother, William Riddell of ?Geo? St., Toronto as their next-of-kin in Canada. There is a notation added later as follows:
    "Abandoned Domicile March 19/34," which I assume means they returned to Canada at this time.

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Arrival Date: Jul 1922
    Age: 63
    Estimated Birth Year: 1859
    Birthplace: Ontario
    Last Residence: BC
    Gender: Male
    Race/Nationality: Scotch (Scotish)
    Port of arrival: Seattle, Washington
    Port of departure: Victoria, British Columbia
    Line: 1
    Microfilm Roll Number: M1383_71

    Name: Anne D Riddell
    Arrival Date: Jul 1922
    Age: 54
    Estimated Birth Year: 1868
    Birthplace: Ireland
    Last Residence: BC
    Gender: Female
    Race/Nationality: Irish
    Port of arrival: Seattle, Washington
    Port of departure: Victoria, British Columbia
    Line: 2
    Microfilm Roll Number: M1383_71

  7. Photo Archive - Image No: NA-52-3, in Glenbow Museum
    21 Jul 1901.

    North-West Mounted Police veterans, at Calgary, Alberta

    Image No: NA-52-3

    Title: North-West Mounted Police veterans, at Calgary, Alberta.

    Date: July 21, 1901

    Remarks: L-R back row: A.W. Oakes; O.W. Lealy; Mr. Gullen; John Oliver; Malcolm T. Millar; Fred Burke; Bob Riddell; Inspector J. Wilson; Ralph Bell; W. Johnson; J.J. Marshall; Jack Clarke (manager of Queen's Hotel); J.C. Mableland; Jack Donohue; J.A. Reid.
    L-R middle row: Bob McGutcheon; Tom McLennan; J.H.G. Bray; R. W. Fletcher; Jim Olmstead.
    L-R front row: Jack Forbes; G. E. Wood; Colonel James Walker; Fred Bagley; J. J. Roberts; Clarke Knight.

    Subject(s): Calgary, Alberta - Personalities / Royal Canadian Mounted Police - Officers / Royal Canadian Mounted Police - Veterans

  8.   Photo Archive - Image No: NA-919-41, in Glenbow Museum
    Mar 1900.

    Officers of Canadian Mounted Rifles in Capetown, South Africa

    Image No: NA-919-41

    Title: Officers of Canadian Mounted Rifles in Capetown, South Africa.

    Date: March 1900

    Remarks: L-R back row: Lieutenant J. V. Begin; H. J. A. Davidson; Mr. Eustance; Veterinary Surgeon R. Riddell; T. W. Chalmers; Captain A. Ross Cuthbert; Lieutenant Taylor; Captain A. C. Macdonell; Lieutenant Ingles; Father Sinnott; Surgeon Devine.
    L-R front row: Lieutenant Wroughton; Major J. Howe; Captain J. Allan; Colonel L. W. Herchmer; Major G.E. Sanders; Lieutenant Cosby.
    Copied from PD-14-21, Volume 2.

    Subject(s): Canadian Mounted Rifles / Canadian Army - Uniforms / Canadian Army - Personnel / Capetown, South Africa - Personnel / South African War, 1899-1902 / Firearms

  9. Robert Riddell, in Washington, United States. Washington, Deaths, 1883-1960

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Gender: Male
    Birth Date: abt 1860
    Death Date: 11 Feb 1938
    Age at Death: 78
    Death Location: Seattle, King, Washington
    Father: Walter Riddell
    Mother: Mary Renwick
    Record Source: Washington State Death Records

  10. George Riddell household, in Northumberland, Ontario, Canada. 1881 Census of Canada. (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Library and Archives Canada)
    4 Apr 1881.

    Enumerated as a Physician. His brother, Robert, who was included in the household was a Veterinary Surgeon.

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Gender: Male
    Age: 22
    Birth Year: 1859
    Birthplace: Ontario
    Religion: Canada Presbyterian Church
    Nationality: Scotch (Scotish)
    Occupation: Veterinary Surgeon
    Province: Ontario
    District Number: 124
    District: Northumberland West
    Sub-District Number: C
    Subdistrict: Hamilton
    Division: 3
    Household Members:
    Name Age
    George Riddell 27
    Elizabeth A. Riddell 25
    Robert Riddell 22

  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Robert Riddell , in RCMP Graves
    Regimental Number 560.

