Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – June 15th to 22nd, 1959

Click on photos to enlargeThis painting of the old lumberman’s church at Port Severn, by Barrie jeweller Gordon Reeve, is one of a number by district painters assembled by Simcoe County Arts and Crafts Association for display at Midland’s Huronia Museum this year. Assistant curator R. A. Grigg is seen with the painting; which occupies a prominent place in the lower hall. The museum will be officially open Sunday. 

This odd-looking craft, currently tied up in Midland harbour, is the brain-child of Harold Keefer, Ottawa Street. Resting on two steel pontoons, the craft will be powered by an outboard motor. Mr. Keefer is waiting for a nice calm day to try the boat on the broad waters of the bay. 

Once a passenger cruise ship on Georgian Bay, the Vyroya of Midland, formerly owned by Roy French, has been sold to Imperial Oil. This past winter it was converted to a gas supply boat. Here it is beginning the first leg of a highway cruise to Lake Temagami in Northern Ontario. It was loaded on the float at Midland Shipyards.

Yukon Eric got a mixed reception as the first of the cards for this season got underway in Midland Arena Monday night. In the top picture, Eric is besieged by young fans wanting his autograph. In the lower picture, Dick Hutton leaves the imprint of his big boot in Yukon’s tummy, much to the delight (seemingly) of referee  Joe Gollab. 

Playing prominent roles in the success of the Midland Indians in the South Simcoe Baseball League race this year are, left to right, pitcher Gord Dyment and outfielders Larry Greene and Jim Lemieux. Indians have an important game in Creemore with the league leaders’ tomorrow night and return home to host Utopia here Saturday night. 

Best way to beat the heat, said Lynn Hoy, Florence Chapman and Audrey Hoy, left to right, is to get a pop-sickle and stay near a drinking fountain. The 90-degree heat didn’t seem to bother these youngsters too much as they and hundreds of others rushed down to Little Lake right after school, last week. 

Somewhat unusual this early in the season, this huge puffball was found by four Midland lads as they explored the shore of Little Lake. Puffballs of this size are much more common in the fall of the year. Left to right are; John Burke, Bob Fielder, Bill Argue, and Peter Moss. 

Saturday was a big occasion for the members of Midland lOOF Lodge 274 and Rebekah Lodge 199 as the cornerstone of their new temple on Dominion Ave. West, was officially laid. Among the dignitaries taking part were, left to right — Bro. Percy Smith, Noble Grand; Bro. Thos. Sharp, Past Grand Master; Rev. Ralph Wright, Calvary Baptist Church; Mrs. J. A. McCauley, PDDP; Bro. J. W. Bald, Past Noble Grand; Mrs. A. Johnston, PDDP; Mrs. R. Stamp, Noble Grand of Rebekah Lodge. 

During the recent heat wave, just about the most popular spot in this area was Midland’s Little Lake Park. While the younger fry enjoyed a swim, the older folks sat in the shade of the huge old elms. 

The 1,564 votes Lloyd Letherby received in Midland played a big part in his re-election as PC candidate for Simcoe East in the provincial elections Thursday. Here Mr. Letherby, right, smiles appreciatively as James Forester chalks up the winning figure. Party worker Frank Doherty also seems happy at the outcome. 

