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CHARLES DOBIE : LOCAL HISTORY
KEARNS & VIRGINIATOWN, ONTARIO

Kearns & Virginiatown, Ont.
Mostly Photographs

Updated March 25, 2014.

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Virginatown-Kearns welcome sign. Photo by Bob White
1988, 2006 & 2010 REUNION PHOTOGRAPHS
I hope everyone enjoyed the Kearns-V'Town reunion. See the 2010 reunion page -- 82 photos so far, so please send me your best (or worst, for that matter). The 2006 reunion photo page has almost 100 photos posted, but there is room for lots more. Also see the 1988 KLCVI reunion page, with 18 photos so far. or you can snail-mail them to me as well. My postal address is at the bottom of the main history menu page.
See Kearns & Virginiatown
on the latest version of
Google Maps.
10 LOST PEOPLE
As of Oct. 2, 2013
Are you in this list?

Other photos of Kearns and Virginiatown are on my genealogy website.




KIRKLAND LAKE : KLCVI YEARBOOKS & REUNION



2006 VIRGINIATOWN REUNION :



2010 VIRGINIATOWN REUNION :



CHEMINIS & CHEMINIS MOUNTAIN :



EDDIE DUKE POST CARDS :



KEARNS :


Joe Nickerson JOE NICKERSON,
FOLK ARTIST
Joe Nickerson has lived all his life on the same street in Kearns. Formerly a railway worker, he is retired and took up sculpture about 10 years ago. His medium is white PVC tubing. . . .
See photos of Joe's art and a short description by Peter Bikaunieks.
Photos by Peter Bikaunieks, Lloyd Hart and Andy Ross.
On the evening of August 21, 2007, Joe Nickerson's house was destoyed by an arsonist and he barely escaped with his life. I'll let Peter Bikaunieks tell it . . .

" . . . we visited Kirkland Lake Aug. 20/07 and stopped at Joe's place in Kearns Aug. 21. . . . Stayed an hour and had a good chin wag. Interestingly, Joe loves tropical birds and lets a number of them fly free around the house. He also has a large aquarium where he keeps several large, green turtles. After leaving Joe's we climbed Mount Cheminis and drove home next day. That evening we learned Joe's house had been torched while he slept. He had, it seems, barely escaped alive. According to an on-line news item, police were, and still are, investigating the fire. Ironically, the day before, Joe had remarked how well some of his neighbours treat him. I noted that because Joe is a bit of an eccentric, as you well know. Both the house that was burned and his studio across the street, which was not burned, were extensively decorated with his PVC art objects. Though every one in Kearns seems friendly, I always sensed, and likely Joe also sensed, that some folks might be irked by his eccentricity. Our immediate difficulty was that there was no way to contact Joe. We finally called the McGarry municipal office in Virginiatown. While Joe had survived the fire all right, he had simply vanished. . . . .

Finally, early in October, Joe called us. . . . We learned he was staying with friends in Quebec. He said that on the night of the fire he was awakened by a loud explosion near his head and quickly learned the house was on fire. He had just enough time to save himself and a couple of his birds. The rest and the turtles perished in the fire. He got out with the clothes on his back, a bird cage, and a suitcase of his important documents which he kept packed for an emergency. Otherwise everything was lost in the fire, which also engulfed the abandoned house next door. . . . He's thinking of returning to Kearns after the winter with the view of rebuilding his place. I asked if he had any suspicions about how the fire was started. He said many suspicions but no proof. Still, he plans to come home to Kearns where he has lived for 60 years. "




KERR-ADDISON GOLD MINES :



"I REMEMBER, I REMEMBER . . . ." :

In this section some people have put their writing skills to the test and written their recollections of their childhood in Cheminis and/or Kearns and/or Virginiatown. Please keep these items coming in!

My Trip Down Memory Lane. by Mance (Potvin) Delahunt who, with her parents and three siblings, lived in V-Town from about 1938 to 1953. She started Grade 1 at V-Town Public School in 1941. Many people are noted in passing, but specially mentioned are: Laura & Enid Durham, Dr. Hagerman, John Porter, Joan Rebelski, Rosalie St Aubin. Other surnames mentioned: Austin, Bury, Greer, Malane, McCann, Muck, Neville, Perron, Phillips, Weiler.

