Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | February 8, 2018

Book Fair at Cornwall’s Heritage Fair

Printed in 1982, this sofcover book is available at a steal for $5. (SOLD)

Visit the Sat. Feb. 24th book fair and heritage fair at the Cornwall Square, 9 pm to 4 pm.

And remember there is no tax on any books you buy!

Printed in 1999 and originally selling for $25, this lightly used copy will be for sale for $15.

This volume deals with the history of the boondoggle about the Cornwall Aces, begging the question – Is Cornwall still a hockey town; our military and religious heritage, the story of Pitt St., recreation and more.

I have often been asked if I ever wrote Vol. II.  The answer is yes, the CORNWALL SCRAPBOOK, now sold out – but you can still obtain copies of my third volume THE LIVING RIVER – SECRETS OF THE ST. LAWRENCE – FROM MONTREAL TO CORNWALL TO PRESCOTT, regularly $30, but at the Fair only $27.

While I am telling you about our discounts, UNFOROTTEN MARY MACK, CORNWALL’S FIRST LADY, by Ginette Guy will sell for $13, $2 off the regular price at the Fair.

Originally selling for $25 this history will be available for $10.

Remember for many of these books we only have one copy!

Ignore the price tag – this column will be on sale for $10.

1940 era postcard of Cornwall’s first Hotel Dieu on Water St. W., only $2.

We will also have a small selection of local postcards well  below ebay prices.

Watch this blog for more Fair specials!

Remember to visit the SD & G Historical Society’s table at Cornwall Square on Sat. Feb. 24th from 9 pm to 4 pm.  Also remember all purchases are cash only, we are a historical society credit cards didn’t exist when we were formed!



Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | February 7, 2018

Local History Book Sale – Heritage Fair, Cornwall.

RUNNING DOWN THE RAPIDS – an illustrated history of running the Long Sault Rapids by boat is just one of the many local histories that will be on sale at the SD & G Historical Society/Cornwall Museum booth at the Heritage Fair to be held on Saturday 24th at the Cornwall Square from 9 am to 4 pm.  Cost for this slightly used copy $10.

A postcard showing the steamship “Algerian” running the Long Sault Rapids, circa 1900.  The vessel was known at the “Algerian,” the “Bavarian” and the “Cornwall,” it ended its career as a tugboat.

The booklet RUNNING DOWN THE RAPIDS has photographs of more than 30 riverboats, as well as a short history of Richelieu and Ottawa Navigation Co., and the Montreal and Cornwall Navigation Co.

Steering wheel from the S.S. Filgate.  The print to the right shows the vessel running the Lachine Rapids, from the Canadian Illustrated News, May 31, 1879.

The steering wheel from the Filgate was donated to the Cornwall Museum in 1972.

This vessel is one of the many shown in RUNNING DOWN THE RAPIDS, one copy only is available at the Cornwall Square On Feb. 24th, for $10.

Here is a rare local history, available at the Heritage Fair at the Cornwall Museum’s stand for only $20.

For the Heritage Fair only this book is available for $27.

The book covers local river lore, the building of the Seaway, the creation of the Lost Villages, military history and much more.  Over 150 photographs, many never seen before.

Do you like antiques, but can’t afford them?  This richly illustrated book written by Royal Ontario Museum curator Donald Webster, shows you some of the finest in Ontario.  Printed in 1979, it has not been replaced by any other work.  Well worth $20, and available along with other books at the Cornwall Community Museum’s table at the Heritage Fair, Sat. Feb. 24th, at the Cornwall Square, 9 am to 4 pm.


Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | January 21, 2018

Walter’s Meat Market – in the Square Mile Town

Recently we were paid a visit by Richard Vinet and son, whose father / grandfather operated a mom and pop grocery store / butcher shop in Cornwall. They brought us a donation of 14 relevant vintage photos.

Walter Vinet purchased the brick structure at n.e. corner of Fourth Street West at Bedford Street, taking over the F. Gosselin Market located in the west corner unit. This photo is circa 1951.

At different times the Vinet family lived beside and above the store in the complex which is home to a handful of families today. Today the units bear the addresses of 235, 237, 239 a and b and 241; all units are now residential.

2018-3.1g_Walters Mt Mkt_int_1_webVinet sold the business to Norman McCrimmon, while the Vinets continued to live upstairs at 239  a. We see evidence of this change in the 1959 City Directory. In 1963 much of the building was vacant. Other retailers later took their turn occupying the store, including a reptile house.

Vinet also purchased the apartment building directly across Bedford Street, which is of the same architectural style and vintage; that building continues to be home to families, but the exterior has since been sided over.