Ecole Publique Saint-Joseph

  • The Free Press Herald headline of June 17, 1959; Midland Taxpayers Face Outlay of $1,000,000. As a result of an ultimatum from the Ontario Water Resources Commission, Midland ratepayers are faced with an expenditure of nearly $1,000,000 on a new sewage disposal plant. The ruling was contained in a letter from Dr. A. E. Berry, general manager of the OWRC, read at a special meeting of Midland council Monday night. The commission refused to approve a request from Midland council to install 2,738 feet of sanitary sewers in the Scott Street sub-division. Dr. Berry’s letter stated: “It is the policy of this commission to not issue certificates of approval for sewer extensions until a program has been adopted for providing adequate treatment of the sewage. We do not have in this case information from you as to what is planned for meeting those requirements.”
  • The County Herald headline of June 19, 1959; Area Municipalities Face Increases in County Levy. Schedule of equalization of assessment for Simcoe County, which will receive final approval of county council in Barrie today, this year reflects, among other items, the effects on the 31 municipalities involved, of Barrie’s withdrawal from the county. The increases in equalized assessment for 1959 compared with those for 1958, as listed in the county assessment committee’s report, run the gamut from Orillia’s $1,384,229 to Creemore’s $32,851.
  • Penetang’s committee in charge of local arrangements for the royal tour is getting some idea of the vast amount of coordination and effort being put into the affair by similar committees, across the country. Local information officer Marcel Bellehumeur this week received a book, titled “Royal Tour of Canada, 1959, Arrangements.” The 344-page volume gives a comprehensive picture of the royal party’s activities every minute they are in the public eye, from the time they arrive at St. John’s Newfoundland, tomorrow (Thursday) at 3.30 p.m. until they depart embarking aboard HMY Britannia at Halifax, Nova Scotia, 10.30 p.m., Saturday, August 1. An example of the minute-by-minute scheduling can be seen in the entries for Penetang and Midland, which read as follows:.”2.45 p.m., royal barge leaves HMY Britannia. 3.15 p.m., the royal barge arrives federal dock. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh disembark, accompanied by Hon. J. M. Macdonnell (Minister without Portfolio). Mr. Macdonnell presents the mayor of Penetanguishene (J. J. Gignac, Esquire) and Mrs. Gignac. The mayor presents member of Parliament for Simcoe Centre and his wife, The Warden of Simcoe County (J. Patton, Esquire) and Mrs. Patton, the general manager of the Georgian Bay Development Association (Neville Keefe, Esquire) and Mrs. Keefe and members of the town council and their wives. Her Majesty is asked to sign the guest book and also to accept a bouquet presented by Miss Mary-Lou Gignac. 3.20 p.m. the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh enter their automobile and leave the federal dock. Route: Main Street to Poyntz, west on Poyntz to Owen, North on Owen to Robert, East on Robert to Penetang Road, South on Penetang Road to the town limits.”
  • A new and improved type of drinking fountains will be installed at the corners of King and Bay Streets and King Street and Hugel Ave., it was decided at the Midland Public Utilities meeting Monday night. “We had better see that they are well anchored,” suggested commissioner Wm. Benton. “Maybe when we get them installed we should notify the town council and get police protection for them,” countered PUC Secretary-manager Stewart Holt who suggested that it would be about two weeks before the new fountains would be installed.
  • More than 400 children have submitted entry forms for the Midland firemen’s bicycle road-e-o, to be held on the municipal parking lot June 20. Dave Hudson, secretary of the Committee sponsoring the event, said first prizes for the boy and girl who obtain the most points in the road-e-o were bicycles. Second prize will be a $10 merchandise certificate at Eisenberg’s tire and sports. Eight other successive winners will receive crests.
  • Accepting a recommendation of its police committed, Midland council Monday night appointed Sgt. George Wainman acting chief of police for Midland, on a six-month probationary basis, and paid on the basis of a $4,200 annual salary.
  • by Charlie Noquet  – Two immovable objects — in the form of Midland Huronias and Collingwood Kaufmans — met head-on in an important Barrie and District Soccer League fixture at Midland’s Parkview School Saturday night. When the dust from the high wind and fast action had cleared, Collingwood had preserved its unbeaten record with an 8-3 win over Huronias, also unbeaten up until Saturday night.
  • Demonstrating the immortal Willie Keeler’s “hit’em where they ain’t” technique to perfection, Midland Indians blanked Barrie Flyers 4-0 in a South Simcoe Baseball League game here Monday night. Held to only four hits, Indians made every one of them count in the run-scoring as they tallied all their runs and hits in the second inning. Going the distance for Indians Monday night was southpaw Joe Faragher, who at other times covers first base. Joe came up with a sparkling mound chore as he scattered five hits and was never in danger of losing his shutout.
