childhood memories of EBlana
The 2019 Ontario Heritage Conference (OHC) will be held in beautiful Bluewater and Goderich in just 86 days.
The current home of Walter and Min Zuppinger, 1 Tuyll Street, is a turn-of-the century Tudor home. Granddaughter of the previous owners, Abby Armstrong, shared this picture of how the house looked when she roamed the grounds there as a child. (Submitted photo)
It is noted on the OHC website that, “The conference theme is heritage economics and features an exciting program focused on how the agricultural, marine, industrial and tourist economies in Bluewater and Goderich have shaped the built and natural heritage of these communities and, more recently, the interplay between heritage and tourism.”
Bayfield is going to be an important presence at the annual Ontario Heritage Conference which will be coming to Ontario’s West Coast May 30 to June 1. To generate some excitement and to allow area residents to reflect on their heritage several local history buffs have come together to create a feature called, “Take a Look”. They will be providing village anecdotes in the weeks leading up to the conference. This week’s recollection is provided by Abby Armstrong.
Majestically positioned, the Metcalf house (forever “Eblana”*** to my family) stands a silent tribute to a lifestyle long gone. Now the home of the Zuppinger family at 1 Tuyll Street, Eblana, encased by its privet hedge and stone gates, still entices those who pass by to crane their necks, steal a peek and imagine what stands within the proud facade.
To a five year-old it was a marvelous place, a veritable fairyland-cum-castle brimming with things to explore. As a child, my siblings and I approached it stealthily, creeping through the cedars at the gate until we exploded onto the lawn and up the front porch, screaming, “We’re here, we’re here!” much to the delight of our grandparents, Brigadier Dr. Morgan and Edith Smith.
Eblana was built at the turn of the century by Dr. William Metcalf, a well-known surgeon in Detroit. The house he built had two parts, the servants’ quarters (or annex) on the left which was connected by a covered walkway to the main house on the right. The rooms of the main house were beautifully proportioned with high wood coffered ceilings on the ground floor and the requisite cavernous fieldstone fireplace in the great room. I’m convinced that it was that fireplace which ensured that I scoffed at those who queried Santa’s trips down the chimney. If I could stand inside it, then Santa with a load of toys would have no problem at all.
With careful wooing, my grandfather convinced Jessie Metcalf, the last of Dr. Metcalf’s children, to sell him Eblana. Although Jessie had since moved next door, she was not only determined that her family cottage not be sold to developers, she also wanted the right kind of person to purchase it. Jessie was, amongst other things, an amateur botanist and a passionate gardener. Luckily for us, Jessie and Grandad came to a meeting of minds over their joint interests and the deal was made.
My grandparents purchased the house with many of the contents for which it was known. The winding of the imposing grandfather clock was accomplished with the protocol and decorum that would make the royal family seem gauche and the billiard table rivalled any of Alcocks (billiard table manufacturers). And it was at the dining room table where, according to Jessie Metcalf, Dr. Metcalf, the Detroit General Hospital Association and Henry Ford signed the final paperwork to finalize the creation of the Henry Ford Hospital. I loved the clawfoot tub. At six feet in length this colossal tub held all the grandchildren at once and was much more fun than any Olympic-sized pool.
While the main house was the domain of the adults, the annex was the dominion of the grandchildren. With its own washroom, we were in a kingdom unto ourselves. Those of my generation will remember the Bayfield dump where we know recycling was truly born. Anybody who had anything remotely useful to get rid of would place it carefully on the edge of the dump allowing it to be retrieved by villagers and used again. Everybody in the village participated in the fun from the loftiest to lowest. I brought back a rug once which may still grace my bedroom in the annex. My grandfather almost put his foot down about keeping it but, in all things that mattered, my grandmother ruled the roost and after several days of scrubbing we carefully carried my treasure in. I, of course, had no idea that this system of sharing was anything out of the ordinary until I told my city friends who gasped in horror.
