Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – October 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 enlargeThis stately old home (Georgian Lodge) among the pines has long been a Midland landmark. Located across the bay behind the Midland Simcoe Elevator it was the center for much of the towns social life a few generations back.  (From our website- This dry stone wall is all that remains of the Georgian Lodge, the home of John J. Drummond and his family. In 1900 Drummond opened the Canada Iron Furnace in Midland, which became one of the town’s largest employers. At its peak, the company employed about 350 men and its payroll was said to be the largest in Simcoe County. The family enjoyed its role as part of the social elite, and helped to shape the economic interests of the fledgling town at the beginning of the 20th-century. The wall not only acts as a reminder of the economic and social history of Midland, but is also an example of a simple and masterful craft that is seldom seen and preserved today.)

Last Thursday night’s freak thunder storm resulted in minor damage to Midland’s famed Huron Indian village when lightning set fire to a few palisade poles at the south end of the enclosure. Fortunately none of the buildings inside were damaged. 

No place for the squeamish is this high perch of painters working on the Pillsbury flour mill in Midland. When finished, the paint job will brighten up Midland’s waterfront considerably.

There were lots of high jinks as well as football as MPDHS seniors played Camp Borden High School last Thursday. Lending inspiration to the gridiron hero’s were, left to right, back row – Lynda Riley, Ellen Barber, Lois Todd, Lynn McAllen, Karen Blair; front row – Marion Lavigne, Helen Elliott, Marie Cordes, Jane Campbell, Gail Richardson, Barbara Murday and Junia Corcoran. 

It’s another first down for MPDHS seniors in their game with Camp Borden High School here last Thursday. With the score already 54-0 against them, the Borden players don’t seem too interested in the outcome of the measurement. They did get a TD later to make the final score 54-6 for MPDHS. 

At the fashion show held at Edwards’ Specialty Shop recently, Miss Doris Wainman, left, showed a white scuffle coat with the new dramatic collar effect. Mrs. Walter Woods modelled a brown tweed boxy suit and brown felt hat. 

One of the features of Edwards’ Specialty Shop these days is a new fur salon. At left, Mrs. L. Parliament features a three-quarter length mouton coat, with mink crushed collar. Mrs. Eric Paul’s coat is a full-length grey Persian Lamb with three-way sapphire mink collar. 

This corner of the new fur salon provided a resting spot for Mrs. Walter Woods, left, and Mrs. Willi Germann during the recent fashion show al Edwards. Mrs. Woods is modelling a sapphire mink pocket stole and Mrs. Germann a “Lassie” beige wool coat topped by a leopard skin hat. 

New millinery bar forms an attractive nook in the realigned Edwards Specialty Shop, Midland. Madame can see herself from just about any angle in this maze of mirrors.

This was the the apparent feeling of Morris Brown and his brother, both of Toronto, following the recent wave of vandalism at Balm Beach. Some 20 cottages were reported entered and an estimated $12,000 damage done. 

Victim of a hit and run driver more than two years ago Mrs. “Jock” Jenkinson was left badly crippled by the accident. The driver was never apprehended. Here she receives a visit from her minister Rev. J. L. Self of Knox Presbyterian Church. A shut-in, Mrs. Jenkinson enjoys the television set (background) given to her by her children. 

Work is well underway on the new 17-room building which will replace the present Sacred Heart Separate School in Midland. Located at Elizabeth and William Streets, the new school will cost around $275,000 and is slated to open next September. 

Two Governments Okay $66,475 in Winter Work
Free Press Herald headline of October 19, 1960 

Reeve H. J. Beauchamp told the regular meeting of Midland council Monday night that the federal and provincial governments had approved the town’s three applications under the winter works incentive program. Approved were projects involving sidewalks, storm sewers and curbing. The total cost for material and labour was $66,475, Mr. Beauchamp stated. 

Saturday Polling Day Holds Edge in Survey
County Herald headline of October 21, 1960 

Preliminary results in a public opinion poll indicated a cross-section of Midland voters show a slight preference for changing the municipal voting day to Saturday. Of five housewives, selected at random yesterday by this newspaper, three favored Saturday and two supported Wednesday. (Very scientific!) 

    Midland’s Branch 80, Canadian Legion, plans to build a new building, which will cost in excess of $40,000 to replace its burned out building on Bay Street. This was revealed by Legion spokesman Ken WilIiams when a delegation appeared before Midland council Monday night, to see if council would consider selling a portion of land on Bay Street between Gloucester and Queen Street. 

