Thursday, August 14, 2014


Nicknamed the Whisky Six and popular with rumrunners, the Studebaker is built in Windsor, Ontario. The Windsor Police buy one to chase the lawbreakers. Cops called their car the Police Flyer. A  Special Six is featured above.       


January 20:  Jacques Ferron is born in Louiseville, Quebec. The award-winning writer will found the Rhinoceros Party. Dedicated to satire and silliness, the party platform will be “made of wood and two foot high.” Pledges will include paving Manitoba to make it the world’s largest parking lot; to ban winter; count the Thousand Islands to make sure none are missing and to tear down the Rocky Mountains so that Albertans may see the sun set over the Pacific Ocean. The Rhinos will get more than 100,000 votes in the 1980 election, making it the fourth most popular political party in Canada. Ferron will die at home in 1985 and his party disbanded in 1993.

February 13: In an attempt to stop desecration of the Lord’s Day, a judge in Winnipeg decrees that no moving pictures can be seen on Sundays. Folks can cozy up to Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford on the silver screen six days a week but on Sundays decent Canadians belong in church.

February 19: Folks who live in the North End of Halifax no longer speak to an operator when placing a telephone call as the province’s first permanent self-dial exchange comes into service.

February 25: Pierre Laporte is born in Montreal. He will grow up to be a reporter and then a politician. As Quebec’s Minister of Labour, he will be kidnapped by the FLQ. He will be assassinated on October 17, 1970, his body found stuffed into the trunk of a Chevrolet. 

March 1: The federal government uses the latest technology to stop drug trafficking into British Columbia: an airplane is pressed into service allowing officials to easily observe the movement of ships.

March 10: Cecil “Cec” Linder is born in Poland. His family will move to Canada when he is a small boy and he will grow up to become an actor, appearing in Goldfinger, Lolita and other movies. He will also star in American soap operas and many television shows in Britain, the US and Canada. He will die of a heart attack at his home in Toronto in 1992.

March 12: The Canadian Authors Association is founded in Montreal. The group forms in response to legislation that will strip writers of the sole right to reproduce their articles and stories. Humourist Stephen Leacock is elected as first president.

March 26:  Designed by William RouĂ© and built by Smith and Rhuland, Bluenose is launched at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. The vessel is both a working cod-fishing schooner and a racing ship. It will win every contest it ever enters and be immortalized on the back of the dime.

April 13: The British Columbia Liquor Control Board is established. Citizens of BC prefer the regulation of liquor to outright prohibition.

April 27:  Farmers take the step of incorporating the Potato Growers Association of PEI.

May 1: Voters have spoken. The Province of Quebec will sell liquor in retail stores. This makes la belle province one of the few places in North America where one can legally buy booze.

May 3: The Canadian Transit Act is passed. It authorizes a bridge to be built across the Detroit River to connect Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan. The span will open to the public in 1929.

May 12: Farley Mowat is born in Belleville, Ontario. He will grow up to become one of the world’s favourite storytellers with 17 million copies of books like The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be and Never Cry Wolf. His wonderful yarns will be translated into 52 languages.

July 7: Sir George Arthur French, first Commissioner of the Northwest Mounted Police, is dead in London, England at the age of 80. He led the great trek of 1874 that established law and order throughout the western portion of this country.

June 8: Gladys Smith is born in Penticton, British Columbia. When she grows up she will move to Hollywood where her name will be changed to Alexis. She will star in Night and Day, San Antonio and Of Human Bondage. She will win a Tony in 1972 and be nominated for an Emmy in 1990. The gifted actress will die of brain cancer on the day after her birthday in 1993.

The Gray-Dort is built in Chatham, Ontario.

June 26: Anne of Green Gables author Lucy Maud Montgomery and her Presbyterian minister husband have a motorcar accident in the village of Zephyr. Ontario—where one of Reverend Macdonald’s congregations was located. Their Grey-Dort collides with a Chevrolet. The damage is $50 to the Gray-Dort and $100 to the Chevrolet.

The Right Honourable Arthur Meighen is our nation's ninth Prime Minister.

June 29: Prime Minister Meighen is adamant that Britain not sign a Pacific Treaty with Japan because it will further damage an already poor relationship between Ottawa and Washington.

