Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years Ago in North Simcoe – January 16th to 22nd 1958

Click on photos to enlargeThere is good news for skiers this week in the announcement that Midland Ski Club will operate for the rest of the season. The 600-foot tow is expected to be back in operation this weekend. Club members were busy Wednesday getting the new chalet in shape to handle both local and visiting skiers’ needs. 

We have posted this picture in the past but it needs another look. The view is to the NE from the slope of the Midland Ski Resort west of Midland. At the foot of the hill are the old and new ski chalets. Hidden in the tree line can be seen highway 27 to Penetang and beyond the Simcoe Elevator on the left and the Dominion Ave. water tower to the right. The property along the tree line will become the site of the Mountainview Mall.

Bell buoy from Georgian Bay, sitting out the winter on the Midland dock, frames the busy tug Bayport as it clears a channel in the bay for movement of grain-laden ships. The Bayport’s activities extend around the bay to Tiffin and Aberdeen elevators and as far as Port McNicoll, some five miles away. Movement of grain from the elevators has been brisk in recent weeks after many idle months.[Perhaps some knowledgeable sailor can tell us the meaning of the word or words “JAW LOG” on the buoy’s anchor.] (On April 23, 2020 we are told by Jim McKean, son of F. K. McKean, district agent for the Department of Transport in Parry Sound, that it actually says “Sawlog” indicating the buoy for Sawlog Bay.)

With three boy’s and two girl’s basketball teams in action this season the MPDHS cheerleaders get lots of opportunities to display their talents in the new gym. Judy Bellaire, Gail Richardson, Marion Lavigne, Jean Brown, Carol VanLuven, Mary Lou Brissette and Lucille Duquette. 


A crowd of 350 turned out on Monday night to elect a new board of directors for St. Andrew’s Hospital and discuss problems facing the hospital. The meeting was held in the auditorium of the new municipal building. The previous board had resigned.

Nearly every organization in Midland was represented at the emergency meeting which discussed St. Andrew’s Hospital problems and choose a new board. Members of the Phiat Club, a YMCA group, get a close-up view of the statistics surrounding the emergency. Lorna Edwards, Marion (Deeton) Lemieux, Donna Bertrand and Marjorie (Hornsby) Wiles. 

The new board of St. Andrew’s Hospital is seen following its election at a special meeting in Midland’s new municipal auditorium Monday night. Seated, John Burke, Dr. E. A. (Ed) Grise, Frank Spence, Mrs. Bruce Holt. Standing, Ed Mechan, Gordon Moss, Bill Cranston, Walter Kluck, Douglas Haig and R. B. Moffatt. 

 This highway was completed in 1959 and was known as the Highway 400 Extension. As you can see the plan was to build from Coldwater to Gravenhurst, the route to Gravenhurst was surveyed but never constructed.

Inaugural meeting of the 1958 Midland Public Schools Board. Front, W. A. (Bill) Hack secretary, Chairman Frank Bray and Mrs. H. McIntyre chairman of the management committee. Back row, Jack Thompson chairman of property, Harold Wilcox, John Burke and Frank Whiteman. Mr. Burke and Mr. Whiteman are new to the board and replace Tim Nesbit and Dr. J. S. Corcoran. 

Another in the safety photo series that ran in the newspaper. This is King Street South just in front of the cenotaph, what a beautiful street it was!