 

A V-Town Kid in the 1940's. by Graham (Glen) Bromley. Born in 1934 on a farm near Pembroke, Ont. Glen's family moved to Kirkland Lake where he attended Grade 1 in 1941. By 1942 they were living in Kearns and then later on Coville St. in Virginiatown. After finishing school in V-Town Glen went to KLCVI, graduating in 1953. Surnames mentioned: Aceti, Bolduc, Brewer, Bromley, Buskey, Cameron, Cutler, Del Bosco, Foley, Golden, Hamilton, Herd, Judge, Latimer, Mann, McCall, McCauley, McCurdy, McMorin, Moore, Oehring, Palmer, Radakovich, Ramsey, Rebelski, Stratford, Turner, Whalen, Wilkie, Young.

 

A Child's View of Virginiatown in the 1940's. A wonderful document by Kathleen Anne Palmer-O'Neil who was born in Virginiatown in 1942. The Palmers lived there from 1938 until 1948. Several photos are included. Surnames: Green, McKenna, Oehring, Palmer, Pollock, Prentice, Stewart.

 

Childhood Memories of Virginiatown, 1948-1953. Written by Mike Jewell, this is partly a response to Kathleen Palmer's article above. But Mike carries on the story after the Palmers left Virginiatown in 1948. Families given more than passing mention are: Bouchard, Carter, Charlebois, Cox, Joyce, Lamoureux, Palmer, Pollock, Scott, Spencer, Wilkie.

 

Memories of Virginiatown & Kearns, 1944-1956. Written by Art Brown who lived in Virginiatown in the early and mid-1940's and then in Kearns until 1956. A great many families are mentioned in passing but details are given about the following: Allan, Bolger, Guerin, Judge, McCrea, McLennan, McMorin, Nelson, Nugent, Portelance, Turcotte, Wilkie.

 

Reflections on Chemins, 1946-56. By Germaine Larmond who was postmistress in Chemins from late 1950 to 1956. Surnames mentioned: Francoeur, Landry.

 

Virginiatown Memories. A short biography and reminiscence by Mike Molotkin who lived in Virginiatown from 1958 to 1978. Surnames mentioned: Adam, Bordin, Clouthier, Croteau, Eastman, Kirby, Klimov, Kowbassa, Paquette, Spack.

 

Kerr Addison Underground. An article by Mike Molotkin. What was it like to leave the surface and head underground? Mike worked underground at Kerr Addison from January 1977 to April 1978 as a motor crew operator, lumber journeyman and in a stope as well. Names mentioned: Otto Bock, Lou Bougie, Harry Curtis, Steve David, Hans Kneiremen, Stan Materny, Michel Paquette, Paul Ranger, Bill Reynolds, Frank Sacher, Donald Veinot, Richard White, Ron Wollner, John Yargeau.

 



McGARRY TWP. SCHOOLS : STUDENT LISTS & CLASS PHOTOS

This section has mostly class photos of Virginiatown Public School, with only one of Kearns Public School. They are arranged by year, then by grade within year, to help you find your class. This is a very popular section of this website, so if you have photos of any of the missing classes I would love to get a copy from you. It doesn't matter if you've forgotten everyone's name, website users will identify most students very quickly.

Margaret Stratford Margaret Stratford

On June 24th, 2013, Margaret Stratford, former teacher and principal of Kearns and McGarry Public Schools, celebrated her 100th birthday.

Margaret is currently a resident of Teck Pioneer Senior's Residence and you may email her at: residents@ntl.sympatico.ca with the subject title: Margaret Stratford.