Previously, for a time in the 1940’s, Vinet’s store was located on Montreal Road, visible behind this early delivery vehicle.

This photo is believed to depict the Maple Leaf Meat operation in Montreal, where Walter learned the butcher trade.

The Vinets later purchased the duplex (later triplex) at 20-22-24 Lawrence Avenue from the Viatorian Fathers, which the clerics had utilized as the beginning of what became the Classical College prior to the development at Wind Mill Point. The above photo is from our existing collection.

Your Museum and Archives is delighted to receive this photo donation and asks that you consider sharing with us any photos that you have of historic Cornwall businesses, etc.



Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | January 11, 2018

St. Lawrence High School Yearbooks

Recently the Museum and Archives received a donation from Sue Makinson which included three St. Lawrence High School yearbooks, which had belonged to her mother, Dorothy (Anderson) McDonald.




We are pleased to include these in our selection of yearbooks which, for St. Lawrence High School, includes 1959, 60, 61, 62, 65, 66, 67, 71, 72, 75 and 2000 from both the old and new schools. We also have booklets from commencement exercises and course calendars.

These yearbooks and others from several area schools are accessible at your Museum and Archives during regular hours.

Thank you, Sue, for being our first official donor of 2018!


Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | January 6, 2018

Changes to Pitt Street North – Pt 2

Continuing on  from where we left off in Part 1 of this series …

1447 Pitt Street is now home to an automobile repair shop.

1503 Pitt right next door now houses two restaurants.

The convenience store across the street now operates under a different brand.

Further north, the car dealership at 1515 Pitt Street has been replaced by a fitness centre, which has expanded the footprint.

Right next door at 1525 Pitt, the home renovation center has been replaced by a furniture chain store.

Further along the street at 1613, the natural gas company office has been transformed into a popular dining spot.

Next door, the once popular Bob Auline chicken and rib eatery has witnessed a series of restaurants/pubs come and go. It is now home to a Thai restaurant.

Across the street, the service station has become the base of operation for an hvac company. And across Emma, while the soda shop/convenience store remains, the used car dealer is now an automobile accessory shop.

To the north of that complex, Surgeson Electric has moved to Tyotown and been replaced by a wine and beer kit store. Across Pitt Street, another tool rental company has taken over the Atlas site.

Follow this LINK to see some businesses which previously operated at the foot of this overpass.

The SD&G Historical Society colour photographs on this page were taken in September of 1989.


Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | January 6, 2018

Changes to Pitt Street North – pt 1

For those who tend to think that little ever changes in Cornwall, let’s ponder this…

Just looking at the section of Pitt Street from 11th Street to Emma/Balmoral, can you guess have many properties have experienced changes in occupancy since the 1990s?

HopesHope’s Garage on the n.w. corner of Pitt and 11th St W. has witnessed a few businesses come and go. Recently a chiropractic office renovated the building and relocated there.

1164 Pitt_1989-09_webMoving north along Pitt Street, in September of 1989 this craft shop occupied the main level of this building at 1164 Pitt Street. Subsequently a ceramics shop moved in and the siding is now grey. The plate glass window has been replaced with a lovely six light bay window.

1170 Pitt_1989_webThat same year, 1170 Pitt was home to a laundromat. The building was completely transformed and later housed a finance company and a computer store.

1180 Pitt_1989-09_webNext door at 1180 Pitt Street the car wash was rebranded and its lot has also doubled for flower sales as well as automobile sales.

1274 Pitt_1989-09_webContinuing north, the strip mall at 1274 Pitt Street has experienced a complete turnover of its tenants. The computer shop was replaced by a diner. A nail studio replaced the pharmacy. A vape shop and tattoo parlor occupy the other store fronts.

1307 Pitt_1989-09_webThe service station on the n.w. corner of Pitt and 13th St. W. has been replaced by an automated car and wash and pet wash, operated by the same owner. The house was sold to Jeff Wheeler and relocated.

1328 Pitt_1989-09_webThe north branch of the Bank of Montreal is scheduled to soon fade into history as the Cornwall branches consolidate at a new site.

1331 Pitt_1989-09_webAcross the street, the strip mall at 1325-1331 Pitt Street has also experienced a considerable turnover. Now known as the Pitt Street Plaza, the building is home to a walk-in clinic, connected pharmacy, as well as a florist/gift shop.

1415_1417 Pitt_1989-09_web1415 Pitt is now 1418 Pitt and is still home to Rainbow Music, but the appearance has been altered somewhat. 1417 Pitt Street is now 1420 Pitt and has reverted to a residence. The addresses have been altered to align with the numbering system on the rest of the street.

Please watch for the second part of this article on the evolution of Pitt Street north.

The SD&G Historical Society colour photographs on this page were taken in September of 1989; the black and white photo is from 1953 and was shared on social media.

This series continues with Part 2 at this LINK.







Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | January 3, 2018

Lavimodiere Furs: 1927-2017

In 1927 A.E. Lavimodiere furrier opened shop at 33 Second Street East. Lavimodiere_ad_1929
From 1929 until about 1936, A.E. Lavimodiere furrier operated out of 133 Pitt Street, situated between the New York Café and Snetsinger’s Hardware. This ad was from 1929.

A 1936 newspaper article indicates that Charles Morgan pleaded guilty to a charge of break and enter as well as theft of $1,400 worth of furs from the store.

From ca. 1936 until about 1956, 33 Second Street East resumed being the firm’s home, just a few doors west of the Nazareth Orphanage, which burned May 4, 1950. After Mr. Lavimodiere’s death, his wife Irma continued the operation.

Lavimodiere-neg-4_webEver since that time the business has operated at 117 Montreal Road.

ext 2_webThis photo from January, 2018 was taken prior to the second inventory and fixtures online auction.
rental sign front._webThe building includes a second retail space to the east and apartments on the second level.

Lavimodiere_ad_Mtl Rd
During this period Maurice E. Lavimodiere came aboard as assistant manager then manager. Maurice and his wife Hughette retired and moved to Barrie, both are now deceased.

Lavimodiere Furs_1956_Van Dyck Studios_webIn 1972 the business was sold and renamed Lavimodiere Furs Ltd. (1972) with Michael Remer as President and Michael’s wife Maria Remerowski as Vice President. This 1956 portrait is by Montreal’s Van Dyck Studios.

Lavimodiere Furs_bus card_Remer Fur CoPrior to relocating to Cornwall, Michael operated the Remer Fur Co. in Montreal.

Lavimodiere Furs_Remer papers_webMichael Remer

Lavimodiere Furs_cust photo_Roys_web
Photo by Roys Studio.

Canada Week 1977_webFrom 1977.

poster 50th anniv_webThis large poster hung in the store window promoting the business’ 50th anniversary in 1977.

Lavimodiere Furs_Christina_webBy 1990 Christine Remerowski joined them as Manager / Bookkeeper and later she became owner / operator. In late 2017 and early 2018 Christine arranged for the remaining inventory and fixtures to be cleared via a series of online auctions.

This ornate industrial vault door was manufactured by Goldie and McCulloch of Galt (now Cambridge).

This manufacturer of divers products functioned from 1859 until 1927, operating from the former Dumfries Foundry which opened in 1849. The company was succeeded by Babcock & Wilcox, which is still engaged in the manufacture of power generation equipment.
vault stairs_webThe vault door protects a two-storey concrete cold storage vault for furs.

Vault_2 storey_bsmt
Pictured here is the basement level of the fur vault.

The back room on the main level includes Ahern Safe Co. Limited cabinet vaults, which bear the name of the original furrier. Arthur Ahern’s business functioned from ca. 1880 until the late 1920s. The company was simply a distributor for manufacturers including J &J Taylor, Goldie & McCulluch as well as the Syracuse Safe Company.

This large floor safe bears the name of the original owner, N.E. Brossoit, a Valleyfield lawyer.

bags CRtLux shopping bags…

hanger pair inset_web…and garment hangers.

Lavimodiere Furs_Mfrs labelManufacturer’s label.

hat box assembled_webOne of the various hat box styles.

matches setThese promotional matches date back to Michael Remer’s tenure.

furs_webThese lovely fur garments are among the inventory items included in the second auction.

furs 2_webThe SD&G Historical Society is very pleased to be able to help preserve the memory of several of Cornwall’s historic retailers. Donations of historic photos and other memorabilia are welcome and appreciated.

Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | December 26, 2017

Cornwall Street Railway Flashback

Some of us recall the days of trolley buses, and before that, street cars travelling the streets of Cornwall.

Enjoy this Boxing Day flashback to an earlier point in the life of our community.

The street car “barns” were located on the site of the current Cornwall Square shopping center.

A street car sweeper.

A trolley bus passing City Hall.

Paper Mill hill.

And a parade along Second Street; the orphanage is barely visible in the distance.

These photos and many others are from the CSLR collection at your Museum and Archives.

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | December 14, 2017

Glengarry County History book sale.