July 6: Folks in Quebec City swelter through unprecedented heat as the mercury reaches 40C.

July 12: Overturning last year’s vote, residents of the Yukon vote to turn on the taps and let liquor flow freely again. Booze will have to be shipped from southern Canada, there are no breweries or distilleries in the territory.

July 19: Queen’s Park votes to make the importation of liquor illegal in Ontario. In Quebec City, the government of Quebec goes in the opposite direction, deciding to regulate booze by getting into the business of selling alcohol through government stores.

July 27: Frederick Banting and Charles Best discover insulin in a laboratory at the University of Toronto. They will receive the Nobel Prize for Medicine and sell the patent rights for the diabetes-alleviating drug to the University for $1.

August 4:  Joseph-Henri-Maurice “Rocket” Richard is born in Montreal. He will grow up to play hockey for the Montreal Canadiens. A true sportsman and great Canadian, when the Rocket dies in 2000 more than 115,000 will pass by his casket at the Forum and he will be given a state funeral—the first ever accorded to an athlete. His funeral service will be broadcast live on the CBC and Radio-Canada.

August 8: John Herbert Chapman is born in London, Ontario. He will grow up to be a scientist and aerospace engineer. He will create the Alouette communications satellites that permit instantaneous long-distance communication. He will die in 1979. In 1992 the Canadian Space Agency headquarters will be named in John’s honour.

Vicount Byng of Vimy is the country's 12th Governor General. He is seen here with Lady Bing.

August 10:  Lord Byng arrives in Quebec City. The popular military man commanded the Canadian Corps in The Great War and has been named as Canada’s new Governor General.

August 25: Maurice Halprin is born in Winnipeg. He will change his name to Monty Hall and become one of TV’s most popular game show hosts with Let’s Make a Deal, a concept he helped to create.

September 15: Inventor Frederick Classens unveils his portable X-ray machine in London, Ontario.

Rideau Hall has been the official residence of the Governor General since 1867.
September 21: Newly elected Prime Minister Meighen and his cabinet are sworn in at Rideau Hall by Vicount Byng. Not a single cabinet member from Quebec holds a seat in the House of Commons, Meighen alienated Quebeckers with his stand in favour of conscription during the Great War.

In the year 2000, Captain Angus Walters will pose with just a few of the trophies he won as skipper of the Bluenose.
October 24:  The sleek new Bluenose beats the American schooner Elsie to win the International Schooner Championship. It is her first win and there will be many more in the years to come.

November 21:  By Royal Proclamation of His Majesty, Canada is granted an official Coat of Arms. Our national colours are declared to be red and white.

November 27: The first long-distance phone call in the Dominion of Newfoundland takes places as operators connect parties in the towns of Brigus and Harbour Grace.

December 3: The ninth Grey Cup goes home with The Toronto Argonauts who whip the Edmonton Eskimos 23 to zip.

December 4: Edna Mae Durbin is born in Winnipeg. She will change her name to Deanna when she signs a movie contract with MGM in 1935. The Oscar winning star will retire from the limelight in 1950 and move to France. She will not give interviews in 2006.

December 6: The electorate has spoken and the Liberals, under William Lyon Mackenzie King, will form a majority government. The press speculates that Agnes McPhail, the 31-year old woman schoolteacher elected as an MP from Ontario, may break the Biblical convention that requires women to appear in public with their heads uncovered when she speaks in the House of Commons. The election is broadcast by radio for the first time to listeners lucky enough to live in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Saint John.

December 6: George Frederick “Buzz” Beurling is born in Montreal. Rejected from the RCAF, he will grab a boat to the UK, get into the RAF and become Britain's most successful ace with 32 confirmed kills and a string of decorations. He will die in a plane crash in 1948 while on a mission for the Israeli government.

December 23: Donald Roderick Cameron, British Chief Commissioner for the Boundary Survey across the prairies, is dead in Dingwall, Scotland at the age of 87.

December 29: Liberal leader Mackenzie King is sworn in as Canada’s tenth Prime Minister. He will set a record by holding office longer than any other Prime Minister in the British Empire.

Ford will sell 35,471 passenger cars in 1921, making it the best selling nameplate in the Dominion. A Model T roadster is seen here.

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