Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – January 16th to 23rd, 1960

The photos found in this blog post are the property of Huronia Museum, Midland, Ontario. Any reproduction for commercial use without permission is prohibited.  Any other distribution must credit Huronia Museum.  Please contact the museum with any questions you may have. 

Click on photos to enlargeThese members of Simcoe County council seemed happy to be starting another session as the new term got underway in Barrie Monday. Representing North Simcoe municipalities, they are left to right, front row, Eldege Quesnelle, Tiny; Alf Cage, Penetang; Dalt Jermey, Medonte; Bernard St. Amant, Penetang; and Fred Kinnear, Tay. back row—Ernest Cadeau, Victoria Harbour; Albert Deconkey, Matchedash; George Mc-Fadden and Earl Trace, Flos; and Albert Calvert, Port McNicoll. On Tuesday, Mr. Deconkey was elected to the roads committee for a three-year term. 

Snow and sleet have transformed these boats, put up on a dock near Victoria Harbour for the winter, into strange new shapes. Ice fishing huts can be seen dotting Sturgeon Bay, in the background. 

Winners of one of the major prizes at Midland Rotary Club’s second annual bonspiel was this rink from the Y’s Men’s Club, skipped by Doug Haig. Left to right are; Bill Russell, Mr. Haig, Bert Banting and Clive Park. Incidentally, they DIDN’T win the cup at the right, the photographer learned later. 

Officials of Branch 80, Canadian Legion, Midland, for 1960, were inducted into office at a meeting in the Legion Hall January 13. Left to right are, front row, H. A. Wiles, secretary; Saul DeVries, 2nd vice-president; Borden Parker, president; George McLaughlin, 1st vice-president; Rev. J. L. Self, padre. Back row are James Mackie, Len Wiles, Oliver Lesperance, Ken G. Williams, Gene Lalonde and James Duncan. Mr. Wiles is the sergeant-at-arms and the others are members of the executive. 

One of the 12 new members of Simcoe County council this year is Deputy-reeve Clinton Smith of Midland. Trying out his new seat for the first time, Mr. Smith gets support from, left to right, Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Beauchamp and Reeve H. J. Beauchamp of Midland. Just a hint of what less fortunate parts of the province got from the weatherman on two occasions recently can be seen in this picture. Icy wires and trees are not nearly so heavily coated as their counterparts in the Orangeville area and Metro Toronto, following recent sleet storm. The picture above was taken on Highway 12, near Jones’ Corner. 

This tunnel, under the CPR tracks which cross Highway 12, near Victoria Harbour, has been the subject of much controversy following the motor accident which took the lives of two young people in November. A coroner’s jury at an inquest in Midland into their deaths recommended flasher lights be installed. More recently Victoria Harbour council has urged that the tunnel be widened as a winter works project. [Nothing was ever done until the CPR abandoned their route in the late sixties and the roadway was re-aligned. Many more serious accident and deaths were to occur.] 