For years, my grandparents opened the gates to friends and acquaintances so they could view the fireworks from our cliff. While the adults passed the wine, as well as the hat to collect donations, I made sure younger guests saw the Metcalf family pet tombstones and the Copper Beech tree with the water tap that protruded from it. I told the young ones it was a maple syrup tree and, with their eyes like saucers, I turned the tap on to let the ‘maple syrup flow’.
My grandfather to his death remained a soldier and the one war he did not win was the battle against the cliff. For years we grandchildren were lowered by rope to plant crown vetch by hand, into the cliff - an attempt to reduce erosion caused by exposed clay. Gabions came next and truck loads of rock were dropped in the backyard for us to toss over the cliff, and then retrieve and load into gabions constructed by our parents and grandfather. Finally, my grandfather, with advice received from some professors at Western, purchased a barge and had it towed to Eblana with the intent of scuttling it to create a breakwall to protect the clay cliff base. As many may already know the height of a sandbar was misjudged, the seacocks were opened too soon and the barge sunk far too far out to have any positive impact on Eblana’s cliff. The end result was, to put it mildly, disappointing.
However, my grandfather and I did enjoy sitting in Pioneer Park listening to sages tell visitors about the sinking of the ship with the loss of all on board despite the brave Bayfield residents, who roped together, struggled to save passengers. Once we were even entranced by an exceptionally good storyteller who spoke of a desperate pirate battle. Perhaps the first story was based on a highly fictionalized account of the wreck of the Malta in 1882 whose crew was saved by the Bayfield Orangemen but the second account was pure fantasy.
Our family was blessed to be the caretakers of Eblana for a time and it was a wrench when we handed over the keys to the current caretakers. In truth though, a piece of our family will remain forever entwined in this home’s history. Soon the daffodils planted by my grandfather will begin to push their way through the earth and signal the birth of another spring. It seems fitting that as we look back into our village’s history, the work of villagers-past continues to renew us.
*** Eblana (Greek) is the name of an ancient Irish settlement. It was traditionally believed by scholars to refer to the same site as the modern city of Dublin. (Wikipedia)
Brigadier Dr. Smith left indelible mark on bayfield
Brigadier Dr. Morgan Smith (Submitted photo)
Brigadier Dr. Morgan Smith, the second owner of the house at 1 Tuyll Street, was one of Canada’s true war heroes who also left an indelible mark on the Village of Bayfield.
When Brig. Dr. Smith and his wife, Edith, retired to Bayfield in 1964, they moved into the 'Metcalf House' beside Pioneer Park. He would later become one of the community leaders who helped change this village forever.
Here are just a few of his achievements as a village resident:
He ran for Parliament.
Warden of Trinity Anglican Church
Chair of the Bayfield Centennial Committee
President of the Pioneer Park Association
President of the Huron County Cancer Society
First President of the Wednesday Evening Bridge Club
Member of the Village Committee of Adjustment
Bayfield Historical Society member
Bayfield Garden Club member
He was responsible for recruiting some ex-military doctors to come live and practice here, including Dr. Wallace.
His long list of military and medical achievements before he settled in Bayfield earned him the Order of the British Empire. He studied with Dr. Charles Best, one of the discoverers of Insulin, while obtaining his M.A. at the University of Toronto. He survived the ill-fated Dieppe raid and landed at Normandy. He was the head of allied medical care during the Korean War. After his illustrious military career, he became the Chief Medical Officer for Western Canada.
Go Fund Me Campaign continues in support of Keys Family
The Keys family - Sarah, Ryan and Everly celebrated the holiday with some time at the arena on Family Day, Feb. 18. The trio lost all of their personal belongings in a house fire on Sunday night (Feb. 24). Friends and family and service clubs in the village are rallying to help. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
Owners of The Spotted Cow and The Bayfield Public House on the village’s Main Street lost all of their personal belongings on Sunday, Feb. 24 when in the middle of one of the worst storms of winter 2019 their house succumbed to fire.
Residents of Hamilton Street, Ryan and Sarah Keys, along with their young daughter, Everly, are now homeless despite the best efforts of firefighters from Bayfield, Brucefield and Zurich who battled the blaze in high winds and snow.
