Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – July 1st to 8th, 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 enlargeIt isn’t necessary for Midland children, or those visiting in the area, to go for swimming instruction and other playground activities. Midland Y’s Men’s Club has been providing these for many years at Little Lake. Above are Frank Whiteman, chairman of the club’s boys and girls committee, and Carolyn Taylor, playground director for this year’s program.

The last day of school was a proud one for pupils of Midland’s Sixth Street Public School. The boys and girls were awarded Elmer, The Safety Elephant, for having the least points scored against them during the latter part of the term. Sgt. Ernest Bates of Midland Police Department presented Elmer to Principal Ken Cowan, while Const. Arthur Ambeau looked on. The two officers and Mr. Cowan gave pupils a safety pep talk prior to the presentation. 

End of a long day (25 games) saw Elmer Hohl of Wellesley emerge the winner of the “A” class title in the Ontario Horseshoe Pitching Association championships in Midland Arena Gardens. Hohl (right) is seen receiving the Carling’s trophy from Ken Stonehouse of Midland Jaycees who sponsored the event. 

Landscaping has greatly improved the appearance of the new Greening Wire plant on Highway 12, at the south-east corner of Midland. Meanwhile, inside, the company continues the installation of machinery towards full production. 

June 25th saw the wind-up of another Little League baseball season in Midland, with playoffs at Parkview Field. Captains of the teams are seen above. Front row are International League captains, left to right. Bill Smith, Terry Dubeau, Doug Gagnon, Lloyd Graham; second row (National League) are Paul Denis, Bob Clayton, Jurgen Baumann, Bill Graham. At back are three of the men who helped out, H. Richards, F. Allsopp and Frank Graham. 

Hundreds of local school children and others from many parts of Ontario have already heralded another banner season for Midland’s Huronia Museum. Carolyn Brownlee, Cathy Moss and Heidi Koch help display three trays of Indian artifacts. 

Hundreds of local school children and others from many parts of Ontario have already heralded another banner season for Midland’s Huronia Museum. Keith Craig shows some of the copper, clay and iron articles used for trading purposes by the Indians who inhabited this area some three hundred years ago. 

Well known figure in Midland and Port McNicoll for many years, Greg Carroll (seated) was presented with a writing desk and chair as a reminder of his 44 years with the CPR, 22 of them at Port McNicoll. L. L. Saundercook, agent at Port, presided as employees made presentations to Mr. Carroll and Mrs. Carroll, who will live in Scarborough with their daughter Helen, a member of the Toronto Police Department. 

Garbed in heavy sweaters and jackets, these children are being signed in for swimming lessons by Betty Jean Watkinson, one of the instructors in Midland Y’s Men’s Club’s summer playground program at Little Lake. Because of the cold mornings, swimming classes are being held in the afternoons this year. More than 300 youngsters have signed up for the classes. 

“Well let’s go, what are we waiting for?” seems to be the big question on the mind of this pussy cat, which makes its home at Midland Flour and Feed store. Pussy lost her favorite sun seat when owner Clive Park unfeelingly sold the motor scooter a couple of days after this picture was taken. “Never even bothered to consult me,” wailed pussy. 

Looking forward to some hot and heavy action in the OBA peewee division this summer is the Midland team above. Left to right are; front row — Ernie Boast, Wayne Bonner, Mike Robitaille, Earl Scott, Dan Tannahill; back row — Murray Drinkle, Tom Fisher, Bob Clayton, Dave Reynolds, Ron Patrick, Peter Dubeau, Jim Dubeau, Arthur McComb. 

MSGR. J. M. Castex, assisted by Father J. Kelly blessed the boats of Penetang Boat Club Sunday afternoon, shortly before the flotilla took off on their first outing of the
season, which included a picnic supper on Beausoleil Island. 

DOMINION DAY WEEKEND BRINGS RECORD INFLUX
Midland Free Press headline of July 6th, 1960.

 People, motor cars and motor boats invaded North Simcoe towns, villages, resorts, roads and waters in almost unprecedented numbers over the Dominion Day holiday weekend this year. Because of the late closing of the public schools in Ontario this term, many visitors were unable to get to their cottages until late Thursday or Friday. As a result, Saturday saw one of the heaviest crowds ever on Midland’s King Street as cottagers stocked up for the Midland was by no means the only place that was crowded. At least one Midland couple who planned to set up their tent on Beausoleil Island over the holiday, spent Thursday night instead in their boat. Every camp site on the island, a national park, was filled. “People were staying off shore in their boats waiting for some other camper to pack up and leave. It was just like trying to find an empty parking space for cars in town,” OPP Const. Bill Mohan told this paper. Const. Mohan classed water traffic throughout the Honey Harbour and Georgian Bay areas as “very heavy.” It was just as bad on land. “Motor traffic was the heaviest we’ve ever had in this area,” said Sgt. Blake Ball of the OPP detachment at Victoria Harbour. Heaviest traffic was on Highway 103, scene of a fatal accident which cost the lives of three people, the officer said. 

