Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – February 16th to 23rd, 1961

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 enlargeVisitors to the fishing colony on Sturgeon Bay may be a wee bit startled when they see this shanty and its sign reading, “Dressing Rooms for Bathers,” then under it another sign “Women”. But the shanty is not what it appears to be. An ingenious angler is making use of it as a fish hut during the winter months. 

District Commissioner Harvey Boyd, left, and Nancy Mahoney, right, admire an award for bravery which Scout Ian Dalrymple received from William Child, president of South Georgian Bay District Boy Scouts Association, standing behind the trio. Ian, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Dalrymple, has been awarded a gilt cross for rescuing Nancy from Midland harbour last Easter Sunday and is to receive it later this year from the Governor General, at a special investiture. Sunday he received the cloth badge which he will wear in lieu of the medal, and a letter from Deputy Chief Scout Nicholson. 

Setting up the pneumatic controls for the heating and air conditioning system in the new addition to MPDHS is the job of Pat Murphy. Many district tradesmen are being employed throughout the winter on the 14 room addition to the school. 

Work is going on inside the east wing of the new additions to Midland-Penetang District High School as fast as possible, in hopes of having this section ready for classes following Easter holidays. Here general superintendent Len Zinger, left, watches Morley Blow hook up part of the heating and ventilating unit in the east section. 

Mixing mortar is a tricky business on construction jobs during winter months. Here Jack Puddicombe, left, feeds sand into the machine under the watchful eye of Len Zinger, general superintendent for Laverne Assmusen Ltd., on the new additions to MPDHS. 

In the summer months, Wally Meisinger makes a specialty of kicking soccer balls into the nets for Midland Huronias. Above (foreground) he is seen laying bricks on the west section of the new addition to MPDHS. Other workman is Sig Walters. 

There’s great joy in Hillsdale, for Pat Playford Thursday night became “Queen of Hearts” for MPDHS in 1961 at the finals held in the Roxy Theatre. Pat is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Playford. 

Contented proprietor — The atmosphere is informal at Cornell’s in Coldwater. At intervals, between waiting on customers or making deliveries, proprietor Arthur Cornell relaxes in a rocking chair in the centre of the store and smokes a favorite cigar. The same family has operated the grocery store and bakery for 62 years.—Photo by Cyril Martin. [We did not have the negative that went with this caption but have used another photo we have of Ed with Dorothy Laughlin on the left and Edna Walker. Note the canned goods, the doughnuts beside Dorothy and the bare light bulb hanging down.]

Paul Dion is this year’s winner of the Roxy Theatre trophy. The award presented Feb. 16 at the Queen of Hearts finals, is made to the student at Midland-Penetanguishene District High School who is considered the most valuable football player in the senior division. 

Winner of he “Queen of Hearts title among MPDHS students this year, Patsy Playford (seated) and her four princesses have been invited to ride on one of the many floats which will take part in the parade which will open Penetang’s Winterama festivities this weekend. “Princesses” are, left to right, Bonnie Rourke, Arlene Armstrong, Margaret Spicer and Karen Mick. The girls took part in the final contest at the Roxy Theatre Thursday night. 

A small, neat home at Martha and Richard Streets, Victoria Harbour, was the mecca for literally dozens of friends from the village and surrounding Tay Township who came to pay tribute to Mr. and Mrs. William Grigg on their golden wedding anniversary Wednesday, Feb. 15. Tay and the Harbour have good cause to honour the Griggs. They have lived all their lives, with the exception of two years, in either the village or the township. In addition, Mr. Grigg served the township faithfully for more than 30 years as lineman and general manager of its telephone system. He retired only last year, although he marked his 75th birthday Tuesday, only one day ahead of his wedding anniversary.

Council Tempers Flare in Chamber Grant Talks 

County Herald headline of February 17, 1961.
Tempers flared and no decision on grants was reached when Midland council met as a finance committee Thursday night, Feb. 9, to consider grants to Midland Chamber of Commerce and the Georgian Bay Development Association.  Mayor Charles Parker explained that the chamber of commerce previously received a grant of $3,500 plus $225 for the information bureau as well as accommodation in the municipal building. The GBDA last year received 10 cents per capita amounting to $834.80 the mayor stated, pointing out that the GBDA also received $1,500 from county council which amounted to approximately 24 cents per capita. “It would be a grave error to take industrial promotion from the chamber of commerce and put it into municipal hands.” commented Alderman Wm. Thompson. He emphasized that companies considering a Midland location are reticent to let their names become public and don’t want to get involved in local politics. 