    Tower TV Ltd., which has provided five-channel cable television service to Midland subscribers for the past five years, has been acquired by Neighbourhood Television Limited which operates similar systems in Guelph, Owen Sound and Huntsville. Its president is Mr. Fred Metcalfe who was the first head of the National Community Antenna Television Association of Canada. In announcing the sale, W. H. Cranston, President of Tower TV said that the change of ownership stemmed from recognition by the Midland directors that future expansion and improvement in the local system was dependent on an association with other cable systems and on expanded technical services which a single operation could not sustain. 

The Midland Bugle Band appeared in new uniforms of blue capes turned back and buttoned at the shoulders to show a bright red lining. White shirts and blue trousers completed the uniform. • • • As a tribute to the late Mrs. W. E. Preston, Midland stores remained closed between 2 and 3 p.m. to enable clerks to attend the funeral. • • • Nearly 2,500 jammed Midland Arena to hear Premier M. F. “Mitch” Hepburn speak on behalf of the Federal Liberal Party, which was later swept in to power with a majority of 103 seats. * * * The Canadian Dredging Co. of Midland was awarded a contract for improving the Collingwood harbor at a cost of $32,846. • • • The Vasey annual fowl supper was held in the basement of the United Church. The admission charges 40 cents for adults and 25 cents for children. • • • The Midland YMCA was marking 25 years of service with a campaign for 250 additional members and $3,000. • • •  A notice appeared in the Local newspaper stating that any person owning, driving or operating a motor vehicle without the approval of the Welfare Committee will be struck off relief. • • •  The Penetang Town Boys’ Hockey League was sponsored by Penetang Kiwanis Club and saw five teams comprising 72 boys in competition. 

    COLDWATER –  An amber flashing light was installed and placed in use last weekend at the intersection of Main and Gray streets. In addition to the flasher there is a smaller white light a short distance west of it which goes on and off at intervals when the larger one is blinking. The safety lights were placed by the Highways Department following a request by Coldwater Council. Hope is expressed the installation will reduce the accident hazard at the corner where Highway 12 enters Coldwater’s Main street at a right angles. 

   Work started Thursday morning on two paving projects in Penetang, both of which are expected to be completed this week.  A strip of dirt surface on the south side of Robert St. W., from the old Town Hall to Main St. is being paved. Loaders, trucks and a grader were busy yesterday morning digging out the area preparatory to adding granular base. According to Streets Committee Chairman, Ray McDonald, the right of way alongside Fern Shoe plant, leading to Tessier Planing Mill, will also be hard surfaced. He said this road, sometimes called the Shoe Factory Lane carries a lot of traffic, both to the shoe plant and to the planing mill. Both pieces will be finished with an asphalt surface, the chairman said.

MRS. MARY H. JAMES – An active worker at St. Paul s United Church and a Past Regent of Kitchekewana Chapter IODE Mrs. Mary Helen James died at Toronto, Oct. 3, following a heart attack. Rev. W. L. Morden conducted the funeral service at St Paul’s United Church, Midland, Oct. 6. Pallbearers were C. M. Vent, Dr. James Small, Clarke Edwards, Jack Wilson, Alex Preston and C. H. Webb. Born at Renfrew, July 4, 1904, Mrs. James received her education at Arnprior and there on April 16, 1926, married Dr. C. Norman James. Dr. James predeceased his wife in February of last year. Mrs. James lived in Midland following her marriage until the death of her husband when she moved to Toronto. She was a past president of St Paul’s Evening Auxiliary, a soloist in St. Paul’s choir and was active in many church groups. She was also interested in golf and curling. She is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Dan Webb (Mary) of Midland and Mrs. F. C. Israel (Callie) of Richmond Hill and a son Bill of Blind River. Two brothers, John Wishart of Arnprior and George Wishart of Belleville also survive. Out-of-town relatives and friends attended the service from Toronto, Richmond Hill, Ottawa, Arnprior, Belleville and Carleton Place.  Burial was in Lakeview Cemetery.  

Wise & Otherwise
Nothing exceeds a Canadian autumn for richness of color and breath-taking beauty of nature resplendent in her fall dress. And, this year, North Simcoe has had its full share of this annual kaleidoscope work of The Master Painter. (Encore in 2020)

Prayers and hugs Marion, a speedy recovery for one of Midland’s special angels.

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