Friends and family members have immediately rallied to aid the family creating a Go Fund Me Campaign where financial donations can be made: www.gofundme.com
The family is still in need of 18-24 month old spring and summer clothing for a girl, laundry baskets and cleaning supplies..
For more information please contact Katie Johnston at email@example.com or Lion Don Vance at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anthropocene to be shown at the Bayfield town hall
The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association is hosting a screening of the award-winning film “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch” at the Bayfield Town Hall on March 19.
The film is the result of the Anthropocene project, a Canadian director, producer and photographer who have traveled the world recording “us”, “humans” as the primary cause of permanent planetary change. The film, from these three globally respected Canadians: Nicholas de Pencier, Jennifer Baichwal and Edward Burtynsky, was released in the fall of 2018 to cinemas. Their work is based on the research of a group of scientists working together worldwide for the past 10 years to gather evidence to define this new geological era. This climate change documentary features the footage from a team of filmmakers who traveled to 20 countries across six continents to detail the effects humans have had on the planet. The film is narrated by Alicia Vikandeer.
“Anthropocene: The Human Epoch” will be shown starting at 7 p.m. Admission is by donation or free for members of the BRVTA with a 2019 paid membership.
Membership donations allow the BRVTA volunteers to keep the trails accessible, covering expenses such as liability insurance, maintenance, programming, training and signage. Keeping the trails accessible is an ongoing effort. The membership registration desk will be available at the Bayfield Town Hall during the event.
Annual membership costs are: $20 for individuals or $30 for families.
For questions on membership or this volunteer program, please do not hesitate to reach out via e-mail to: email@example.com.
The BRVTA allows all residents to enjoy the area’s natural beauty, including safe, historic and environmentally sensitive walking trails, suitable for every fitness level.
The Bayfield Trails are managed entirely by volunteers. The projects undertaken by the BRVTA are paid for by community contributions, successful grant applications and by annual memberships.
Membership can be activated or renewed by visiting their website: www.BayfieldTrails.com or by sending a cheque to: Bayfield River Valley Trail Association P.O. Box 531, Bayfield, ON N0M 1G0
concert to be flavored by newfoundland influences
The Bayfield and Area Chamber of Commerce (BACC) is working with the Bayfield Historical Society (BAS) to celebrate the life and achievements of Admiral H.W. Bayfield. It is nearly the 200th anniversary of Admiral Bayfield surveying Lake Huron. His work is an amazing achievement of perseverance and dedication. He went on to survey the other Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence River, and the coastlines of the Atlantic and Newfoundland. Events are being planned for 2019 and 2020.
To kick off the celebrations the Ennis Sisters will be performing at the Bayfield Town Hall on Friday, Apr. 5. According to organizers, these amazingly talented musicians and will be a fitting start to April events.
The Ennis Sisters will be performing at the Bayfield Town Hall on Friday, Apr. 5 to kick off the 2019-20 celebrations of Admiral Bayfield's surveying Lake Huron. (Submitted photo)
The Ennis Sisters stepped into the spotlight in 1997 with the release of their debut album, “Red is the Rose”. Twenty years later, with 12 albums, a Juno award and multiple music awards to their credit, Maureen, Karen and Teresa have toured all over the world, performing on some of the most prestigious stages and festivals. Flavored by Celtic and traditional Newfoundland influences, the Ennis Sisters are known for their captivating sibling harmonies and their powerful, often humorous, storytelling.
Their 2018 release, “Keeping Time”, is reflective yet uplifting, about keeping time in both life and music. Produced by Alan Doyle, the album was inspired by the unraveling and tethering of memory, and is part homage, part celebration of life, as the album honors their father, whom they recently lost to dementia.
Tickets are $40 and are available on www.ticketscene.ca. There will be a cash bar. The town hall doors will open at 7 p.m. with the concert at 7:30 p.m.
The BACC would like to thank the concert sponsors: Scotiabank, the Lake House of Bayfield and the Little Inn for their support.
And in keeping with the Admiral Bayfield celebrations later in April, the BHS will be presenting a play by local playwright Judy Keightley on the subject of this great explorer and surveyor himself.
