Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years ago in North Simcoe – July 1st to 7th 1956

Click on photos to enlarge

I think the Free Press photographer was on holidays the last week of June and the first week of July 1956, there are very few photos and they come from correspondents, previous news items or Rolfoto and Budd Watson. The Watson photo is a good one of our town band in the band shell at Little Lake Park.

 2006 0020 2405 This photo appeared on the bottom right corner of the front page of the Free Press, July 4th, 1956. Unfortunately the corner was torn, taking away 90% of the caption. The heading is “Natural Science Lesson” and the only name we can make out is Clifford Ga?? A Harbour is mentioned so it could be Honey Harbour or Victoria Harbour. We pulled out the original copy of the paper and confirmed that the corner is missing.

Let us know if you can identify this group!!

 2006 0020 2406 Activities for another year wound up at SS #15 Tay, June 29th, with a picnic and open house. Gathered around a social studies project are Alma Galbraith, Ruth Galbraith, Lois Todd and Vernon Morris, teacher of the 16 pupil school at Sturgeon Bay.

 To fill out the photo section we will include some local photos from a collection acquired by the Free Press that relates to a 1956 booklet called “The Story of Simcoe County” published by the County of Simcoe and edited by the Honourable E. C. Drury. The photos depict agriculture, leisure activities, tourist locations, historic sites and the natural beauty of Simcoe County. 

2006 0020017
2006 0020019

2006 0020018Little Lake Park in the winter prior to 1956. The log cabin was a gift from Dr. Garnet Tanner and was used as a post office for the campers. It was removed in the spring of 1956. The second photo shows the old store, also prior to 1956 and the band shell. The third, taken at the west end of the park, shows the small cabins that ended up in back yards all over the area.

 2006 0020070 Row boats for hire, Little Lake Park.

 2006 0020071 The GTR / CNR roundhouse and service facilities at the Tiffin. The roundhouse has been reduced to what appears to be five stalls and by 1956 the steam locomotives had disappeared and these facilities, such as the water tower to the right in the photo, would no longer be needed. The roof of the Aberdeen or Tiffin #1 can be seen on the left as well as the smoke from the town dump. By 1956 the town was looking for a better way to handle its waste. 

2006 0020111 CPR summer station at Port McNicoll with the ice house in the background. For years this was one of the most photographed sites in Simcoe County, not just by the passengers but it was a popular spot to visit by locals on a family outing.

2006 0020143 2006 0020145 Martyr’s Shrine before the reconstruction of Ste. Marie. Note the passenger shelter used by tourists that arrived by passenger train and the small house behind it. 

2006 0020082 The Parkside Inn on Yonge Street Midland. 

2006 0020079Government dock at Victoria Harbour.

2006 0020037Owl Pen, the home of Kenneth Wells and Lucille Oille in Medonte Township near Creighton. 

2006 0020010 There were many “glamour” shots like this one with women in bathing suits on the beach, in boats and canoes and mostly sitting on rocks, but only this one was used in the book, but with a young man driving. The photographer certainly made an effort to get a good selection. 

  • For the second year in succession the Midland Citizens’ Band has brought home the Canadian championship for Class 1 junior brass bands.
  • A thirteen year old girl from Hamilton was struck and badly injured by a power boat while swimming at Little Lake Park. The Parks Commission is seeking a ban on high horsepower boats on the lake.
  • Midland and district public and Catholic schools published promotion lists
  • Ted McKillen is closing his men’s clothing business at 245 King Street after 38 years. When brother Lloyd returned from overseas they set up shop in the Georgian Coffee Shop under the name McKillen Brothers
  • Lloyd Letherby, MLA for Simcoe East announces a new million dollar super highway to be constructed from Highway 400 to Gravenhurst. The original plan called for a two lane highway paralleling Hwy 93 from Crown Hill to Craighurst then branching off to Coldwater to meet Hwy 12. The new plan calls for an extension from Coldwater through Matchedash and Orillia Twp’s to Hwy 11 at Gravenhurst. (As we know this road was never built. The 400 extension went as far as Coldwater where it joined #12 which joined the Trans Canada Highway #103 at Waubaushene. With the bypass of Coldwater built several years ago and the widening of the 400 extension to four lanes the 400 highway now goes as far as Parry Sound and will soon reach Sudbury.)
  • Two Midlanders, Lionel Bourgeois and Siegfried Appelt, have both been charged after being involved in a traffic accident at Fourth and Quebec Streets.
  • In Canada the poisoning of lakes and re-stocking with game fish has become a proven tool for restoring lakes where coarse fish have taken over. (Really!!)
  • Mr. & Mrs. Amos Mateff wish to announce the arrival of their son, Glen Howard, a brother for Lana and Karen.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Howard Leonard wish to announce the engagement of their daughter Carolyn Maureen, to John Ralph Fagan, son of Mr. & Mrs. Cecil Fagan of Wyebridge.
  • The Roxy is showing “The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” with Gregory Peck, Jennifer Jones and Frederic March. The Pen Theatre has live stage entertainment as well as their screen performance. The first one hundred patrons receive a free Elvis photo.
  • The areas newest dining spot is the Grange in Wyebridge. Once a community meeting hall, jail, home of group of seven artist Franz Johnston, the new restaurant is owned and operated by Mr. & Mrs. Fred Cook.
  • Midland Parks Superintendent Harold McAllen told this newspaper yesterday that results of a water test by the Simcoe County Health Unit show the water in Little Lake to be satisfactory.
  • Promotion results from Moore’s Corner. Grade 8 to 9, Shirley Holm, Tom Smith –  Grade 7 to 8, Mary Holm, Maizie Mount, Garnet Sallows  – Grade 6 to 7, Eldon Irish, Karen Sallows, Sharon Sallows, Brian Webb  –  Grade 5 to 6, Eleanor Holm, Neal Mount, Shirley Sallows  –  Grade 4 to 5, Wanda Russell  –  Grade 3 to 4, Judy Bumstead, John Holm, Allen Mount  –  Grade 2 to 3, Jennifer Bumstead, Mary Burnie, Sharon Rumney, Rodney Sallows –  Beginners to Grade 1, John Burnie, Bruce Rumney
  • BBQ’d chicken now available at Midland IGA Foodliner, barbequed before your eyes with our new “Sun Valley” Rotis-O-Mat, $1.29 for regular bird and $1.49 for a stuffed bird.
  • 25 YEARS AGO – Port McNicoll Masons, who a few weeks previous had purchased the old Star Theatre in the village, dedicated their new lodge rooms in the second story of the building  –  Increase in postal rates took effect July 1st, letter rates were two cents for local mail and three cents for anywhere else in Canada, the new rate is one cent more.  –  North Simcoe is in the grip of a heat wave, the temperature has been 96 degrees for three days.

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