Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – December 7th to 14th, 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 enlargeReeve of Port McNicoll for 12 years, Albert Calvert, ‘signs’ up for a 13th term. At his right is Clerk B. J. Brownell. Waiting to qualify are, left to right, standing, Alex McCullagh, R. J. Belanger and Johnson Young, along with Mrs. Jack Reedy, who declined a seat on the school board. 

Sound financial position of Port McNicoll brought smiles to these men studying a report prepared for Wednesday night’s nominations by Clerk B. J. Brownell. Left to right are; Robert Smith, Tim Lewis, Lloyd Cameron and John Kent. 

There were smiles from some and disappointment for other candidates in Midland’s election Monday. Three winners above, left to right, are Mervin Grigg (Deputy-Reeve), Oliver Lesperance (Alderman Ward 3) and Walter Woods (Alderman Ward 4). 

Four more successful candidates in Monday’s municipal election in Midland watch Free Press Herald Manager Bob Chittick totalling the counts on an adding machine. Left to right are Tim Nesbitt, returned to the school board, Albert Atkinson, new alderman for Ward 1, Herb Carpenter, who gained a seat on the PUC, and Frank Bray, several times chairman of the schools board who was re-elected. 

“It looks like . . but no, the ball hit the rim and stayed out” Taking part in this  Little League basketball action at Midland YMCA are, left to right, Doug Taylor, Don Moffatt and Dalton Moore. 

Editorial page photo entitled, “Kennedy at Orr Lake?” 

These toys being checked off by Cecil Launder, left, and Ray Church look like they’ve just come off the store shelves. Actually it took many hours of work by volunteers from Pillsbury’s Midland staff to get them back in good condition for distribution to needy children at Christmas time. More toys are still needed, any person who wants to rid his attic or basement of wagons, dolls, carriages or other playthings discarded by his own children is asked to call the Pillsbury office. 

Reeve Ernest Cadeau and the public school board were returned to office by acclamation at nominations held in Victoria Harbour Monday night, but there will be an election next Monday for the four seats on council. It will be Mr. Cadeau’s fourth term as reeve, following several years as councillor. Seven candidates have lined up for the battle, including sitting members Oliver Savage, Wilfred Savage and Don Eplett.  Also qualifying were Herbert West, Mel Robertson, Allen Vallee and Albert Cameron. Three sitting members of the public school board, all returned by acclamation for two more years, were William Grigg, Lorne Ball and Forbes MacKenzie. Still with a year to go are Bruce Crooke, Dick Brown and Mrs. Bob Murray. For two of the men, nominations at Victoria Harbour are not new. They are Lorne Ball, on the school board for a quarter-century, and Wilfred Savage who, Mr. Heels said, had- spent “a third of his life on council”. Mr. Savage later said this will be the 21st year he has served as councillor or reeve of the village. Although he wasn’t present Monday night, Mr. Grigg is the dean of them all in Victoria Harbour, with nearly 30 years on the school board. 

“Oh for the life of a sailor” hardly applies at this time of year, when temperatures dip near or below the zero mark and the stormy winds do blow on the Great Lakes. The Golden Hind, which brought a half-million bushels of grain to Port McNicoll Monday, is a good example of the hardships which must be endured by both men and ships. Ice in many spots on the ship was more than two feet thick. 

’Twas an icy world Gilles Ferron looked out of as the freighter Golden Hind docked at Port McNicoll Monday to lay up for the winter season. Sub-zero temperatures and strong winds coated the ship with many tons of ice as she fought her way down the lakes from Port Arthur with her last cargo of the season. 

Members of the Midland Salvation Army Corps are raising funds for their Christmas Cheer campaign for the needy by playing carols at various points on Midland streets. Here, except for the modern school crossing and street signs in the background, a quintet of Salvationists present a picture that is symbolic of old-time Christmas card scenes. 

Landmark in Midland for more than half a century, the old Midland Boat Works building has been torn down and will be replaced by a more modern marina structure. The two photos (7019) show the building as it was being dismantled. 