  • Midland Free Press headline of January 20th, 1960; ELECT LISK NEW WARDEN, WINS IN WALK-AWAY VOTE. It was George Lisk all the way at Barrie Monday as the veteran Tecumseth Township reeve became Simcoe County’s 103rd warden. Although nine men were nominated for the post only Flos Reeve Earl Trace let his name stand in opposition. Mr. Lisk won by a landslide (53-11) on the first vote and Mr. Trace moved that it be made unanimous. 
  • County Herald headline of January 22nd, 1960; MPDHS PARENTS NIGHT HAS RECORD ATTENDANCE. “We were, very pleased and encouraged by the great turnout of parents Wednesday night. In fact, we were a bit floored by it all,” said R. C. Gauthier, principal of Midland-Penetang District High School, noting that more than 1,000 parents had attended the school’s parents night. “It caused us some disappointment too, for with such a large gathering it was completely impossible for the school staff to meet all the parents and discuss their children’s problems,” Mr. Gauthier, added. Pointing out that in previous years about 200 parents had attended the meeting. 
  • NEARLY 100 Midland, Penetang and district citizens crowded into the ladies’ parlour of Midland YMCA Monday night to approve the formation of a local association of the Ontario-Association for Retarded Children and to elect officers for the coming year. President of the new group is Mrs. John Banks, Midland. Her executive includes Stanley Brooks, Midland, 1st vice-president; Mrs. E. Niblock, Victoria Harbour, 2nd vice-president; Mrs. M. DeVillers, Penetang, 3rd vice-president; Mrs. F. Helson, R.R. 1, Midland, recording-secretary; Mrs. J Krochko, Midland, corresponding-secretary; and W. A. Child, Midland, treasurer. Committee chairmen elected were Public School Inspector K. J. Ellis, education; Mrs. R. Trepanier, Sunnyside, home care; Wm. Bennett, Midland, publicity and bulletin and Mrs. R. Lacroix Penetang, membership. Meeting chairman K. J. Ellis expressed his “amazement at the large turn-out”. He thanked Mrs. Banks for “doing much of the spade work in getting the meeting organized’, and this newspaper for its assistance.
  • Reeve H. J. Beauchamp told Midland council at its inaugural meeting last week that there “is no room for party politics in municipal affairs”. “We should divorce ourselves entirely from party politics of any kind,” be declared. He felt the 1959 council worked conscientiously. Deputy-reeve Clinton Smith said many of the problems cited by Mayor Parker in his inaugural address were “continuing ones”, not necessarily stemming from last year’s council. He said he hoped he would be able to “make a good name” for himself at the county council, which he will be attending for the first time. 
  • Coldwater’s well known retired harness racehorse trainer, Eddie Hawke, 78, died as the result of a truck accident at 6.30 a.m. yesterday morning in Coldwater. Mr. Hawke was dead when Dr. George W. Hall arrived at the scene of the accident. It is reported that a Weide Transport truck from Calgary, driven by 28-year-old Earl Holland, missed the turnoff on Highway 12 partway up Gray Street and in the dark and snow hit Mr. Hawke. OPP Const. Murray F. Tamblyn of the Victoria Harbour detachment is investigating. Known as a true sportsman on race tracks in the area, Mr. Hawke held a certificate from Elmvale Fall Fair attesting to this. 
  • BIRTHS – HARTLEY — To Mr. and Mrs. Ed Hartley of Toronto, at the Scarboro General Hospital, Sunday, January 17, 1960, a son. La GRANDEUR To Mr. and Mrs. Rene La Grandeur, 298 Princess St., Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, January 12, 1960, a son. LATANVILLE — To Mr. and Mrs. Herman Latanville, 316 William St., Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, January 12, 1960; a son (Stillborn). LEVESQUE — To Mr. and Mrs. Bernard Levesque, R.R. 1, Victoria Harbour, at St. Andrews Hospital, Midland, Friday, January 15, 1960, a son. NICHOLSON — To Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Nicholson, Beausoleil Island, at St. Andrews Hospital, Midland, Friday, January 15, 1960, a son. YORKE — to Mr. and Mrs. Michael Yorke, 210A King St., Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Saturday, January 16, 1960, a son. 
