Huronia Museum is open again!

The Huronia Museum staff are happy to announce that we are able to open the village and museum for the public.

We are admitting visitor bubbles every 15 minutes to allow time and space for social distancing and a pleasant, unhurried visit. You can pre-book your visit to Huronia Museum by calling 705 526 2844 or emailing us at if you wish.

Huronia Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 9 am to 4 pm and our last admission will be 3 pm to ensure visitors have enough time to enough the entire site.

We look forward to seeing visitors again soon!

Huronia Museum has opened the village!!!

We are excited to be able to at least be able to open the village to the public for the time being.

Looks like our first guests to the village in over a year enjoyed themselves regardless of the rain.

The village is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4.p.m. and our last admission time is 3.30. We ask that visitors wear masks and practice social distancing while visiting the village.

The museum’s gift shop is also open for browsing and shopping for one visitor bubble at a time.

Come visit us and spend some time in our village. We look forward to seeing you.

The indoor museum will open in phase three of Ontario’s Re-opening Plan.

Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – July 8th to 15th, 1961

Sorry, we have fallen behind in preparing this weekly post, the information is now 3,120 plus 1, weeks old.

Sale of the yacht Haidee, owned by D. L. Pratt, to Bruce Eplett of Victoria Harbour was completed at Midland last week. Although, Mr. Eplett declined to comment on the proposal, it is understood that he plans to operate a cruise service out of Midland this summer. The cruise ship is pictured above at the dock of Great Lakes Boat and Machine. 

It’s holiday time again, and the children and adults above, relaxing at Little Lake Park, are typical of the many vacationers to be found throughout North Simcoe at this time of year. Safe swimming and play areas for children are among the paramount attractions of resorts in this district. (Taken from the roof of the boathouse.)

Careful mapping of every bit of information obtained by students of the summer school of archaeology at the Forget Site south of Midland is an important part of the project. Here Maryl Mercer of Guelph (left), Dr. Wilfrid Jury’s secretary, points out some interesting find to Elisabeth McAskill of Kingston, one of the guides at Midland Y’s Men’s Club’s Indian village in Midland this year. 

There’s lots of action like this for wrestling fans every Monday night at Midland Arena Gardens. The card is sponsored by the Midland Minor Hockey Association to help “put the kids on the ice” next winter. Here Tony Marino enjoys a brief advantage over rugged Ivan Kalmikoff while equally rugged Karl Kalmikoff leers his disgust from the corner. Seemingly unmoved by it all is referee Bunny Dunlop. 


Free Press Herald headline of Wednesday July 12, 1961.
Midland council, at a special meeting Monday night, accepted the tender of Albert Dragoman for a new garbage disposal site at a cost of $4,800 per year. The contract starts August 1, 1961, and terminates April 30, 1964. The Dragoman site is approximately four miles from the town limits, in Tiny Township on the concession west of the drive-in theatre. As the present garbage collection contract with Thomas G. Wilcox and Sons Ltd., calls for the dump to be situated not more than two miles from the town limits, council approved adding an additional $2,800 per year to the Wilcox hauling tender to compensate for the extra mileage. In calling for tenders on the new dump site, a five-year contract had been specified but on the suggestion of Reeve Percy Crawford the new contract termination will coincide with the termination of the present hauling contract held by the Wilcox firm. This was agreed to by council after it was learned that all parties concerned would be agreeable. 


County Herald headline of Friday July 14, 1961.
Principal R. C. Gauthier told the Midland-Penetang District High School Board meeting Wednesday night that the average marks of students in Grades 9 to 12 was better this last school year than the year previous. While the percentage of students obtaining first class honors (75% or better) was about the same as last year, Mr. Gauthier stated there was a much higher percentage of students obtaining second class honors (66% to 74%). Noting that the general average percentage of failure across the province was 20%, Mr. Gauthier said the MPDHS average this year was 16.1% failure as compared with approximately 18% last year. 