The Third Midland Brownie Pack, led by Lieutenant  Mrs. William Johnson, sing Christmas carols in the Edwards store Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 7:45 until 8:15. The program will be broadcast live on CKMP radio. Names were provided by volunteers, not published with the photo. Back row L to R Melanie Dyer, Mary Lea Rutherford, ?, Gail Langridge, ?, Judy Scott, Susan Cochrane. Front row L to R Bonnie Hornsby, Mary Paul, Jane Adams Marilyn Douglas, Judy Douglas, ?, Eve Kurschner, Betty Paul, Karen Gray, Barb Douglas. 

May Make Manor Wing Winter Project

County Herald headline of December 9, 1960. 

Possibility that the Georgian Manor addition at Penetang may become a winter works project was seen in part of Tiny Reeve Montcalm Maurice’s nomination speech at Perkinsfield, Monday. Reeve Maurice said the committee in charge is conferring with government officials at present to determine whether it could be turned into a winter project, with work continuing through the cold weather. 

OWRC Sets Up New Code to Governs Plumbing Trade

Free Press Herald headline of December 14, 1960.

Amended plumbing regulations for Ontario are now in effect, Midland council heard Monday night in a letter from Dr. A. E. Berry, general manager of the Ontario Water Resources Commission. The new regulations, passed under the authority of the Ontario Water Resources Commission Act, apply to all municipalities and set up standards of materials and their installation. The original plumbing regulations which were made under the Public Health Act are now administered by the OWRC and the letter states that, as a result of the changes, health officers have been advised that all municipal plumbing bylaws made thereunder (Public Health Act) cease to have force or effect on that date (date of order- in-council Sept. 30) and are now superseded by the Plumbing Code. The new regulations place the responsibility for plumbing inspections on the municipality  without designating which branch of municipal government does the work. Referring to the new regulations, the letter continues: “No person shall construct, repair, renew or alter plumbing except in conformance with these regulations. Where plumbing has been constructed, repaired, renewed or altered, the plumbing shall not be put into use until it has been inspected and found to conform to these regulations. Every municipality shall carry out such inspections as are prescribed by these regulations. 

    A medical doctor member of the Commons predicted Monday that viruses will be almost completely conquered in 10 years. Dr. P. B. Rynard (PC—Simcoe East) made the prediction in speaking on a Liberal member’s resolution for a national survey on mental illness. Dr. Rynard said many children are born mental defectives because of virus infection in the pregnant mother. There was nothing more tragic than the arrival of a mentally retarded child in a home. He said the number of mental defectives probably will be reduced when viruses are conquered. One estimate was that one out of every 10 children born today would be in a mental institution at some time in its lifetime. Half the numbers of people seeing doctors today were going to them because of emotional disorders. 

    Louis O. Breithaupt, well known in Penetang as owner of a tannery, and as a summer resident with a cottage “Up the Shore” died unexpectedly in a Toronto hospital Tuesday afternoon, after being rushed there by ambulance from his Kitchener home. Mr. Breithaupt was better known to the rest of the province through his service as lieutenant-governor of Ontario for five years. He had been interested in civic affairs from an early age and at 32 was the youngest mayor ever to serve the city of Kitchener. He was elected to a seat in the federal house in 1940, and held it until his provincial appointment in 1952. He had been chancellor of Victoria College, Toronto, succeeding Lester B. Pearson in that post. Premier Leslie Frost adjourned the legislature half an hour early on hearing of the death. Speaking of Mr. Breithaupt, Mr. Frost said. “Mr. Breithaupt was a man of fine intellect who had great knowledge of this province and its ways.” Funeral service was held yesterday in Kitchener with a large number of government officials present. Burial was in the family plot in a Kitchener cemetery. 


HATLEY — To Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hatley, Port McNicoll, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, December 6, 1960, twin sons.

LABRASHE — To Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Labrasbe, 7th Concession, Perkinsfield, at St. Andrews Hospital, Friday, December 2, 1960, a daughter.

MOREAU — To Mr. and Mrs. Donald Moreau, 137 Fourth Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Friday, December 2, 1960, a son.

PENDER — To Mr. and Mrs. Russell Pender, 372 William Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Wednesday December 7, 1960, a daughter.

RICHARDSON — To Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Richardson, 81 Bay Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Saturday, December 3, I960, a daughter. 

