Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 27, 2017

Artifact of the Week. Painting – Lock 17, Cornwall Canal.

Oil painting by H. Brault of Lock 17 on the old Cornwall Canal, painted June 17, 1959.  Acquired the by the Museum in 2003.

Postcard, 1952.

The archives at the Cornwall Community Museum contains dozens of photographs and postcards showing the old Cornwall Canal, available for viewing and copying at a modest cost.

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 25, 2017

Cornwall Township – School Section 13.


Memorandum of Agreement made this 4th day of January 1897 between the Public School Trustees of Section No. 13 in the Township of Cornwall and Mary E. Eamon of the Village of Wales, in the Township of Osnabruck, the holder of a Second Class Certificate of qualification, as a Public School Teacher in Ontario, as follows.

  1.  The Trustess hereby employ here for their said school, such teacher, at the yearly salary of $230 for the term of one year, beginning on the 4th day of January, 1897, and further agree that they and their successors in office will pay such salary to the said teacher, and will exercise all powers, and perform all duties under the Public School Act and Regulations of the Education Dept. which may be requisite for making such payment.
  2.   The teacher agrees to teach and conduct the said school during the said term, according to the said Law and Regulations in that behalf.
  3.   The foregoing is subject to the following conditions:-

i That the teacher shall continue to be the holder of a legal Certificate of qualification as a Public School Teacher in Ontario.

ii That the days on which the teacher has attended the meetings of Teachers’ Associations, as certified by the Inspector or

Chairman thereof shall be allowed her, as if she had actually taught in the said school.

iii  That in the case sickness, as certified by a registered Medical Practioner, she shall be entitled to receive her salary without deductions for such period as may be authorised under the statute in that behalf.

iv  The Trustees and the Teacher, may at their option respectively terminate this engagement by giving notice in writing to the other of them, at least two calendar months previously, and so as to terminate on the last day of the calendar month.

v  This agreement shall also be construed to continue in force from year to year, unless and until it is terminated by the notice, herein before prescribed.

As witness the corporate seal of the said Trustees and the hand of the Teacher, on the day and year first above mentioned.

Mary E. Eamon…Teacher

Philip T. Empey

S.S. Brownell

Finch Ontario, August 29th, 1924.

Mr. N.J. Robinson, Monkland Station, Ont.

Dear Sir:

In reply to your letter of Aug. 20th, I beg leave to state that the Trustee Board is NOT LEGALLY obliged to supply a teacher with a boarding place – and there is no limitation as to the amount per month that she must pay – that matter can be settled only between herself and the party engaging to board her.  Of course, if the Board can accommodate a teacher by telling her where she can get lodging – she should be thankful – as it is sometimes difficult for a stranger to get a suitable place in a section.

Yours Respectfully

James Froats

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 25, 2017

Good Citizenship plaque presentation Cornwall, March 9, 1981.

scan0038These Good Citizenship plaques were presented by the Cornwall Board of Commissioners of Police, on March 9, 1981, (photo taken March 27), for the rescue of Sylvain Derochers from the city waters of the St. Lawrence River on Dec. 22, 1980.

left to right:  Bryson Comrie, Board member, Messrs. Steven Rodgers, Leslie Henry, William Mondoux and Cornwall Mayor Gerald Parisien.

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 25, 2017

Artifact of the week. Three Cornwall trophies.

A silverplate Tug of War trophy, made by the Wilco Silverplate Co., in the U.S.

Tri-county tug of war challenged donated by Doctor D.R. McDonald, MPP for Glengarry, 1898 – 1902 and 1908 to 1911.

Won by  (blank)       1911, 1912, 1913

Purchased at the auction for the estate of Dennis Jacobs, Maxville, in 1997.

Courtaulds’ golf trophy, presented by English Cellophane Ltd. for the annual competition between TCF Canada Ltd. and Courtaulds (Canada) Ltd.  1953 to 1981.

Donated by Ransom Ledoux in 2007.

Birk’s sterling silver bowl for the Cornwall Curling Club.

Inscribed:  From The Beach Brothers, 1887 to 1937.

