Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years Ago in North Simcoe – February 1st to 7th 1958

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Telegraph operator in Midland for the CNR for the past 12 years, John Scharbach takes over a new post in Toronto next week. Mr. Scharbach is seen in the center, upper picture, with CNR agent Frank Whiteman, left, and Charles Vent, following the presentation of a desk set by fellow employees and representatives of several Midland firms. Below, Mr. Scharbach checks over some messages with “Bill” Mitchell, left, his successor in Midland.

A familiar part of every Free Press for years.

Mrs. Eileen Peters, left, holding the Justice Carl Stewart Trophy for best director, and Ken MacEachern, with the best supporting actor award and last year’s festival trophy for the best play, will defend their laurels at the third inter-school drama festival in Barrie next weekend. MPDHS entry won the best play award two years in succession. 

The devil bids goodbye to Miss Appleby, after failing in all his temptations. Wayne Parker and Judy Campbell were the stars of ‘The Devil and Miss Appleby’, entry of Midland-Penetang District High School in the third annual Georgian Bay Drama Festival. Midland won the best play award at the festival, held at Barrie District North Collegiate last Friday and Saturday. 

A cross-section of the crowd which filled Cumming-Nicholson shoe store in Midland Thursday is shown above. The photo was taken soon after the store opened for its annual shoe sale. The sale was announced in a quarter-page advertisement which was published in the Wednesday, Jan. 29, Free Press Herald. 

These five girls were among the prize winners in the temperance poster contest sponsored by the WCTU in Ontario schools as part of its scientific temperance instruction. Left to right are Marilyn Nicholson, whose poster was the best in the county as well as locally in Grade 6; June Brownlee, Grade 5; Gaile Wright, Grade 8; Barbara Caston, Grade 6; and Janet Setterington, Grade 5. 


Made by his father in Dartmouth, England, some 64 years ago, this miniature set of blacksmith’s tools is being donated to Midland’s Huronia Museum by William Waldron of Waubaushene. Exact replicas of the real thing, the tiny tools are made of iron. 

Having the rope tow in operation again has been a boon to both members of Midland Ski Club and visitors who have been out in large numbers on recent weekends. Snow conditions were almost perfect last weekend. (Sorry mom, it wasn’t me that ruined my new coat, it was the rope tow!)


