Huronia Museum – Looking Back 60 Years in North Simcoe – September 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.  

Midland Firm to Build Modern Factory Building

Midland Free Press headline of September 20th, 1961.  J. E. Lawlor, vice-president of Webster-Smallwood Limited, announced yesterday he expected construction of his firm’s new 20,000 square-foot plant in Midland would start today. The new plant, which will house equipment for manufacturing reinforced fiberglass elevator buckets, also will contain general office and large warehouse space, Mr. Lawlor stated. When preliminary plans for the office are expanded, the new building at George and Elizabeth Streets will have a value of approximately $120,000, Mr. Lawlor said. The new one-storey plant, which will face Elizabeth Street, will be the conventional factory type building of concrete foundation and structural steel, with brick facing on the Elizabeth Street side and concrete block tor the remaining three sides. Mr. Lawlor, noted that it would have steel sash and metal pan deck for the roofing to decrease the fire hazard. It will be completely equipped with a sprinkler system. The new plant is to be known as the Webster – Smallwood Building, a division of Webster- Smallwood Limited. Approximately 6,200 square feet of the new building will be used for the manufacture of reinforced fibreglass buckets. This process was started by Webster-Smallwood last May in the Midland Curling rink on a temporary basis. 

    Two boating accidents, which occurred at widely separated points on Georgian Bay over the weekend, killed a St. Catharine’s youth instantly and critically injured a 52-year-old Toronto man. OPP at Victoria Harbour said Robert Gordon Clark, 19, of 130 River Crest Drive, St. Catharines, was killed in a boating accident that occurred near Honey Harbour about 7 p.m. Sunday.   Two Toronto families, with summer cottages on Midland Point figured in the other boating accident which took place Saturday night. Rushed to St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, by Midland-Penetang ambulance, Emilio Nosello, 52, underwent a 5 ½ hour operation for critical injuries to the back of his head. Mr. Nosello was a passenger in a boat driven by his nephew, Joseph DeCarli, 16. 

    Fire, started unintentionally by a juvenile in the lane east of King Street, Midland, between Dominion Avenue and Bay Street Monday at 6.51 p.m. caused an estimated $1,200 damage to a garage. The fire started in oil being spread by Miller Paving Company prior to sanding the lane. “A Juvenile started the fire.” Police Chief George Wainman stated yesterday. “He did not do it intentionally. He just picked up a match and lit it and the oil caught fire.” Fire Chief Arnold Tippin, who with Chief Wainman, questioned the juvenile yesterday, said the damage to the west wall of Boyce’s garage was covered by insurance. Chief Tippin said the garage took the brunt of the blaze and only minor damage resulted to telephone and hydro wires. 

    A section of the road along Con. 15 in Tiny Township was transformed into a slaughter house about 6 p.m. Saturday when a  motor vehicle was in collision with a herd of pigs that apparently had escaped out a farm gate. Eight of the herd, owned by Albert Asselin, R.R. 2, Penetang, were killed instantly. OPP at Victoria Harbour said the vehicle was driven by John Pierce, 21, of Enterprise, Ontario. The car was proceeding west on the concession road, into the setting sun. 

    Enrolment at Midland’s three public schools has increased by 24 pupils over last year’s 1,253 total. This was revealed at Midland Public Schools Board meeting Friday night when a total enrolment of 1,277 was reported. The three schools reported totals as follows: Parkview, 378; Regent, 689 and Bayview, 210. 

   Reassessment of the town of Penetang has taken a little  longer than had first been anticipated according to Assessor Willard Duquette. Mr. Duquette said the Ottawa firm doing the job had run into  a number of complicated problems in attempting to straighten out property lines and discover the owners of some lands within the town. One feature of the reassessment is a new numbering system designed by the assessing firm, said Mr. Duquette noting every single property had been given a number. This includes sufficient numbers for building lots on land which have not yet been subdivided, he added. 

    Knocks and boosts came about evenly divided for Midland Parks Commission at its September meeting in the Municipal Building Thursday night. First item on the agenda was a letter, from Mr. & Mrs. Paul DeMeester from RR 2, Blenheim which said Midland’s Little Lake Park was “one of the nicest places we have ever been in.” The DeMeesters had stopped off at the camp for two days on their way home from holidays spent in North Bay. There was also a lengthy letter from Midland Chamber of Commerce, asking the commission to review its $1 admission charge on motor vehicles of non-residents. The letter said the chamber was not criticizing the work of the commission, a non-paid body of men, but felt a review of conditions was needed after a two-year trial of the admission fee. The letter intimated the chamber had received many verbal complaints, and a few written ones, concerning the admission fee. They had been submitted by persons who merely wished to drive through the park.

