Materials documenting the life and community service of St. Thomas resident Ken Verrell, born August 13, 1926; died June 29, 2016. Includes obituary and remembrance service program. Also includes records relating to his Order of Ontario nomination in 2005.
Diamond Jubilee Medal Certificate presented to Kenneth Verrell, June 29, 2012.
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas fonds - Miscellaneous Records series
28 cm of textual records
1 photograph : col.
Scope and Content
Series consists of miscellaneous records created, collected and maintained by The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas in the course of operating the St. Thomas Home/ Thomas Williams Home and Campbell Cottage residence for indigents/senior citizens in St. Thomas, Ontario.
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas was organized at St. Thomas, Ontario March 24, 1876 and incorporated in April 1878. Under Article II of its constitution the Society and its members were committed to the following objects: "1st - The care of the aged, and the homeless. 2nd - The promotion of Temperance. 3rd - To acquire and hold property as a place of refuge for the aged and homeless."
On March 27, 1878 the Society opened the St. Thomas "Home" for "those who are sick or destitute belonging to the town." The Home was located "in the brick house formerly used as a tavern on the Wilson farm in the town of St. Thomas."
The St. Thomas Home admitted adult men and women as well as children under the age of twelve in its "Orphanage Branch." In its first year of operation the Home admitted 29 people (19 female, 10 male), including two infants born at the Home; the eldest admittee was 90.
Although initially inmates were expected to pay residency fees according to their means, the Home was funded principally by grants from the Government of Ontario and the City of St. Thomas, and, to a lesser degree, private donations.
Because it received government funding, the Home was required to file annual reports with and was subject to the supervision of the Office of the Inspector of Public Charities for Ontario, and later the Ontario Department of Public Welfare - Homes for the Aged Branch and its successor, the Ontario Department of Social and Family Services - Homes for the Aged Branch.
On July 24, 1882 the Society purchased property at 57 Walnut Street, St. Thomas from Hiram Comfort and later that year erected the Thomas Williams Home on that site, replacing the St. Thomas "Home" as a refuge for indigent citizens. The Home was named in honour of its principal patron, St. Thomas philanthropist Thomas Williams, who was also named a life member of the Home's advisory board.
The last child resident of the Thomas Williams Home was discharged in March 1899; thereafter, while adults under the age of 40 continued to be admitted, the Home's population became increasingly elderly. In the year ending October 1, 1911 the youngest of the Home's eighteen inmates was 53 and the average age was 74.
Although not absolute requirements for admission, the great majority of residents were received from the City of St. Thomas and reported affiliation with some denomination of Protestantism.
By 1956 the Thomas Williams Home had evolved from its origins as a temporary place of charitable refuge for indigents to a permanent residence for senior citizens of reduced means operated under sanction of the Ontario Department of Public Welfare - Homes for the Aged Branch. Residents contributed to the cost of their care by assigning their old age security entitlements in trust to The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas.
From the 1950s on, the Home maintained an average population of twenty five residents, divided equally between the sexes, and employed a staff of five - superintendent, caretaker, cook, and two housemaids.
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas operated the Thomas Williams Home until 1994 when the house and property were sold to private investors who remodelled the site as a bed and breakfast called "Rosebery Place."
From May 1927 to August 1973 the Society operated a similar institution, for women only, known as Campbell Cottage, located at 40 Wellington Street, St. Thomas.
The Cottage had been the residence of Mary Campbell Leitch who died March 20, 1921 and left this property in trust to the Society for the purpose of operating a home for "elderly women of modest means." On April 1, 1927 the Society established its Campbell Cottage Committee to undertake the administration of the residence. The first residents were admitted to the Cottage in July 1927.
The Cottage received a second source of funding when St. Thomas resident Sophia Burton Lamb died on July 13, 1930 and left half her estate as a legacy to establish the Sophia Cutten Lamb Memorial Fund Trust to support the operation of Campbell Cottage under the management of The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas.
In 1973, citing declining demand for admission and the existence of other, similar relief institutions, the Society ceased managing Campbell Cottage, the Mary C. Leitch estate, and the Sophia Cutten Lamb Memorial Fund Trust.
The fonds was donated to the Elgin County Library in the mid-to-late 1990s and subsequently transferred to the Elgin County Archives.
