Looking back week of March 8

70 Years Ago

March 10, 1948

– Napanee’s town planning committee met with the local health unit and an engineer from the provincial government’s sanitary engineering division regarding sewage and garbage disposal.

Following those meetings, council received a recommendation to empower the committee to engage with a competent consulting engineer to prepare plans and recommendations to enlarge the town’s sewage facilities, create a disposal plant, and install an incinerator for garbage.

– A fire, which broke out at 10 a.m. March 5 almost completely destroyed a two-storey metal clad building on John Street, just north of the DominionBank. The building housed Reid Bros. Hardware and John Wilson’s real estate office on the first floor and four tenants on the second floor.

The fire was started by a burst of blow-torch flame ignited at Reid Bros. Dense smoke quickly filled the building and flames spread rapidly.  Firefighters kept water from four hoses on the blaze most of the day, but freezing temperatures and the building’s structure made it difficult to control the fire.  Most of the equipment and stock at Reid Bros. was destroyed. Fire did little damage to household effects in the apartment, but they were soaked with water. The Red Cross and the local Kinsmen were involved in efforts to replace or restore furniture and accommodate the tenants.

40 Years Ago

March 8, 1978

– Ernestown Township council was concerned about the impact on tariff cuts on textiles entering the country, which the industry suggested could cut production in  half, or worse, by 1985. The Celanese Canada (Millhaven Fibres) plant accounted for 54 per cent of the municipality’s total tax assessment and employed 951 people with a payroll in excess of $17.1 million.

The township voted to petition the federal government to exclude textiles from tariff cuts from the ongoing General Agreement on Tariffs and Trades talks in Geneva, Switzerland.

 – Incumbent Progressive Conservative MPDouglas Alkenbrack would face three challengers for the party’s nomination in the newly constituted Hastings-Frontenac riding. Bancroft broadcaster Nan Whitlaw and Napanee’s Bill Vankoughnet (a future MP and MPP) declared themselves candidates for the nomination, to be decided in April.

The Beaver learned that Lennox and Addington County Board of Education chair Hugh Kerr would announce Yarker Public School would remain open, but the school at Camden East would likely be closed as of June 30, 1979.

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