Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years Ago in North Simcoe – April 14th to 21st 1958

Click on photos to enlarge Providing instruction for young lads in the safe handling of small-bore rifles is one of the useful projects sponsored by Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers Association. Some members of the association are seen above looking over a selection of guns with instructor Geoff Jones of Barrie at a class held in the Midland ‘Y’ last Thursday night. Left to right are, front row; Lorne “Smoky” Wood, Mr. Jones, Peter Clause; back row, L. S. “Toots” Wallace, Ken Walker and Bill Russell. 

Teaching the lads the proper way to handle a gun is the best way to avert accidents, Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers Association are agreed. Boys are left to right, Richard Jones of Barrie and Charles Scott, Morris Fransden, Don Zabzinski and Paul Dumais, from the Midland area. 

Annual dance of Midland’s Garrison Badminton Club was one of the highlights of the social season. Club President Brian and Mrs. Wood (Dorothy), right, are seen greeting Mr. and Mrs. Len Zablotny and Mr. and Mrs. Jim Galt at the dance, held Friday night in the Midland Armory. 

 The “LADY” in the center wasn’t saying much and never did sell a single balloon at the Midland Garrison Badminton Club’s annual dance in Midland Armory Friday night. Enjoying a spot of fun with the “lady” (a store figure) are Mr. and Mrs. Jim Collins, left, John Bourgeois and Margaret Ambeau. 

Waiting on the stairway for their escorts are four pretty girls who attended Midland Garrison Badminton Club’s annual dance. Left to right are Ray Stewart, Mignon Pearson, Margaret Ambeau and Evelyn McElrea. 

Nonchalant cigar smoker Bob Hamelin of Penetang was among those fighting a brush fire on the property of Norbert Bourgeois, Eighth Concession, Tiny, Thursday afternoon. A large stand of Christmas trees was untouched by the fire. 

Things are looking up on Hanley Street in Midland, where six modern homes are being built by Bernick Construction Ltd. These and two others on Donalda Street are under the supervision of Bill Ellis, superintendent of construction. The footings went in March 11, and the builders say the first house should be ready for occupancy by May 2nd. The wireless tower on William Street can be seen in the background. 


The four girls pictured won themselves big chocolate Easter bunnies through their ability with the skipping rope at classes held in Midland YMCA during the holidays. Left to right, the girls are, Ellen Okenka, Sharon Williams, Linda Duggan and Elizabeth Rutherford. Ellen won the singles title and paired with Sharon to capture the doubles for girls in the 9-10-year group. Elizabeth was top girl in the one-year group and also paired with Linda to win the doubles title. The girls are seen with instructor Lloyd Stackhouse. 

The first vessel to leave Port McNicoll this spring was Canada Steamship Lines’ ‘T. R. McLagan’, which pulled out Wednesday morning. The last load of clean laundry, delivered by Wagg’s, is being hauled aboard shortly before the departure. 

Delegates to the meeting of Zone 3, Georgian Bay Development Association, Wednesday toured three industries in Midland.  E. H. Nicholson of Midland, Steve Cerny, general manager of Bay Mills Ltd., and Howard Robinson, clerk of Medonte Township, examine a fabric in the Bay Mills finishing department. 

Reeve Albert Calvert, Port McNicoll, and Manning Stroud, Wasaga Beach, examine a plastic bread box made at Midland Industries Limited by Eunice Leduc. 

Two members of Zone 3, Georgian Bay Development Association, scrutinize a pair of lenses for sunglasses while touring the Midland plant of Bausch and Lomb. Left to right are George Thompson of Stayner, William Alderson of Alliston and Mrs. James Chretien, who operates the edging machine. 

Installation team for lOOF, Northern District 30, who have installed the officers of six district lodges, are pictured here. Back row is Garfield Steer, Tom Blair, Eric Heels, Archie Campbell and Omery Caudle. Front row, are S. Glassier, Harry Gray, DDG warden, Gordon Campbell, DDGM, Arnold Tippin and Albert Bowie. Last Friday night, J. Grant Chambers of Ottawa, grand master of Ontario, paid an official visit to this area and was guest of honor at a dinner at Parkside. (Copy of a photo by Andrews) 

Things are getting so mixed up these days it’s hard to tell the boys from the girls — well, almost. At Port McNicoll Public School’s “Open House” Tuesday night, Inspector Ken Ellis is seen above with Mary Kovalak, left, and Helen Elliott, who made the magazine racks they’re holding. Meanwhile, Allan Quesnelle displays his culinary prowess to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ernie Quesnelle, in the lower picture. 

