Tuesday, August 12, 2014


National Snapshot

From the big scrapbook of time, here’s a look at Canada in 1922-

 The inexpensive Essex is highly popular with Canadians.  Imported from the US, Essex is the lower-priced companion car to Hudson.

January 1: Canadians who enjoy radio listening must now purchase a permit for $1. Regulations are relaxed. People who own radio sets are no longer required to be proficient in Morse Code, no longer need to prove British citizenship or swear an Oath of Secrecy.

January 3: The Royal Mint in Ottawa strikes five-cent coins for the first time. The coins are composed of 100 percent nickel and will be called “nickels”. The first two are ensconced in a plush case and presented to Lord Byng, the Governor General, who is on hand for the occasion.

January 11: The first successful use of insulin in a diabetic person takes place at the Toronto General Hospital. The medical breakthrough will earn Drs. Banting and Best the Nobel Prize in medicine.

January 21: Lincoln Alexander is born in Toronto. He will grow up to become the first African-Canadian elected to the House of Commons in 1968. He will serve as Lieutenant Governor of Ontario from 1985-1991 and then be named Chancellor of the University of Guelph.

March 8: The first session of the 14th Parliament begins. MPs will pass the National Defense Act and create the Canada Wheat Board.

March 20: Jack Kruschen is born in Winnipeg. He will grow up to be star of radio, screen and TV—heard and seen on such popular shows such as Dragnet and Gunsmoke. He will be best remembered for his role as Grandpa Papouli on the sitcom Full House.

March 28:  The Toronto St. Pats do battle with the Vancouver Millionaires and win the Stanley Cup in game number five.

March  -- Rumours swirl that retail giant, the T. Eaton Company, Limited—Canada’s Greatest Store—is on the verge of bankruptcy and will be sold to Sears & Roebuck or Macy’s in the United States.

March 1: The first car from Durant Motors of Canada Limited—a Durant--rolls off the factory line in Leaside (near Toronto). The factory will become the third largest producer of automobiles in the Dominion before going out of business in 1931.

March 11: Gordon McGregor is dead of injuries sustained in a train accident—according to Ford’s publicist. He was VP and General Manager of Ford of Canada.

March 13: Radio station CKCD takes to the air at 8.30 pm in Vancouver. Owned by the Vancouver Province, the station features news and stock reports. It will sign off for good in February of 1940.

March 15: The Vancouver Sun launches a radio station of its own. CJCE is found at 420 kilocycles on the radio dial. It will close down in 1923.

March 16: Every major newspaper in North America has sent reporters to Caledonia Mills, Nova Scotia because people believe a string of fires has been set by ghosts. Dr. Walter Franklin Prince of the American Research Service in New York is the ghostbusting expert who, after studying the phenomenon, reveals that a young girl is setting the fires and creating other mischief on orders of an unknown and invisible power.

March 22: Coal miners in Alberta and British Columbia go on strike. The 12,000 men will stay off the job until August 24, 1923.

March 29: Fire destroys the Basilica of Ste-Anne de Beaupré, 30 kilometres north of Quebec City. Erected in 1658—to honour the patron saint of Quebec—by greateful sailors who survived a shipwreck. The church will be rebuilt. Some 500,000 visitors come each year. Countless devout pilgrims have made the trek to Ste-Anne’s and been rewarded for their faith by being healed of sickness and disease.

CKAC becomes the first Francophone radio station in North America. It is owned by the newspaper, La Presse.
March 31: The Minister of Marine and Fisheries authorizes regular radio broadcasting. He reports that 39 radio stations are already in operation across the Dominion, including CKAC in Montreal and CHCF in Winnipeg.

April 26: Jeanne-Mathilde Benoit is born in Prud’homme, Saskatchewan. She will graduate from the Universite de Paris, marry Maurice Sauve and have a successful career as a journalist at Radio-Canada before becoming a Member of Parliament. PM Trudeau will appoint her Speaker of the House. Known for her unfailing charm and grace, she will serve as our 23rd Governor General from 1984 to 1990. Madame Sauve will die of cancer in 1993.

May 1: The current issue of Canadian Motorist carries an advertisement from GM: “Better cars are being built—and McLaughlin is building them.” Next year the name will be changed to McLaughlin-Buick and continue until it is retired in 1942.

The latest in radios, this Marconi De Luxe Crystal Set Radio Receiver.
May 2: Folks in Calgary can warm up their Marconis and tune in to radio programmes on CFAC. The station is owned by the Calgary Herald.

May 3: Women on Prince Edward Island may now vote and stand for public office as long as they meet the requirements of being good British citizens. That brings to eight the number of provinces where women may vote. Quebec is the lone holdout and women there will have to wait until 1945 for the vote.

May 16: The Newfoundland Government Railway is bleeding money despite a shared agreement between the Dominion government and the Reid Newfoundland Company. The railway is shut down today and the Bullet will not run again until May 23rd.