  • The County Herald headline February 7, 1958; Falls Into Septic Tank Harbour Lad Suffocates    —-  Falling through a small hole into an ancient septic tank in the village of Victoria Harbour Wednesday afternoon, Daniel Fannin, aged three, died of suffocation before his plight was noticed. OPP Const. H . R. Banting, of the Victoria Harbour detachment of the OPP, said the boy was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Fannin, who are separated. The father is reported to be living at R.R. 3, Pickering, and the mother in Toronto. Daniel and a 10-year-old brother David were living in Victoria Harbour with an aunt, Mrs. Margaret Hall. Const. Banting said Daniel had been playing with his brother and a 12-year-old son of Mrs. Hall earlier in the afternoon. The two older boys had taken him back to his own yard and had then gone out to a fishing shack on the ice of Georgian Bay nearby. When Mrs. Hall saw the two older boys returning without Daniel, a search was immediately started for the Uttle lad. The two boys were able to follow Daniel’s tracks to an old septic tank, believed to have been installed some years ago by one of the old lumber companies that flourished in the Harbour. It still serves the village office and a number of other buildings in the area, police said.
  • Free Press Herald headline of February 5, 1958; Faces High Court Trial on Manslaughter Charge.  — Magistrate K. A. Cameron ruled a prima facie case had been established in Midland police court  Monday morning against a 19-year-old Midland taxi driver, charged with manslaughter following the death of John Clark, 31, also of Midland. He was committed for trial in the next highest court having criminal jurisdiction, probably at the spring assizes in Barrie. Bail was renewed.
  • Well known resident of Midland, where he had been employed by the former T. J. Campbell plumbing and heating firm for many years, William Evart Thompson died suddenly Tuesday morning. He was in his 71st year. Mr. Thompson, accompanied by Rev. W. R. Auld, had Just entered Mr. Campbell’s home on Yonge Street West when he was stricken by a heart attack. He is survived by Mrs. Thompson, the former Jean Ross.
  • W. R. Auld, minister of St. Paul’s United Church, Midland, for the past 26 years, announced Sunday that he was retiring from the ministry. He told his congregation he had felt for some time that the work at St. Paul’s should be carried on by a younger man. He said he planned to seek lighter church work and would not be remaining In Midland. Mr. Auld is now serving his 41st year in the ministry. At Prince of Wales College, Charlottetown, he was a fellow student of James McGuigan, now James Cardinal McGuigan.
  • Midland’s “Mr. Hockey”, who has been named a member of the selection committee of the new “Hockey Hall of Fame” to be established at the CNE in Toronto. Mr. Dudley was also guest of honor at the recent sportswriters’ dinner in aid of crippled children.
  • “Oh, Mom, it was so wonderful can hardly find words to describe it.” Lorraine Lacroix, returning from five days spent at the St. Paul, Minn., Winter Carnival, repeated these words several times as she rode in the back seat of a car with her mother, from Malton to Penetang, last Wednesday night. Miss Lacroix,  Penetang’s 1957 Winterama Queen, had been invited to attend the St. Paul event as one of 19 visiting “Snow Princesses”.  “Everyone was wonderful to us there, and we couldn’t possibly have been treated better,” she said, as she explained the elaborate plans carried out to ensure the comfort of the visiting guests. “I was so glad when they played and sang Alouette, I felt right at home then, and I had to sing it in French,”  she said.
  • Ten Years Ago This Week — Penetang was without railway service for two days when strong westerly winds blocked a cut half way between Elmvale and Wyevale with drifting snow. Three engines and a snowplow became stuck in the cut trying to clear the track right-of-way. * * * Annual meeting of St. Andrews Hospital was told that the operating deficit for 1947 amounted to $13,263, despite an increase of $9,053 in operating revenue. * * * A proposal to raise telephone operators’ wages from $10 to $15 a week and the chief operator’s wages to $20 weekly touched off a storm of protest at the annual meeting of Coldwater Telephone Commission. The proposal was eventually adopted without a dissenting voice. * * * The Department of Municipal Affairs had notified Penetang council it would not approve a $75,000 expenditure on a new wing to the town’s hospital or a $60,000 expenditure for a new ice arena. The reason given was that the town was already carrying a bank loan of $51,875 for expenditures which would have to be debentured.  * * * Midland-Penetang Coach Lines had announced that its crosstown bus service would commence in Midland. Buses were to run every half hour, commencing at 6.30 a.m. Sunday service was to operate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. * * * Simcoe County Council approved a resolution requesting the Ontario government to pay 50 percent of the cost of maintaining children’s aid societies. * * * Fifty people, representing several rural communities in Simcoe County, endorsed plans for Bass Lake Co-operative Park at a special meeting in Barrie. Twenty-five of those in attendance subscribed for membership.
  • Pete Addison, now regional forester for the South-Western region of Ontario, including the Simcoe, Huron, and Erie districts, is the son of Dr. W. L. T. Addison, Penetang doctor around the turn of the century. Forester Addison spends many a summer at his family cottage on the 13th Concession of Tiny and among his many broader responsibilities are the overseeing of lands and forests and parks developments in this part of Huronia. (This cottage was considered the first to be built along the Tiny Twp beaches and would be destroyed by fire within a year.)
  • Mrs. Robert Mosley, Sr., died unexpectedly Jan. 19 at her late residence, RR 1, Wyebridge; she was 55. Funeral service was held Jan. 21 at A. Barrie and Sons funeral home. Rev. N. B. McLeod of Victoria Harbour and Rev. W. R. Auld officiated. Pallbearers were Bill Jones, Bert Jones, Douglas Mosley, Ross Irwin, Douglas Curry and Erie Curry. Mrs. Mosley, the former Ethel E. Stewart, was born Jan. 10, 1903, on a farm on Old Fort Road, and was educated at Ebenezer School. On March 21, 1921, she and Robert Mosley were married in Midland. She had lived in this district all her life. Mrs. Mosley was a member of the Ebenezer United Church and had been an active member of the Waverley LOBA for more than 25 years. She was also a member of the Ideal Rebecca Lodge No. 199 Midland, and the Wyebridge W. I. Besides her husband she is survived by two sons, Robert Jr., of Wyebridge and Donald of Midland; seven grandsons and three brothers, Thomas Stewart of Victoria Harbour, Fred Stewart of Española and Albert of Montreal.
  • A resident of Coldwater district for 56 years, Mrs. Margaret Louise Davidson died in Toronto Jan. 20 of coronary thrombosis. Mrs. Davidson was one of the most faithful members of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Coldwater. Mrs. Davidson was the former Margaret McNally and was born at Waverley, June 6, 1881. Educated at Waverley and Fesserton, she was married June 3, 1914, at Fesserton, to William John Davidson. She was predeceased by her husband in 1949. Mrs. Davidson resided at Waverley for 10 years, at Fesserton for 20 years, was for a year each at Fergus and Toronto, spent 18 years in Dundas, 13 years at North River, and was a resident of Coldwater for the past seven years. Pallbearers were Mervyn Walker, Edward Fell, Albert Locking, Oliver Blake, William Gilchrist and Cecil Dunlop. Immediately surviving are two sons, William David Davidson of Guelph; Harold Albert Davidson of Scarborough; and one daughter Ferne Elizabeth Carnes of Toronto.
  • A former resident of Christian Island Indian Reserve, Percy Marsden, 54, died at Roseneath Reserve, in the Rice Lake area, Jan. 29. Along with his father and former chief at Christian Island Robert Marsden, Percy had operated a store and post office at Christian. Surviving are his wife, daughter Delia of Toronto, and his father.
  • Said to have been the first shot ever fired out of a brand new rifle, a .22 caliber bullet caused severe facial and mouth injuries to a 15-year-old Midland girl in an accident early Wednesday afternoon. In St. Andrews Hospital is Phyllis Crawford, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Crawford, 83 Olive Street. The accident occurred shortly after 1 p.m. Wednesday when her boyfriend, Ernest Dorion, 17, of 112 Olive St., was showing her the new rifle.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Philias Toutant, Lafontaine, were chosen to cut the wedding cake, last Thursday night, when 118 couples renewed their marriage vows at a ceremony in St. Ann’s Church, Penetang. The date coincided with the Toutaut’s 60th wedding anniversary. The large group held a wedding breakfast in the church basement, followed by a reception in the Knights of Columbus Hall.

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