  • TEN YEARS AGO THIS WEEK – Outcome of a motion approved by Midland council, aldermen were requested to hold ward meetings to get the recommendations of their constituents for the development of an overall town plan. The council also asked the public utilities commission, the park commission, public and separate school boards to set out their future land-use plans. * * *  More than 20 spectators, the largest turn-out in years, attended the inaugural meeting of Penetang council. The council chamber had been completely redecorated for the occasion. * * * It was June in January in 1950 as the mercury in the thermometers hovered around the 50-degree mark. Port Severn lockmaster Bob White reported seeing suckers swimming around the locks. Usually, he said, they don’t start to run until after the pickerel have spawned in May. * * * George Lisk of Beeton was elected president of Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture at the association’s annual meeting in Barrie. * * * A freak windstorm, which swept across North Simcoe, ripped roofs off summer cottages and toppled hydro and telephone poles in the area.  * * * Medonte Township marked its 100th birthday Jan. 21. The council and its retiring clerk, T. D. Robinson, who had served for 56 years, made plans to celebrate the centenary year of the municipality. * * * An adjourned sitting of Midland Court of Revision lopped $33,410 off the 1950 assessment roll. Among the business firm’s which received major reductions were the Roxy Theatre and Midland Shearlings. 
  • OBITUARIES – LEO MARTIN EDGAR A lifelong resident of Midland Leo Martin Edgar died at his First Street home Jan. 10. He was in his 56th year. Requiem mass was celebrated at St. Margaret’s Church by Rev. F. Voorwerk Jan. 13. Honorary pallbearers were A. Bremer, J. Birch, T. Pyman, E. Pearson, P. Elby and D. Active pallbearers were M. Blackhurst, J. Lalonde, J. Donaldson, G. Kenwell, T. Lalonde and B. Lee. Son of the late Mr. and Mrs. James Edgar, one of the early Midland families, Mr. Edgar was born May 6, 1904, and received his education in Midland. On Feb. 14, 1923, at Midland, he married the former Grace Lalonde of Penetang. He was employed as a riveter at the James Playfair Shipyards until the general layoff at which time he went to work at the Port Weller shipyards. He was a member of the Boilermakers’ Union, Local 680, at Port Dalhousie. His hobby was boating. Besides his widow, he is survived by three sons, Martin, Douglas and Garnet; a daughter, Mrs. M. Blackhurst (Grace); three sisters, Mrs. Margaret Letherdale, Las Vegas, Mrs. Kate Cowan, Las Vegas, and Mrs. George Gawley of Midland; four grandchildren, Elizabeth, Kenny, John and Terry. Four brothers, Nicholas, Jacob, Charlie and Jim, and two sisters, Cinderella and Caroline predeceased him. * * *  MRS. CHARLES KAUS A lifelong resident of Penetang, Mrs. Charles Kaus died at the home of her daughter in Aurora Saturday, Jan. 2. She was in her 62nd year. Born in Penetang, the former Hilda Arbour, married Charles Kaus June 7, 1920, and, until his death several years ago, they had lived at 43 Fox Street. Mrs. Kaus had been living with her son, Gerald, recently. Surviving are one son, Gerald of Penetang; four daughters, Mrs. Louis Legare, Ohio, Mrs. Jack Lawrence, Aurora, Mrs. Ted Leonard and Mrs. Ed. Staurch, Toronto; one brother, Howard Arbour, Toronto, and five sisters, Mrs. R. Corriveau, California, Mrs. Alma Cowan, Mrs. Myrtle Walsh, Mrs. L. Holland, Mrs. C. Fordham, all of Toronto. Funeral service was held Tuesday, Jan. 5, from the Beausoleil funeral home to St. Ann’s Memorial Church where requiem high mass was sung by Rev. A. Louis Bourque, assisted by Rev. J. Kelly and Rev. J. Marchand. Pallbearers were R. Stewart, A. Lizotte, Maurille Marchand, Martial Desroches, Francis Dumais and Ted Light. * * * EMMA JANE JORY Widow of one of Midland’s most prominent businessmen, Mrs. P. H. Jory died at her King Street  South home Jan 13th after a lingering illness. She was in her 82nd year. Born and educated in Hillsdale, she was the former Emma Jane Faragher. In 1902 she married Phillip Henry Jory in Midland. They lived in Midland for two years before moving to Haileybury where they spent 20 years, returning to Midland in 1924. Prior to his death in 1954, Mr. Jory was the proprietor of the King Street drug store now managed by his son, John. A member of St. Paul’s United Church, Mrs. Jory in her earlier years, was