    Lloyd Stackhouse, physical director of the Midland YMCA for the past four years, has been appointed physical director of Holt Memorial YMCA, Quebec City. Mr. Stackhouse will be in charge of men’s and boy’s physical programs and will supervise the aquatic program at the Quebec ‘Y’. He will also direct the ‘Y’ camp, Camp Naskapi, for the 1962 season. At present Mr. Stackhouse is on staff at Geneva Park, YMCA national leader training camp, where he instructs in basketball and gymnastics. 

    With 3,000 copies of its first printing sold, British Book Services has now issued a second edition of Kenneth McNeill Wells’ Book “Cruising the Georgian Bay”. An attractive new four-color jacket heralds this much enlarged edition which, within its 183 pages, updates and expands the photographic and textual coverage of the water routes from Grand Bend, around the Bruce, along the Nottawasaga and north through the Georgian Bay to Killarney. 

COLDWATER — Another historic spot is to be marked with a plaque in the near future when the site of the Huron village of Cahiague, near Warminster on Highway 12, is officially designated. It was revealed by Premier Leslie Frost during an address at the re-opening of Orillia Public Library Thursday. The late Leslie Wise of Coldwater was one of the most enthusiastic proponents of a move to have the old Indian village east of Coldwater unearthed. The importance of Cahiague had been emphasized among others by C. H. Hale, editor emeritus of the Packet and Times of Orillia. Mr. Frost expressed the wish that Mr. Hale would be present when the historic marker is unveiled this summer. A summer school ‘dig’ is taking place at the present time at the Cahiague location. Samuel de Champlain spent considerable time at this Huron village of two hundred long houses and 10,000 inhabitants. Cahiague is one of the latest sites of many in this district and throughout Ontario, which have been marked with plaques following research by Archaeological and Historic Sites Board of Ontario. 

Ten Years Ago
Penetang’s first traffic lights were installed at the corner of Main and Robert Streets. * * * Midland Junior Chamber of Commerce undertook to furnish a private room in St. Andrews Hospital. A cheque for $150, the first installment, was turned over to the hospital by Ivan McConnell, Jaycee hospital chairman. * * * More than 140 North Simcoe children were participating in swimming programs sponsored by county’s recreation services. * * * Meeting at Elmvale, Flos Township council set the tax rate for 1951 at 27 mills, an increase of 12 mills more than the previous year. * * * Despite a gradual shift of population from rural to urban centers, farm areas of  Simcoe County were still paying more than half of the county’s tax levy. * * * Penetang Chamber of Commerce was disturbed about what it called the “disgraceful condition” of Huronia Park. * * * The second annual session of the University of Western Ontario Summer School of Indian Archaeology was concluded with the presentation of 18 certificates to successful students at a dinner sponsored by the Town of Midland. * * * Jim Elliott of Port McNicoll, member of RCSCC “Huron” Midland, left Midland for special training in cadet work at HMCS “Cornwallis” in Halifax. * * *  Tiny Township council approved a new building control bylaw which applied to buildings from Ossossane Beach to Wahnekewening Beach from Con. 8 to the centre line of Con. 13. 

    It was bound to happen sooner or later, and Tuesday of this week was the day. A golf ball, shot from a tee at Midland Golf and Country Club, collided with a car being driven on Highway 27. Result: one broken windshield. No damage to the golf ball. A Gropp Motors mechanic, driving a car owned by George Grise, Honey Harbour was travelling south along the golf course property when the windshield suddenly disintegrated. An Ottawa man, summering at a cottage near Waubaushene, is said to have admitted he had driven the erring ball. 

Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – July 1st to 7th, 1961

The photos found in this blog post are the property of Huronia Museum, Midland, Ontario. Any reproduction for commercial use without permission is prohibited.  Any other distribution must credit Huronia Museum.  Please contact the museum with any questions you may have.  

We are going to let the photos do the talking this week, there is a good selection.

If these lads look especially happy, it wasn’t merely the prospect of school being over for the year this week. For them, it’s off to high school next year. They are the boys of Grade 8 graduating class of Sacred Heart Separate School, Midland. 

