Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – Sept 15th to 30th 1955

  • OPP and Midland Police raid three concession stands at the Midland Fall Fair, seven persons arrested for operating a gambling devise, released on $500.00 bail each, three cars impounded
  • Patricia Grisé, 17 year old daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Didace Grisé wins $1,200.00 Loretto Alumnae Scholarship, money will pay four years of university tuition. She obtained eight firsts and one second in her grade 13 departmental examinations this year. Her sister Kathleen won the same scholarship two years ago
  • New CKVR channel 3  signal is interfering with reception of channels 2 and 4 from Buffalo, Midlanders were never able to get steady reception of USA channels but those on Tower TV are also impacted until company can install necessary filters to allow all three channels to be received
  • O. H. Swan, 84 of Vasey has never missed a Tiny & Tay Fall Fair in 60 years
  • Trustees for SS No16, the one room Mountain School have a problem, the school can accommodate only 37 pupils but an average attendance of 40 is needed to apply for a second classroom
  • A gremlin raided the Free Press negative files and removed all those pertaining to the local fall fairs in 1955 before they were donated to the museum, there are excellent photos in the newspaper of parades and events but Huronia Museum received none of those negatives
  • Felix Turcotte, Board Chairman of the Penetang Hospital reports 2,143 admissions in the first year of operation, 200 major operations, 403 minor, 430 births, 170 blood transfusions
  • Imperial Oil honours local newspaper by selecting the Free Press Herald as one of five Ontario papers, three being Toronto dailies, to be included in the contents of a time capsule placed in the corner stone of their new 19 story office tower at Avenue Road and St. Clair Ave. W.
  • Midlanders will no longer hear the town fire siren, in the move to their temporary home in the Pratt building it was decided by council not to erect the siren but to use a radio warning systems to call firefighters
  • Excerpts from Horst Siegfried’s article in the Ernst Leitz employee’s magazine “Objectiv” after his time in Midland; “Life in Midland, which is actually situated in a huge park, is agreeable even in the winter months”, “Hacker’s store has a wide selection of German magazines and they are not even out of date”, “it is not an exaggeration to state that a car is the same as a bicycle or a motor scooter in Germany, the reason for this is, cars cost less”, “Sundays are quieter than in Germany but this rest does one a lot of good, it is reflected in the behaviour of the population, in their friendly greeting and conversation”, “there are not many soccer enthusiasts, during the winter fierce ice hockey battles serve as compensation”.
  • Globe Restaurant is advertising, “Enjoy television while you eat at the Globe”
  • Victoria Harbour residents to express their opinion by ballot on November 23, whether a Brewer’s Warehouse,  liquor store or beverage rooms should be established in the village, two previous votes in the last 15 years have been “NO”. (real issue is the canteen at the legion)
  • 25 Years Ago – two special trains brought 400 pilgrims from Peterborough to the Martyr’s Shrine – some features of the fall fair in 1930 were; mouth organ contest, baby show, old time car parade, girl’s softball tournament – Christian Island held its second annual fall fair – the S.S. Ralph Budd made her maiden voyage from Fort William to Midland with 243,000 bushels of oats and wheat
  • Simcoe County Warden Roy Hickling at a meeting of the Georgian Bay Development Association is quoted, “the liquor industry puts cents in one pocket and takes dollars out of another”, “We are suffering more from parental than juvenile delinquency. Fifty-two new liquor outlets have been opened in Simcoe County in the last few years and liquor is one of our biggest problems”, “at least half the time, of not only County Council but local councils as well, is taken up by welfare problems”, “it might be wise for taxpayers to double the amount spent on education thus reduce the adult welfare costs, specialized teachers might be needed”
  • The Free Press has over 60 correspondents and staff and five out of six homes in North Simcoe receive the paper, 5,000 copies per addition
  • George Lynn of Highland Point loses large barn and vegetable sheds to $17,000 fire
  • George Wismer, 80 year old Wyebridge resident, killed instantly when struck by a car while walking along Highway 27, twenty three year old Midland man charged
  • In 1953 the port of Midland unloaded 1,685,344 tons of grain, coal and gasoline, the most of any of the eight Georgian Bay ports. Port McNicoll handled the second largest, receiving 1,077,845 tons
  • In the past eight years primary school enrollment in Simcoe County has risen 45%. (now we have a name for it, the Baby Boom)
  • Ten Years Ago – The new club rooms for the Canadian Legion were opened at Dominion and Midland Avenue – ad in the September 26th Want Ads read, …wanted, wife, middle aged, for further particulars apply…

 Click on photos to enlarge:

2006 0020 1375

 Trophy winners at the Midland Golf & Country Club annual awards night, last Wednesday. Les Marsell, winner of the Strathspey trophy, emblematic of the men’s championship; Maurice “Moe” Beteau, with the Hugh Wallace Memorial Trophy; Mrs. H.L. Wilson won the Haig Rose Bowl and George Ross the O’Hare Trophy for senior play. 2006 0020 1381

