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Independent Order of Odd Fellows Rodney Lodge No. 291 fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives807
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Independent Order of Oddfellows Rodney Lodge No. 291 fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1892-1988
Accession Number
2002-02
Storage Location
R6 S5 Sh6 B2-8
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Independent Order of Oddfellows Rodney Lodge No. 291 fonds
Creator
Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Rodney Lodge No. 291
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2002-02
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Storage Location
R6 S5 Sh6 B2-8
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1892-1988
Physical Description
90.6 cm of textual records
History / Biographical
The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) began in 17th century England when a group of men organized themselves for the purpose of giving aid to those in need and the pursuit of various projects for the benefit of mankind. Odd Fellows are known as "The Three Link Fraternity" which stands for Friendship, Love and Truth. The first Odd Fellow Lodge in Ontario was instituted on June 17, 1845 in the village of Belleville. The IOOF in Rodney, Ontario was established on May 20, 1892, with charter members William Morris, A. Wismer, A. Humphrey, J.S. Robertson, J.H. Barnes, N.S. Lusty, Charles Grant, William Mapes, and W. Peer. At the Lodge's first meeting in the Barnes Block twenty new members were initiated by members of the Ridgetown Lodge. Meetings after 1903 were held on the second floor of the first brick building of Mistele Ltd. store with entrance by an outside stairs on the north side. In 1943, the Oddfellows purchased the Morris building on the northeast corner of Furnival and Clark Streets. Membership in the lodge peaked in 1955 with 137 members on the roll. For many years, they assumed responsibility for one of the most important social events of the year in this community, the annual "IOOF at Home". The Lodge also participated in many community service and fund-raising activities in Rodney and surrounding area. Rodney members took an active part on district committees in raising funds for new equipment for hospitals in St. Thomas, London, Tillsonburg, and Newbury. In association with the Rebekahs, the Humanitarian Services Committee maintained a supply of articles such as hospital beds, wheel chairs, crutches and walkers. They were loaned free to anyone who needed them. Members also held Ambliopia Clinics in the interest of better vision for children. The IOOF Rodney Lodge No. 291 existed under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Ontario Erie District No. 15. IOOF Rodney Lodge No. 291 disbanded in the early 1990s.
Custodial History
Purchased by Ed Phelps from an antique dealer in Strathroy. The records were deeded to the Elgin County Archives in March 2002.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of minute books (1899-1986), membership and attendance records (1892-1988), and financial records (1892-1985) relating to the operation of the IOOF Rodney Lodge No. 291. The fonds consists of the following series: 1. Minutes 2. Attendance and Membership records 3. Financial records 4. Correspondence 5. General History
Name Access
Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Rodney Lodge, No. 291 (Rodney, Ont.)
Rodney (Ont.)
Subject Access
Community Service

Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18 fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives149177
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18 fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1937-1999
Accession Number
2005-01
Storage Location
R13 S2 Sh4 B8 F1-5
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18 fonds
Creator
Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2005-01
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 110
Storage Location
R13 S2 Sh4 B8 F1-5
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1937-1999
Physical Description
6 cm of textual records
History / Biographical
The Daughters of Rebekah, also known as the Rebekahs and the International Association of Rebekah Assemblies, is an international service-oriented organization and a branch of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. It was initially designed as the female auxiliary of the IOOF,[1] but now allows both female and male members.[2] It is one of the units of the IOOF, but women need not be related to an Odd Fellow to be a member of the Rebekahs. As long as she meets the moral, ethical and age requirement for admission, any woman may join. In most jurisdictions, women aged 16 or 18 years old and above can join a Rebekah Lodge The Rebekah Lodges were founded on 20 September 1851, when, after considerable debate, the Sovereign Grand Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows voted to adopt the Rebekah Degree, largely due to the efforts of an Odd Fellow named Schuyler Colfax. The first Rebekah Degrees were honorary awards only, conferred on wives and daughters of Odd Fellows at special Lodge meetings, and recipients were known as "Daughters of Rebekah".[4] The name is taken from the Biblical character of Rebekah. These early Daughters of Rebekah had no lodge system of their own, and operated in an informal and local manner. On September 25, 1868, the IOOF voted to establish Degree Lodges of the Daughters of Rebekah, mirroring the existing arrangements for their male counterparts. The Daughters were given the right to elect their own officers, charge for initiation fees, collect dues and undertake charitable and benevolent activities. The name was changed to "Degree of Rebekah" in 1874.[. The Rebekah St. Thomas Lodge No. 18 existed under the jurisdiction of the Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows. The Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18 disbanded in the late 1990s.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of minute books (1937-1982), by-laws (1938-1983), and financial records (1996-1999) relating to the West St. Thomas District No. 49, No. 9, and No. 18 Rebekah Lodges. The fonds consists of the following series:
1. Minutes
2. By-laws
3. Financial records
Name Access
Rebekah Assembly of Ontario, Independent Order of Odd Fellows St. Thomas Lodge No. 18
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Subject Access
Community Service

Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives167108
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1972-1997
Accession Number
2005-27
Storage Location
R8 S5 Sh1 B4
R8 S5 Sh1 B5
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society fonds
Creator
The Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2005-27
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 110
Storage Location
R8 S5 Sh1 B4
R8 S5 Sh1 B5
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1972-1997
Physical Description
3 volumes
Physical Condition
Good
History / Biographical
The Aylmer Horticultural Society was established in 1915, with a Mr. A.J. Elliott as provisional secretary. Although little information beyond the initial announcement of its formation, it continued up until the 1930s and apparently dedicated itself to beautifying the town of Aylmer through planting and maintaining garden beds. No information exists after that, but in terms of its scope and work, it appears to be a precursor for the Aylmer Centennial Garden Society. In 1972, Dr. Bill Cresswell, then Director of the Aylmer Centennial Activities Committee and member of the Aylmer Fair Board, convinced the Board to sponsor an Aylmer Garden Club. The Board agreed and financially sponsored the club for the next four to five years, during which time Dr. Cresswell worked to properly organize the club. He was assisted greatly by Helen Penhale, who had worked for the city of Chicago as an award-winning horticulturist, and Mrs. Penhale came up with a variety of activities for its members, including garden walks, tours, plant sales, and contests. By 1983, talks began to affiliate with the Ontario Horticultural Association, which they achieved (by attaining the required 50-member minimum) in 1984. That same year, the name appears to have been changed to the Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society, although informally it was still known as the Garden Club. In 1996, the name changed to the Aylmer and District Garden Club, with its stated aim being “to encourage interest and improvement in horticulture” through such things as holding meetings to learn about aspects of horticulture; encouraging improvement of private and public grounds by planting trees, shrubs, and flowers; conducting contests and giving out prizes as appropriate; distributing seeds and plants; and promoting the protection of the environment. As before, they also promoted horticulture through donations to the Aylmer Public Library, and served as an affiliate of the Aylmer Fair Board. By September 2005, the club re-established itself as a new entity, the Aylmer and District Horticultural Society, affiliated with the Ontario Horticultural Association.
Custodial History
Scrapbooks were compiled by Audrey Thomson and donated by her in 2005.
Scope and Content
The Aylmer Centennial Garden and Horticultural Society fonds consists of 3 scrapbooks, and associated negatives, encompassing the years 1972-1997, that document the Society's meetings, activities, events, and members.
Name Access
Aylmer (Ont.)
Aylmer Fair
Subject Access
Community Service
Elgin County
Gardening
Scrapbooks

Wallacetown Optimist Club fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives171996
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Wallacetown Optimist Club fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1983-2005
Accession Number
2007-20
2014-13
Storage Location
C10 Sh6 B1-4
C10 Sh7 B3-4
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Wallacetown Optimist Club fonds
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2007-20
2014-13
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Storage Location
C10 Sh6 B1-4
C10 Sh7 B3-4
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1983-2005
Physical Description
10 volumes
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of ten scrapbooks created and maintained by the Wallacetown Optimist Club between 1983 and 2005.
Name Access
Wallacetown (Ont.)
Wallacetown Optimist Club
Subject Access
Community Service

Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives58255
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
objects
Date Range
1931-2004
Accession Number
2008-01
2008-21
Storage Location
R9 S5 Sh5
R9 S5 Sh6 B1-3
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas fonds
Creator
Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2008-01
2008-21
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 110
Storage Location
R9 S5 Sh5
R9 S5 Sh6 B1-3
GMD
textual records
graphic material
objects
Date Range
1931-2004
Physical Description
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.
Custodial History
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:
1. Special Events, 1931-2000
2. Historical records, 1940-1990
3. By-laws, 1941-2001
4. Financial records, 1941-2004
5. Reports, 1944-2003
6. General correspondence, 1947-2001
7. Newsletters, 1948-2004
8. Membership records, 1949-2009.
9. Minutes, 1952-2004
10. Clubs, 1962-1966
11. Service Projects, 1970-2001
Name Access
Kiwanis Club of St. Thomas
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Subject Access
Service Clubs
Community Service

Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Talbot Chapter fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives63479
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Talbot Chapter fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1914-1928
Accession Number
99-7
Storage Location
R9 S5 Sh4 B7
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Talbot Chapter fonds
Creator
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Talbot Chapter
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
99-7
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 110
Storage Location
R9 S5 Sh4 B7
GMD
textual records
Date Range
1914-1928
Physical Description
6 cm of textual records
Physical Condition
Good
History / Biographical
The Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire (IODE), Talbot Chapter, Dutton, Ontario, held its organizational meeting on September 11, 1914. The Chapter disbanded in 1928, holding its' last meeting on February 10, 1928. "The Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire was founded in 1900 in Fredericton, NB, by Margaret Polson Murray of Montréal, who envisioned an organization of women devoted to encouraging imperialism. Beginning with an educational mandate promoting Britain and British institutions through the schools, it became actively involved in both world wars in supporting Canada's efforts on behalf of Britain and the allies. In 1979 the name IODE was officially adopted. IODE chapters are made up of women from many walks of life with a common interest in volunteering their time to improve the quality of life for children, youth and those in need, through educational, social service and citizenship programs. Other areas of interest included immigration, child welfare, community health and social services. In recent years the IODE has concentrated more on community affairs, supporting Canadian educational, cultural and social developments. Although its membership has declined it remains an active women's organization, with 8000 members in 400 branches in 1999."
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records created, collected and maintained by the Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Talbot Chapter, Dutton.
Fonds is organized into the following series:
-Minutes, 1914-1928
-Miscellaneous historical information, ca. 1916-1928
-Correspondence, 1917-1928
Name Access
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire. Talbot Chapter (Dutton, Ont.)
Subject Access
Community Service
Women

Pilot Club of St. Thomas fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives7415
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Pilot Club of St. Thomas fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1948-1993
Storage Location
R7 S1 Sh3 B2
R7 S1 Sh2 B1
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Pilot Club of St. Thomas fonds
Creator
Pilot Club of St. Thomas
Pilot Club International
Description Level
Fonds
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Storage Location
R7 S1 Sh3 B2
R7 S1 Sh2 B1
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1948-1993
Physical Description
60 cm of textual records
ca. 100 photographs : b&w and col.
Physical Condition
The majority of the fonds is in good condition.
History / Biographical
The Pilot Club of St. Thomas was founded in September, 1948 as a business and professional women's service organization affiliated with and sanctioned by Pilot Club International. The club's organization meeting was held at the St. Thomas Y.W.C.A. on September 20, 1948. The club's thirteen charter members chose Mrs. Millicent Ashton to be the inaugural president at a meeting held November 1, 1948, and it celebrated receipt of its charter from Pilot Club International at a meeting held January 5, 1949. Through the years the club fulfilled its community service mandate by raising and donating funds to support numerous local and national institutions and organizations, including the St. Thomas-Elgin General Hospital, St. Thomas Memorial Arena, St. Thomas Memorial Continuing Care Centre, St. Thomas Y.W.C.A., St. Thomas-Elgin Art Gallery, Telecare-Elgin, Elgin County Pioneer Museum, St. Thomas Cenotaph Fund, Mental Health Elgin, Alma College, Elgin Manor, CNIB, Arthritis Society, and United Way. The club also supported several international relief organizations, including UNICEF, and from 1959 to 1973 sponsored a foster daughter from India, providing for her education from public school to graduation with a medical degree. The club's fund raising activities included holding rummage sales, fashion shows, teas, food sales, draws, and organizing bus trips to theatres, shopping centres and other attractions. Effective November 17, 1977 the club was incorporated as the Pilot Club of St. Thomas Inc. under Ontario corporation number 000366069. At a meeting held April 27, 1992 the membership voted to disband, and the club surrendered its charter to Pilot Club International and terminated its incorporation effective August 3, 1992. Pilot Club International is a non-profit classified business and professional women's service club. It was founded by charter of incorporation dated October 16, 1921 in Macon, Georgia where it has always maintained its headquarters. District 17, Pilot Club International's first district outside the United States, was established when the Pilot Club of Windsor, Ontario was chartered on February 17, 1947. By the late 1980s District 17 comprised thirteen clubs, located in Brantford, Hamilton, Markham, Mississauga, Niagara Falls, North York, Oshawa, Ottawa, Sarnia, Scarborough, St. Catherines, St. Thomas and Windsor. Mrs. Jean Conacher of Hamilton, Ontario is the only Canadian ever to serve as president of Pilot Club International, serving in that capacity in 1956-1957. As of 2005 Pilot Club International reported sanctioning approximately 500 clubs with more than 25,000 adult and youth members in five countries: the United States, Japan, Bahamas, Singapore and Canada, with clubs based in Niagara Falls and Scarborough.
Custodial History
The fonds was donated to the Elgin County Library in the mid-to-late 1990s and subsequently transferred to the Elgin County Archives.
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of records created, collected and maintained by the Pilot Club of St. Thomas and its parent organization Pilot Club International. The fonds includes minutes of the club's meetings, scrapbooks created to document the club's activities, and miscellaneous records including club attendance records and standing rules as well as manuals, brochures and other materials issued by Pilot Club International and collected, used and maintained by the Pilot Club of St. Thomas. The fonds is arranged in the following series: 1. Minutes, 1948-1992; 2. Scrapbooks, 1948-1992; 3. Miscellaneous Records, 1948-1993. The fonds is particularly useful to those interested in researching the history of the Pilot Club of St. Thomas and its fund raising and community service activities, to genealogists seeking information about club members, and to those researching the history of Canadian community service clubs in general and Canadian women's community service clubs in particular. The fonds is also of interest to researchers concerned with the history of Pilot Club International and its Canadian operations.
Name Access
Pilot Club of St. Thomas
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Subject Access
Women
Community Service

Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives7789
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1932-1999
Accession Number
2005-16
2006-24
2007-21
Storage Location
R7 S4 Sh2 B4-5
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter fonds
Creator
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2005-16
2006-24
2007-21
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Storage Location
R7 S4 Sh2 B4-5
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1932-1999
Physical Description
18.5 cm of textual records
7 photographs : col.
History / Biographical
The Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire (IODE), Tonti Chapter, St. Thomas, Ontario, received its charter in 1932, and took its name from the original name of Kettle Creek - Tonti. Due to declining membership, the Chapter disbanded in December 1999. "The Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire was founded in 1900 in Fredericton, NB, by Margaret Polson Murray of Montréal, who envisioned an organization of women devoted to encouraging imperialism. Beginning with an educational mandate promoting Britain and British institutions through the schools, it became actively involved in both world wars in supporting Canada's efforts on behalf of Britain and the allies. In 1979 the name IODE was officially adopted. IODE chapters are made up of women from many walks of life with a common interest in volunteering their time to improve the quality of life for children, youth and those in need, through educational, social service and citizenship programs. Other areas of interest included immigration, child welfare, community health and social services. In recent years the IODE has concentrated more on community affairs, supporting Canadian educational, cultural and social developments. Although its membership has declined it remains an active women's organization, with 8000 members in 400 branches in 1999."
Custodial History
The records comprising this fonds were donated to the Elgin County Archives in 2005-2006 by the Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records created, collected and maintained by the Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire, Tonti Chapter, St. Thomas, Ontario. Fonds is organized into the following series: 1. Minutes and Annual Reports, 1972-1999 2. Correspondence, 1991-1994 3. Miscellaneous historical information, 1932-1994
Name Access
Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire. Tonti Chapter (St. Thomas, Ont.)
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Subject Access
Community Service
Social Services
Women

The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives7852
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas fonds
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1876-ca. 2000
Accession Number
2013-09
2017-39
Storage Location
R7 S1 Sh2 B2
R7 S1 Sh1 B1-2
R7 S2 Sh6 B1-3
M10g
Display
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas fonds
Creator
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas
Description Level
Fonds
Accession Number
2013-09
2017-39
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 105
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Archives Reference Room
Storage Location
R7 S1 Sh2 B2
R7 S1 Sh1 B1-2
R7 S2 Sh6 B1-3
M10g
Display
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
1876-ca. 2000
Physical Description
1.15 m of textual records
17 photographs : b&w and col., some sepia toned
1 drawing
4 signs
History / Biographical
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.
Custodial History
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: Minutes, 1876-1952; Financial Statements, 1942-1987; Residents Registers/ Log Books, 1878-1924; General Ledgers, 1892-1975; Returns to Government, 1878-1971; Legal Records,1921-1974; Inspection Registers, 1965-1977; Staff Account Ledgers, 1957-1975; Photographs, [189-?]-1969; 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.
Name Access
The Ladies' Benevolent and Temperance Society of St. Thomas
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Thomas Williams Home
Subject Access
Homes for the Aged
Women
Community Service
Access Restriction
Access to personal information of residents subject to restrictions.
Related Material
Elgin County House of Industry/ Elgin Manor fonds
Images

Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch fonds

https://inmagic.elgin.ca/en/permalink/archives7923
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas
Description Level
Fonds
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
[1887?]-1991
Storage Location
R3 S5 Sh3 B7 F9-28
R3 S5 Sh3 B9 F11-23
R7 S3 Sh5 B1
Museum / Archive
Elgin County Archives
Part Of
Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas
Creator
Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch
Description Level
Fonds
Storage Room
Archives Storage Rm. 107
Storage Location
R3 S5 Sh3 B7 F9-28
R3 S5 Sh3 B9 F11-23
R7 S3 Sh5 B1
GMD
textual records
graphic material
Date Range
[1887?]-1991
Physical Description
57 cm of textual records
1 photograph : b&w
History / Biographical
The Women's Art Association of Canada was established in Toronto, Ontario in 1886 by its founding president the painter and educator Mary Dignam (1857-1938) with a mandate to promote "a general interest in art and the encouragement of women's work for the purpose of mutual help and co-operation of its members, the establishment of art lectures, reading clubs and music study clubs, the holding of exhibitions of paintings, designs, sculpture, engraving and industrial arts, and the encouragement and development of the art handicrafts and home industries of Canada." The national Association solicited and assisted the establishment of local branches across Canada. The St. Thomas, Ontario Branch was founded at an organization meeting held at the St. Thomas Business College on March 26, 1895. The Branch had eleven founding members, who elected the St. Thomas painter and teacher Miss Susan Paul to be the Branch's inaugural president. Miss Paul served as president until 1898, when she was succeeded by Miss A. Ermatinger who in turn served until 1920. Other long-serving Branch presidents include Mrs. Amasa Wood, 1920-1935 and Mrs. G.L. Kennedy, 1940-1948. In April, 1930, the Women's Art Association of Canada affiliated with the Lyceum Club of London, England, and changed its name to the Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada, necessitating a similar change in designation for its affiliate branches. Over the years, the Branch met at various venues in the City of St. Thomas, including the Y.W.C.A., the St. Thomas-Elgin Art Gallery, and Sifton House at Alma College. Branch activities were principally funded by members' fees, but also by exhibitions, lectures, teas and other events organized by the Branch. Under the original rules adopted by the Branch, members were periodically obliged to present papers/ lectures at Branch meetings for the entertainment and edification of the general membership. The Branch fulfilled its mandate to advance members' and the general public's appreciation for and understanding of the arts by organizing lectures and exhibitions, arranging museum and studio tours and sponsoring the placement of original art work and prints in public schools. The period of most intense interest and activity in the Branch occurred from the late 1940s to the mid 1950s, when paid annual memberships typically exceeded 100 and 75 members on average attended the Branch's bi-monthly meetings during its October to April season. Sadly, interest in the Branch gradually but steadily declined from this high point, and the Branch disbanded circa 1990 as a result of insufficient membership. In 2005, the Women's Art Association of Canada continued in operation as a charitable organization that provides scholarships for students studying music and the arts.
Custodial History
Fonds was donated to the Elgin County Library ca. 1991 and subsequently transferred to the Elgin County Archives.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records created, collected and maintained by the Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch/ Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch, including minutes of meetings; copies of annual event programmes and annual reports; financial statements and account books; lists of members; collections of newspaper clippings and scrapbooks documenting Branch activities; and samples of papers presented at meetings by Branch members. Fonds comprises the following eleven series: Minutes, 1895-1986; Annual Programmes, 1900-1990; Annual Reports, 1937-1988; Financial Statements, 1919-1987; Membership Lists, 1895-1980; Newspaper Clippings, 1920-1988; Scrapbooks, 1921-[1983?]; Meeting Presentations, 1910-1971; Cash Books, 1895-1931; Accounts Journals, 1905-1929; Miscellaneous Records, [1887?]-1991. Fonds will be useful to researchers concerned with the establishment, development, administration, membership and activities of the Branch, its parent organization the Women's Art Association of Canada/ Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada, and private art appreciation/ education societies in Canada generally. Local historians and genealogists will profit from consulting the Branch's minutes, programmes, and membership lists when researching the identity and activities of individual Branch members.
Name Access
Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch
Lyceum Club and Women's Art Association of Canada - St. Thomas Ontario Branch
St. Thomas (Ont.)
Subject Access
Women
Community Service
Artists

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