 Bulging a bit as he crammed his way into a Grade 1 seat at Port McNicoll Public School, William Graham gets a close-up view of his daughter Nancy’s work. The occasion was the school’s “Open House” Tuesday night. 

Frank Bray, president of Midland Chamber of Commerce and owner of the Midland Planing Mill, became the first to use the dual-type around the clock depository unit recently installed at the Bank of Montreal Branch in Midland. It is the first unit of its kind in operation in Midland. 

  • The Free Press Herald headline from April 16, 1958; “Back Strict Clamp-Down on Delinquent Parents” Parents, whose under-age children are caught roaming the streets of Midland after 9 p.m. in future, will face charges and the full penalty the law permits in fines. Chief Cameron said in the past-month 21 charges had been laid against juveniles for creating disturbances, swearing and making general nuisances of themselves late at night on Midland streets. The chief pointed out that a curfew in nearby Penetang was working quite effectively.
  • The County Herald headline from April 18, 1958; “$150,000 Sewage Plant Under Study by Council” Possibility of a major program which would eventually provide a complete sewage system for Penetang, including treatment plant, was seen following Monday night’s meeting of Penetang council when two members of the Ontario Water Resources Commission were in attendance. Under the present system, raw sewage is flowing into the water directly, from two main outlets. One of these outlets is situated at the end of Burke Street, and the other at the end of Owen Street.
  • Midland council has agreed to enter into a five-year lease with the Canadian National Railways for property which is to be sublet to Midland Yacht Club for a mooring basin. The lease, which is retroactive to March 1, 1958, involves two parcels of property on the west end of Midland Bay, one 320 by 20 feet and the other 872 by 265 feet. The property contains 311,980 square feet.
  • Just how much will it cost to install a separate water system for the Ingram sub-division, and other parts of Tay Township west of Midland? And who is going to pay for it, not only now, but in the event that Midland may decide to yield to requests from a growing number of residents of this same area for annexation?
  • The building boom predicted for Port McNicoll early last fall is now definitely underway, with activity on three fronts. The most important project is the new Maplewood Park sub-division being undertaken by the Meadows Land Development Co. Ltd., Toronto. Interviewed; yesterday, C. A. Meadows said his company plans to erect some 200 homes in the $8,000 – $12,000 bracket. The first phase of the project is the opening of several new streets. Actually, they are extensions of existing streets, McNicoll, Wardell, and Hayes, in the north end of the village. Work is also well in progress on the new post office being built by Jack Reedy. The building, of cement block construction, will measure 71 by 25 feet. The first 37 feet of the building will house the post office. The remainder will provide a new residence for Mr. and Mrs. Reedy. Work has also started on at least two homes for private owners, with others in prospect.
  • Three long blasts and two short ones echoed around Midland Harbour early Tuesday morning, heralding the opening of another navigation season. The salutes were for the Canadian government lightship St. Heliers, starting out on its chore of setting up buoys and other markers along the route between Georgian Bay and the St. Mary’s River. A few hours later, however, and the St. Heliers was back at its berth in Midland. A ship’s officer said the boat encountered heavy windrows of ice off Giant’s Tomb.
  • Customs excise collections at the port of Midland dropped $119,097 during the fiscal year 1957-58, says collector of customs and excise A. E. Martin in his year-end report. Total revenue this year was $798,648 as compared with revenue of $917,745 during the fiscal year 1956-57. Mr. Martin said that a decrease of $13,321 in excise taxes —only $725 was collected—is accounted for by the removal of certain excise taxes by the government.
  • From the Want Ads page; – WELL ROTTED Manure, no straw, suit lawns and rose gardens. F. Vincent, Robert St. E., Penetang. * * * LUNCH COUNTER with fridge and stove. Zimmer’s Service Station, Howe’s Corners, Penetang. KI. 9-7753. * * * 12 WEANLING PIGS. Duncan Barr, R.R. 1 Midland, phone 70 ring 51, Victoria Harbour. * * * YOUNG Heavy Team Horses. Gilbert Desroches, E.R. 1, Perkinsfield. * * * 4th CLASS STATIONARY ENGINEER. Apply Wagg’s Laundry and Dry Cleaners Ltd., Midland. * * * FOR DECORATING, painting, or paper hanging, samples and estimates free. Earl Asselin, phone 121J, Victoria Harbour, 6 to 7 p.m. * * * ROOM AND BOARD for a business girl. $10 per week Phone LA. 6-6700, Midland. * * * Found, lighter near Leitz plant. See Doug Brooks, Post Office. * * * BEAGLE dogs and Pups. Apply Tobacco Farm, Cedar Point. Phone Lafontaine 43-R-3. * * * WOOD AND COAL RANGE— “Clare Jewel”, white enamel trim, good condition. Phone LA 6-6671, Midland.
