Sunday, December 22, 2019

A Christmas Card and Some Christmas Memories from the Fabulous '50's and "60's

A Very Merry Christmas to Everyone and of course I'm sorry for not being diligent with my posts.  No excuses...just promises to get to more.  This is just a little Christmas Memory post from younger years, with a Christmas card for all and a big hello and thank you to my Facebook friends as well.
 The next photo here is an annual thing I do and that is to create a tongue in cheek "Hot Rods and Jalopies" magazine cover.  I guess it's wishful thinking that I could publish a magazine, but at least I have covers.  I have done one every year for the past 10 years and they can be found around Christmastime posts.  The nice police officer was assisting the pretty young lady by adding a dime to the meter so she wouldn't get a ticket.  I would have done the same thing. 😄

Christmas is always a time for gift giving and this photo taken in the early 1960's of a random young man in a hobby shop reminded me of myself.  I rarely bought a Christmas gift for anyone I knew from a model hobby shop, but if I got any cash for Christmas in the 1950's, off I would head to Lil's Hobby Lobby to their original store on south Franklin St. here in Fort William, near our home, where a model car of some sort would be purchased, and in the day would be about .98 cents to $1.49.
I received this very toy below when I was about 12 years old and any kid would utter shouts of joy if he received one under his Christmas tree.

Another favourite that I received in those days was Tinkertoy.  That was the so called gaming device of the times.

A memory many of us may have isn't so much that of easy peel Mandarin oranges, but the fact that they came in wooden boxes and all the way from Japan.  There's an old saying that people that didn't have much would save the green wrapping paper to used for toilet paper.  To me it was all rumors. LOL

These two following advertisements came from a 1952 Christmas edition of Motors Magazine.  Click on them to enlarge.

 Here is the 1956 Christmas editition of Chilton's Motor Age magazine with great graphics, however Santa sure looked like an elf beside the mechanic.

Christmas can't go by without a 1940's shot of Laurel and Hardy after having a terrible day trying to sell Christmas trees....they are momentarily not speaking to each other..... another LOL.  These guys were the best.
 The final entry here is of an old book I found with my old magazines that was likely my own from 1952.  All that was left is the cover, but it was a Christmas shopping catalog that Woolworth's did put out for their customers.
Once More - A Very Merry Christmas to all our friends and followers....and one final word for the holiday season.....
DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE - and as they used to say, the life you save may be your very own.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

"ALL GAVE SOME, BUT SOME GAVE ALL"....Remembrance Day in Thunder Bay, Ontario - Monday Nov. 11 2019....

This 2013 post is more relevant today in my mind and feel it needs to be seen again.

We only have a few veterans left from the second world war and none from the first world war so if you encounter a veteran be sure to thank him or her for their sacrifice so that we may enjoy the freedom we have today.  "All gave some, but some gave all!"

The first world war, "A WAR TO END ALL WARS" was sadly not enough of an impact on Canada and its allies to actually make it such, as on Sept 11, 1939, Canada again declares war.

Below are two articles firstly from the Port Arthur daily news and another article from a Fort William newspaper both printed in August of 1914.  If you click once or twice on these and all the other pictures, they can be read and seen in better resolution.

Canadian Soldiers in the trenches....would you want to be there?


"A different 9-11 back in 1939"
     This is an incredible photo of the Algonquin Regiment leaving Port Arthur, Ontario on June 4th 1941.  In the background is a steam engine at the Port Arthur Canadian Pacific Railroad station torn down many years ago and today, Water Street near Marina Park runs right through this property.  Off to the left in a gold square is the Hydro sub-station which still exists today as seen in the next photo.  Look hard and you may recognize someone you love....also look at those young faces heading off to fight for our freedom.  Click on photo for a closer look!

The Hydro sub-station as seen today.
The following picture is an unknown regiment.  They are gathered to march in McKellar Park.  McKellar Park's present location is where McKellar Park school is today, just to the north of the Fort William Curling sure to look at the rest of the photos below.  These soldiers are marching with Lee-Enfield British rifles (a closer photo of one is below). 
When I was in sea cadets back in the 1950's we would shoot these in rifle range at the old Fort William Armory which would be located to the right and behind in the following photo. 
These rifles weighed 8.8 imagine carrying one of these around on parade or in the battle field with all the other gear a soldier would have to wear.  I could barely lift it to take one shot!
This McKellar Park field was used for local baseball, football, and was the starting point for many a Fort William Parade.  Off in the distance with a gold square is the Sweet Caporal score board for the sports field...more data on that below. 

Below is an old Sweet Caporal cigarette package which actually displayed WWII planes so as to help identify what you may see flying overhead.  My father(still living today at 94 years) was a Sergeant in the Canadian Army then and stationed in Victoria, BC. where they were guarding the west coast after Pearl Harbor was bombed.  They thought the Japanese were going to do the same to Canadian Naval bases along the coast.  While there, he also taught an aircraft recognition course.

McKellar Park and school as it looks today.
Sweet Cap aircraft recognition package WWII.
Here is a colored picture of a Sweet Caporal Cigarettes scoreboard.

If you want more data on the Lee-Enfield, you can go to Wikipedia here then come back to view the rest-

You can also view other years of Remembrance Day posts with some incredible local photos on this blog as follows -

A HUGE THANK YOU TO ALL VETERANS OF ALL WARS for their unselfish service....