Girls of the Grade 8 graduating class of Sacred Heart Separate School are seen above on the steps of St. Margaret’s Catholic Church. They are the last class to graduate from the old Sacred Heart School, which shifts to a brand new school on Elizabeth Street in September. (The museum would appreciate receiving any or all the names of the graduates in the last two photos for our permanent record.) 

Eden Morrison, Barbara Dalryple, Wynne Gilmour, Betty Jean Watkinson, Hessel Pape, Gudrun Mandler, Mary Lou Graham and Paul Howard examine water safety posters held by David Seaton, center. 

David Seaton of Windsor, swimming instructor for the playground program at Little Lake, trains this crop of lads in the buddy system. The program got under way at the park Monday morning. Nearly 300 boys and girls registered the first day. 

Eden Morrison and Betty Jean Watkinson, nearest camera, games instructor for Midland Y’s Men’s playground program at Little Lake Park lead a group of girls in a singing game. The program got under way Monday morning. 

Two happy boys last Wednesday night were Chester Graham and Donald Downer. Chester is seen receiving a leadership award from Douglas Haig at Regent School graduation on behalf of Midland Y’s Men’s Club. 

Miss Ethel Wagg is presenting a book to Donald on behalf of the IODE for his work in social studies at Bayview School. 

In spite of overcast skies Sunday, holidayers were plentiful at Little Lake Park. These people stretched out on the greensward and sand east of the park boathouse Sunday. The short holiday weekend and the weather it is felt, kept many would-be vacationers away.

Graduation exercises were the order of the day in Midland public schools last week, and Bayview School was no exception. Mrs. Bob Stanway presents awards to David English and Maureen Mohan, chosen Bayview’s senior boy and senior girl for the year. Mrs. Stanway is the retiring president of Bayview Home and School Association. 

Graduation exercises were the order of the day in Midland public schools last week, and Bayview School was no exception. Principal William Barnett is seen with Ron Patrick and Geraldine Koenig, winner of the Y’s Men’s Club’s leadership awards. 

Always a matter of great anticipation at Midland public schools is the naming of the senior boy and senior girl for the year. Winners at Regent School this year were Louise Parker and Bobby Clayton. Mrs. Marion Wilcox, presents the students with their awards on behalf of Regent Home and School Association. 

Port McNicoll’s CPR elevator, one of the largest in the British Commonwealth, is almost full to the brim with grain this week. The big triple-legged giant, as of Monday, had unloaded eight bulk carriers since Thursday, June 29, and it was expected that another would arrive the latter part of this week. The elevator crew and longshoremen established a mark that has not been achieved in well over 10 years. They unloaded two grain ships at one time Monday. On Monday the S.S. Douglass Houghton and the barge John Fritz of Upper Lakes Shipping Ltd. were relieved of their burdens simultaneously. The Houghton had 253,000 bushels in her holds and the Fritz carried 282,000 bushels. 

Jamboree bound Scouts were caught by the cameraman just before they left for Toronto Wednesday evening to entrain for Ottawa. Scoutmaster Milt Ellery, left, jokes with Scouts Tom Gordanier, John Allen and Bob French, all of Midland, as they load their dunnage aboard his car. 

Stan Secord, Penetang; Don Edwards, Midland; Bert Mason, Penetang and driver Doug Edwards prepare to leave for the Queen City. 

Fred Howard, left, commander of Midland Power Squadron for 1961, receives the commander’s flag from Elmer Ellison, past commander. The squadron held its annual meeting last week. 

To Reach Verdict Today on Garbage Disposal Site 

Free Press Herald headline of July 5, 1967.
Midland council will hold a special meeting again this afternoon, with the main item of business the final selection of a new-garbage disposal site. Three tenders were opened at a meeting Thursday night, but acceptance of any tender was delayed until council could secure figures on the additional of hauling garbage to all three sites. Lloyd Wilcox, representing the firm that currently has Midland’s garbage hauling contract (It still has three years to run) was asked to have the necessary figures available. One of the tenders opened Thursday night was from the same firm, Thomas G. Wilcox and Sons Ltd., and was for $8,700 per annum. The other two were by E. M. Latimore, R.R. 1 Midland, and Albert Dragoman, Midland. Mr. Latimore’s proposed site, 50 acres, is on Con. 2, Tay. Mr. Dragoman’s is in Tiny Township, on the concession west of the drive-in theatre and the Wilcox site is just off Highway 27, at the top of the hill north of Wyebridge. 

    Believed to be the first in that district, an aeroplane landing strip, was opened recently by Tom Anderson of Port Severn. Already 10 planes have landed on the 1,000-foot runway which runs parallel to Highway 501(Honey Harbour Road), about 1 ½ miles west of Highway 103. Mr. Anderson said yesterday. Mr. Anderson stated, ”that shortly he expects to extend the present runway to 1,800 feet and by spring we hope to have two additional runways completed and radio communications installed”. He added, “Then planes will be able to land no matter what the direction of the wind”. Only light planes are able to use the present landing strip. Mr. Anderson noted, adding that “by spring we expect to be able to accommodate twin-engine craft.” 

Ten Years Ago
Midland Boys’ Band, directed by Bandmaster A. J. Laley, placed second in the competition for Junior brass bands at the Waterloo Band Tattoo in which 55 bands participated. * * * Beausoleil Island National Park provided sites for most — but by no means all — of the more than 17 camps for boys and girls which had more than 4,000 campers that summer. Other camps were at Honey Harbour, Severn River,  Sturgeon River and at a series of locations along the bay shore. * * * Charles Vent and Haig Abbott were co-conveners of the Midland Y’s Mens Clubs Peanut Day.  Proceeds were for the club’s boys’ and girls’ work. * * *   Members of the Central Ontario Press Association, some 40 publishers and their wives, met in Midland for their annual summer meeting.  Following lunch at the Midland Golf and Country Club they toured Midland Shipyards, Huronia House Museum and the Martyrs’ Shrine. * * * Major L. H. Taylor, Midland, officer commanding the 166th Light Anti-Aircraft Battery took his unit to artillery camp at Picton, guns and transport were moved by road convoy. * * * Noting that the premium on each dollar had been about six cents, Jack Doughty, Tourist Committee Chairman of the Midland chamber of commerce said that giving the U.S. tourist the proper daily premium on United States bills was one of the best investments that can be made in good will. 

Radar Unit, Works Snag, Flare Council Tempers
Garbage site plan lost’ in smoke 

County Herald headline of July 7, 1961.
The unseasonably cool temperature Wednesday did not find its parallel at a special meeting of Midland council Wednesday afternoon when contentious issues caused the temperatures of some aldermen to rise well above normal. While the meeting was called specifically to discuss the awarding of a contract for a garbage disposal site, council never did get to that item. (To paraphrase the rest of the article, the councillors argued through all of the meeting about the need for a radar gun, already approved and budgeted and the need to scarify Ontario Street, already approved and budgeted.) 

Editorial by William Cranston – A local museum lives on the goodwill and interest of its local citizen supporters. That, for its entire fourteen years, has been the secret of the success of Midland’s Huronia Museum, and was particularly evident at the recent annual meeting of the association. People like the R. S. Sheppards, the Lawrence Devines, Major and Mrs. Ritchie Lane, Jack Tipping, Mr. and Mrs. Jack Drinkwater, and others of the Coldwater district; the Joseph Leas of Hillsdale; the Tanners of Tannerville and the Jack Skeltons of Fesserton; Don McGuire of Elmvale and the late John McGuire of Penetanguishene; Mrs. Arthur Downer of South Tiny; the several Miller families in Medonte; Mrs. Rawley of Port Severn . . . one could go on naming them by the dozen, these are the sort of people on whose shoulders historical conservation is carried. We often wish that, in addition to seeing the artifacts in the glass cases, the thousands of children who visit Huronia’s local museums each year, could somehow see and catch the spirit of some of these pioneer citizens.