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Exhibit 2020: Celebrating a Century

Although the museum is not open for the 2020 season, the Board of Directors decided that it did not want to miss sharing the story of Owen Sound becoming a city one hundred years ago. 

There are several ways to experience this.

Do you have a smart phone? Are you in the area? Come down to the Centre and through Augmented Reality watch short videos about our 2020 exhibit: “Celebrating a Century”.

Start on the east side of the former CN train station at 1155 1st Avenue West, Owen Sound. Locate the panel in the window with the poster: “Start here”. There you will find the instructions.  Open your internet browser and type in:  You will move to your right and go around the building stopping at each window where there is a poster. Point your phone at each of the 8 images located in the windows to hear the story of how Owen Sound became a City.  These will be accessible in this way until the end of October.

If you don’t have a smart phone or are not in the area, go to our web page Virtual Exhibit. On that page, you will find links to the Community Waterfront Heritage Centre YouTube channel and also links to the individual videos. Subscribe to our YouTube channel. 

There will be a third way that you will be able to access the information and it will be in print. We will update this information when it is available.

Online Scavenger Hunt

It is time for some fun. Take part in an Online Scavenger Hunt to Railway Museums in Canada.

Follow the clues to the different Railway museums in Canada. The link includes the instructions for submitting your answers by May 31, 2020 at 5 p.m. EDT.

Thank  you to the Toronto Railway Museum for hosting this event. The Community Waterfront Heritage Centre is pleased to take part in this activity.  

A Local Manufacturing Company

In last week’s posting of items from the Community Waterfront Heritage’s Centre’s collection, nothing was shown that represented Industry, one of the three areas of focus of the Centre. 

This photograph is part of the archival collection. These two women are shown with a machine that made a product in an Owen Sound factory. This product could be found in stores outside of Canada. What were they making and what was the company name? Did you or did anyone in your family work at this industry? 

This black and white photo depicts two women at the toothpick machine, Keenan’s, Owen Sound. The women are identified as Darlene Brown and Jo Forbes.  Mrs. Forbes was awarded a gold pin for 50 years service. 

This shows one of the toothpick boxes that is in the collection. 

Keenan Woodenware Co. Ltd. / Keenan Bros. Ltd. / Keenan Industries Ltd. were names the Company was known by. It was an important industry in Owen Sound for one hundred years (1896-1996) and was located on the east side of the harbour. 

The August 1, 1929 issue of The Financial Post featured Owen Sound industries. “Keenan Industries Varied Products Wide Distribution” provided information about the company.  Keenan Industries was the sole manufacturer of toothpicks in Canada.

The parent company was Keenan Brothers Ltd., all privately held in the family circle. … Everything manufactured is produced cheaper through the close alliance of tugs, barges, sawmills and factories and one set of owners who are content with one profit from the allied industries. [1]

The company’s large ad on the front page of the second section “From Stump to Finished Article” highlighted the diversification of the company.

Grey Roots Archives provides some history of Keenan Woodenware Co. Ltd. / Keenan Bros. Ltd. / Keenan Industries Ltd.  and shows some related items in their collection.