  • 25 Years Ago This Week – 1934; Mayor J. B. Roebuck of Midland officially opened the new five-acre Eastside Park in Midland’s east end. The park was situated in an area bounded by Yonge Street East, Elizabeth and Borden Streets. * * * Nearly 500 delegates attended the 20th annual meeting of Barrie Presbyterial WMS of the Presbyterian Church in Canada, held at Barrie. Mrs. M. W. Heslip of Penetanguishene, president, was in charge of the sessions attended by delegates from as far north as Bracebridge and south as far as Beeton and Bradford. * * * Simcoe County Warden Edward Dutton entertained county councillors, their wives and friends (about 350 in number) on board the CPR steamer Keewatin. The party left Port McNicoll at 2 p.m. aboard the flag-bedecked ship and returned 6 p.m. after cruising the waters of Georgian Bay. * * * When official nomination day for the provincial election had drawn to a close, there were 262 candidates in the running. They were comprised of 90 Conservatives, 82 Liberals, 37 CCF, 13 Communists and 14 independents. Among the party affiliations of the independent candidates were “Dry Liberals”, Labor, Labor-Socialists, Socialists and “Workers Industrial Party”. * * * An Alderman on Midland council for 11 years and a member of the Midland Citizens Band for 30 years, T. Harry Trill died unexpectedly at his home. * * * A deputation from Penetang Retail Clerks Association demanded that Penetang council enforce its bylaw calling for a Wednesday afternoon holiday. Council agreed to instruct the chief of police to lay charges “against any merchant who saw fit to resist council” on the half-day closing bylaw. * * * As clouds of dust were making driving conditions dangerous, the Department of Highways oiled Highway 12 between Midland and Orillia.
  • Obituaries – LEGER J. BELLEHUMEUR  – A native of Penetang and a resident of this area throughout his entire life, Leger J. Bellehumeur died June 11 in Penetang General Hospital, following a cerebral haemorrhage. He had been unable to work following, a heart seizure about five years ago. Born in Penetang in 1893, he had lived here and in Lafontaine during that time. Mr. Bellehumeur remained a bachelor. Until he took a position at Beatty Bros, foundry about 25 years ago, he had been a machine operator at the C. Beck Co. Ltd. He was a Roman Catholic. Surviving are six brothers, Joseph Arsene of New Orleans, La., Fred and Theophile, Windsor, Andrew of Bala, Harvey of Midland and Edmond, Lafontaine. One brother, Thomas, predeceased him. Funeral service was held Saturday, June 13 from Beausoleil funeral home to St. Ann’s Memorial Church where mass was said by Rev. Leo Ramsperger. Interment was in St. Ann’s Cemetery. Pallbearers were Marcel, Hebert and Lawrence Bellehumeur, Rosaire Moreau, Theodore Simon and Joseph Bobus. * * * EUGERE BEAUCHAMP – A lifelong resident of this area, Eugere Beauchamp died Friday, June 5, at his Penetang home following a heart seizure. Born in Perkinsfield June 28, 1886, Mr. Beauchamp had farmed until he retired in 1940, moving to Penetang at that time. He had been educated at Penetang Public School. Five years ago, Mr. Beauchamp, and his wife, the former Victaline Mailloux, celebrated their golden wedding anniversary. Of the fifteen children born to the couple, four predeceased him. Besides his wife, he leaves, seven sons, Bernard, Armand and Alcime, Perkinsfield; Harvey and Jack, Penetang; Edgar and Lionel, Lafontaine; and four daughters, Bernadette, (Mrs. Tony Juneau), Alida, (Mrs. P. Desroches), Veronica, (Mrs. Norman Robillard), all of Penetang, and Albertine, (Mrs. A. Marchildon), Lafontaine, and one sister, Miss Hortense Beauchamp, Penetang. Two brothers, Julian and Napoleon predeceased him. There are 69 grandchildren and 29 great-grandchildren. Funeral service was held (Monday, June 8, from Beausoleil’s funeral home to St. Ann’s Memorial Church where a solemn requiem high mass was celebrated by Father J. Kelly, assisted by Msgr. J. M. Castex. Interment was in St. Ann’s Cemetery. Pallbearers were six nephews, Alfred, Donald, Raymond and Gerard Beauchamp, Eugene and Herbert Mailloux.
  • Additional gas mains are to be installed in Midland, Bud Turnbull, Public works superintendent for Midland, reveals. He said a start would be made immediately to install 2,600 lineal feet of new mains for the Consumers’ Gas Company, he said. The new lines are to be installed on Seventh Street, Montreal to Quebec; Robert Street, Russell to Johnston; Ottawa Street, Fifth to Sixth; Dominion Ave, Lindsay to William; Johnston, 200 feet south; and Midland Ave., Bay to Dominion. (It is easy to forget sometimes that under our feet lie all the gas, phone, sewer, water and hydro services.)
  • At the official opening of Fort Penetanguishene Museum Wednesday, Dr. W. W. Jury said the University of Western Ontario and the town of Penetang have been trying to make history live in their work at the old military establishment. He went on to say that he was confident he would be able to rectify some errors in locations of historic sites in this area before the end of this year. Msgr. J. M. Castex said many local people “don’t even realize what the museum is.” He paid tribute to those who have worked in the restoration of the historical site and singled out J. M. H. McGuire, who died last year, for special praise. Mr. Jury said the museum was fortunate to have been the recipient of Labatt’s generosity.” The firm provided funds to completely furnish a room in the museum in period style. “This museum is history in a complete way. It tells us what our ancestors have done, and we should show an appreciation of it,” Msgr. Castex said. “We have here the making of a second Fort Henry and I am hoping we will be able to march right along with this development,” Mr. Jury said.
  • P. B. Rynard, M.P. for Simcoe East, announced yesterday that two Midland firms had been awarded a total of S32,375.37 in federal government contracts. Dr. Rynard the firm of Wilson and Bell had been awarded the contract for plumbing and electrical work on two comfort stations and a house, and heating work in a house. The contract, amounting to $11,041. is for work on Beausoleil Island and was let by the Department of Northern Affairs and Natural Resources. The other contract, amounting to $21,333.52 was awarded to Midland Foundry and Machine by the Department of Defence Production.
  • Under arrangements made by Reeve Montcalm Maurice. Tiny Township, some 75 members of Simcoe County council, their wives, and a number of county employees will visit Christian Island this afternoon. The visitors are slated to leave Penetang dock around 3 p.m. to travel to the island by the Penetang 88. Port McNicoll’s Reeve Albert Calvert, pointed out that in World War II every able-bodied man on the island reserve had served in one branch or other of the armed forces. “A few members from the Christian Island Reserve have since settled in our village and we have found them to be good citizens.” Reeve Calvert told other members of the council.