VIRGINIATOWN
and KEARNS
STUDENT LIST
1936-1986.
This list of about 3,800 names was transcribed from the McGarry Township 40th Anniversary booklet. The students listed are from Virginiatown Public School starting in 1936, Kearns Public School (see school photo) starting in 1950 (although this is an error, as Kearns classes started in February, 1955), and Ecole St-Louis starting in 1956. Names are listed alphabetically with all three schools combined. Click on a letter below to find a surname.
A BC DE FG H I  JK LM NO PQ RS TV WY Z

VIRGINIATOWN
CLASS LISTS
1939-1990.
Thanks to Ellen Watson for transcribing these class lists from various sources. There are only a few classes listed for each year and all classes may not be complete. Included are the adult students of an English as a Second Language class given about 1946-47.
Public School Yearbook for 1945. A 32-page booklet published by the Public School Area of McGarry. Includes class photos of all grades. Many thanks to Brenda Belmonte for sending me the page scans.


VIRGINIATOWN :

Please note that school class photos are in a separate section immediately above.

NEW  Did you know J. (possibly Joseph) Piwowarczyk in Virginiatown? He was Ukrainian and lived in Virginiatown at least in 1949 & 1950, and probably worked at Kerr-Addison. See More . . . (Added February 9, 2014)


1930's to 1940's PHOTO ALBUM, with photos from KERR ADDISON & DOBIE TOWNSITE.

NEW  thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo Malane Family Photos. Thanks to Eleanor "Pidie" (Malane) Balleny for this collection of 15 photos spanning the years 1938 to 1952. In addition to Malane family members, there are photos of: John & Jimmy Baker, David & Elizabeth Beggs, René Cadieux, Ann & John Cutler, Jane Dewar, Enid Durham, Ronald Gauthier, Julia Golden, Dick Guerin, Brenda Jarvis, Wendy McIntyre, JoAnne Postle, Jim & Mary Row, Jane Wickham. Only one girl is unidentified. Other Malane photos are posted in the school class photos and the Kerr-Addison sections. (Added February 20, 2014)
thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo NEW  Collison Family Photos. Thanks to Leona (Collison) Belmonte for this collection of 10 photos taken from about 1945 to 1953. Surnames: Aceti, Allen, Bell, Burke, Cameron, Collison, Eagle, Farrell, Garvin, Gray, Hamelin, Jewell, Lacoeux, McLennan, McPhail, North, Oehring, Palmer, Robinson, Ross, Scott, Stori, Stoss, Turner, Webb, Wilcox. (Updated July 24, 2013)
thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo NEW  Lamoureux Family Photos. Thanks to Richard Lamoureux for this collection of 23 photos mostly taken from about 1945 to the 1960's. Surnames so far: Darragh, Lamoureux, Locke, Lopata, Mann, McIntyre, Stratford, Tabaka. Richard's grandfather, Cliff, and father Edward, were barbers in Virginiatown for 40 years or more. (Updated June 26, 2013)
thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo thumbnail photo NEW  Poulin Family photos. Thanks to Dianne (Poulin) Bush for this collection of 34 photos. They were taken between about 1953 and the 1970's in both Kearns and Virginiatown. Most people are identified but some, especially school students, are not. Surnames: Ayotte, Beltrame, Breen, Briand, Camden, Cameron, Cook, Coté, Daviau, Drummond, Falardeau, Fortin, Gauthier, Grimard, Gusmanis, Hull, Lavoie, Lemire, Locke, Lowe, Malane, Malloy, Morin, Oehring, Poulin, Prest, Roy, Sagin, Spadatto, Stratford, Sudol, Tardif, Timmerman, Turnbull, Vieglas, Young. (Updated November 24, 2013)
AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHS, AUGUST 30, 2003
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Kerr-Addison site
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North V-Town
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V-Town
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Old School site
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North V-Town
Click on a thumbnail above to see a larger photo.



LARDER LAKE :


Please see the Larder Lake website for more historic photos.

Other photos of Kearns and Virginiatown are on my genealogy website.

Does anyone know what happened to the "Welcome to Virginiatown" website?

Do you have photos of the Kearns & Virginiatown area?
I would like to put them on this website.

Website format is © Copyright 1999- by Charles Dobie.
All photographs are © Copyright by their contributors.




Click here to see a collection of my photos on the Flickr website.


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