TINY REVERSES DECISION ON TOWNSHIP ROAD ROUTE
County Herald headline of July 8, 1960.

Tiny Township council, in special session Wednesday night, reversed a decision made last month on the location of a development road project for the Champlain Road. Following considerable discussion, council moved to approve completion of plans for a new right-of-way from Patenaude’s Corner (15th Concession) to an intersection with the 17th Concession. Last month approval had been given to a plan which, essentially would, follow the existing Champlain Road, with one or two new sections to eliminate extremely sharp curves. After thorough investigation, some members of council reached a conclusion that the first new section which would have bypassed a 102-degree curve at the 15th Concession, would not be satisfactory. Proposal had been to construct this new section west of the present road, joining it in between a house and service station. After examining the terrain, it appeared to council members that space between the house and service station is insufficient for construction of an adequate road. Councilors also expressed a conviction that some of the land necessary for the bypass section would have been difficult to obtain. During the discussion, it became evident that all members felt the new route would be required within the next five years in any event. 

    Each year for the past decade over 10,000 tourists have visited Midland’s Huronia Museum. During the last two weeks of June, Midland Y’s Men’s Huron Indian village officials conducted more than 100 tours for school children. H. Gimblett of Rothsay, Ontario, showed the young school children of his home town that the Huron medicine hut was the first drug store. A large percentage of modem medicines are derived from early Indian herb cures, Mr. Gimblett claimed and he described the Indian cures of shepherd’s purse and yarrow for kidney trouble; stewed Jensen and Burdock root for stomach ailments; slippery elm bark for infection; stewed yarrow for running sores and balsam herb remedies. 

    Despite a continuing decline in sales and production of men’s footwear throughout Canada, Midland Footwear employees are back on a five-day week until the plant close-down for holidays July 22. The Midland factory, employing some 175 people, had been on a, four-day week for nearly two months. “Although we still have only three weeks’ production ahead of us in our stitchdown division as compared with eight full weeks this time last year, most of the shoes are wanted for August” Jerry Zabransky explained. “The Canadian Shoe and Leather Council reports that sales of men’s shoes, our major product, are down between 10 and 20 per cent, below 1959.” Sales of the Midland factory in May were down one-third from last year. “We hope to see this trend reversed later this year,” Mr. Zabransky  continued, “but so far the outlook is not too bright.” Fern Shoe factory output in Penetang continues steady but with none of the overtime of 1958.  

TEN YEARS AGO
Midland Public School teachers advised music festival chairman J. W. Smith that, by a vote of 23 to 5, they were in favor of a non-competitive festival. * * * Sunday sport was approved at Wasaga Beach by a vote of 121 to 20. Only 25 per cent of the eligible voters cast their ballots. * * * University of Western Ontario President Dr. E. G. Hall predicted that the university’s summer school of archaeology would have its locale in this area for some years to come. Dr. Hall was speaking at the official launching of the school at Fort Ste. Marie. * * * A cottage building boom had started all up and down the length and breadth of the North Simcoe peninsula and “Up the Shore”. * * * Rev. A. G. Reynolds accepted a call to the United Church at Elmvale. * * * Penetang council accepted an offer by the Bank of Toronto to purchase $24,000 in debentures to cover the cost of the new water well at the west end of Robert Street. * * * A concentrated search was underway for Melville Wilkie and George Herman Woodcox who had escaped from the Ontario Hospital, Penetang. Both men had been admitted to the institution after being adjudged insane on charges of murder. It was Wilkie’s fifth escape. * * * Canadian warship HMCS “Portage” docked at Midland and held “open house”. * * * Hon. Ray Lawson, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, was a surprise passenger aboard the M.S. Midland City when it arrived at Penetang from Parry Sound. He had been visiting up the shore.  

    Midland Public Utilities Commission has informed Tay Township council it will not guarantee water to persons obtaining building permits in the King Street south area. This was disclosed at a meeting of the township council July 5, when a letter from the PUC was read asking that no building permits be issued on the King Street South area with the understanding that the holders of the permits would be granted water as the PUC did not wish to serve any more customers in the area at this time. 

    “It should be a most interesting year, perhaps a little lonely but a wonderful experience to always remember.” These were the words of Donald C. Attridge, son of Dr. and Mrs. W. L. Attridge, Midland, who is taking a year’s leave of absence from the teaching staff of Orangeville District High School to teach 75 Canadian students who are going with him for a year’s study in Switzerland. Following a summer extension course in mathematics at the University of Western Ontario, London, Mr. Attridge will leave Montreal Sept. 2 for Europe. He will be accompanied by the students and three other teachers. 