Life at the rink
The Bayfield Relics have home ice advantage versus the Clinton Foul Ups tonight (March 6).
Game time is 8:30 p.m.
The Bayfield Relics are an Oldtimers Hockey Team that was founded in 1987. Their home ice is the Bayfield Arena. The Relics play their season schedule versus teams from Huron and Middlesex Counties.
SOUP AND A MOVIE
“Soup and a Movie at Trinity St. James” will be held on Tuesdays during the upcoming Lenten season!
The congregation of Trinity St. James Anglican Church welcomes the community to join in fellowship over a hearty bowl of soup while delighting in a great cinematic work.
This extremely popular community event will begin on Tuesday, March 12 and will be held on the four subsequent Tuesdays after that from 6-9 p.m. Those who attend will enjoy a choice of soup, bread and a beverage all for a free will donation followed by a movie.
This year’s movie schedule is: Crazy Rich Asians, March 12; The Soloist, March 19; Battle of the Sexes, March 26; Breathe, Apr. 2; and The Zoo Keeper’s Wife, Apr. 9.
Anyone who has yet to come out to a movie night should consider doing so as the church hall boasts surround sound as well as a terrific big screen plus it is a fabulous evening to socialize and escape the winter blahs. Participants are asked to reserve a spot by calling 519 565-2790. All in the community are welcome to attend.
Saturdays at the Library
Pauline Hoffman (Submitted photo)
Pauline Hoffman, of Just in Time Solutions, will be the next speaker at “Saturdays at the Library” hosted by the Friends of the Bayfield Library (FOBL) on March 23.
Hoffman will present on “Everyday Organization or Downsizing” starting at 10:30 a.m. at the Bayfield Public Library.
She is an expert in providing solutions so that people can live and work in flow, transforming chaos into clarity and calm by aligning their internal and external environments. She will provide ideas to transform living spaces into welcoming functional spaces within a calm stress-free environment.
March Break is the perfect time to visit the Bayfield Public Library especially when there are special programs being offered – don’t forget to reserve a spot!
On Tuesday, March 12, the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority will present their Animal Detectives Nature Program from 10 a.m. to noon. And then on Friday, March 15, Mad Science returns with The Science of Magic for a one-hour presentation starting at 1:30 p.m. Both programs are open to children ages five to 12, registration and adult accompaniment are required.
Please call 519 565- 2886 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
Then on Saturday, March 16 a special Children's Art Activity for "St. Patrick's Day!" will be offered with Artist and Illustrator Karlene Ryan from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. To register for this art activity please contact Karlene Ryan at email@example.com
Communities around the world will demand action on climate change by marking Earth Hour on March 30. All are encouraged to turn their lights off for 60 minutes starting at 8:30 p.m.
To celebrate Earth Hour in Bayfield everyone is invited to turn off lights at home and head to St Andrew’s United Church to join in a one-hour sing-along of songs from all over the world with the Glee Sisters.
The program will launch the Bayfield Tree Project’s 2019 season. There is no admission fee to this event but a free will offering will be collected for the work of the Bayfield Tree Project Committee.
The church lights will be turned off at the appointed time so those who attend are asked to bring a flashlight so they might see the words for the sing-along portion of the evening.
The sweet taste of maple syrup poured over a stack of freshly flipped pancakes is a spring ritual for many Canadians. All in the community are invited to join the congregation of Trinity St. James' Anglican Church as they host the tenth annual Pancake Brunch and Sugar Bush Tour on Apr. 6.
Pancakes and sausage with Rick and Rusty Schilbe's fresh maple syrup, coffee, juice and dessert will be served at the Pine Lake Campground Recreational Hall, 77794 Orchard Line, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
In addition to brunch, participants will be able to go on a hayride and once they reach their destination see first-hand how maple syrup is made at the Rick Schilbe Farm. Wagon rides will leave from the recreation hall for the short ride across the road to the sugar bush and shanty.
The cost for the brunch is $10, adults; $5, children 12 to 6 years; and youngsters aged five and under are free. Proceeds to Trinity St. James' Anglican Church and outreach.
