War Brides: One-Way Passage

This exhibition presents the work of Bev Tosh, a Calgary-based contemporary artist who interprets some of the personal stories of women who married Canadian military personnel during and after the Second World War. These “war brides” are women she has met and corresponded with in Canada, England, New Zealand, and the United States. Their stories, of finding and sometimes losing love, represent the leap of faith taken by thousands in order to build lives far from home.

Between 1944 and 1947, 44,000 women came to Canada, alone or with their children, as the wives of Canadian military personnel. A further 1,000 came to Newfoundland and Labrador. This is the largest single immigration in Canadian history. Some 4,000 left Canada as the wives of foreign military men who had trained in Canada during the war. Today, close to one million Canadians are the descendants of war brides.