Note the imitation English hallmark.

Donated by the estate of Dora Campbell (nee Beach), in 2005.

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 24, 2017

Artifact of the Week – 1960 CCVS Mirror, yearbook.

This 1960 copy of the CCVS MIRROR was sent to the museum by Judy Raymond of Belleville.

While the museum’s archives have many issues of the MIRROR we are missing 1932 – 35; 1956 – 57, 1959, 1961 – 62, 1964 – 65, 1972, 1975, 1977, 1982, 1984 – 85 and 1987 – 89.  If you have any of these issues collecting dust at home, we would be happy to have them in our archives for the community to enjoy.

Posted by: Media Manager | July 23, 2017

Historic Cornwall – Sister Macdonell

Sister Macdonell, often incorrectly spelled as MacDonald, was one of the early suburbs in the former Cornwall Township that became a Cornwall neighbourhood on January 1, 1957 when the City annexed much of the Township.  The name Sister Macdonell no longer appears on Cornwall maps.

The Macdonell family farm property had been passed down to Sister Janet Macdonell and ultimately to her religious community, the Religious Hospitallers of St. Joseph. The property was a strip of land on the east side of McConnell Avenue, north of 3rd Street East, part of Lot 6, just east of the original Square Mile Town.

The “New” Hotel Dieu Hospital

HDH_1959-11_CR_300In 1948, Sister Marie de la Ferre made a provincial application to replace the outgrown Water Street Hotel Dieu Hospital. In 1952, sod was turned on the Sister Macdonell site and construction of the new five storey, 250 bed Hotel Dieu Hospital began in late 1952. The cornerstone was laid on June 16, 1954. June 1, 1955 was the planned opening date, but Maternity & Pediatrics were not ready in time. The first patient was admitted on August 17, 1955 and on September 14, 1955, the hospital officially opened to a crowd of more than 3,000. The new hospital was fully approved by the Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation in 1956. The project included a separate boiler house and laundry. Not only did the Sisters donate $200,000 and the land, but they also assumed responsibility for the $1,800,000 loan and contributed an enormous amount of free labour. Their contribution to the community was considerable. The above photo was taken in 1959.

The photo above is from 1970; it reveals a new structure to the north of the hospital.

Constructed in 1961 on the hospital site at 840 McConnell Avenue and opened in November the following year, the new R.H.S.J. Hotel Dieu Convent housed the Sisters who were responsible for the Hospital Administration. Prior to that time, they lived in quarters in two areas of the hospital. Living on-site meant that the Sisters could be called into action on very short notice day or night. The order had also been responsible for the original hospital.

With its 25 bedrooms, in 1989 the Convent was able also accommodate the 12 Sisters from the Macdonell Memorial Convent.

Ca. 2000, the religious community relocated to a large brick house at 783 Guy Street, to the rear of the hospital, on separate property.

In 2003 the Sisters gave over the hospital and property for a token $1, pending a consolidation of services from the General and Hotel Dieu sites. Over a period of some years, the former “new” Hotel Dieu Hospital and the former Cornwall General Hospital would progressively amalgamate under the name of the Cornwall Community Hospital, largely being rebuilt on former Hotel Dieu Hospital expansive property, much larger than the half-block Cornwall General site that would be re-born as The Care Centre.

On Friday, July 21, 2017 the Cornwall Community Hospital announced that a contract had been awarded for the demolition of its North Annex. The hospital’s I.T. and Facilities Departments were due to have completely vacated the premises by the end of the day in favour of more modern quarters in the expanded hospital complex. Once the former R.H.S.J. convent turned Annex has been taken down, the area will be used as a doctors’ parking lot.

The former convent has witnessed a variety of uses and structural changes over time. Gone are the former garage and courtyard walls.

The Sisters’ airy community room became hospital office space with a view.

There is an adjacent kitchenette and break room.

Some of the symbols associated with the R.H.S.J. Convent are still witnessing to the buildings’ original purpose.