    Detailed Results for:
    Member Name Riddell, Robert. (Officer year 1886). WWI
    Regimental No. 560
    Other Regimental No.
    Officer No O.77
    Rank Superintendent
    Join Date 07/06/1881
    Joined With Commision No
    Served: Postings/Provinces Fort Walsh, Battleford, Fort MacLeod, Calgary & Regina. 'Depot', 'F' & 'K'. Rec'd Commission on 01/07/1886. 'Depot' Veterinary Surgeon. Resigned
    Other Police Service
    Place of Birth Cobourg, ON
    Date of Birth 12/09/1859
    Date of Death 11/02/1936
    Place of Death Seattle, Washington State, US
    Cemetery Name
    Cemetery City Seattle
    Cemetery Prov State WA
    Cemetery Country USA
    Location of Grave in Cemetery
    GPS Co-ordinates
    Condition of Plot
    Mounted Division March West
    Honours or Medals D.V.M. Surgeon
    The Quarterly Index The Quarterly, V5(4)
    Academic References
    With Thanks To Vets Sheldon Boles & AJH 'Joe' Collinson
    Died While Serving No
    Honour Roll No
    'K' Division Wall of Honour No
    Memorials No
    March West Original 300 No
    North West Rebellion No
    South Africa War No
    World War I Yes
    Siberia Yes
    World War II No
    RCMP Provost Corps No
    UN Peacekeeping No
    Picture Link1
    Picture Link2
    Picture Link3
    Picture Link4

    Career Comments: Animal Vet. Surgeon.
    The following message was received from Vet Sheldon Boles on 31/10/2010,

    'Riddell's name is mentioned on pages 27 & 28 in the book entitled 'Vet in the Saddle': John L. Poett: First Veterinary Surgeon of the NWMP” written by Franklin M. Loew and Edward H. Wood.

    Page 27 states “Robert Riddle, one of the very first graduates of a Veterinary College to have become a police veterinary non-comissioned officer, was appointed Veterinary Surgeon in July 1886. Riddle'’s youth and experience – he had been in the Force since 1881 but was still under 30 – seem to have given him an advantage over Poett.

    Was also a Canadian citizen and a graduate of the Ontario Veterinary College, considerable assets at a time when nationalism was such encouraged in senior police appointments.” ('E' Div. Vet. Sheldon Boles).

    Appointed Veterinary Surgeon 1886 from S/Sgt at annual salary of $700
    Military Service Comments: At outbreak of NWRebellion at Battleford, SB

    On 02/05/1885 was Vet/S/Sgt in Battle of Cut Knife Hill. In Colonel Otter's column.

    After resigning from the Force, he served in the WWI. 'B' Squadron, Siberia

  12. Robert Riddell household, in Lewis, Washington, United States. 1930 U.S. Census Population Schedule: Fifteenth Census of the United States, NARA Microfilm Publication T626. (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration)
    3 Apr 1930.

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Gender: Male
    Birth Year: abt 1860
    Birthplace: Canada
    Race: White
    Home in 1930: Centralia, Lewis, Washington
    Map of Home: View map
    Marital Status: Married
    Immigration Year: 1889
    Relation to Head of House: Head
    Spouse's Name: Anne D Riddell
    Father's Birthplace: Scotland
    Mother's Birthplace: Scotland
    Household Members:
    Name Age
    Robert Riddell 70
    Anne D Riddell 63

  13. Robert Riddell household, in 1921 Census of Canada. (Ottawa, Ontario: Library and Archives Canada)
    1 Jun 1921.

    Robert was enumerated as retired (possibly stroked out) with "income."

    Name: Robert Riddell
    Gender: Male
    Marital Status: Married
    Age: 61
    Birth Year: abt 1860
    Birth Place: Ontario
    Relation to Head of House: Head
    Spouse's Name: Annie Dillen Riddell
    Father Birth Place: Scotland
    Mother Birth Place: Scotland
    Racial or Tribal Origin: Scotch (Scotish)
    Province or Territory: British Columbia
    District: Victoria (City)
    District Number: 24
    Sub-District: Ward 5
    Sub-District Number: 30
    City, Town or Village: Victoria
    Street or Township: 460 Chester
    Municipality: Ward 5
    Occupation: Income
    Household Members:
    Name Age
    Robert Riddell 61
    Annie Dillen Riddell 54