    All the excitement Monday night wasn’t concerned with the Midland elections. An Ontario Hydro helicopter trying to land after dark attempted to land on the playing field of Midland Penetang District High School, but there was not sufficient light there. After circling the area a number of times, it was finally able to land on the lawn next to the Shamrock motel on Yonge Street west. “It caused quite a bit of excitement,” Harvey Ellison stated “and quite a few people came to the motel to see what was going on.” The Hydro men had been repairing a broken line at Twelve Mile Bay and had expected to get to Midland before dark but were unable to make it until nearly 6 p.m., Mr. Ellison stated. 

    With the last ships already in or on their way, at least 13 lake freighters will winter in the Bayports of Midland and Port McNicoll this winter with the possibility of one more to add to the list. The 13 ships have already brought a total of 6,728,000 bushels of grain to the Bayports and the expected arrival of the CSL’s Hagarty at Port McNicoll Friday will add another 400,000 bringing the total to more than 7,128,000 bushels. Also slated to winter in Midland are the new government ship Alexander Henry and the older government ship, the C. P. Edwards. Biggest single cargo, 777,000 bushels, is in the hold of the CSL’s Murray Bay at Tiffin elevator in Midland. The T. R. McLagan is also at Tiffin, bringing the total there to 1,471,000. Nearby, at Aberdeen elevator, two Algoma Central ships, the Algosteel and Algocen, have around 616,000 bushels in their holds. At the CSL elevator are Nipigon Bay, 560,000 and Goderich, 398,000 just short of the million-bushel mark at 958,000. Across the bay three Paterson Line ships have 1,325,000 bushels for the Midland Simcoe elevator. They are the Senator of Canada, Paterson and New Quedoc. Biggest total load, 2,358,000 bushels, is already berthed at the CPR elevator in Port McNicoll. Ships are the Jobn E. F. Misener, 619,000; Sir James Dunn, 591,000; John O. McKeller, 643,0001 and the Golden Hind, 505,000. Also slated for Port McNicoll is the CSL’s Hagarty, carrying around 400,000 bushels. Officials said the Hagerty may proceed to drydock in Collingwood later, if weather permits. Three CSL ships, which usually winter in Midland, will be missing this season, according to J. G. Hendrickson, CSL manager here. They are the Coverdale, stranded in Montreal by the Seaway closing; the Donnacona in drydock at Fort William and the Lemoyne, in drydock at Collingwood. (It will take approximately 3,500 boxcars to move this grain to the east coast.) 

     Jack Blackburn has been appointed harbormaster at Midland, Dr. P. B. Rynard, M.P. for Simcoe East, announced Saturday. Mr. Blackburn succeeds the late Dave Hewis. 

    Facing a ballot for the first time in three tries for the mayoralty of Penetang, Jerome Gignac was returned Monday by a whopping 333 majority over George Kerr. Mr. Gignac polled 717 votes compared with 384 for Kerr. Both questions submitted to the voters carried with a large majority. Sunday sports was approved 802 to 225. The two-year term for council carried on a count of 688 to 289. 

    A sudden cold snap, following on the heels of a spell of unusually mild weather for this time of year, froze Midland Bay Sunday. Ice in the harbor thickened Monday and Tuesday as temperatures dropped. Thermometer readings ranged from four to ten below zero.  

    A ratepayers’ meeting at Port McNicoll Dec. 7 was informed that the village’s population had reached a new peak since the community was incorporated by an act of parliament in 1917. The population new stands at 1,016 an increase of six since Sept. 30 of this year. Assessor John Hartford reports that the total assessment for Port for 1961 will be $I,356,670 compared with $1,328,605 in I960. Land assessment is $246,745 (up $61,000): buildings $1,095,960 (up $19,860); and business $13,965 (up $2,105). 

