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These sets of minutes from the Board of Parks Management of Fort William, and the Board of Parks Management of Port Arthur, show some of the early political discussions regarding the Playgrounds program.

From the Fort William Board of Parks Management Minutes 1913-1914

FW Board of Parks Management Minutes-1

Minutes of the public meeting held in the interest of the Play Ground Movement in Fort William June 11, 1913.

Mr Blain was in the chair.

After a few remarks by the chairman, Mr I.L. Matthews, gave an address on the Play Ground Movement and the need in Fort William.

Motion Mrs Cole second A. Snelgrove that the Play Ground Commission be formed, and that Mr Schnurr act as Secretary Protem. Carried.

A constitution was presented for consideration. It was taken up in sections.

Motion Lumby second Hamilton that clause four of the constitution be struck out. Carried.

Motion Lumby -- Mills that the organizations named in the last clause be invited to elect their representatives to the Commission. Carried.

Motion Bartell second Cole that the Constitution be adopted as amended. Carried.

The Constitution as adopted is attached.

The Following officers were elected -- S.C. Young, President, Mrs Harvey Vice President, G.B. Schnurr Secretary Treasurer, Mr Lumby and Mrs Cole being the two other members of the Executive.

Respectfully submitted, Secretary Protem.


FW Board of Parks Management Minutes-2

Report -- June 11, 1914.

Supervisor's Report to the Play Ground Commission of Fort William

Mr Chairman and members of the Commission:

The time of your supervisor has been occupied since his arrival in chiefly organization work and the ordering of equipment.

Many of the schools have been visited where the principlas have given opportunity for me to speak to the children and explain what this Commission propose to do for them this summer. It has given an opportunity not only to get acquainted with the teachers but also with the children.

The principals are very sympathetic and have offered to give every assistance possible. Each school is sending to your employed officer a list of 10 of the best boys and the same number of girls who can be used at the heads of various committees. These leaders will be of paramount importance to the Directors and thus the grounds can be made as nearly self-governing as possible.

Several interviews have been held with those considering taking up the Playground Association work.

A detailed list of the equipment and estimated cost of that which has been ordered is here given. This does not include what is being ordered by the City Engineer.

Mr McNaughton has given the store room in the tower of the City Hall, the only available space left, that can be used for an office and store house for light equipment.

The following are a few of the office items that have to be attended to regularly which makes it imperative that arrangements be made for a stenographer to give her mornings to this work.


FW Board of Parks Management Minutes-3

Fort William, Ontario

June 11th, 1914

We, the undersigned representatives of the Playgrounds Commission of the City of Fort William, on behalf of the said Commission, request the use of the grounds and basements at the Collegiate Institute, Franklin St. School, Central School, and Ogden St. School, agreeing:

First. To assume all responsibility for any breakage or damage to any of these properties, during the months of June, July, August and September, while under our care;

Second. That the authority of the Principal shall be supreme during School session.

Third. That access shall be given to the basements of the school buildings only at such times as they are under  proper supervision. And that all buildings shall be closed not later than 9.30 P.M.

Fourth. That the Board of Education shall in no sense be responsible for the payment of any janitor, Teacher, Director, or Supervisor, while performing any duties pertaining to the Supervised Playgrounds.


[S C Young] President of Playgrounds Com.

[G B Schnurr] Secretary of Playgrounds Com.    


FW Board of Parks Management Minutes-4

Playground Commission, Fort William

July 27th. 1914

Supervisor's report to Playground Commission. 

Mr Chairman and members of Commission:

The Playgrounds were opened on June 29th., as requested by this Commission and have been in operation every day except Sundays from 2 P.M. till 9 P.M. The attendance on the whole has been very good. The Central, Ogden and Franklin Grounds have the largest attendance.

The following is a summary of the attendance for the past four weeks:

  1st wk  2nd. wk  3rd. wk.  4th. wk. 
Central  2117  2503  3000  2661 
Ogden  1186  1795  2154  2074 
Franklin  1452  1685  1879  1972 
St. Martins  979  1225  990  1017 
Collegiate  836  789  963  863 





Average attendance per day on each ground: 

  1st. wk.  2nd. wk.  3rd. wk.  4th. wk. 
Central  423  417  512  447 
Ogden  237  236  359  345 
Franklin  289  280  313  330 
St. Martins  196  205  165  170 
Collegiate  167  132  189  144 





The following is a comparison with several cities in Canada and the United States taken from the "Playground" magazine year book which will give some idea of the relation between Fort William and those other cities in regard to attendance.

Series: 5, Fort William Board of Parks Management Minutes
Location: TBA 5572 


These minutes, scanned from the Port Arthur Board of Parks Management Minutes Ledger, record some of the first steps taken by Port Arthur to create playgrounds. Equipment was purchased, but a supervised playground program was not put into place until 1917. Early discussions of the Port Arthur playgrounds noted significantly fewer accidents and injuries sustained by children in the Fort William supervised playgrounds program, which was a strong argument towards supervision.

From the Port Arthur Board of Parks Management Minutes, 1913

PA Board of Parks Management Minutes-1

Minutes of Special Meeting of the Board of Park Management of the Corporation of the City of Port Arthur held in Council Chambers on Arthur St, Port Arthur, at 4 pm on Thursday, August 14, 1913

Business - General

Present: R. Hamer, Chairman ; Mayor Oliver, Messrs. Dwyer, Walsh, Allan, Milne

The following documents were submitted:

Agreement between Board of Education, Parks Board, Separate School Board and City re Playground Apparatus

Agreement between School Board and Parks Board and Council re exchange of lands

Letter from I. N. Andrew submitting an offer of $3600 for Lots 32-33-34 Park Lot 9 N/Bay

Moved by Mayor Oliver, Seconded by F.B. Allen, and resolved:

That the Solicitor be instructed that when preparing transfer between the City, School Board and Parks Board that it has been mutually agreed between the latter two Boards that the Agreement made on May 1/1912 has been altered so that the Parks Board shall receive the 208 ft strip of Park Lot 11 lying between Prospect Ave and Sheppard Sts along Dawson St and the balance of the square to Tupper St on south to be given to the School Board, the description of said property to be prepared by the City Engineer and the lines to be demarked on the property.


PA Board of Parks Management Minutes-2

Moved by L. Walsh, Seconded by F.B. Allen, and resolved:

That the Secretary of the Board be authorized to pay the taxes due on Lots 1 and 2 Park Lot 9 N/Bay purchased for Parks purposes from Mr [Doheny]

Moved by Mayor Oliver, Seconded by F.B. Allen, and resolved:

That letter from I.N. Andrew dated August 12 offering without prejudice Lots 32, 33 and 34 Park Lot 9 for $3600 be received and filed, and the Clerk is hereby instructed to write in reply, "That in order to avoid arbitration proceedings and without prejudice, this Board is willing to pay for the said three Lots, Twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per foot, subject also to an acceptable this week, and the Treasurer is authorized to issue a cheque at once if accepted."

Moved by F.B. Allen, Seconded by L. Walsh, and resolved:

That the Chairman and Secretary he and are hereby authorized to sign agreement re installation of Playground Apparatus in school grounds and at Current River Park.

The meeting then adjourned.

J.F. Milne, Sec.

[illegible] Chairman.

Series: 44, Port Arthur Board of Parks Management
Location: TBA 3919