June: King of the Canadian Cowboys,  Earl Bascom makes the first hornless bronc saddle on his ranch outside of Welling, Alberta.

June 11: The world’s first documentary film opens today in New York City. The subject is the daily lives of the Inuit of Arctic Quebec. The movie is entitled Nanook of the North.

June 22: Folks in Manitoba cam purchase alcohol legally as the legislature opts to end prohibition in favour of a government run liquor board.

July 22: The Canadian Red Cross is on hand with emergency relief in the Saskatchewan towns of Alameda, Frobisher, Lampman, Steelman, and Estevan after an F5 tornado kills four, injures 13 and leaves 42 families reeling in the aftermath of the disaster.

June 30: There are 2,588 licensed radio sets across the Dominion. News, weather, crop and market reports brings the world to previously isolated farmers.

July 29: The skies over the Dominion of Newfoundland have a new voice as radio station VOS takes to the air with the nation's first commercial radio programme.

July 30:  John G. “Jack” McClelland is born in Toronto. He will grow up to work in his father’s publishing company when he is discharged honourably from the Royal Canadian Navy in 1946. He will become president of McClelland & Stewart in 1961 and do much to promote Canadian literature. Authors like Farley Mowat, Morecai Richler and Margaret Atwood become household names under his aggressive marketing programme. McClelland will die in 2004 at the age of 81.

August 2: Alexander Graham Bell dies at the age of 75 at his home in Beinn Bhreagh, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. He invented the telephone nearly half a century earlier in Brantford, Ontario. Dr. Bell will be buried in a hollowed out rock, on the grounds of his summer home.

August 11: Mavis Leslie Young is born in Montreal. She will study journalism, marry and divorce musician John Gallant and leave the world of reporting in 1950 to live in Paris and write. Her stories will appear regularly in New Yorker. Queen’s University will bestow an honourary PhD on the Order of Canada recipient in 1992.

August 17: The coal miners’ strike in Cape Breton turns ugly as troops sent from Halifax to protect the mines are stoned by an angry mob. The area will be declared a police zone by the government in attempt to restore order.

August 24: Rene Levesque is born in Campbellton, New Brunswick. He will become a reporter during World War Two. Entering politics he will become disillusioned with federalism and create the Parti Quebecois—a political party dedicated to making Quebec an independent country. Levesque will leave politics in 1985. He will die of a heart attack two years later at the age of 65.

September 1: Margaret Yvonne Middleton is born in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her friends will call her Peggy. She will move to the United States when she is 15 year old and as Yvonne de Carlo she will become a Broadway and Hollywood star. Yvonne will be best known for her comedic performance as Lily Munster in the 1964 to 1966 American television series The Munsters.

September 3: Salli Terri is born in London, Ontario. She will grow up to become a singer and songwriter, often seen on television. The mezzo-soprano will be part of a choir that sings for Queen Elizabeth’s coronation. In Hollywood she will work in movies, and will be best remembered for being the voice of the cow in the movie Mary Poppins. Salli will die in 1996.

September 15:  Hamilton Tire and Rubber Limited opens in Hamilton, Ontario. The store will change its name to Canadian Tire and grow into a national chain.

September 18: Ford of Canada announces it has sold 1,192 tractors this year. That figure is down substantially from the 3,063 tractors sold last year.

September 18: Prime Minister Mackenzie King tells Britain that Canada will not send troops to fight in Turkey until Parliament votes on the issue. It is the first time that Ottawa exercises its nationalistic muscle, charting a path different from the one set out by London.

October 5: More than 50 people are dead, killed by forest fires in and around Cobalt, Ontario. It is estimated that more than 100 square kilometres of land have been ravished by the worst fires in history.

October 17: Pierre Juneau is born in Montreal. He will grow up to become a broadcaster and be appointed to head the Canadian Radio and Television Commission, be Minister of Communications under PM Pierre Trudeau. During Juneau’s tenure as president of the CBC he will push programming to 95 percent Canadian content and inaugurate CBC Newsworld. The music industry award—the Juno—is named in his honour.

December 1: By order of the legislature, all New Brunswick automobile drivers will no longer drive on the left; the 12,609 registered automobiles must now keep to the right side of the road.

Frank “Pep” Leadlay (left) and Harry Batstone are two of the stars of the unstoppable Queen's teams that will win the next three Grey Cups.

December 2: Queen’s University whips the Edmonton Elks 13 to 1 to take home the Grey Cup.

The 1922 Ford Model T five-window coupe.

December 31: The Ford Motor Company of Canada Limited reports it has 3,427 employees on its payroll.

December 31:  Our vast, sprawling nation grows closer as the newly formed Radio Branch of the Department of Naval Service has issued 58 operation licenses to private commercial broadcasters from Sydney to Victoria.

Workers at GM Canada in Oshawa, Ontario build 16,878 Chevrolet motorcars in 1922.

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