 Midland Police  have moved from their location of the last fifty years in the old town hall on King Street to a temporary location in the Pratt building on Bay Street. Constable Ray Atkinson takes a call at his new desk, only complaint, no heat yet. 2006 0020 1378

 Pair win Pinchin Trophy. Newest trophy at the Midland Golf & Country Club has been donated by Dr. A. H. Pinchin, center, and is presented to Mrs. Jim Thomas and Bill Hack winners of the mixed two ball. 2006 0020 1352

 Fifty six ton excavator got in too deep, construction workers on the Trans Canada Highway 5 miles north of Port Severn worked day and night for ten days to free the unit from the mud that almost completely buried it. 2006 0020 1389

 Art Bath, veteran Midland business man tries out this 1860’s steel wheeled, wooden seated bicycle. Eric Eisenburg has it on loan from one of his bicycle suppliers and featured it at the recent fall fair.

2006 0020 1421

 Serious threat to fishing in the North Simcoe area, Sea Lamprey Eels have attacked both of these rainbow trout caught in the Sturgeon River. Reg Smith and Pete Pettersen point to marks left by eels.

The devastating impact of the sea lamprey on Great Lakes sport, commercial and Aboriginal fisheries in the 1940s and 50s led Canada and the United States to form the Great Lakes Fishery Commission in 1955. Since then the commission has led a program to assess and control the species using measures that target different stages of its life cycle. These include chemicals that selectively kill lamprey larvae, and barriers and traps that prevent adult lampreys from moving upstream to spawn.

Although it is likely impossible to eliminate the sea lamprey from the Great Lakes, ongoing efforts to control the species have reduced populations by 90 per cent. Unfortunately, the remaining sea lampreys continue to affect native fish species.   (taken from

2006 0020 1355

RCSCC Huron got a new commanding officer Tuesday night when Lieut. Jack Harber, at the right, resigned from the post he has held since 1953, he has been a member since 1943. Sub-Lieut Robert McLeod is taking over. 2006 0020 1370

Ross Creser of RR 2 Markham collects the outboard motor boat he won in the Midland Intermediate Hockey Club draw. Jack Martin club president on the left makes the presentation with Jack Valliear team manager on right.


Mrs. James Dalziel died September 8th in her 97th year. She was born Edith Maud (Amanda) Archer in Elmvale, November 6th, 1858 and received her education there. She lived in Elmvale and Hillsdale for 52 years and the last 45 years in Midland. Lakeview Cemetery.

Mrs. Napolean Andrew Somers, a Midland resident for 55 years died September 8th in her home on Fifth Street. The former Catherine Rose Dubray was born in Quebec in 1874 and married Napolean Somers in Penetang in 1898. Survived by four daughters, Bertha, Mrs. Charles McKeown, Midland; Molly, Mrs. Angus Willette, Midland; Mary, Mrs. Earl McConkey, Toronto; Dolly, Mrs. John O’Hara, Midland. Three sons, Ernest, George and Bob all of Midland. St. Margarets Cemetery

John Alva Connor, a lifelong resident of Sturgeon Bay died September 12th in his 58th Year. Mr. Connor was born December 7th, 1900 and married Cora Brooks in 1927. Besides his wife he is survived by his mother Mrs. Oakley Connor, daughter Ann, Mrs. William Potter, sons, Oakley & Dale at home and Albert of Toronto. Also a brother, Ben Connor of Sturgeon Bay and sisters Hattie, Mrs. Willaim MacDonald and Katie, Mrs. William Crawford, both of Midland. Waubaushene Cemetery

A life well lived. 
A lifelong resident of Midland, Frederick Hill, died September 14th in St. Andrew’s Hospital. Mr. Hill was born on July 8, 1881, in a house on the property now occupied by the Alliance Tabernacle. He received his education in a wooden four room school on the site now occupied by Glen Mawr Frocks Ltd. At thirteen he quit school to help his father, the late Joshua Hill, operate the old American Hotel, then located across the street from the IGA store on King Street. The Hills ran the hotel from 1893 until 1903. After the hotel was sold Fred worked on a gold mining claim in the Haileybury area with the Turnbull brothers of Victoria Harbour. Later he worked for two years in the men’s furnishings department of the Playfair Preston Store. The Hills, junior and senior, acquired a 33 1/3 square mile timber site in the townships of Freeman and Conger on the Moon River in 1908. The company was first known as Hill and Demorest and was later changed to the Freeman Lumber Co. Ltd. A sports enthusiast, Mr. Hill played junior hockey, lacrosse and other sports. He speedskated and won several bicycle races. In 1942-43 he skipped one of the two rinks which brought to Midland the only provincial championship, the Governor General’s Trophy. Del Hastings skipped the other.  On February 14, 1912 he married the former Lena M. Garbutt in Arthur Ont. He was a member of the United Church and served several terms on Midland Council, including terms as Reeve and Deputy-Reeve. He is survived by his wife and two sons, Bert and Stanley. One son, Lawrence, pre-deceased him in 1938. Internment, Lakeview Cemetery.

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