Thursday, February 13, 2014


From the big scrapbook of time, here’s a look at Canada in 1948-

Folks like the Monarch, now in its third year on the market. Workers at Ford of Canada in Windsor build 6,682 of them. The four-door sedan lists for $2,968. 

January 15: Andrew Jordan Jones is born in St. John’s, Newfoundland. He will grow up to be a comedian and TV star appearing in the classic comedy series CODCO and This Hour has 22 Minutes.

January 16: Clifford Charles Devlin Thorburn is born in Victoria, BC. He will learn to play snooker, earn the nickname “The Grinder.” He will win the 1980 World Snooker Championship. Cliff will be made a Member of the Order of Canada in 1983.

January 19: Francis Joseph (Frank) McKenna is born in Apohaqui, New Brunswick. After serving as Premier of the Picture Province from 1987 to 1997 he will step down from office and become our shoot-from-the-hip, no-nonsense Ambassador to the United States in 2005.

February 6: It’s gold for Canada and Canada’s Sweetheart as Barbara Ann Scott takes top honours for figure skating at the Winter Olympics in St. Moritz, Switzerland.

February 14: For the second year in a row Barbara Ann Scott wins the World Figure Skating Championship.

February 20: The Dominion Bureau of Statistics tells us that there are 3,136,000 homes in the country of which 90 percent have a radio and 50 percent have a telephone.

March 11: British officials announce that the future of Newfoundland and Labrador will be decided in a referendum. There will be three choices: return to independent Dominion status, stay as a colony for the next five years or join Canada in confederation.

March 20:  It’s a boy for Mr. and Mrs. Doug Orr of Parry Sound, Ontario. Robert Gordon will grow up to be the most dazzling defenceman that the NHL will ever see. Bobby will be forced to retire at the age of 31. He will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame and made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1979.

April 1: The 40-passenger Northstar Skyliner makes its debut on a Trans-Canada Air flight from Montreal to New York City.

April 14: For the second year in a row, The Toronto Maple Leafs triumphantly skate off the ice with the Stanley Cup, this time snatching it from the Detroit Red Wings in four games.

April 18: Officials at Ford Canada unveil the Meteor as a 1949 model. The mid-priced offering will fit between Ford and Mercury. It’s a hit and Meteor will rocket to third place in sales, capturing nearly 11 percent of the domestic sales pie.

April 26: More than 2,500 homeless refugees have nowhere to go as floods sweep Manitoba. There is more rain and snow in the forecast and the floodwaters are now only three blocks from Portage and Main.

May 24: Spring means flooding and the Fraser River overflows its banks. Volunteers will be joined by the Royal Canadian Army. Folks work around the clock for three weeks solid to protect homes. Ten people will die, 2,300 dwellings are damaged or completely destroyed. Vancouver will be cut off from the rest of the country for three weeks.

June 3: Newfoundlanders line up at the polls to determine the fate of their homeland. When the votes are counted they add up to 69,000 votes for self-government, 64,000 for union with Canada and 22,000 want to remain a colony of Britain. Another referendum will be held on July 22.

June 5: Sandra Post is born in Oakville, Ontario. She will grow up to swing a mean club on the golf course and win eight LPGA tournaments. In 1988 she will be elected to the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and made a Member of the Order of Canada.

June 8: Cecil George Harris of Rosstown, Saskatchewan is pinned under his tractor and bleeds to death. He scratched his will on the tractor's fender with a penknife. It will be upheld as a legal holistic will by the Law Courts and his widow will inherit the farm.

June 24: Members of the Toronto Board of Education pass a resolution to pay women teachers the same salary as their male counterparts. The annual average pay for a teacher is $3,500 and taxpayers will have to pick up the $120,000 tab needed to make up the shortfall.

June 30: Murray McLauchlan is born in Paisley, Scotland. His family will move to Canada when he is five. He will grow up to be folk singer and songwriter, winning 20 Junos. His first gold record will be Farmer’s Song.