Tay, Harbour Councils Plan Joint Fire Force 

Free Press Herald headline of February 22, 1961.
Representatives of Victoria Harbour council met with Tay Township council at a special meeting, Feb. 17, to discuss joint fire protection for the area. Harbour representatives at the meeting were Donald Eplett, Fred Savage, Albert Cameron and Oliver Savage. A representative of the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office, Harold Hunter, who was present to give advice, suggested that any debentures that might be issued, should be issued by one municipality. Mr. Hunter also suggested that a member of the Victoria Harbour and Waubaushene brigades should attend the training school at Gravenhurst. Representatives of Tay Township and Victoria Harbour’s councils have verbally agreed to enter into an agreement on fire protection and tenders for a fire truck have been invited, Tay Township Clerk Ralph Dalton said yesterday. It was suggested that each council bear 50 per cent of the cost of the truck, hose, clothing, maintenance and insurance and Victoria Harbour council offered to provide the building to house the truck. Both councils would share equally the fire grants, it was agreed. 

    A number of patrons at the Tuesday night bingo held at Parkside Inn paid, or will pay, $7.50 for tickets, but it didn’t help them win any prizes.’ Instead, the money will go to provincial and Midland coffers in the form of fines for illegal parking. Members of the OPP detachment at Victoria Harbour wrote 30 tickets under Sec. 89-9 of the Highway Traffic Act against motorists who allegedly parked their cars in a manner which interfered with the movement of traffic and snowploughing. Members of the Midland police force added 10 more they found inside the boundaries of the municipality, each of whom will pay a $1 fine. Tile ticketing commenced after provincial police had received complaints from transport drivers who had difficulty moving their vehicles along the highway, lined both sides with cars. 

    Penetang council, Monday night, passed a bylaw engaging a private trucker as garbage collector for the municipality. For many years the garbage collection has been the responsibility of the town crew. With costs rising continually, council felt money could be saved by calling tenders for the work. Sanitation chairman, councillor Leonard Ladoucer reported that 11 tenders had been received, with bids running from S4,495. up to $12,000. Leo Mailloux, who submitted the lowest tender, was given the contract and will be asked to enter into an agreement before commencing work Feb. 27 Mayor Jerome Gignac offered some objection to employing an out-of-town man for the job. He said he felt a local man should be given preference, provided his price was close. Council learned that the lowest tender from a Penetang man was $5,200. Practically every member of council said they felt the contract should go to a Penetang man if at all possible. However, under existing conditions, they did not consider it justified in this instance. Over the objections of Councillor Ralph White, town foreman Ovila Cascagnette was appointed dog catcher for 1961. 

    There should be a lot of smashed clay, burned powder and spent lead pellets around the grounds of Penetang Gun and Rifle Club when the smoke clears following the Winterama trapshooting competition this Sunday. A little over two tons of clay birds and shotgun shells was received in a shipment this week, to be used for this special occasion. Shooting addicts will find things a little more comfortable around the Fuller Ave. range this year. Recently, the club erected an addition to its facilities which doubled the size of the club house. Two traps are expected to be in operation from 9 a.m. until close to dusk, with a record number of entries indicated. 

   Penetanguishene General Hospital will celebrate a half-century of service in the healing  of the sick, April 19, 1961. First move toward marking the event came at the last board meeting when J. D, Roderick, only surviving member of the original board, was named honorary member of the current board. Board President Jerome Gignac said this week a committee has been named to “dig up” as much Information as possible on the hospital and its operations through the years. 

    The summer home of Midland YMCA, Camp Kitchikewana, has proven as popular as ever, states camp director J. W. ‘Win’ Smith when he announced Monday that the camp is now filled for the summer. More than 70 applications from prospective campers had to be returned last week. Mr. Smith continued “Some children have applied now for two or three years, but because of the camp’s popularity with former campers the intermediate and senior sections are now filled so the applications  from new campers had to be refused” Mr. Smith stated. Kitchikewana handles 180 campers and 45 staff daily during July and August, the camp director noted. 