active in the work of the church and in Midland YMCA work. Her main hobby was needlepoint. She was a Conservative in politics. Funeral service, conducted by Rev. Wilson Morden, was held at her residence Friday, Jan. 15. Temporary interment was in Lakeview Cemetery vault. Pallbearers were James Playfair, Earl Cumming, Calvin Simpson, Lorne Faragher, Joe Faragher, all of Midland, and James Poppleton of Barrie. She is survived by a son, John; two daughters, Jean (Mrs. Jack McFarlane), and Helene (Mrs. Tom Currie), all of Midland; a brother Edward Faragher of Hillsdale and Midland; and five grandchildren. Bill and Mary Jane Jory, Suzanne McFarlane, and Kim and Craig Currie, all of Midland. A daughter, Phyllis, and a son, William, also predeceased her. * * * MRS. ROBERT JACKETT A resident of Midland all her life, Mrs. Robert Jackett died in St. Andrews Hospital Jan. 5 following a stroke. She was in her 77th year. Born in Midland Jan. 1, 1883, and educated there, she was the former Annie Wadge. In 1905, in Midland, she married Robert Jackett, who predeceased her in January 1949. She was a member of the Salvation Army. The body rested at A. Barrie and Sons funeral home until Thursday, Jan. 7, when it was taken to the Salvation Army Citadel for funeral service. The service was conducted by Lieut. William Johnston. Pallbearers were I. Rumney, E. Heels, C. Tait, P. Farrow and nephews Vic and Howard Wadge. Temporary interment was in Lakeview Cemetery vault. She is survived by two brothers, Frank of Timmins and Howard Wadge of Midland. 
  • Walter Kluck, manager of Ernst Leitz (Canada) Ltd. Acted as the spokesman for a delegation which appeared before Midland council at its inaugural meeting last week. The petitioners were seeking action on a noisy hydro sub-station near their homes. Mr. Kluck admitted he and other homeowners in the area had possibly delayed action on the matter longer than they should. “We thought the PUC would be erecting a building similar to the Queen Street sub-station, which is a cottage-type brick building. When we realized just what they were putting up on Scott Street, it was too late,” he told the council. Alderman Douglas Haig told the group that council had also felt the building would be along the lines of the one erected on Queen Street. The Scott Street station and its “ugly wall” was an eye-sore, he agreed. Mayor Charles Parker said the installation of the sub-station on the Scott Street location was “definitely a violation of the zoning bylaw”. Mr. Kluck presented a petition signed by eight homeowners in the immediate area. 
  • “You could say that Midland’s retail and commercial district represents the largest single industry in town’,” said R. B. Moffatt, secretary-manager of the chamber of commerce. “As a matter of fact,” he continued, “about 22 per cent of all Midland municipal taxes are paid by retail and commercial establishments. This, of course, is exclusive of industrial plant. “I might go farther,” said the chamber of commerce executive head, “and remark that more than 50 per cent of Midland’s municipal taxes come from commerce and industry.” When you consider that 33 per cent would have been a very good showing, it will be seen that Midland’s experience is excellent — one of the highest proportions in Ontario paid by commerce and industry. “Total town tax revenue is around $540,000.” Mr. Moffatt explained. “Of this, $215,000 goes for education and the balance for general purposes.” Of the 3,500-odd persons gainfully employed in Midland, about 600 work in retail or commercial establishments (exclusive of industry). Midland’s mercantile picture is well diversified. Retail outlets include food, clothing, furniture, appliances, variety stores, drugs, hardware, gift stores, florists, photographic and art supplies, flour and feed, shoes, tobacco and confectionery, bakeries, garages, accessories, and others. Mr. Moffatt points out that Midland has one of the most extensive commercial sections of any town of its size. It also offers a variety of goods comparable with anything to be found in Toronto; “Perhaps the explanation for this lies in the tourist trade,” Mr. Moffatt says. “The summer influx of visitors makes it worthwhile for merchants to stock high-quality items in adequate quantity.”


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