A look further back at some articles from the early days of Midland. 

February 8, 1939 –

Magistrate Col. C. F. Bick fined eight persons $2.00 and costs ranging from $3.00 to $3.50 for not possessing radio licenses, in Midland police court Thursday. One of the delinquents, Edward Cox of Hamilton, was fined for the operation of a car radio without a license. Girard Berriault, who shot a partridge out of season, was fined $10.00 and cost on a charge laid under the Game and Fisheries Act. 

October 1, 1931 –

The miniature golf course that has been operated here for the past couple of years on the Oddfellows lot, King Street, has been closed for the season this week. There was some little interest taken last season, but the novelty rapidly wore off and this season interest in it has almost entirely disappeared. It is hardly likely in view of conditions this summer that the institution will reopen next spring. The people here took little or no interest in the new game, although the course was made as attractive as it possibly could be. 

August 29, 1918 –

The ‘Pathfinder.’ the large private yacht owned by Mr. James Playfair, Midland, was in Owen Sound harbour yesterday and attracted a great deal of attention from the citizens. She arrived off King’s Royal Park about eleven o’clock Wednesday night and dropped anchor there, coming on into the river about nine o’clock yesterday morning. On board were the owner, Mr. James Playfair, and Mayor D. L. White and Mr. D. S. Pratt, manager of the Canadian Dredge Company, both of Midland, and Mr. J. S. Bell, general manager of the Bank of Hamilton, and Mr. W. E. Finn, also of the Bank of Hamilton. The trip was made from Midland for the purpose of conveying the latter two gentlemen part way on their trip to Hamilton. During the stay of the boat in town, Mr. Playfair and his guests were entertained by a number of prominent citizens of the town, including Mayor Webster, and Messrs. E. Lemon. J. M. Kilbourn and H. B. Smith. Mr. Playfair also visited the Kennedy plant. The boat is a beauty. 154 feet long, built like a battleship with protruding ram in front and a battleship stern. She is in command of Capt. Kitchen, a well-known lake mariner, and carried a crew of 13 officers and men, including a wireless operator. The boat was built in Rachine, Wis., for Mr. Burnham, of Chicago, one of the best-known yacht racing enthusiasts in the United States, and is capable of a speed of 24 knots. She is of steel construction and is handsomely equipped with all modern appointments as could be desired. Here furnishings are all of the very best and she makes an ideal gentleman’s yacht. She left for Midland at 12.30 p.m. yesterday. 

1918 was a war year and in contrast to the pleasant scene above, this picture appeared in the October 1918 issue of the Midland newspaper.

April 11, 1936, the Catholics win,

Happy first day of summer North Simcoe!

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