    Moose meat and vension were the bill of fare for 75 members of the Georgian Bay Hunters and Anglers and their guests at the club’s February dinner meeting at Bourgeois Dining Hall Feb. 15. Some of the moose meat was supplied by Stan Brooks and Jack Frame. The venison donated by Lorne Smokey Wood and Stan Brooks. Jack Frame showed a film of the moose hunt, so guests could see the moose that provided part of the main course of the meal. Maynard Thiffault also showed movies of his trip to Florida. 

CADEAU — To Mr and Mrs. Thos. Cadeau, Port Severn, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Tuesday, Feb 7, 1961, a son.
ASSANCE — To Mr. and Mrs. Fred Assance, Christian Island, at St. Andrews Hospital, Monday, February 6, 1961, a son.
BELCOURT — To Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Belcourt, Robert St. E., Penetang, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Feb. 2, 1961, a daughter.
DAWE — To Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Dawe, 11 Montreal Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, February 7, 1961, a daughter.
DUSOME — To Mr. and Mrs. Peter Dusome, Vinden Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, February 7, 1961, a daughter.
GRAHAM — To Mr. and Mrs. Glen Graham, 208 Queen Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Monday, February 13, 1961, a son.
HANSFORD — To Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Hansford, 135 Yonge Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Wednesday, February 8, 1961, a son. Baby died.
LeBLANC — To Mr. and Mrs. Leo LeBlanc, R. R. 3, Penetang, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Friday, Feb. 3, 1961, a daughter.
MAYER — To Mr. and Mrs. Martial Mayer, R.R. 2. Penetang, at St. Andrews Hospital, Monday, February 13, 1961, a son.
MIXEMONG — To Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Mixemong, Christian Island, at St. Andrews Hospital, Sunday, February 12, 1961, a son.
MOREAU — To Mr. and Mrs. Simeon Moreau, 82 Main St. Penetang, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Tuesday, Feb 7, 1961, a daughter.
NODWELL — To Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Nodwell, Victoria Harbour, at St. Andrews Hospital, Midland, Wednesday, February 15, 1961, a son.
PLAYNE — To Mr. and Mrs. John Playne, Sunnyside, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, February 14, 1961, a daughter.
QUESNELLE — To Mr. and Mrs. Gabriel Quesnelle, R.R. 1, Perkinsfield, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 1961, a son.
ROBITAILLE — To Mr. and Mrs. Cena Robitaille, 30 Fox St., Penetang, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Wednesday,  Feb. 1, 1961, a son.
ROBITAILLE — To Mr. and Mrs. Gabriel Robitaille, West St., Penetang, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 1961, a son.
SIMMONDS — To Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Simmonds, 215 Russell Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Wednesday, February 8, 1961, a daughter.
AMANT – To Mr. and Mrs. Philip St. Amant, Perkinsfield, at Penetanguishene General Hospital, Monday, Feb. 6, 1961, a son.
VASICEK — To Mr. and Mrs. Vaslade Vasicek, 316 Fourth Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Monday, February 13, twins, a son and daughter. 

XAVIER THERRIEN  – A native of Lafontaine and resident of Penetang for the past 50 years. Xavier Therrien died ‘Saturday, Feb. 11, at the home of his son, Leonard Therrien. He was in his 82nd year. Retired since 1945, he had  married Albina Martin at Lafontaine in 1900. He was fond of fishing and was a Liberal in politics. Surviving besides his widow are seven sons, Gilbert of Port Colborne, Leonard of Penetang, Oscar and Norman in Toronto, Lawrence and Denis of Barrie and James of Ottawa, and three daughters, Mrs. Russel Baker (Leona), Ottawa, Mrs. Lou St. Germain (Marie) and Mrs. Jos. Hawkins (Margaret) of Toronto. There are 41 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. Funeral service was held Monday, Feb. 13, from Beausoleil’s funeral home to St. Ann’s Memorial Church. Father J. Kelly officiated, assisted by Father L. O’Malley and Father J. Marchand. Pallbearers were Robert, Ronald, Stanley, Allan, Jack and Danny Therrien.
A former chief constable of the Tiny Township police force and well-known throughout this district, Roch Pilon died at Penetang General Hospital, January 18. He was in his 62nd year. Requiem mass was conducted by Rev. A. J. Desaulniers at St. Patrick’s Church, Perkinsfield, Jan. 21. Pallbearers were Lawrence and Isaac Pilon, Albert Gouett, Joe Lalonde, Julien Bourgeois Henry Quesnelle. A lifetime resident of Perkinsfield where he was born April 9, 1899, Mr. Pilon married the former Irene Gouette at Penetang in September 1940. He is survived by his widow, two sons Gerald of Toronto and Ron of Perkinsfield, a stepson, Larry Curran of Midland and eight daughters, Mrs. Russell Ladouceur (Doreen), Perkinsfield, Mrs. Bernard Mastronadeo (Lorraine), Jean, Mrs. Gordon Forfar (Terry), Mrs. Fred Richardson (Bernadette) and Mrs. Eric Kennedy (Gloria) all of Toronto. Mrs. Jack Lloyd (Margaret) of Barrie and Mrs. Fern Maurice (Marian) of Lafontaine. Surviving also are 31 grandchildren. Temporary entombment was in St. Ann’s Mausoleum with burial later In St. Patrick’s Cemetery. 

