A years-long plan to replace Cornwall Collegiate and Vocational School and St. Lawrence High School with a super school is unfolding with all indications that it will be built on a large piece of the former Domtar property.
At one time the Upper Canada District School Board was said to be eyeing a parcel of property at Tollgate and Brookdale adjacent to where the new fire headquarters is being built. The former C-I-L property also was on the short shopping list.
Original price tag was $39 million but it would not be a major surprise if the cost has soared to more than $50 million.
While choosing a site for the super school has not been controversial, as was the case when the Catholic board went outside the city to build Holy Trinity, coming up with a name could be contentious.
Then there is the million dollar scholarship mother lode left to Cornwall Collegiate by New York City neurosurgeon Dr. Arthur Battista, a CCVS graduate. Several scholarships, ranging from $3,000 to $4,000, are granted each year. Interest earned on the million dollar gift funds the scholarships that have been handed out since 1998.
Since the money was gifted to Cornwall Collegiate, there could be a legal tug-of-war if the new school is named anything but Cornwall Collegiate.
The huge gift to a public school by a staunch Roman Catholic (the fund is administered by the Knights of Columbus headquarters in New Haven, Conn. ) raised some eyebrows in the Catholic system and local diocese.
Another piece of history was erased in the name of progress in May 1958 as the St. Lawrence Seaway Project neared I-Day and the Big Flood.
The ‘I’ stood for Inundation Day, July 1, when an explosion ripped open the cofferdam and flooded thousands of acres that four days later became a lake. Six villages and three hamlets were wiped off the map and 7,500 inhabitants displaced.
An 11th hour bid to save an historic Dixon home in Moulinette from the reckless wrecking ball that cleared a path for the project was rejected by the St. Lawrence Parks Development Commission.
The Dixon home was built in 1817 by United Empire Loyalist George Dixon.
In a back-handed good-will gesture, the commission said several artefacts from the home would be preserved.
One of the oldest railway ‘milk runs’ in the country was discontinued by Canadian National Railways (CNR) in May 1958. The line had lumbered over the tracks between Montreal and Brockville, with stops at every city, village and hamlet, for 103 years.
Along with passengers, freight and mail it picked up along the way were cans of milk from local farmers to be delivered to dairies and cheese factories.
In its heyday, the line – called the Moccasin – carried hundreds of passengers every day. By 1958 the number of paying customers had dwindled to a handful, while trucking became a preferred mode of transportation for milk, freight and the Royal Mail.
In May 1958 a Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) T-23 jet trainer crash-landed in a field near Moose Creek after running out of fuel on its way back to Ottawa.
The pilot was not injured while the co-pilot who ejected before the crash suffered minor injuries after getting caught up in a tree.
The fighter belly-landed with its wheels up in a muddy field. It crashed through two fences before coming to a rest.
ALSO IN MAY 1957 – Prince Bernard of The Netherlands received a warm welcome from dozens of Cornwall and area residents, many from Immanuel Christian Reformed Church on Pitt Street North, who came to Canada from The Netherlands after the Second World War. The prince spent several hours touring the Seaway Project. Among the official greeting party were Eita Turksman and Hennie DeVries who wore traditional Dutch costumes and presented the Royal couple with a bouquet of flowers. … The $6.5 million Harte Haven shopping centre in Massena drew thousands of people to its official opening. The 1,500 car parking lot was filled with police estimating another 2,000 cars parked on streets near the centre. … Optimist Club bicycle rodeo winners included John Markell, Brian Wylie, Harry Koolstra, Diane Desjardins, Frank Burke, Peter Nazar and Janice Warden. … Norman’s Transfer, owned by Norman Emblem of Cornwall, was sold to Smith’s Transport owned by Canadian Pacific Railways. …. City businessman Hubert A. McAlear applied to the federal Air Transport Board for a licence to operate an air service to be called Omega Air Service out of Cornwall. He proposed starting the service using a grass landing strip and a four-passenger Cessna. The Cornwall Industrial Commission supported the application. … Louis Armstrong and his All=Stars performed in front of a disappointing crowd of 500 at the Water Street Arena. … The Chez Louise Tea Room, across from the Roxy Theatre on Montreal Road, opened. … Shad St. Jean held North End Fastball League powerhouse Emard Lumber to three hits as Hodgin’s notched a 3-1 victory in North End Fastball League play at King George Park. St. Jean had seven strikeouts. Bill Ingram had three hits. … Bruno Lamarche, fresh off a no-hitter, hurled a four-hitter as New York Cafe Aces roughed up Paragon Motel 10-3 in a Cornwall Junior Baseball League game. He notched 15 strikeouts, giving him 30 in back-to-back victories. In the nightcap, Coca-Cola took a 7-4 decision against Miller-Hughes. Paul Lapointe had the mound win with 13 strike-outs. Eugene “Slugger” Bergeron, the league’s top batter with a .417 average, went 3-for-4 for Miller-Hughes.
TRIVIA Agnes Macphail made Canadian history because: 1) First female surgeon, 2) First female to get a commercial pilot’s licence, 3) First female elected to House of Commons, 4) First female federal prison warden, 5) First female to reach the rank of colonel in the Canadian army.
TRIVIA ANSWER Peter Fonda, son of Hollywood legend Henry Fonda, and brother of Jane Fonda, starred in the 1969 classic Easy Rider.
QUOTED “Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the national debt.” – Herbert Hoover