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Streetcars and Advertising from The Civic/Electric Railway era in our hometowns of Fort William and Port Arthur, Ontario

Yes....I'm still here with the Hot Rods and Jalopies Facebook page.  Many apologies for being so preoccupied with other things that I have been negligent in my writings here on my blog.  Myself and my family have had a very busy summer....but no more excuses...I have a new post for today which I have been working on on and off during the summer months.

My good friend Des Stolz is also an eclectic collector and like myself was lucky enough through the years to find some very interesting and valuable items that stimulate the mind and the memory.
If you are old enough to remember, many buses and streetcars through the years used advertising which were displayed inside to help with the cost of running bus and streetcar services.  Fort William and Port Arthur Ontario was no exception.  The colorful streetcar generation and I mean the rail type, not the trolley Brill bus generation with rubber tires, had the most diverse and and vivid advertising considering that the printing press and lithograph were the only means to reproduce colored advertising in that era.  The rubber tired electric trolley buses were introduced in our home towns in 1947 and sadly the electric rail streetcars stopped carrying passengers in 1948.  Both Fort William and Port Arthur until amalgamation ran their own civic/electric railway independently of each other.

This post is not a transportation history but mainly about our street railway era.  It begins with a series of electric railway photos from my own collection which I purchased on-line quite a few years ago now (a few of which have been on this site before).  These photos were all taken in 1941, and edited for this blog.  Following that will be photos from Des Stolz electric railway advertising days collection for you to enjoy.  Be sure to click on each photo for a nice screen size view then return to the photos and continue right to the end.
All the streetcar photos are titled and all photos are copyright.

This one also shows the J.M. McCartney store with the very famous clock below it, Mahon Electric, the Woolworth's and Kresge's five and dime stores, as well as a number of era motor vehicles in what used to be Fort William's bustling downtown.

Port Arthur and Fort William painted their trolley's different colors in the day, but many ran in both cities, so both colors of Trolley's were seen everywhere.   Vividly in view was Quinlan's and the F.W. Woolworth five and dime store, the Prince Arthur Hotel, the Pagoda and the head and chest of our famous Sleeping Giant, as well as what looks like a Lincoln beside the streetcar and a Model A Ford sedan waiting for the light.
 The Chapples Store (Grain Exchange Building) was the anchor store for the Fort William downtown area.  The building does still exist today, but inside a mall called Victoriaville.

Many a family excursion headed out across the swing bridge and down Mission road to Chippewa Park for a picnic, kids rides and the zoo, for many who couldn't afford a car in the day.

If anyone can tell me the exact spot for this next would help.  Note the Orange Crush advertising sign on the front of the store, and the new home or business being constructed.

Other family excursions also headed north on Memorial Avenue in Port Arthur to go to Boulevard Lake for a swim and/or picnic or to Current River Park for a family day or the Casino Dine and Dance near the Current River Dam.

The Car Barns or Transit sheds in Port Arthur were located at the foot of Van Horne Street on Water Street where the recycle depot is today.  The next three photos were all taken at the Port Arthur Sheds.  
There are no photos of the Fort William transit building here, but it was located on the south side of Walsh Street between Franklin and Selkirk Streets.

 The advertising was viewed by passengers while riding the Trolleys....some as shown here.

The first group of advertising cards are likely from the 1920's and show a few companies that are still in business today such as Wrigley's and Buckley's.  The Chevrolet dealership was handled by the Badanai family for many years in Fort William and Port Arthur, but in the 1920's, Roach and Irwin ran the dealership in Fort William and Ernest Parker in Port Arthur.
 Just by looking at some of these advertising cards, you can guess that most were from the 1920's and 1930's
 In this group as well as just above some of the same companies as mentioned are still in business almost 100 years later.  Also there are two more beautiful Roach & Irwin and Ernest Parker Chevrolet ads.  The art work is spectacular.

 Another local one is shown in this group.  The Scollie's Ice Cream ad with the phone number of S.128.  Scollies had a few different locations in Fort William....the first being "Scollie's Locker Service" which was located on Catherine Street in Fort William.  I remember my parents sending me there to pick up some fresh meat back in the day.

My favourite poster of the lot is this Sellers & Jones Limited.  This poster brought back a huge memory of my father telling me that the Kam Motors building which was on Leith Street(the building is still there) was once called Sellers and Jones.  Up until I started this blog and communicating with other historians from our area I had never seen an advertisement or photo of Sellers and Jones until this advertisement in Des Stolz collection turned up and also a photo below which was on the Facebook page Thunder Bay Then and Now.  Obviously this was very exciting for me to see.

Thanks to Richard Mark...Thunder Bay Then and Now for finding this great photo of the main portion of the original Kam Motors Limited building.  This photo is looking east down Leith St towards the corner of Leith and Simpson St.  At the lake end of Leith Street and Hardisty stood a huge Elevator which I can't recall the name of.

This is Kam Motors as it looked in and Advertisement in it's prime.
 ...and this is how the building looks today as Ace Automotive and Diamond-Lacey's Taxi.  Both the words "Diamond" and "Lacey's" were always icons in the taxi business back in the day as well as now.

 Many thanks of Des Stolz for letting me photograph his Streetcar Advertising Posters, to the original photographer of the Streetcar photos and to Richard Mark of Thunder Bay Then and Now.
I hope you have taken the time to read the attached stories and view all the photos.  Thanks for being loyal fans of The Hot Rods and Jalopies generation blog pages.