Sunday, March 24, 2013

Another World Premiere for Port Arthur, Ontario - "Corvette, Port Arthur" at the Colonial Theatre in 1943...

"Corvette, Port Arthur", was a film produced by the National Film Board of Canada in 1943.  It illustrated the Royal Canadian Navy's part in battling U-boats and protecting British supply lines during WWII, featuring the crew of the "Port Arthur".
This was an actual WWII propaganda film using a British Submarine on training duty to represent a U-boat that was forced to surface; the U-boat's surrendering crew was played by the British Submariners.
The world premiere of this film was shown at the Colonial Theatre in Port Arthur, Ontario.

The photo above shows the model of the H.M.C.S. Port Arthur, built by the Port Arthur Ship Building company on the back on one of their trucks and in front of the Colonial Theatre.
The following photo shows the people gathering at 235 Arthur Street(now Red River Road) in Port Arthur, Ontario for the premiere.

This next photo shows the number of people waiting to attend the premiere in 1943.

This is the exact spot where the Colonial Theatre used to be....a pretty boring street compared to how it looked back in the 1940's and 1950's.
This is a closer photo of the truck and model as shown in a brochure from the Port Arthur Ship Building Company.  My friend Al asked the BIG question, "Where is the model of this ship now?"  It's typical how local artifacts seem to just disappear.
The following print is a description of the year and date of the films as well as who directed and narrated the film...  Double click on all photos for enlargements.
Thanks to the National Film Board of Canada, we can see the 22 minute film right here.

To view more about the Colonial Theatre in Port Arthur, Click here then return to HR&J

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Fort William and Port Arthur, Ontario....interesting tidbits during the Hot Rods and Jalopies era...

I can never get enough of the vintage photographs of the bygone era that folks in my generation or even younger for that matter love the most.
This era will go down in history as one of the most colourful times of the 20th Century......The Hot Rod and Jalopy era from beginning to end and in between.
I have had a number of emails lately asking why this blog is called what it is.  My answer to that is mainly an era between the 1920's and the early 1960's when no sane gear-head could leave their cars alone or just as they came out of the showrooms.  They would modified them into race cars either for the street or the actually everything that fit into that generation including bits and pieces of our own home town`s history or any interesting phenomena of that era would become fair game!
Make sense? .....hope so.

The first photo here is taken in 1959...see that cool 4-door sedan 1959 Chev Biscayne....well, it was my dad's company car from Kam Motors, and it is parked right behind the house where I lived on Arthur Street in Fort William.  My dad also made that cool swing on which I had my first kiss at about 14 years old.

 .....and here is where I lived on Arthur Street in Fort William until I was married.....the car above was parked in the back yard as most everyone who lived on our street then probably had been hit by a drunk driver at one time or another.

This next photo is of the Lakeside Esso Station at 514 North Cumberland Street in Port Arthur, Ontario.

 ....and here is the same location and how it looks today....I believe it's called "Lakeside Husky" now.

Thanks to Gary Spence(again)....comes this very cool photo of May street near the Fairgrounds, taken in 1959.  The interesting thing is not just the wonderful arch that we miss so much, but the billboard on the left.....enlarged below.(by the way....Always click on all the photos once or twice for closeups.)

 Here is the close-up of the billboard with a sign showing Heath Court Cabins....which were just a little further down(north) on May Street(Memorial Ave.) just past the river and arch.

Note below a Coca Cola magazine ad with exactly the same picture that`s on the Billboard.
 The CNR Trestle

The Canadian Nation Railways Ore Trestle with a Port Arthur Brill Bus heading under it....Fort William Road and Downtown Port Arthur is in the distance.  The picture on the right is very close to the original site after the trestle was removed.
The little store just behind the bus is still there today shown just behind the traffic heading in this direction in the newer photo.

 Here is a punch card from Mandel`s Shell Service on 376 Memorial Avenue....If you buy this much gas, you would get a free Lubrication.  There is only $30.00 on this card, which today`s standards, you would get at least 2 or 3 free oil changes with EVERY fill up.
Mandel`s Shell building today...I believe it belongs to the Honda Dealership now.

Castle Boulevard Inn
 This is an interesting image that I had never seen before.  It is an old late 1920`s post card advertising Castle Boulevard Inn.  It was located on the Corner of Algoma Street and Lyon Blvd., just as you reach Boulevard Lake heading north and turning left onto Lyon Blvd.
 The closeup reveals a late 1920`s BA oil sign and a little teapot sign advertising that they sold tea.

The location is shown as a star in each of these photos....fairly close to the LPH.

Remember the Arthur Cafe on 220 Arthur Street, now 220 Red River Road in Port Arthur, Ontario
Now Kim Lee`s Restaurant at the
same location. 

Finally is a wonderful photo of the Twin City Wine Company in the East End of Fort William, Ontario.

Peter Belluz is advertising the Best Quality Wines.  The photo on the right is the same structure modernized into apartments on the same property in the east end of Fort William.

Thanks to all those who loaned or donated photos to produce this particular post and all others who send in patient as your pictures will be posted some time in the future.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Port Arthur and Fort William's Gala World Premiere of Walt Disney's, "The Incredible Journey" - by Sheila Burnford

A wonderful Motion Picture World Premiere for Port Arthur and Fort William was none other than the Walt Disney classic "The Incredible Journey".  This film was premiered in Port Arthur and Fort William on November 4, 1963 because the author Sheila Burnford was a Port Arthur resident for more than 15 years.  Canadian publishers rejected the film because it lacked a love interest, however the book was accepted with open arms by the British film industry and the United States film industry.

The film premiered in Port Arthur simultaneously at the Paramount Theatre and the Odeon Theatre and following that, it was also shown at the Odeon Theatre in Fort William

Here is a photograph of the author Sheila Burnford taken near the time of the world premiere.

The Following is a short biography of Ms Burnford.  More on Ms Burnford on wikipedia and the Internet.    Click on all items for enlargements.

The Lakehead cities of Fort William had its share of world premiere's through the years and HR&J will endeavor to add a few more blog posts over time regarding these films.