William Otter – The first Professional Soldier



William Dillon Otter is often regarded as Canada’s first true professional soldier. With the outbreak of the 1885 Resistance, Otter was despatched to the Northwest Territories to assist General Frederick Middleton in the advance on the Métis stronghold of Batoche. However, upon news of the murder of white settlers at Frog Lake, Otter was placed in charge of a column that was to “relieve” the town of Battleford and the surrounding area from the threat of Indian attack.

During the Boer War, Lieutenant-Colonel William D. Otter, was the Commanding Officer of the 2nd (Special Service) Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry in South Africa, November 1899 – November 1900.

During World War 1 Otter would be summoned out of retirement to head Canadian Internment Operations, a post he would remain at until after the end of the war.

Reference: Facebook @Canadasmilitaryhistorycom