Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – May 23rd to 31st, 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. 

Again we have no original negatives for this week and we will make do with copy and paste. 


County Herald headline of Friday May 26, 1961.
Penetang council will study a proposal for monthly billing of taxes. Authorization for the study was given at Tuesday night’s council meeting after the suggestion had been made by Mayor Jerome Gignac.  The mayor’s proposal is to send out bills monthly, commencing with the beginning of the year. This would be done on the basis of the previous year’s bill.  When the mill rate for the year has been set, a 13th bill would be issued to provide for any adjustments necessary.  The study is to be carried out by the clerk and finance committee. 

    If Councillor Leonard Ladouceur has his way, Penetang may soon see an end to the garbage scattered around the streets as a result of containers breaking or being torn apart by dogs. Monday night the councillor tabled a resolution providing for preparation of a bylaw which would require garbage to be kept in covered metal containers. He explained that garbage is being put out in all sorts of open cardboard cartons and paper bags. “When it rains these break and present a horrible mess.” Following some discussion, the councillor agreed to change the resolution to one which authorized the clerk to present a proposed bylaw at the next meeting of council. Some members of council felt requirement of metal containers was a little stiff. One suggested properly tied cartons served the purpose adequately. Building Inspector Ernest Marcot was authorized to have a condemned house on Fox Street demolished. It was stated the house has been condemned by health authorities for some time, but no attempt had been made by the owner to remove it. Councillor Ralph White reported that Sgt Marcel Dorion is going to re-activate the school patrol system, which operated quite efficiently for several years. He asked that crosswalks be painted at certain locations where the patrol would work. 

    A petition signed by 75 percent of Midland merchants covered by the present retail store hours bylaw, has been forwarded to Midland council by the chamber of commerce. Confirming receipt of the petition, Wm.  Hack, town clerk-treasurer said that it would be presented at the next meeting. The petition asks for the repeal of the section requiring stores to remain closed Wednesday afternoons during the months of July and August. It is understood that the result of the petition will be that stores can observe the half holiday if they wish or can remain open six days during the summer if they think it advisable. 

    Workmen made an unusual discovery recently while digging a grave in St. Mark’s Anglican Cemetery, west of Midland. Only a few inches under the top soil, they hit a heavy stone wall, which took considerable work to cut across. With a steel bar, it was easy to follow the outlines of the foundation. It measured roughly 10 by 15 feet. Best guess seems to be that it may have been the foundation for a mausoleum, which was not completed. Chairman of the cemetery board, Percy Hopkins said no one can remember any building being demolished on the site, which was opened as a cemetery in 1911. If, as and when the grave immediately to the north is opened, it will be necessary to dig out the full 10 feet of the heavy foundation. 


Free Press Herald headline of Wednesday, May 31, 1961.
The town of Midland will not be receiving a grant from St. Andrews Hospital this year to assist in the repayment of debenture interest incurred on behalf of the hospital. Hospital Administrator Alex Craig reported to the May meeting of the board Monday night that St.  Andrews recently had received a grant of $7,875 from the provincial government. Last year, this grant was turned over to the town for the purpose mentioned above. This year, however, the board decided the money will be retained for capital requirements and passed a motion to that effect. Feeling a further addition to the hospital is inevitable within a few years, the board has already started a fund for that purpose and the current grant will be added to it. 

    For the first time in the history of the Ontario Hospital at Penetang, a large group of patients journeyed beyond the confines of the institution for an evening’s entertainment Thursday night. Approximately 70 men and women were transported by bus to the public school auditorium where they saw a shortened version of the YPC Capers. The event was arranged through the group of volunteer workers who make regular visits to the hospital. 


Some two thousand parishioners of St. Margaret’s Church, Midland, and from Roman Catholic parishes in the North Simcoe district Sunday took part in the sixth annual rosary parade and rally. Although heavy clouds threatened to pour down rain shortly before parade time, a bright sun broke through and shone during the entire service. Escorted by Midland and provincial police, and preceded by flag and cross bearers and altar boys, the procession of men and boys moved off from St. Margaret’s on schedule. Midland Citizens’ Band and St. Theresa’s High School Band, the latter under the direction of F. S. Johnstone, provided music for the marchers as they wended their way along Midland streets to Town Park, the scene of the rally. The high school band preceded a large float bearing a statue of the Virgin Mary. Fourth degree Knights of Columbus formed an honor guard for the float. Two cars, equipped with public address systems, carried reciters of the rosary prayers. One group spoke in English and the other in French. Also represented were Boy Scouts, Girl Guides, Holy Name Society members, pupils of Sacred Heart and St. Mary’s Schools, Midland, and many clergy and novitiates from Martyrs’ Shrine, accompanied by Shrine Director Rev. F. J. McCaffrey. St. Margaret’s Church choirs led the congregational singing at the park. Master of ceremonies was Rev. G. Bean of St. Margaret’s Church, who welcomed those present and introduced Rev. T. Marchildon of Lafontaine, who addressed the congregation in French. 

    Midland Indians started the new South Simcoe Baseball League season on an auspicious note at Town Park Monday night when they blanked Collingwood Lions 3-0 behind the combined four-hit pitching of Gord Dyment and Joe Faragher. The few fans who braved the 40-degree weather saw a well-played game under the existing frigid conditions. Indians next game is tonight when they move to Orillia to help Merchants open the season there.

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