25 Years Ago
Major J. Wells arrived in Midland to take charge of the local Salvation Army Corps He succeeded Adjutant Hart who had been granted sick leave. • • • Editorial note — Don’t forget to invite your friends back to Midland for the Autumn Glory weeks of October. It is the loveliest time of the year in these parts when all the trees are aflame, touched by the brush of the Master Painter. • • • Members of Calvary Baptist Church, Midland, unanimously extended a call to Dr. L. J. Ruttan of Agawam, Massachusetts, to be their pastor. • • • The annual memorial service at the Waverley monument was attended by 2,000 persons. Rev. W C Stubbs conducted the service at which Rev. G. S. Lloyd of Midland was the principal speaker. • • • The Great Ziegfeld was showing at Midland’s Capitol theatre and the evening price was 35 cents plus five cents tax. • • • Tom Cranston kicking quarterback of the junior rugby team was elected president of the Midland High School Boys Athletic Association with Frank Bray as vice-president. • • Tom Collins, a horse owned by Herb Taylor of Midland, won third money in the $200 purse trotting race at Lindsay fair. • • • G. R. Polkinghorne purchased the Coldwater butcher and grocery business formerly operated by Devine and Letherby. • • • Tiny and Tay Agricultural Society Fall Fair officials reported 300 society memberships had been sold during the fair and gate receipts totalled $722 compared with $283 the year previous. • • • The Midland branch of the Canadian Red Cross Society was campaigning for $650 to carry on their activities. 

        A radiation protection –survey of Simcoe County will begin this week. Ray Atkinson, the County’s civil defence coordinator announced this week. “Purpose of the survey,” Mr. Atkinson said, “Is to determine the buildings in the county where evacuees could be housed in the event of nuclear fall-out after an attack.” The work will begin in Barrie and will be extended to the main centers in the county, Mr. Atkinson stated. “To cover the whole county will be a tremendous job.” Mr. Atkinson stated, “and we may have to ask for help from volunteers and from service clubs in the county to get the work done.” 

There was plenty of activity for wives of delegates to the conference held by Georgian Bay Development Association at Honey Harbour last week. Relaxing following the luncheon Monday were, left to right, Mrs. Gordon Mallion, Tottenham, wife of the GBDA president; Mrs. J. Stevenson, Bracebridge, daughter of the late Franz Johnson; Mrs. Norman Shill, Mrs. W. N. Keefe and Mrs. W. H. Cranston, all of Midland.  

Also at the conference, Mrs. Russell Quick, Trout Creek, the former Kathy Swaile of Victoria Harbour: Mrs. Wm. Child, Midland, and Mrs. Lillian Rutherford, who covered the distaff side of the conference for this paper, relax on the Delawana patio. 

Second annual conference of the Georgian Bay Development Association brought a number of civic dignitaries together at Honey Harbour. Finding out “what’s next on the agenda?” are, front row, Alderman Bill Thompson, Midland, Art Evans, Bradford, MPP for Simcoe Centre, and Gordon Mallion, GBDA president; back row, GBDA general-manager W. N. Keefe and W. H. Cranston, its secretary-treasurer, both of Midland. 

Second annual conference of the Georgian Bay Development Association brought a number of civic dignitaries together at Honey Harbour. This photo: Rev. Wallace Downer, MPP for Dufferin-Simcoe, gets in a lick far his candidacy for the leadership of the Progressive-Conservative party. Left to right are, William Orr, Midland, Mr. Downer, Mayor Willard Kinzie, Barrie, and CKMP’s Bruce Armstrong. 

Fifty years ago, Tom Contois and Delina Charlebois drove to St. Ann’s Church, Penetang, in a horse and buggy to exchange wedding vows. On Saturday, Sept. 16, they did it all over again, this time to St. Margaret’s Church, Midland, on the occasion of their golden wedding anniversary. They had two horses and a democrat this time, driven by Colin Lawson. Their many friends and relatives lent a modern era note by following in cars with the usual horn honking that attends weddings nowadays. 

Happy winner of $15.00 prize on August 28th was Mrs. P. Ducaire, Fox Street, Penetang. Shown here presenting the prize is Miss Bernie Hamelin of Cross Country Stores. Photo contained in an ad for Cross Country Stores. 

Football enters the local sports scene for the first time this season when the MPDHS juniors play host to Collingwood in a game slated to start at 3 p.m. today. Providing protection for quarterback Mike Dubeau are, left to right, Paul Davidson, Jim Dubeau and Dave Hook. 

This is fall fair time in many North Simcoe communities and who knows maybe one of these geese may pop up in the prize list at Midland this week. Even if they don’t, they’ll make a tasty dish on some table come Thanksgiving Day, next month.