  • Ten Years Ago This Week — Police committee of Midland council approved the installation of parking meters on King Street, from Elizabeth to Bay Street, on a one-year trial basis. * * * The Canadian government ship St. Heliers left Midland harbour April 13 on its first voyage of the season. * * * North Simcoe citizens were out in force — the smelts were running in creeks and bays along the Georgian Bay. One Midlander, who had been smelting at the Hog River, returned with the floor of his truck buried a foot deep in smelts. * * * A special nomination meeting had been called by Victoria Harbour Clerk Walter Lumsden to nominate a councilor to replace Percy Brown, a railway employee who had been transferred out of town. * * * Harry Martin of Coldwater was elected district master of the Loyal Orange Association of Simcoe East. Another Coldwater citizen, Victor Turner, was named deputy district master. * * * Revenue in import duty, excise tax and sundry items for the port of Midland amounted to $428,573.89 for the 1947-48 fiscal year. The figure represented an increase of $92,058.08 over the previous year. * * * Colour movies of scoot races at Penetang’s winter carnival were televised over a New York TV station. It was believed to be the first time a news event in this area had been televised. The films were the work of Midlander Bert Maddox. * * * The third of five hopper barges which were being constructed for the French government by Midland Shipyards was launched April 12. It was christened “Iroquois.”
  • Here’s one for the what-will-they-think-of-next department. The Bell Telephone Company has installed a drive-in phone booth in Toronto.
  • When The Bank of Toronto and The Dominion Bank amalgamated Feb. 1, 1955, more than 183 years of banking experience combined to form one of the foremost banks in Canada. The first branch of The Toronto-Dominion Bank in Midland will be opened officially this Saturday afternoon, April 19 by Mayor Charles Parker of Midland. The office is located at 260 King Street and the extensive remodeling of the two-storey building has made it one of the most modern, well-equipped offices in the district.
  • Captain E. F. ‘Ed’ Burke, member of an old Penetang family whose name has been synonymous with Georgian Bay shipping for three-quarters of a century, died in Midland yesterday. He was 84. Captain Ed, who sailed a tug up to Byng Inlet at 15 and became a captain at 21, had been active on the Midland Harbour Commission for many years. More recently, he became a valued member of the newly formed Harbour Committee.
  • A fire of undetermined origin Tuesday night has left a Jarratt family of 11 homeless, despite a bucket brigade formed by neighbors. The farm home of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Rankin, on Concession 11, Oro Township, was destroyed in the fire, which started in the roof of a summer kitchen. The house had no electricity. Mr. Rankin and the couple’s nine children were all outside at the time and Mrs. Rankin managed to escape unharmed. Only a few pieces of furniture were saved, and it is believed the house was only partially insured. 
  • A young man from Amsterdam, Holland, who hopes to get his Canadian citizenship papers next month, is the new manager of the fur department at Edwards’ Specialty Shop. He is Robert Voorzanger, who came directly to Midland from Holland five years ago. He was employed by Fabulous Formals for most of that time, attaining the position of head of the cutting department. But furs have long been in the Voorzanger blood, Bob’s father also had been a furrier and the son started to learn the business under his dad as a lad of 14 years.
  • A native of Midland. F/O Clare Vasey is helping deliver jet planes to the German air force. F/O Vasey is the son of Ivan Vasey, superintendent of Georgian Manor, Penetang, and Mrs. Vasey. The family resided in Midland for a number of years before moving to Orillia.
  • Five Midland lads, who called themselves “The Five Peppers,” walked off with first place honours in the amateur night contest at the Roxy Theatre, Thursday. The boys, who wrote, played and sang their own songs, were Harry DeVries, Winston Schell, Kevin Rogers, Larry and Gary French, one of the group had a snare drum and one had a guitar. Second place went to Barbara and Sharon Johnstone, who played guitars and sang. Linda Vernon and Sandra Reynolds, also of Midland, duet singers, were third. In fourth place were Jim Vassair and Reg Allen, guitar player and singer combination. Finals will be held April 24, when winners of the four contests will compete for the grand prize. Nearly 700 attended the event. Master of ceremonies was Roxy manager Al Perkins.
  • A glimpse back 80 years to the front page of the March 1938, Free Press;

The Midland Free Press_1938-03-23 1

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