Original minute book (March 1876-April 1884) and notebook (October 1876-September 1886) donated as accession 2013-09.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records created, collected and maintained by The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas in the course of operating the Thomas Williams Home and Campbell Cottage residence for indigents/senior citizens in St. Thomas, Ontario. The fonds includes minutes of meetings of the Society; annual financial statements, account records and reports to various government agencies concerning the operation of the Thomas Williams Home and Campbell Cottage; registers, log books and ledgers providing information about inmates/residents and staff of the Home and Cottage; and photographs depicting the grounds, buildings, residents and staff of the Thomas Williams Home and members of The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas.
The fonds comprises the following ten series:
Financial Statements, 1942-1987;
Residents Registers/ Log Books, 1878-1924;
General Ledgers, 1892-1975;
Returns to Government, 1878-1971;
Inspection Registers, 1965-1977;
Staff Account Ledgers, 1957-1975;
Miscellaneous Records, 1882-1985.
The fonds will be useful to researchers concerned with the funding, operation, population and staffing of the Thomas Williams Home and Campbell Cottage in particular and private houses of refuge or relief and private retirement homes for the aged in Ontario and Canada generally; with the history of municipal and provincial funding and oversight of the provision of relief to indigent and elderly citizens in Ontario; with the establishment, development, organization structure, membership, business practices and fundraising activities of The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas in particular and of private philanthropic agencies in Ontario and Canada generally. Genealogists will find the fonds useful in identifying and gleaning information about individual inmates/residents and employees at the Home and Cottage.
1.3 m of textual records, graphic material and objects
History / Biographical
The Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas was organized in 1921 with 62 members.
One of its first projects was a Kiwanis Park, which was located on Ross Street, opposite Forest Avenue.
The record of service by local Kiwanians has been long and varied. Believed to be one of the oldest Kiwanis Clubs in Western Ontario, the St. Thomas Kiwanis Club renewed its beliefs by also chartering a second chapter, the Lord Elgin Kiwanis Club in 1963, and in most recent years supporting the Kiwanis Golden K, oriented for seniors over 60 years old, which was chartered in 1988.
Some of the highlights of the club's early years of service included looking after fatherless sons of First World War soldiers, assisting the hospital financially, establishing playgrounds, gaining goodwill with inter-community gatherings, helping set up dental clinic in schools, aiding those with failing eyesight and taking a leading part in many fundraising campaigns.
In 1925, unable to procure a slate of officers, a motion was introduced to suspend club operations, which became a strategy move.the club survived and membership was set at 55.
During the depression years, the Club launched their crippled children's clinics and formed and carried out the man-a-block system to provide work for the jobless, and staged many successful money-raising carnivals.
Despite the Second World War, the group continued to be active. While peace-time activities including their support of the 1940 International Plowing Match continued, the club raised about $30,000 for war services, including the purchase for the Red Cross of the first mobile blood serum gathering unit in Ontario. They also assisted with prisoner of war parcels and operated and maintained extensive blood clinics for several years in St. Thomas, Dutton and at the Aylmer and Fingal RCAF Schools.
Club membership continued to rise after the war years and in 1949 the club membership peaked at 130, its highest since inception.
In 1951, the St. Thomas Kiwanis sponsored the Port Stanley Club, which received its charter on April 22. It later amalgamated with the St. Thomas Club.
The motto of "We Build" continued and in 1954 the club provided $12,000 for a ward in the new St. Thomas-Elgin General Hospital, and another $1,000 was donated to assist in building the J.W. Snell Nurses Residence.
The club also continued it caring attitude towards children.In 1960, the members administered the Harry Townsend Fund to a boy who lost his legs in a railway accident.
From 1963 to 1964 local Kiwanians provided student loans of about $7,000.
The St. Thomas Kiwanis Club continued to honour it commitment of We Build, as well as supporting children's charities and helping seniors throughout the 1970s and 1980s.
Presently, the Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas continues to provide service to the community.
Records were stored at Reith & Associates Insurance, 462 Talbot Street, St. Thomas, before being donated by the Club to the Elgin County Archives in 2008.
Scope and Content
Records created and/or maintained by the Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas. Records have been divided into the following series: