Tuesday, December 10, 2013


 From the big scrapbook of time, here’s a look at Canada in 1962--

 The 1962 Cadillac Sedan de Ville six-window sedan retails for $6,687. Folks purchase 2,830 of the GM’s posh flagships during the calendar year. 

Northern Electric began offering telephones in colours other than black in 1956.
January 1: Newfoundland and Labrador now has its own area code for long distance telephone usage. It is assigned area code 709. New Brunswick will become area code 506.

January 17: James Eugene Carrey is born in Newmarket, Ontario. The precocious kid will think he is funny and send his resume to superstar Carol Burnett when he is ten. With acting in his blood, he will drop out of high school at sixteen and try his hand at standup comedy. Hollywood will love him. Wildly successful at his craft, Jim will earn a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame in 1998.

January 27: Ottawa announces that the nation's new federal immigration policy will be broadened to include any person of any race or background as long as he or she has skills needed in this country. The Queen's Loyal Opposition charges that colour barriers are simply being replaced with education barriers.

Stamps and currency are issued in both French and English.
February 6: As of today, all cheques issued by the Federal Government will be bilingual.

March 6: A bomb destroys a huge hydroelectric transmission tower in Kootenay Lake, British Columbia. The RCMP suspect the sabotage is the work of the Sons of Freedom Doukhobors.

March 3: Senator Cairine Mackay Wilson is dead at the age of 77. Appointed by Prime Minister Mackenzie King as the first woman to take a seat in the Senate, she was also Canada’s first female delegate to the United Nations.  in 1955 she broke more ground as the first woman to hold the post of Deputy Speaker in the House of Commons.

Thalidomide is prescribed by doctors under the trade names of Kevadon and Talimol.
March 21: Ottawa orders the drug thalidomide be withdrawn from the market. There is proof that the sedative causes women to give birth to severely deformed babies. More than 100 children will be affected but the Federal Government won't compensate them for nearly 30 years.

March 27: Jann Arden is born in Calgary. The singer and songwriter will win two Juno awards for her hit I would Die For You in 1993.

April 9: Nearly 1,000 Canadian Pacific Railway employees who work at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto end a bitter 11-month long strike. Hotel & Club Employees Union Local 299 wanted a 15-cent hike over three years. Married men earned $27 a week but women earned only $20. The labour disruption was, by and large, unsuccessful.

March 31: Established in 1857, Newfoundland and Labrador's oldest and most successful financial institution—The Newfoundland Savings Bank— is purchased by the Bank of Montreal.

Macintosh the Cat is the logo for Mac's Milk. He will be replaced by Hibou the Owl in 1999.
 April 4: Mac's Milk Limited is incorporated in  Ontario. The convenience store chain will boast 5,906 stores and 52,000 employees throughout North America in 2014, making it the second largest in the industry. Mac's is known as Couche-Tard (night owl) in Quebec and Circle K in Atlantic Canada and the United States.

April 22: The Stanley Cup goes home with the Toronto Maple Leafs, who beat the Chicago Blackhawks, four games to two. It's the Leafs' first Stanley Cup win since 1951.

May 2: Our dollar continues its free-for-all. Today it slides downward more than two cents, the biggest drop in history. To offset the damage, the Bank of Canada sets our dollar permanently at 92.5 cents on the US dollar.

May 9:  A pair of Studebaker Lark VIIIs take first and second place in the Trans-Canada Rally sponsored by Shell Oil. The 6,400-kilometre race is from Vancouver to Quebec City.

Workers will build 21,852 Ramblers this year, up from 8,606 in 1961.
May 17: Orders for Rambler Classics are piling up faster than snowdrifts in a February blizzard. To meet the backlog, officials announce the Brampton, Ontario plant will be doubled in size at a cost of $2.5 million. The ultra-modern plant was only opened in January of 1961.

May 23: Workers begin drilling the first tunnel for Montreal’s new subway system—to be called le Metro. If all goes well the Metro will open in time for Expo ’67, Canada’s 100th birthday party, and millions are expected to come. By 2010 the Metro will be the third busiest in North America and will have carried 7 billion passengers--the equivalent of the planet's population.

May 27: Actress Lucille Watson is dead of a heart attack in New York City at the age of 83. Born in Quebec City, the star of stage and the silver screen appeared in more than 40 Broadway productions and more than 40 Hollywood movies. She was nominated for an Oscar for her role as Aunt March in Little Women.

Trent University will be built along the Otonabee River.
May 31: The Government of Ontario announces the creation of a new institution of higher learning. Trent University will be located in Peterborough. 

May 31: It is the birth date of Corey Hart who will grow up to be a “bad boy” rocker with his pop hit, Sunglasses at Night.

Hillman will become part of Chrysler UK before the brand is laid to rest in 1970.
June:  Sales of imported cars will drop sharply now that a hefty new tax is imposed by the Federal Government. The tariff is designed to protect the domestic auto industry.

June 4: Ontario Hydro gets its first taste of atomic energy as nuclear power is fed into the grid for the first time from the Rolphton, Ontario generator. The joint effort between Atomic Energy of Canada Limited and Canadian General Electric has been eight years in the making.

June 8: Acting in the belief that God told them to do so, a group of Doukhobor women near Trail, British Columbia set fire to more than fifty of their own homes and allow them to burn to the ground. They throw stones at police and reporters who arrive on the scene.

St. Vincent de Paul Penitentiary opened in 1873. It is the nation's third oldest federal prison. It will close in 1989.
June 17: Convicts set fire to the buildings during a seven-hour riot at the St. Vincent de Paul Prison, north of Montreal. A total of 27 prisoners are injured during the rampage.

The Right Honourable John George Diefenbaker is our 13th Prime Minister.
June 18: The voters have spoken. John Diefenbaker and his Conservatives are returned to power with a severely reduced number of seats in the House of Commons. The minority government will not last long. Eleven months later citizens will line up at the polls to exercise their democratic rights, again. This time, they will turf out the Tories in favour of Mike Pearson’s Grits.

Summer: The curtain rises for the first time on Shaw Festival in the Ontario town of Niagara-on-the-Lake. The eight-week season is held in the Assembly Room in the historic Court House. The event will mushroom beyond anyone’s wildest dreams and in 1973 Queen Elizabeth II will dedicate the Festival Theatre. The popular venue will grow to be eight months long and become one of the largest repertory theatres in the world.

June 22: Nicholas Lea is born in New Westminister, BC. He will grow up to be an actor starring in TV shows like the X Files, Kyle XY and Whistler, star in the spy drama, Arrow, as well as Hollywood movies.

July 30: Fourteen years after Parliament voted to build it, Prime Minister Diefenbaker is in Roger’s Pass to open the Trans-Canada Highway.  Some 3,200 kilometres of the 7,511-kilometre long road are still unpaved but that doesn’t put a damper on anyone’s excitement. For the first time in history one can drive across the Dominion to St. John’s from Victoria without leaving the country.

July 1: The Saskatchewan Medical Care Insurance Act goes into force today. Unhappy physicians promptly go on strike to protest the law because they do not want to be civil servants and work for the province. Nearly a hundred doctors are brought in from the UK to provide emergency care. The bitter dispute will be resolved on July 23.

August 25: Polar explorer Vilhjalmur Stefansson is dead at the age of 82. The Gimli, Manitoba hero conquered the ice caps to make many important contributions to our understanding of the Arctic.

September 13: Place Ville Marie is dedicated and open for business in Montreal.
The magnificent skyscraper is designed in the shape of a cross and takes honours as the tallest building in the British Commonwealth.

Dr. Colin Franklin, Keith Brown and Dr. John Barry (left to right) with the Alouette. Canada is the third country in the world, after the Soviet Union and the United States, to put a satellite into space.
September 29: The 145-kilo satellite Allouette is launched. Once in orbit, it will study the upper surface of the ionosphere. Ottawa intends to use the knowledge gathered to launch a series of domestic communication satellites.

October 22: The RCAF is on high alert and ordinary citizens scramble to prepare for World War Three as the United States and the Soviet Union threaten to duke it out. The flash point is the installation of Soviet nuclear missiles on Cuban soil.

October 25: The Bedford Institute of Oceanography is opened in Nova Scotia. The marine research facility is one of the largest in the world. Its 15-hecatare campus is spread out along the north side of Halifax Harbour.

October 31: Federal finance minister George Nowlan rises in the House of Commons to announce that automakers may import engines and transmissions duty free if their export of Canadian-made parts is of equal value.

The Canada-only Acadian will be one of the General Motors family of fine cars to use locally made automatic transmissions.
November 1: The new 25-percent tax federal tax on automatic transmissions prompts GM to announce that it will build them domestically.

September 13: At a cost of $31 million, Toronto’s new City Hall is dedicated by Governor General Georges Vanier. Designed by Finnish architect Viljo Revell, his design called for two elegantly curved towers to flank the Council Chambers.

December 2: The Winnipeg Blue Bombers finally whip the Ti-Cats 28 to 27 for the Grey Cup at the CNE Stadium in Toronto. The game takes two days to complete because it is interrupted by dense fog coming from Lake Ontario. History books record this match as “The Fog Bowl.”

Arthur Lucas (left) and Ronald Turpin (right) are the last men to be hanged.
December 11: At 12:02 am, two convicted criminals are hanged until dead at the Don Jail in Toronto. Ronald Turpin, 29, killed a police officer. Arthur Lucas was an American who killed two witnesses scheduled to appear in a trial. They will be the last men to be hanged in this country as capital punishment is soon to be abolished.

 Pontiac is the best selling car in the country. A top-of-the-line Parisienne four-door hardtop is seen here.
December 31: It is the biggest year ever for the automakers as more than 500,000 domestically built cars and trucks roll out the factory doors. The Top Ten selling cars for the calendar year are the full-sized Pontiac, the full-sized Chevrolet, the full-sized Ford, Volkswagen, Ford Fairlane, Rambler, the Chevrolet Chevy II, Ford Falcon, Mercury Meteor and the Valiant.

Studebaker sponsors the popular TV comedy Mr. Ed. The plot line revolves around a talking horse.
02: With a list price of $3,640 f.o.b. Hamilton, Ontario, the Studebaker Cruiser V-8 four-door sedan weighs in at 1,374 kilos (3,030 pounds). The final tally for the calendar year is 7,386 units sold.

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