On Saturday December 16th, from 1 pm to 4 pm, the Cornwall Community Museum will be having a special sale of duplicate books about Glengarry’s History.

The Round Church is on sale for $10.  No tax on any books.

We take cash or cheques only, no credit or debit cards.

Here is a hard to get title, first printed in 1974 and reprinted two years later.  $20.


$2 only



And for something different an 1895 cheque from the Molson Bank, $5.

Along with books, the museum has an ephemera and postcard collection for sale.

On sale for $13 on Dec. 16th only.  Regular $15.  Signed.

On sale on the 16th only for $27 – $30.

Info.  613 936-0280;

Many more titles.

Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | December 13, 2017

Christmas on Pitt Street, or the Cats visit Cornwall, part III.

Children lining-up to see Santa Claus, Cornwall, ca. 1960.

A letter to Santa from John in depression era Glengarry County.


This is the third in a series of Christmas stories written by Mary Ross-Ross for her husband Philip.

Susie Belle came hurrying into the house from her work in the barn.

Susie Belle, one year old.

“I wish Philip liked to eat mice,” she said.

“I had planned to give him a brace for Christmas, but when I took him one to him when he was sick in bed he didn’t seem grateful, so now I shall have to make an effort and go to Cornwall to find something.”

“Let’s go soon,” said Doodlebug.

“Before the shops get too crowded.”

“Yes!” said Pedalpusher, “And before Mrs, Hall sells all the red tricycles so I won’t miss my Christmas treat.”

So they set a date, and on the appointed day Susie Belle wore her grey furs and they all pulled on their fur mittens and climbed into the car with Laddie.  The dog didn’t like driving very much, but felt he had to go to guard everyone – and besides he couldn’t trust his shopping to anyone else, especially those cats!

After a pleasant drive along the River, the car was parked and they trooped into Hall Brother’s store singing “Jingle Bells,”  Shouting “Merry Christmas ” to Mrs. Hall, Laddie had just started toEdwardian era Christmas postcard.

exchange a few pleasantries  with Alex when he was nearly knocked off his feet by a red tricycle with Pedalpusher at the helm.  “No Pedalpusher,” he barked, “Business first, pleasure afterwards,” and he lifted him firmly off the bike and escorted him from the store.

Pitt St. was looking very festive and all the cats wanted to stop and look in every window, but Laddie kept them moving and took them into Zellers where Pedalpusher purchased his traditional present of three red handkerchiefs.

“Now come across the street,” said Jackie, and he went into a very exclusive candy shop (Laura Secords) and bought Philip a five cent stick of barley sugar.

“Now, I have to go to Webers,” said Laddie.  When they got there the store was very busy and they had to wait a few minutes before Laddie could speak to his friend Mr. Sliter.

“Will you please wrap up one of those Lovely Lady calendars like I bought last year,” he said.

“I’am sorry,” said Mr. Sliter.  “But we couldn’t get any this year.”

“What! no calendar?” said Laddie, and his ears and tail dropped in a dejected manner.

Card display at Weber’s Cornwall.  The business was in operation from 1876 to 1987, when Thelma and Harry Sliter closed it upon their retirement.

The cats were very sorry for him and took him back to Mrs. hall’s where he confided his troubles to Christena.

“I’ll tell you what,” said Christena, after listening .

“If you can’t get what Philip wants, why not get something you want?”

“What a good idea,” said Laddie, cheering up.  “I need a brush, so Philip can brush me, have you got one?”

Christena looked in the glass case and found a brush.  “That will be just the thing,” said Laddie.  “Please wrap it up for me.”

Meanwhile Susie Belle had been waiting and Mr. Ouimette asked if he could help her.  She said “Thank-you, but it is something domestic I want, so I need to speak to Christena.”

After Christena gave Laddie his parcel, she turned to Susie Belle.

“I would like one of those purring machines that sit on top of stove,” said Susie Belle.

“Do you mean a kettle?” asked Christena.

“That’s the name,” said Susie Belle.

“Philip has a new Franklin stove in the kitchen and I thought it would be nice to sit on top of it and purr to remind him of me.”

Christena showed her several shining kettles and she chose the medium sized one.  Just as Christena was about to finish wrapping the kettle, Pedalpusher flew by on the tricycle screaming, “Lppl out! her comes Sputnik.”

Having had his fun Pedalpusher now left the tricycle behind and joined the rest of the cats and Laddie in wishing everyone at Mrs. Hall’s a Merry Christmas.

Join us on Saturday Dec. 16th from 1 pm to 4 pm for an old-fashioned Christmas sing along at the Cornwall Community Museum.

Info:     613 936-0280


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