The two-storey bedroom wing was separate from the community wing. Some of the former convent bedrooms served those in training at the hospital. For a time, long-time Hospital Chaplain Father Claude Halle also lived there.

Microsoft Word - Former Hotel Dieu Convent.docA wall had been removed to facilitate a combined kitchenette and lounge.

In many ways this moment further delineates the end of an era of Catholic public acute care hospitals in the City.

Med Ctr_aerial_1970-09_2010-22.139To the immediate south of the hospital stands the McConnell Medical Centre as depicted in 1970.

Adj proptiesIn this 2017 image we see that the Medical Centre has been enlarged considerably and further south are two other significant structures on the former Sister Macdonell estate.

CRSN_sod turning_1967-04-04CROn April 4, 1967, sod was turned for the $3.1 million Cornwall Regional School of Nursing, located on the s.e. corner of 4th St E and McConnell Avenue.

Completed in June of 1968, the nine-storey School housed 144 in the residence and had classroom space for 200 students. It was the replacement for the former 1929 St. Joseph’s School of Nursing on York Street. This building later became the student residence for St. Lawrence College and more recently a seniors’residence, which constructed a second building to the east.

To return to our main post on Historic Cornwall neighbourhoods, please follow this LINK.

Posted by: Media Manager | July 23, 2017

Ed. Warner’s – From Livery to Taxi to Auto Dealership/Garage

Ed Warner started Cornwall’s first taxi service in 1911. Located at 30-32 2nd St W when it succumbed to fire on November 29, 1951, the taxi, car dealership and service garage was then sandwiched between the Cornwallis Hotel and Shirley’s Lunch. Previously, ca. 1930 we see the business operating from the next block at 29 2nd St E, near Warner’s residence at 35 2nd St E.

This recently donated 15” ruler was likely issued in the 1940s. Wes Dunbar and Ed Anderson are noted on the ruler.

Among the related artifacts in our Archives are:

    • 1924-03-04 Invoice – E.D. Warner Auto Livery and Garage
    • 1924-11-01 Statement – E.D. Warner (McLaughlin, Buick, Star)
    • 1925-08-01 – E.D. Warner (McLaughlin-Buick, Star, Willys-Overland ) – Taxi 105, Garage 14J
    • 1926 – Near King George Hotel (McLaughlin-Buick, Willys-Knight, Overland, Pontiac) & Taxi

    • 1930 ad – Warner’s Garage / Ed. Warner, 29 2nd St E
      (Buick, Pontiac, Cadillac, LaSalle, G.M.C. trucks)

  • 1931 Bell Dir – bus 29 2nd E, res. 35 2nd St E.
  • 1939 17 employees earning $22,475.55, finished products worth $176,959.16
  • 1940-12-28 – Ed. Warner (Cadillac, LaSalle, Dodge, DeSoto)
    • Sale to Glen-Stor-Dun FARM (this was the Glebe House of Refuge from 1912-1952)
  • 1941 16 male employees earning $28,267.47, finished goods worth $266,687.08
  • 1942 13 male employees earning $23,637.44, finished goods (sales) worth $135,000
  • 1947 Invoice – Ed. Warner Limited (Chrysler, Plymouth, Fargo Trucks)

This March, 1954  advertisement reveals the business then operating at 120 Augustus Street (Cornwall Housing apartments there today on the former Dominion Store site.)

This is a sampling of the many items in the Archives at your Cornwall Community Museum.


Posted by: Media Manager | July 21, 2017

Leger’s Hardware / Proulx Brothers

The 1951 Cornwall City & Township Directory includes an ad for Leger’s Hardware at 361 Alice Street. The store was located in Lorneville on west side of Alice Street between Walton and 1st St. E. The centre of Alice Street was the dividing line between the historic Cornwall Township neighbourhoods of Lorneville and Riverview.

45_Leger's Hardware

Pictured above is the store’s 1954 Business Listing in the Bell Directory.

This 1957 sales receipt for Leger’s Hardware hints back to the time of three and four digit telephone numbers.

