Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years Ago in North Simcoe – April 7th to 14th, 1958

Click on photos to enlargePhotos from the sugar bush of Hormidas Laurin at the bottom of the 18th Concession of Tiny Twp. The camp was visited on a Sunday morning by Vern Farrow, Free Press editor in Penetang,  and his wife, on the invitation of Mr. Laurin’s nephew Marcel Bellehumeur. [The Penetang Free Press office was in the same building on Robert St. W. as M. Bellehumeur’s insurance office.]


The old and the new are graphically illustrated in this sugar bush where both horses and tractor are used. The team draws sleigh-mounted cask for picking up sap. 

Steaming hot and full of bubbles, maple syrup is drawn from the end of the evaporator and strained through several thicknesses of cloth to ensure a pure product. 

Hundreds of children, young and old crowded around the Easter bunny in Little Lake Park Saturday morning prior to the annual Easter egg hunt in the park. Here Mr. “Wabbit’s” well-wishers give him a cheer. Prior to the start of the hunt, the children took part in a sing-song of Easter songs led by V. B. Strickland. Each child also had an opportunity to shake hands with the bunny. More than 50 special prizes were distributed to those who found the lucky tokens hidden among the grass, leaves, tree roots and stumps in the park. There were few sticks, piles of leaves and stones left unturned after the wave of hunters had passed. 

Five hundred candy suckers were distributed by members of Midland’s Y’s Men’s Club to all children who participated in the mammoth Easter egg hunt at Little Lake Park April 5th. Harold Wilcox and Charlie Walton are shown handing out the suckers to the eager tads. 

Second schedule winners for women’s competition at Midland Curling Club was this rink pictured at the club last week. Seen with the Hartman Bros. Trophy are, left to right, Agatha Smith, vice-skip; Marnie Powell, lead; Islay Nicholson, skip and Mrs. Jack [Betty] Moss, second. 

Ike Cumming’s rink emerged winner of the H. J. Thompson competition at Midland Curling Club this winter. Left to right are Ed Sutherland, Ike Gumming, Charlie Walton and John Dalrymple. Other winners included Dr. Jim Small in the “Early Bird” competition and Karl Bertrand’s rink in the Industrial League. 

First schedule winners on the distaff side at the Midland Curling Club, are pictured here with the Men’s Club Trophy and handbags they won in the competition. From left to right are lead Margaret Johnston, skip Mrs. Charles Walton, vice-skip Mrs. James Tully and second Mrs. Ken Ellis. 

One of the most successful events of the winter season, Midland’s 9th annual mixed bonspiel was held recently. Winners were Milt Irwin’s Midland rink, seen above, who won the Orr Trophy and wrist watches for first prize. Left to right are Mr. Irwin, Mrs. J. May, Mrs. R. A. Megaw and Mr. Megaw. 

Coldwater’s old public School is to be demolished and replaced by five modern homes. Agreement of sale for the building and property was finalized this week. Steve Kepic of Brantford is the new owner of the property. [It was located on the North side of Gray Street beside the Anglican Church.]

Anything but a pleasing sight these spring days is the main slip at Government Dock in Midland harbor. Sand and muck cover the snow dumped alongside the dock, where it has been deposited all winter long from Midland streets. Tin cans, bottles, and other garbage litter the center portion of the slip. 

Spring flowers proved an irresistible attraction for hundreds of Midland residents who toured Mac Perrin’s shop and greenhouses March 30. Tour was sponsored by the Women’s Auxiliary of the YMCA.  Mrs. J. H. Sargent left, and Mrs. E. H. Zimmer stop beside a bed of chrysanthemums. 

Capt. and Mrs. George Stephens admire the many-colored cineraria. 

 Mrs. Perrin pins a rose on one of the youngest visitors, Perry Gordon. Watching are Gail Tremblay, left, and Sharon Moreau. [Perrin’s greenhouses were located along Bourgeois Lane behind Cathy Boyd’s Gallery, the former Perrin’s Flower Shop.] 

For the first time in some twenty years, veterans of the Midland area held a Vimy dinner at Parkside Inn Wednesday night, commemorating the great battle of April 9, 1917. Among the officials present were, left to right, Charles Stewart, Ernest Hurl, Envoy J. Thompson, Midland, and Cpt. R. G. Ellsworth, Orillia, both of the Salvation Army; Rev. W. R. Auld, H. A. Wiles. 