Nutrition classes were started by the Midland Red Cross Society and were held in St. Mark’s parish hall. • • • Announcement was made that the Letherby and Son Lumber Mill would open in the summer and it was expected to employ 125 of Midland’s unemployed. • • • Miss Norma McKinley was crowned “queen” of the Midland skating carnival at Midland arena when more than 200 citizens took part in various skating activities. * * * Midland curlers retained the Shaw Cup, donated by ex-president Shaw of the Port McNicoll Curling Club, for annual competition between the two clubs. The majority for the six Midland rinks was 35 shots. * *  * Elmvale’s second annual Board of Trade banquet was held with lion Dr. I. J. Simpson and D. F. McCuaig, MP, as guest speakers. * * * Penetang Horticultural Society spent $60 beautifying Memorial Park, Huronia Park and the General Hospital grounds. * * * The provincial government reduced its relief contribution to Midland and as a result the town had to raise $60,000 as its share of relief in 1936 or cut relief. * * * Midland Orange Lodges were preparing for the annual convention of the Grand Lodge of Ontario West when more than 1,200 visitors were expected. 

    The number of farm wagons showing up in factory yards and elsewhere in Penetang during the past several days could lead a stranger to think the town is seriously considering the possibility of becoming engaged in agriculture. The wagons, however, are going to be used for a purpose never dreamed of by their manufacturer. They will be the base of floats in the Winterama parade next  weekend. A bit of “snooping” around reveals that six years of parades have given Penetang people considerable education and originality of ideas in producing floats. Each year, floats in the parade are becoming more unique, and display even greater amounts of creativeness on the part of their builders. 

    More than 200 people attending the annual Warden’s banquet in St. Joseph’s Hall, Barrie, Thursday night heard Judge J. L. Harvie complimented Montcalm Maurice on being the first French Canadian to be named Warden of Simcoe County. Later, in his short speech, Judge Harvie said. “Mrs. Maurice has done something very close to my heart in making certain her children can speak both French and English. I have felt it very deeply that I couldn’t talk in French to Montcalm while he is able to talk to me in English. Judge Harvie mentioned that the average French Canadian can speak French. I learned French in University, but I cannot speak it now.” he added. The speaker urged the two Provincial members present to take back to Premier Frost a recommendation that French be taught in our public schools. 

   As the mortgage on the auditorium addition was being burned Saturday evening, members of Penetang Legion revealed further major improvements and additions to their building at Simcoe and Peel Streets are contemplated. President Doug Rogers mentioned plans are underway to purchase and install a new heating system for the entire building. Preliminary consideration also have been given to a project which would add a second floor to the auditorium extension. This addition would be used as a recreation area, he said. The actual mortgage burning was carried out by President Doug Rogers, Harry Turner, one of the older members of the branch, and Fred Locking, zone commander, Legion Zone E4. Past President George Scott presented the specially engraved lighter, used for the ceremony to Harry Turner. 

   Application for permission to open a second-hand store in Penetang was held over for two weeks, when council will hear the bylaw concerning the matter. The application was signed by Herb Secord who said he wanted to open such an establishment at the corner of Wolfe Street and Simcoe Lane. Mayor Jerome Gignac told council he was certain there was a town bylaw which would prohibit such a store being opened. Clerk A. Doucette is to bring the bylaw to the next meeting of council. (Shades of the movie “Needful Things”)

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