  • The County Herald headline from January 17th, 1958; Ontario’s Chief Coroner Probes J. Clark’s Death.   Provincial Chief Coroner Dr. Smirle Lawson was called in yesterday morning to conduct a post-mortem on Midlander John Clark, who died in a Toronto hospital about 9:30 p.m Wednesday. Chief Cameron said at 11.15 a.m. today that Eric Rankin would be charged with manslaughter, as a result of Clark’s death, on the advice of the Crown Attorney. Clark’s injuries were received in a tussle between him and Eric Rankin at the Rankin taxi office about 1 a.m. Tuesday, after the two had allegedly had an argument over a wristwatch which Clark had pawned, Sgt. Wainman said. Police said they had received signed statements from Eric Rankin and two eyewitnesses, Stewart Bath, jr., and Clarence Chapman. The last two named accompanied Clark to the taxi office.
  • The Free Press Herald headline from January 22nd, 1958; New Board Puts Hospital on Pay-as-you-Go Basis   Drastic action to strengthen the financial position of St. Andrew’s Hospital, Midland, and ensure its future operation was taken Monday night by the newly-elected board. St. Andrews is to be put on a pay-as-you-go basis, effective immediately, on a plan adopted by many other hospitals in Ontario. Bills will hereafter be rendered weekly.  Cash payments will be required for all services not covered by approved insurance plans. Persons not covered by hospital insurance will be required to pay a $40 deposit on entry to the hospital, to be applied against future bills. Should the $40 be in excess of the expense incurred, the difference will be refunded on discharge. This is to remain in effect until the provincial hospital insurance plan is implemented. Unmet campaign pledges, amounting to some $25,000 toward the cost, of the $825,000 building, will be reviewed.
  • Midland Ski Club has made arrangements to resume operation of the regular ski hill and expects to have a 600-foot tow in operation this weekend. For the time being at least, the big jump, owned by Midland Ski Resorts Ltd., will remain idle. President of the ski club, Ray Smith said yesterday the new chalet will also be made ready and a snack bar put in operation for this weekend. The chalet, an excellent building, was the former community hall in Little Lake Park. It was dismantled and moved to the ski club site last spring.
  • Indications gained from a survey of hotel operators in the area are that more people than ever plan to visit Penetang winter carnival, which this year has been named “Penetang Winterama”. All available accommodation in the town itself has been booked by reservation for the duration of the three-day event which is scheduled for Feb- 21, 22, and 23rd Phil Robitaille, the manager of Hotel Brule, said he is at present looking farther afield in search of accommodation to which he may send reservations which keep pouring into his office with each mail.
  • Obituaries; Funeral service was held for Irwin Cook who died unexpectedly while working at Midland Flour and Feed Store, King Street, Midland, Jan. 8. The service was held Jan. 10 at A. Barrie and Son’s funeral home and Envoy Thompson of the Salvation Army officiated at the service. Interment was in Lakeview Cemetery Chapel. Pallbearers were Gordon Gillespie, Jack Gillespie, Ken Cook, Gordon Cook, Fred French and Richard French. Mr. Cook was born in 1903 at Jarratt Corners and was educated at Craighurst. In 1943 he married Ann Stewart at Elmvale. He had worked in the milling business. * * * * Mrs. John Kissock, 53, died Jan. 8 at her home 395 Russell Street, Midland. She had been in failing health for the past three years. Rev. J. L. Self conducted the funeral service held Jan. 11 at Nicholls’ funeral home. Pallbearers were Logan Cruise, Claytus Cruise of Midland; Gordon Perry, Kenneth Astridge, Douglas Astridge of Barrie, all nephews; and Joseph Ball of Midland. Mrs. Kissock was born April 29, 1904, at Oro Township and educated at Mitchell Square. The former Kathleen Margaret Earnhardt, she married John J. Kissock at Oro Township Nov. 11, 1922. Mrs. Kissock is survived by her husband; daughter Ethel (Mrs. Thomas Bates) of Midland; and sons Arnold of Penetang, Newton of Oshawa and Ross of Midland. Another son, Lloyd, was killed in a car accident in Midland in 1953. * * * * Following a long illness Mrs. William Borrow of Severn Park died at Penetanguishene General Hospital Dec. 31. The funeral was held at the Waubaushene Catholic Church. Pallbearers’ were Etley Lovering, Frank Wellman, Claude Bolyea, Cecil Robinson, Charles Doyle, and Peter Gouett. Mrs. Borrow was the former Elizabeth Mary Gouett and was born at Waubaushene Sept. 13, 1899. She attended school in Waubaushene and resided in St. Catharine’s for a number of years. She was married to William Borrow at Midland, Nov. 21, 1918, and had been a resident of Matchedash Township for 37 years. Surviving is her husband and a son, Stephen Borrow of Coldwater. * * * * Funeral service was held Dec. 27 for John Bellisle who died in Penetang General Hospital Dec. 23 following a long illness. The service was held from St. Ann’s Roman Catholic Church in Penetang and, temporary entombment was in St. Ann’s Cemetery Vault. Rev. C. Robitaille, assisted by Rev. J. Marchand and Rev. Norbert Gignac, celebrated the high mass. Pallbearers were Gerald Bellisle, Larry Bellisle, Gerard Bellisle, Wallace Lacroix, A. Ladouceur and Patrick Marcelle. Mr. Bellisle was born June 18, 1907, at Penetang, where he was educated there. On Sept. 23, 1941, he married Gladys Moreau at Penetang. He had always resided in Penetang and was a butcher by trade.  He is survived by his wife, two sons and one daughter, Roy, Neil and Ruth. Also surviving are four brothers and two sisters.
  • With the advent of natural ice in Penetang Arena, a number of teams which have been travelling to Midland for games are now playing on their home ice.
  • These are the people who have been voted to the Student Council for the season of January 1958, to January 1959. President, Anne Hamilton; secretary, Sue Quinlan; treasurer, Tom Marr. Doug McMillan, Glen Bell, Ed Trudeau, Ken Ball, Girard Marchand, Carol Cowan, Carol Van Luven, Bev Scott, Rodney Rankin, Betty Ann McCullough, Dale Smitham, Rosemary Shields and Elizabeth Cook.
  • Help Wanted Applications are invited for the position of Truant Officer, for the Midland Public Schools, part-time basis, salary $2.50 per call, minimum $250.00 per annum. Further particulars may be obtained from the undersigned. WM. A. HACK, Secretary-Treasurer, Midland Public School Board.
  • Midland’s “new-look” Little NHL, with the number of teams, cut to four in all but the junior “B” section, proved pretty evenly matched last week, with one exception. Possibly they should have put Bobby Clayton in a section by himself. In any event, he scored five goals for Guelph in a junior “A” game as the Biltmores thumped Kitchener 6-1. Dion got the other Guelph goal, matched by Kitchener’s Larmand.

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