Warren French is one of 14 students in the OAC school of graduate studies who received post-graduate degrees of master of science in agriculture. Warren is studying chemistry at McMaster University proceeding to the Ph.D. degree. 

Officers of the newly-formed Huronia Hand Gun Club are seen above at a recent meeting. Left to right are, front row, Bill Mohan, Harry Couling, Mrs. Pete Abram and Charlie O’Dale; back row, C. L. (Bud) Preston, John Magnus, John Power and Pete Abram.

“Good weather is a boon to bridge construction on the new Trans Canada route.” 

  • Headline from the Free Press Herald, April 9, 1958; “Centralized Fire Force Advocated for Township”  A recommendation that Tiny council considers establishing a central fire brigade was made to that body at its monthly meeting in Perkinsfield last week. The proposal was tabled by Harold Hunter, representing the Ontario Fire Marshall’s Department. Mr. Hunter also pointed out that the three existing brigades in the township have no official status, as authorizing bylaws have never been passed. Present bylaws set out fire protection areas but do not properly authorize brigades. Mr. Hunter explained that under existing conditions none of the fire departments has the right to go onto private property.
  • Headline from the County Herald April 1, 1958; Predict Enrollment 1,230, Need New School by 1965” Giving a preliminary report on information he and board Secretary R. S. King are now compiling on possible needs for future expansion, he said that by 1965, 14 more classrooms would be needed and enrolment could stand at 1,230. By that time, seven years from now, he said gymnasium, shop and home economics facilities would be inadequate. These figures were conservative ones and were based only on present elementary school enrolment; not taking into account possible increases in population. Present enrolment is 736. By 1963, only five years from now, Mr. Johnston predicts enrolment will be nearly 1,100 pupils and MPDHS would need 10 more classrooms than at present to accommodate them. [They were right.]
  • [We have mostly avoided including the hundreds of tragedies that appeared in our local paper, car accidents, fire deaths and drownings are the most numerous. These were the years before seat belts, collapsible steering columns, and safety glass. During the summer in the fifties, at least one person was drowned in North Simcoe every week, often children. We include this item to remind us all to be vigilant.] The combination of a kiddie’s tricycle and a slippery river bank proved fatal for a little Wyebridge lad, who drowned in the Wye River Monday evening. Dead is Herbert Bryan Banks, the five-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Lorne H. Banks, who live near the north end of the village. Coroner Dr. D. C. Swan, Midland, called to the scene, announced that an inquest would not be necessary. Bryan had been playing with Ruth, 6, and Reid Rawn, 3, children of Mr. and Mrs. Angus Rawn who reside just south of the Highway 27 bridge over the Wye. The three children were near the first bend in the river east of the highway and were apparently making their way around to some other children further downstream, in some manner, Bryan and tricycle slipped down the south bank and into the stream.
  • J. W. Bald was honored Monday night by members of Caledonian Lodge. A.F. and A.M. on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Oldest past master of the lodge in terms of years, Mr. Bald was presented with a potted plant.
  • Fourteen-year-old Dietmar Wagner of Midland, a pupil at Regent Public School, yesterday won the provincial public speaking contest in Toronto. He was one of 11 elementary school pupils who took part in the competitions held in conjunction with the Ontario Educational Association convention being held this week in the Queen City.
  • Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers Association will commence the first of a series of courses on the safe handling of firearms, Thursday night. The meeting will be held in the Midland YMCA. Chief speaker will be Jeff Jones, a former weapons instructor at Camp Borden. His talk will describe the safe handling of guns and safety regulations. Lorne “Smoky” Wood of the GBHA said the meeting was open to persons 14 years and older. He said those who turn out will be divided into classes for the course.