    Fire believed to have been caused either accidentally or deliberately by young persons totally destroyed the red horse shed back of the baseball field in Midland Town Park early Thursday morning. Owned by the Tiny and Tay Agricultural Society, the building was insured for $1,000, according to Jack Blackburne, fair secretary “It would take at least twice that much to replace it,” said Mr. Blackburne, who told this paper no decision had been made in this regard as yet.  Work will start at once, however, to tear down the charred remains of the building, used to stable horses during the fall fairs. 

    Dear Editor:The 87-ton wooden tug “Audrey C”, official No. 122411, was built in 1907 at Midland by David Dobson for Manley Chew, lumber merchant, and was christened in honor of Audrey Chew, his only daughter. The tug was owned successively by the French River Boom Co. Ltd., of Toronto and Marius Dufresne and Dufresne Construction Co. Ltd., Montreal, Que. Her registry was closed in 1948, after she was dismantled and her hull sunk near Sorel, Que. Her length was 71 feet eight inches, beam 16 feet and depth eight feet one inch. W. R. Williams. 

    “The support of the parents and students was wonderful,” stated Midland-Penetang District High School” Principal R. C. Gauthier following the graduation exercises last Wednesday night. Estimating that 1,100 people attended the function, Mr. Gauthier stated that previously 300 parents had been a maximum, while this year more than 775 had attended. Mr. Gauthier also had praise for the students. Of the 352 who were to receive honor pins or certificates, only 37 were absent and of these 30 advised the principal that they would be unavoidably absent. 

    University of Western Ontario’s Summer School of Indian Archaeology opened in Penetang Monday morning, with 22 students registered for the 1960 class. The class was officially welcomed by Mayor Jerome Gignac and Chamber President George Kerr during the first morning session, which mainly consisted of familiarization talks by Dr. Wilfrid Jury, and his wife Elsie. All members of the class were present Monday evening when the chamber of commerce gave them a “welcoming banquet” at the Hotel Commodore. Local merchants were also present at the dinner designed to help the two groups to become better acquainted. Field work this year will again be conducted at the Forget site, southeast of Wyebridge. Dr. Jury has issued a special invitation to interested citizens to visit the site during the next two weeks. 

    Another banner season of summer programming under the sponsorship of Midland Y’s Men’s Club got under way at Little Lake Park this week, with 320 boys and girls registered as of yesterday noon. While a majority of the 320 children are from Midland, many others are enrolled from neighboring villages and from the tourist camp in Little Lake Park. So far frigid temperatures have marred the program’s most popular item — swimming. This is as disappointing to the parents, anxious that their youngsters learn to swim, as it is to the boys and girls themselves. “This morning” said playground director Carolyn Taylor, “we had to give the children instruction on dry land. It was too cold for us, too, as well as the children,” the young Owen Sound girl admitted. An Instructor at the Y’s Camp Kitchikewana for several seasons, Miss Taylor is receiving help from Lois Ramsey in the swimming end of the program. Other leaders include: Paul Howard, senior boys, Junia Corcoran, senior girls, Betty Jean Watkinson, junior boys and girls, Mary Lou Graham, crafts. 

        Dominion Day 1960 marked another step forward in the progress of Canada’s Indians. On July 1 all Indians aged 21 and over gained the right to vote in federal elections. Earlier this session, parliament approved amendments to the Indian Act and the Canada Elections Act to permit the inclusion of Indian people on federal voters’ lists. The governor-general proclaimed this legislation into effect on Dominion Day. Indians will lose none of their rights or privileges by voting in federal elections. Prime Minister Diefenbaker and Superintendent General of Indian Affairs Ellen Fairclough have stated. Previously about 20,000 Indians had been eligible to cast federal ballots. These were veterans and their wives. Indians living off reserves and people  in the Yukon and North West Territories. On Dominion Day nearly 60,000 more became eligible. Indians living in British Columbia, Ontario, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan also have the right to vote in provincial elections. 

    WAUBAUSHENE — Ideal weather brought crowds of tourists, summer cottagers and visitors to Waubaushene for the Dominion Day weekend when the chamber of commerce staged its annual field and sports day. On Friday, afternoon, races, bingo and other games and sports were held at the Town Park. This was followed by a supper in the Legion Hall which was catered for by the Legion Ladies Auxillary. Mrs. Hazel Blanchard was convener. The dance in the evening was well attended and music was provided by “Tony Moreau’s Boys.” Saturday afternoon a bake sale and tea was held on the lawn of Mr. and Mrs. David Norton. Bingo was played in the Legion Hall in the evening.

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