In the Canadian experience, as with names, anniversaries, and titles, military libraries tend to come and go. As I continue my own research into Canada's military library history and ex libris, I am constantly surprised at the number of different branches and locations that existed at one time or another, as well as the rich diversity of bookplates that existed to identify their holdings. Recently, I came across three different variants of the bookplate employed by the Royal Canadian Navy's Naval Service Library, which at one time was located at Naval Service Headquarters (NSHQ) in Ottawa. I was particularly pleased to see one of these attributed to Percy Walker Nelles, a Canadian naval flag officer who was Chief of the Naval Staff from 1934 to 1944.
These bookplates are both well designed and attractive, but unfortunately, I know very little about them other than they first came into existence sometime during the late 1920s and were likely used through to the end of the Second World War (1945). There are no details of the artist, though one example does sport the item stationary identifiers in the bottom left corner. Otherwise, they remain a mystery for the time being.
|VAdm Percy W. Nelles, RCN|