  • The “Bowery Four,” comprised of Shirley St. Amand, Pat Blanchard, Danny Donaldson and Debbie Hendrickson, won the amateur night contest at the Roxy Theatre, Thursday night. Nearly 600 persons watched the young dance team romp home to victory. All four are from Midland and are scheduled to appear on a Buffalo television station. Second place honors went to dancer Faith Cripps of Midland. Other contestants were dancer Jane Ladouceur of Penetang, Marcel Carriere, guitar player, Penetang, Wayne Bonar and Murray Drinkle of Midland, singers.
  • The TCA flight which leaves Malton for Ottawa at 11 a.m. Thursday will have two very happy Midlanders aboard. They are Miss Judy Mclntyre and her mother, Mrs. Hugh Mclntyre. Judy earned the trip for herself and her mother, as the escort, when she won the Roxy Theatre’s “Queen of Hearts” contest in February.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Charles A. Robins announce the engagement of their daughter Marilyn Ann to Mr. Glen Bradley Bumstead, son of Mr. and Mrs. Archie Bumstead, Wyevale, the marriage to take place on Saturday, May 10, at 2 p.m. at the Church of the Good Shepherd, Wyebridge. [I enjoy the connections I discover in these articles. Over the years many people stand out as super nice and Mrs. Robins was one and Marilyn Bumstead another and now I know why, mother and daughter.]
  • 25 Years Ago This Week – 1933 – Midland was to receive about $425 more in education grants from Simcoe County in 1933 than it received in 1932. The grant for 1933 amounted to $11,116.63. * * * The Royal Scotsman, crack British express train, was on its way to Montreal where it was to be assembled and run to Chicago for exhibition at the Century of Progress Exhibition. * * * Captain Percy Beatty of Midland won the silk topper at Toronto for the second consecutive year, when he took the first ship into Toronto harbor in 1913. His ship, the Coalhaven, had 2,000 tons of coal on board. * * * Dormant for three years, the Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers re-organized. The new president was Lloyd Thompson. Other officers were Robert Davidson, Penetang, vice-president; Dave Haig, Midland, secretary; L. Thompson, J. B. Hanley, L. S. Wallace, N. K. Wagg all of Midland, Mr. Rawson, C. P. Stocking, Waubaushene. Mr. Davidson and Mr. Warnock, Penetang, directors. * * * Midland harbor was free of ice, the ice having left the bay sometime during the night of April 6. * * * The Canadian Canoe Association was negotiating with the town to hold its annual regatta on Little Lake. The two-day event, which was expected to attract more than 3,000 persons, was scheduled to be held August 4 and 5. * * * The Canadian Amateur Hockey Association had officially approved the forward passing rule in all three playing zones. *  * * Food, clothing, shelter and 20 cents a day were to be provided for 1,000 homeless men at a construction camp the Department of National Defence planned to open at Petawawa.
  • Ontario Department of Highways is calling tenders on the structure and approaches for a bridge over the Moon River on Highway 103, five miles south of Footes Bay. Bids close April 23.
  • More than 100 persons are expected to attend the Vimy dinner at Parkside Inn tonight. The dinner, the first to be held in Midland in nearly 20 years, is being sponsored by World War I veteran members of Branch 80, Canadian Legion, Midland. Chiefs speaker will be Capt. R. G. Ellsworth of the Orillia Salvation Army Corps.
  • OBITUARIES – Mary Jane Bell, 77, died unexpectedly March 24 at the home of her daughter, Mrs. S. R. Cowdy, Yonge Street West, in Midland. Rev. L. Delaney conducted the funeral service held March 27 at A. Barrie and Sons funeral home.  Pallbearers were J. Stainton, A. Tybout, R. Hart, G. Smith, V. Sweeting and R. Vandervelde. Born August 27, 1880, in Peterborough, Mrs. Bell and David Bell were married there March 30, 1911. Mr. Bell predeceased her some time ago.  