July 8: Raffi Cavoukian is born in Cairo, Egypt. When he is ten, his parents will immigrate to Canada. Raffi will grow up to become a popular children’s entertainer; loved by millions of kids for such hit songs as Banana Phone, Down by the Bay and Shake My Sillies Out. He will be made a Member of the Order of Canada in 1983.

July 21: Arthur Hindle is born in Halifax. He will grow up to be an accomplished screen and TV actor playing the role of Jeff Faraday in Dallas. The Gemini winner will direct and star in the Showcase series, Paradise Falls.
Newfoundland and Labrador are coloured red on this map.

July 22: The polls are closed and the votes are counted. 47.6 percent of the population wants Newfoundland to be independent again and 52.2 percent favour Confederation with Canada. Britain’s oldest colony will enter into Confederation as Canada’s tenth and newest province next year.

August 1: Ottawa drops the sliding excise tax on new cars. That’s a good thing because it has nearly destroyed the industry since its introduction last November.

August 2: Robert Keith Rae is born in Ottawa to a career diplomat and his wife. Bob will be the first NDP Premier of Ontario, be named Chancellor of Sir Wilfred Laurier University in 2003 and serve as interim leader of the federal Liberal Party from 2011 to 2013.
Prime Minister Mackenzie King will appear on the $50 bill when it is introduced in 1975.

August 7: William Lyon Mackenzie King officially retires after 21 years as Prime Minister. The Liberal Party chooses Louis St. Laurent to lead the Grits. “Uncle Louis” is a perfectly bilingual lawyer from Quebec City and most recently served as Minister of External Affairs in the King government.

August 18: As 400 employees watch, the press is on hand as the first Studebaker rolls out the doors of the new plant in Hamilton, Ontario. It is a blue four-door Champion. Workers will build exactly 3,000 Champions before the model year ends.
Margaret Trudeau will write about her bi-polar condition and be the honourary patron of the Canadian Mental Health Association.

September 10: Margaret Sinclair is born in Vancouver, BC. She will grow up and obtain a degree in English Literature from Simon Fraser University. When she is 22 years old, she will marry Pierre Trudeau, our 15th Prime Minister. Margaret will become an author, actress, photographer, talk show host,

September 24: Phil Hartman is born in Brantford, Ontario. He will grow up to become one of the funniest people on stage or in front of a camera, appear on Saturday Night Live for eight seasons and star in the TV sitcom NewsRadio. He will be murdered by his wife in 1998.

October 15: October 15: Ernest D'Israeli Smith is dead at the age of 94. Born near Stoney Creek, Ontario. E.D. and his sons founded the food giant that bears his name. The company's first product was ketchup but expanded to jams, jellies and pie fillings. The family also owned the Canadian rights for HP Sauce and Lee & Perrins Worcestershire sauce. Mr. Smith served as a Conservative Member of Parliament until he was appointed to the Senate where he served from 1909 until 1946.

October 17: Margaret Ruth Kidder is born in Yellowknife, NWT. The budding actress will change her name to Margot and star in the Superman movies as well as The Amityville Horror and other Hollywood films.

November 24: Spider Robinson is born in New York City. The Hugo and Nebula award winner will move to Canada in his twenties and become one of the world’s most renowned science fiction authors.

December 11: The terms of Confederation between Newfoundland and Canada are agreed upon and the document signed this evening in a royal ceremony held in the Senate Chamber in Ottawa. God Save the King and O Canada are played but no one can find the music for Ode to Newfoundland.

December 14: The Supreme Court overturns a ban on the sales of oleomargarine throughout the Dominion. Though suspended during World War One, the ban on the butter substitute has been in effect since 1886. Margarine may not be coloured yellow. That will only change in 1995 but Quebeckers will eat uncoloured margarine until 2008.

The 1948 Studebaker Champion Regal De Luxe is Studebaker's economy model.

The newest manufacturer in the Dominion in Studebaker. Now located in Hamilton, Ontario, the company’s cars and trucks had been imported from the United States since its factory in Windsor, Ontario was shuttered in 1935.

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