Historical society uncovers interesting items at annual ‘Show and Tell’

February 10, 2016   ·   0 Comments

Don Mossey and his licence plates.

By Wendy Gabrek
The annual “Show and Tell” meeting of the New Tecumseth & West Gwillimbury Historical Society (HS) is always much anticipated.
After taking a break after the September gathering, HS members look forward to reconvening in January, and bringing items of historical importance – and the stories behind them – to the hall in Newton Robinson.
“It was entertaining, it was varied and it was engaging,” said member David Yielding of the meeting. “And, as usual, many personal articles and stories made history come alive.”
This year the following items stood out:
• Don Mossey’s collection of replica Ontario car licence plates, which detailed  the changes in this basic item from  a leather plate in 1903 through  porcelain, to metal, to windshield stickers in1962 and on to 1967, the anniversary of Confederation.
Also noted were changes  from numbers only to the introduction of letters while symbols such as the 1937 crown  reflected George VI’s coronation.
Louis Theriault  demonstrated a  wheel lock for a law-breaking Model T, and Peter Van Dyke showed a surveyor’s 66-foot chain used  to measure road allowances in early surveys.
• Betsy Flood’s “treasures from the attic” that yielded her grandfather’s mechanical bank, a coronation scrapbook  and an old Illustrated London News paper.
• Newspapers were also the subject of Tina Johanssen’s contribution. She noted that early editions of the Woodbridge Advertiser cost the princely sum of $1 per year.
• Betty Fallis’s father’s camera that captured photos of special events at his church, including the Trinity Ladies’ Bible Class (70 members strong), musical events and a huge Sunday school picnic at Port Dalhousie in the early 1920s. Lois Fallis recalled some of her grandfather’s life as a circuit minister in the 1890s in Inglewood.
• A reminder of WW1. A shell remnant fashioned into a small coal scuttle, is a family keepsake for Clarke Smith while Jim Cambell recalled the rituals in making tea with tea leaves with his collection of  tea balls and spoons.
Other items of interest included a 1957 manual for the installation of an oil furnace, brought by Franz Aschwanden, and Gary Doucherty produced a video of his recently-installed ground source heat pump.
Upcoming meeting of the HS are: Monday, Feb. 15, the film, The Marsh Mucker’s Tale, a documentary on Holland Marsh farmers, will be featured.
On March 21 Bryan McClure will present on his topic, “The Irish Famine: Dispelling the Myths.”
The New Tecumseth & West Gwillimbury Historical Society meets at 7:30 p.m. in the Tec We Gwill Hall in Newton Robinson on the third Monday of each month.
New members and visitors are welcome. For more information call June at 905 775-7144.


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