A member of the Anglican Church, Mrs. Bell had lived in Midland for 44 years. She was a charter member of Ideal Rebekah Lodge. She is survived by three sons; David H. of Midland, William H. and Andrew J. of Toronto and one daughter, Mrs. S. R. Cowdy (Kathleen) of Midland. * * * * W. Joseph Smith, 70, died at Georgian Manor in Penetang March 26, following a heart attack. Pallbearers were George Marshall, Jack Fitzgerald, Albert Smith, Jack O’Hara, Jim Smith and Henry Forget. Born at Wyebridge in 1888, Mr. Smith was educated at Evergreen School. He and the former Dolly Hawkins were married in Midland, but he spent all his life on a farm near Wyebridge. * * * * Native of Penetang, Joseph Bazinet died unexpectedly at his Water Street home March 8. Born in Penetang, Jan. 10, 1904, he had lived there all his life, attending Penetang schools. He had worked for many years for the McGibbon Lumber Co. Mr. Bazinet was a Roman Catholic. Surviving besides his wife, the former Delianne Hamelin whom he married in 1930, are two brothers, Herman of Penetang, and Louis of Montreal, and three sisters, Mrs. William Brophy (Marie), Penetang; Mrs. Rose Mullarky, Picton and Albertine Bazinet, Hamilton.  Pallbearers were six nephews. Allan and Clifford Therrien, Bernard and James Brophy, Edward Bazinet and Elric Dupuis. * * * * A resident of Midland and district all his life, Septimus Maughan died March 29 following an illness of two years. Pallbearers were Wm. Toole, Jack Waples, Elsworth Collins, Lorne Taylor, Morgan Edwards and Gordon Vipond. Born July 25, 1886, in Tay Township, Mr. Maughan was educated there. He and Katie Bennett were married in Toronto Oct. 25, 1924. After farming for several years in the district, Mr. Maughan joined the staff at Copeland Flour mill where he worked until he became ill. Besides his wife, he is survived by two daughters, Vivian and Norma (Mrs. Lloyd Roberts) of Midland; two sons, Ray of Midland, Donald of Edmonton, Alta.; three grandchildren Robin and Lynn Roberts and David Maughan, all of Midland. * * * * Funeral service was held April 1 at his home Lot 11, Con. 7, Tay Township, for Stanley Sallows who died March 30 at Gravenhurst. Pallbearers were Wm. Holm, Godfrey Lye, Elmer Tucker, Wm. Sallows, Joseph Gratrix and George McNeil. Born July 6, 1920, at Victoria Harbour, Stanley Sallows was educated at S.S. 15, Tay, Sturgeon Bay. He married Edith Gratrix Sept. 20, 1940, at Victoria Harbour. Besides his wife Edith, he is survived by sons Robert and Douglas, and his mother, all of Victoria Harbour. Also surviving are sisters, Dora of Mimico, Velma of Sudbury, and brothers Charles and Fred of Victoria Harbour.
  • The name “Beatty” on products manufactured by The James Stewart Manufacturing Co., Penetang, is becoming well-known in establishments across the country where commercial cooking units are in use. In addition, the Penetang plant gained considerable prestige through a large exhibit at the recent Canadian Restaurant Convention in Toronto. Included in the exhibit were deep fat fryers, griddles, commercial hot plates, food warmers, commercial ovens and pull down or sandwich grills.
  • One of North Simcoe’s legendary and well-known figures in public life, Lance Rumble died suddenly at Palm Beach Florida late Wednesday night. He was in his 63rd year. Often called Hillsdale’s “Ambassador at Large,” Mr. Rumble spread the fame of the tiny North Simcoe village over the far corners of the earth with his stories of the characters, real and fancied, who lived there a half-century or more ago.
  • Team and individual trophies were awarded to Legion Branch 80’s crib team at Orangeville. Team members were Charles Spiker, Les Scott, Louis Latour, Garnet Drinkle, Charles Stewart, Herb Wiles, Darcy Fitzgerald, Bruce Woods, Mike Doherty and Jerry Borsa. The team will enter provincial competitions at North Bay.
  • HUDSON-David and Eleanor Hudson happily announce the arrival of their daughter, Janice Elaine, at St. Andrews Hospital Midland, on Wednesday, April 9, 1058, a sister for Kathryn.
  • KINNEAR — Mr. and Mrs. John Kinnear wish to announce the arrival of their daughter, Susan Frances, on Saturday, April 5, 1958, at St. Andrews Hospital, Midland.
  • From the editorial page; “The Gordon Commission members appear to be concerned over the spread of wealth in Canada. So are a good many of their fellow Canadians.”

Two items from the old papers;

1931 Argus advertisement for The Georgian Bay Tourist Company and a 1923 Argus advertisement from the local Ford dealer for a conversion kit to turn your Ford into a sedan. 

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