Work has now begun on the new bridge to span the small river leading out of Black Lake and connecting with the Severn River. Except for a narrow gap, the river was almost closed off by sand fill while the three piers were being built. A new road to the north of the bridge will eventually open up the Burrough’s [sic] Lake area to summer cottagers. 

Welcome sight to most Midlanders was the start made on resurfacing some seven miles of town streets last week. Above one of the trucks is seen giving Gloucester Street a coat of sand over the tar, on the block between Lindsay and William Streets. 


Says Sales Pitch Vital in Industrial Promotion 

County Herald headline of September 22, 1961. Not too many industries are going to seek out communities for new factory location. The communities are going to have to sell themselves. So Spencer Kerr, president of Kerr Piping, told the recent Georgian Bay Economic Development Conference at Honey Harbour. His firm recently established itself in the region. 

    Brownies, Girl Guides, Cubs, Boy Scouts, CGIT and Sea Cadets will hold their annual district church parade this Sunday afternoon, Sept 24. This third annual church parade on Youth Sunday will form up at Midland Town Park at 2 p.m. and will parade to 3 o’clock services at Knox Presbyterian Church and St. Margaret’s Church. Service at St. Margaret’s will be conducted by Rev. G. Bean and the service at Knox Presbyterian Church will be led by members of the Midland and District Ministerial  Association. 

    Penetang’s re-activated school patrol, with a total of 41 members, is working out “quite well,” according to Sgt. Marcel Dorion, police officer in charge of the group. Sgt. Dorion said six intersections are being patrolled at the moment and more will be added. He remarked that adults not crossing at the guards is setting a bad example for the youth. 

ELLERY – To Mr. and Mrs. Earl Ellery, 72 Elizabeth Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Thursday, September 7, 1961, a son.
EVANS — To Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Evans, Victoria Harbour, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, September 12, 1961, a daughter.
GRISCUKS — To Mr. and Mrs. Victor Griscuks, Port Severn, at St. Andrews Hospital, Friday, September 8, 1961, a daughter.
HILLIARD – To Mr. and Mrs. John M. Hilliard, 209 Charles Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 1961, a son.
MELNICHUK – To Mr. and Mrs. Dave Melnichuk, nee Margaret Lavigne, Toronto, at St. Michael’s Hospital, Tuesday, August 29, 1961, a daughter.
MOSLEY — To Mr. and Mrs. Robert Mosley, RR 1, Wyebridge, at St. Andrews Hospital, Tuesday, September 12, 1961, a son.
QUINN – To Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Quinn, 100 Elizabeth Street, Midland, at St. Andrews Hospital, Friday, September 8, 1961, a son, Bradley. 

    A total of approximately 2,800 persons visited Penetang Chamber of Commerce information booth during the two summer months it was open, according to M. F. Bellehumeur, chairman of the chamber’s tourist and publicity committee. He said the total was very likely a great deal higher than this, since many people came to the booth but failed to sign the register. Addresses of those who did sign, include a half dozen provinces of Canada, and approximately 18 States, with the farthest being California. In addition there was one registration from London, England, Mr. Bellehumeur noted. Enquiries of the visitors ran a gamut of subjects with the great majority asking for accommodation and some of them looking for places they could stay next year, he said.   

Mrs. Marcel Bellehumeur, Chamber of Commerce Secretary, Marcel Bellehumeur, Councillor Hubert Patenaude and Mrs. Patenaude assured Penetang’s representation at the GBDA economic conference at Honey Harbour this week. 

Iowa isn’t the only place where the sunflowers are growing tall this year. Even an English (double) variety dwarfs Miss M. E. Duffett and two small friends in her garden on Midland’s Frederick Street. Girls are Heather and Karen Ireland. 

Interest in calf club work by the boys and girls in district 4-H Clubs has never been higher than it is this year, according to Keith Clay, North Simcoe assistant agrep. Mary Turner of Con. 2, Flos, prepares her entry for the junior beef class at Elmvale fair Tuesday. 

This huge book, with 30 aluminum pages, each measuring four feet by five feet was one of the attractions at the conference staged by Georgian Bay Development Association at Delawana Inn this week. So were models Donna Bush, Gail Carr, Shirley Wallace and Gisela Von Schneideresser (left to right). The girls were a part of the demonstration of “Hair styles for fall” put on as part of the women’s program by Mrs. James Colling of Midland. 

When MPDHS seniors take the field here this afternoon in their first game of the season against Collingwood, coach Doug Swales hopes to get full mileage out of the above five veteran members of his team. Players are Brian Dubeau, Frank Wice, Don Popple, Jerry Reedy and Bill Binkley. The game is slated to start at 3 p.m.


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