25 Years Ago

Henry Jackson, known as Chief Red Hawk, chief of the Christian Island Indians, was attempting to collect $I,500,000 treaty money allegedly owed to the Canadian branch of the tribe by the United States government. * * * A “Southern Cinderella”, a three-act comedy, was presented by the Christian Mothers in St. Mary’s parish hall Victoria Harbour. * * * Midland Kiwanis Club sponsored a midnight revue at the Capitol Theatre in aid of Christmas cheer for local needy children. * * * Midland council objected to a ruling by the Department of Municipal Affairs that the owner of a home free of encumbrances is not entitled to shelter relief until he is three years in arrears with taxes. * * * Taking the first step for a province-wide organization, a North Simcoe branch of the Ontario Potato Growers Association was formed at a meeting of Simcoe County potato growers in Barrie. * * * Midland Boy Scouts made a house to house canvass for clothing on behalf of the Canadian Red Cross. * * * Miss Dorothy Kerr, Toronto, secretary-treasurer of the Ladies Ontario Hockey Association, expressed the hope that Midland would be represented at the association’s annual meeting and that Midland would be able to enter a girls hockey team in the league. * * * Ivan Smith was elected president of the newly-formed Midland High School Alumni Association at a meeting in a Bloor Street tea room, Toronto. * * * The play “The Bloaters”, produced by the Coldwater Anglican Young People’s Association, was presented to an audience in Foxmead. 

Editorial Page

Dwight D. Eisenhower: “Whenever a government does for its citizens that which they have the capacity to do for themselves, individually and in groups, it begins to destroy both their capacity and their incentive to do for themselves. It begins to weaken rather than to strengthen the foundations of freedom and the means of progress. I can work my girls arithmetic problem better for her than she can work it for herself. I can get the right answer almost every time. And she would like to have me do it for her. She’d even vote for me if I would. But I don’t do it. Not because I don’t love her or want her to succeed — but because I do.” 

    Once again it s December and our country world is wider now, with only dark bare branches between us and the horizon. The road to the end of the concession line is visible, and the postman stopping at the mail box is pleasant to see with no leafy screen of bushes to hide him and in the distance, I can see sturdy Christmas trees standing so strong and bright. Yes, it’s December again and besides being the gala month of the year it s a busy one for us farm folk with geese chickens and turkeys to pluck and get ready for market. But with stations where you can get your fowl plucked for a few cents a bird, we’ve lost the fun we used to have at the old time plucking bees when neighbors would go to one home and pluck geese, then to another the next day to pluck the turkeys. It seemed more like fun than work in those days. As I look out at the snow it brings back memories of Christmases’ of 40 or more years ago, when our family was young and all with us. We used to take the family and drive 10 miles to grandads for Christmas dinner. Dad  wrapped to his ears in a fur coat and a woolen scarf tied around the collar, would drive the team and bobsleighs up to the kitchen door. The sleigh would be filled with straw covered over with horse blankets. The children would be piled in and covered with buffalo robes. Then away we would go, the icy snow crunched and crackled under the sleigh runners, the bells on the tongue poured out with a welcoming sound, wisps of snow sent up by the horses hoofs whipped across our face and went swirling by to light on the rail fences that lined the sides of the roads. When we reached our destination dad would stagger out under his load of Christmas parcels and the family would follow, hardly able to walk under all their wraps. As they neared the door, grandma and grandpa would be there to welcome them with open arms. In the old-fashioned kitchen, the table would fairly groan under its load of good things to eat. There would be roast goose, mashed potatoes, creamed carrots, pickles of every description, bowls of red ripe apples, dishes of nuts and candies and never-to-be-forgotten smell of good things.  And lastly but not, least, there was good old-fashioned plum pudding and flaky home-made bread. After grandad asked the blessing, everyone ate till they were uncomfortable. The children played around the Christmas tree with their numerous cousins. The parent caught up with all the neighborly news such as weddings, births, auction sales and family affairs. Suddenly dad or mother would glance at the clock and once more it would be time to bundle up and start for home. As we drove home we suddenly realized that Christmas was something to be shared with loved ones, it was a time when old arguments, wounds and heartbreaks were forgotten. When we headed for home, regardless of whether we were rich or poor, it wasn’t what we had, but the fact that being home for Christmas spelled happiness for “you and yours.”

God bless you all

This Christmas day

May Bethlehem’s star

Still light the way

And guide thee to

The perfect peace

When every fear

And doubt shall cease.

And may thy home

Such glory know

As did the stable

long ago.

— Rhoda Downer

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