Wondering where the Pole Walkers are meeting or when The Glee Sisters have their next practice? A newly launched website, www.bayfieldactivities.info, is the place to visit to view current calendars of events for all of the village activities.
Bayfield resident, Guy Spence, is the volunteer creator behind the website. He has invited village fitness groups and not-for-profit organizations to have a calendar on the site. Each group has assigned a responsible person to keep their own group calendars up-to-date on a regular basis.
“To date we have had some very good comments about the site. People are pleased to have one place to visit to find out what is going on in the village on a daily basis,” Spence said.
INCOME TAX PROGRAM
Once again, this year, the Bayfield Food Bank (Feed My Sheep) is sponsoring the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP). This program is approved and registered by the Canada Revenue Agency and provides free tax preparation to eligible individuals.
These sessions will be held at the Bayfield Public Library from 6-8 p.m. today (March 6) as well as on March 20, Apr. 3 and Apr. 17
People may be eligible for this service if they have a modest income and a simple tax situation. In general, a tax situation is simple if people have no income or if their income comes from the following sources: employment, pension, interest under $1,000, registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs), registered retirement income plans (RRIFs), support payments, scholarships, fellowships, bursaries or grants and benefits such as Canada Pension Plan disability, employment insurance and social assistance.
Family income levels suggested are: one person, $30,000; two persons, $40,000; plus $2,500 for each additional person.
A tax situation is not simple if people are self-employed or have employment expenses, business or rental income and expenses, capital gains or losses, filed for bankruptcy or are completing a tax return for a deceased person.
Please bring the following to the tax clinic: personal photo ID, 2017 Income Tax Return, 2017 Tax Notice of Assessment, 2018 Income Slips - T4, T4A, T4A(OAS), T4A(P), T3, T5007 etc., 2018 Rent Receipts or Statement from Landlord, 2018 Final Municipal Land Tax Statement, 2018 Medical Receipts and Statements, and 2018 Charitable Donations Receipts.
THE ASHWOOD INN
Kirsten Harrett, owner of The Ashwood Inn, would like to let the community know that the establishment is switching gears.
“We'd like to tell you about some exciting changes happening at The Bourbon Bar at The Ashwood. We are converting the space to serve healthful continental breakfasts for our in-house guests and will focus on small weddings, catered private parties and corporate meetings.
"Thus far in 2019, The Ashwood and Deer Park Lodge reservations are up 68 per cent over last year so we are looking forward to a very busy summer. We want to thank everyone for their support in the past and we look forward to continuing to serve our community in the future," said Harrett.
LIFE LONG LEARNERS
Life Long Learners is coming to Bayfield and to create a chapter experts, teachers, instructors, professors or people with PHDs on interesting or academic subjects are now being sought.
People who are retired, or semi-retired, and would love to continue to teach/share their expertise with others are needed.
Life Long Learners is very popular in local communities including Grand Bend and Waterloo as well as further afield in such states as Florida, due to the condensed nature of the baby boomer population in these areas, who enjoy stimulating learning.
Professionals interested in sharing their knowledge, in lecture form, with other retired or curious people would be perfect for the program. This series is not intended to be a “hands on” or “learn to” experience, but rather a stimulating classroom/academic “lecture-with-discussion” style with an accompanying Power Point Presentation.
Anyone with experience in teaching Arts, Architecture, Business, Science, Design, Psychology, Medicine, Climate/Nature, Technology, History, Travel, Music, Literature, Politics, Archaeology, Photography, Oceanography, Engineering, Animals, Law, or any other subject that may be of interest to others is asked to contact Leslee Squirrell, Designer/ Professor/Entrepreneur/Artist at Leslee@lsqbydesign.ca.
She will facilitate a meeting to discuss the concept, use of the Bayfield Town Hall, subject matter, fees and execution in early Spring, with the six-week series to commence this summer.
Squirrel would like to encourage everyone to please pass this on to friends and family who may be interested in delivering an interesting subject, or has organizational skills to help manage this new group.
Interested “learners” are asked to stay tuned to the Bayfield Breeze for further announcements.