The 1959 City Directory lists Leger’s Hardware, still at 357 Alice Street, still owned by Emile G. Leger. From the 1939 City Directory we know that Emile previously worked as a clerk for Belanger & Gauthier.

In the 1963 and 1970 City Directories, we see the business listed as Leger Hardware Reg’d at the same address and phone and now owned by Robert Proulx.

This 1965 school yearbook advertisement reveals that the store was still a merchant of C.C.M. bicycles.

According to the 1971 City Directory, Jean (John L.) Proulx had joined Robert in the business, now operating as Proulx Brothers Hardware. The prior year, John was listed as working for Hodgins Lumber as an accountant.

Other businesses subsequently operated from that location. The building still stands and recently (2017) housed a variety store.

The paint stir sticks shown above are from a large collection donated to the Museum recently. What’s in your closet waiting to be shared? Contact us at .


Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 20, 2017

Hotel Cornwallis. Artifact of the Week.

A silverplate vase given to Edith Firth for 25 years service at the Cornwallis Hotel.  Acquired by the museum in 2011.

The museum is always looking for Cornwallis related memorabilia, contact us if you have anything.

Hotel  brochure, ca. 1940.

The letter sent to Mrs. Mary Synder inviting her to the official opening of the hotel as the person who named it the CORNWALLIS.

Advertising card, pre 1934.

The theatre featuring “talkies” across the street was the Capitol.

This photograph was taken in the Club Dining Room in the Hotel, on the regular meeting night of the Cornwall Kinsmen Club, Feb. 9, 1944.

In this photograph Kinsmen are seen parting with their clothing to give to the “Clothing to Russia” campaign, as part of the War effort.

In the foreground, left to right:  Ernie Sleeman, pres; Robert Revie and George Hunter, campaign organizers.

In the background, left to right:  Clint Birchard, Harry Devitt, Ray Hartle, Joe Elson, Ed Goss, Graham Dennison, Lloyd Gallinger, Arnold (Standard-Freeholder, photographer)

The hotel was constructed in 1928 by the Cornwall Community Hotel Co. Ltd., and headed by MP Arnold Smith, insurance agent Harry W. Snetsinger, wholesale grocer Arthur Chevrier, coal merchant J.E. Chevrier and Road Master J.C. Broderick.

In the late 1930s the Hotel advertised that it was “…the most comfortable hotel in Cornwall, yet rates are no higher.  Large airy rooms and fresh crisp cleanliness add to the many comforts at this beautifully quiet hotel.  Hotel operated on European Plan.  Rooms $2.25 up.”

With 90 rooms and 40 baths, the brochure continues: “Every convenience of the hotel is available at the Cornwallis, which is Cornwall’s newest, fireproof hotel.”

The place to be seen in Cornwall, the dining room stated the 1945 banquet celebrating the incorporation of Cornwall as a City.  Former U.S. President Truman was one of its more illustrious guests.

The dining room’s most famous guest, however, Queen Elizabeth II, never made it for lunch, the royal yacht being held up by fog during her 1959 Canadian tour.

Ironically, a fire in 1977 led to the hotel being demolished.


Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | July 20, 2017

Cornwall Sports trophies and medallion.

A sterling silver medal awarded to Vince Martelle for being on the winning team for the 1937 – 38, Hazeley Cup.

The medal was donated by Ron Martelle in 1989, a former Cornwall mayor, his dad was awarded the medal.

Here is a useful trophy.  A pewter glass bottom pint tankard awarded to Earnest M. S. Mattice by the Cornwall Lawn Tennis Club, on July 26, 1886.

Donated to the museum in 2012 by Mary Mitchell of Ottawa.

A wood, plastic, and metal trophy awarded in 1973 to Peewee Lacrosse Division Coach A. Bissonnette.

The lacrosse stick could also serve as a swizzle stick.  Given to the museum in 2013.


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Cornwall Industry

A Cornwall Community Museum Blog

Streets of Cornwall

Pitt St. and Beyond

Cornwall Canal and Shipping History

A Cornwall Community Museum Publication

Cornwall Community Museum

In The Wood House at the waterfront, Cornwall, Ontario, Canada