Rotary Club of Montreal
100 years of Service Above Self
ROTARY CLUB of MONTREAL 1913-1986
A HISTORICAL REVIEW
Prepared by LLOYD A. McCLINTOCK

Thanks are due to Stephani Bonnar for her valuable assistance in doing the "esea rob and to Karen Brebner for her co-operation in making the necessary material available.
 
INTRODUCTION
The Rotary movement was founded in 1905 by Paul Harris and his three companions. Silvester Schicle, Gustavus Inelir, and Hiram Shorey. Paul Harris, a Chicago lawyer, felt lonely, even in the midst of thousands. He conceived the idea of a club composed of businessmen who could meet together periodically to discuss mutual problems, share experiences, and, at the same time, enlarge their circle of friends. The idea caught on and since they established the custom of meeting on a rotating basis at each other's homes or offices, the movement became known as Rotary. Others, recognizing the value of the movement, expressed a desire to join; soon it was necessary to meet in a public place rather than in a private home.

In the beginning, the purpose was to form a discussion group; it was only later that the concept of service to others was formulated.

As time passed, additional clubs were formed in other cities. In 1910 the Rotary movement became international with the founding of a Rotary Club in Winnipeg. Winnipeg was soon followed by Toronto, Hamilton, Montreal, Vancouver, Victoria1 and Halifax. The Montreal club was the eighty-fifth club to be organized. The history of the movement on the international level can be found in publications available through the central office or Rotary. Rotary now exists in some 159 countries and geographical areas around the world and has a membership of close to one million members in 20,000 clubs.

As the Rotary movement gained popularity, the service concept was formulated, and rules and regulations were adopted. Four avenues of service were formulated: Community, International, Vocational, and Club. The classification principle, whereby only two representatives of each craft or profession could hold membership within a club, was also adopted. This rule was to prevent a club from being composed of only one or more professions or businesses.

It is a fervent desire of most Rotarians that the movement will continue to grow and that its philosophy will be adopted by political leaders and that eventually world peace and international understanding will become the main objective. Ten million Rotarians dedicated to the principle of service and to the rules of the Four-Way Test - (Is it the Truth? Is it Fair to all concerned? Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships? Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?) - would help achieve this goal.

FOREWORD

As we look into the future, we know that microfilm and other advanced forms of storing information will make it relatively simple for those who come after us to write the history of our particular period. However, when we try to piece together what happened in bygone years, we are forced to rely on much scantier information and fragmentary data.

Every one of us is interested in what occurred in the past. Through the pages of history and other writings, we are able to assess what level a civilization reached at any given point in time. Lack of proper recording methods has necessitated a great deal of speculation, particularly with those civilizations lost in antiquity., The Roman, Greek, and E gyp dart eras were reasonably well documented, but others dating back much further are not as well known. We were, nevertheless, able to come to some conclusions as to their level or knowledge, civilization, etc. and are able to evaluate them accordingly.

What applies to nations or civilizations applies  equally well to organizations. By looking into past records, we can compile the history of any particular group and arrive at a proper assessment of its achievements as it has progressed down the vista of the years.

In the folio wing pages we will shall attempt to compile a brief history of the Rotary Club of Montreal since its founding in 1913. We shall also make an attempt to indicate the philosophy and the underlying spirit which governed its actions and undertakings, without giving a list of projects it underwrote. By so doing, we hope to show that the club is not a" cheque-signing organization" but one where the members are truly interested in and dedicated to the principle of service.


"I, as a Rotarian. do hereby dedicate myself to the principle o/'Service Above Self"
 
The First Decade: THE FOUNDING
By the year 1913 the Rotary Club movement had taken hold in Canada. Clubs were formed in Hanilton, Vancouver, and Victoria. The Montreal club was officially founded on October 2, 1913 011 September25, nine businessmen met and agreed on the formation of a Rotary Club for the City of Montreal. Those present at that particular meeting were: A. A. Bitwes, Ross Mclamon, W. M. Hall, Hugh Mackay, H. L. Straw, 3. A. Elder, W. Millar, G. S. Merrick, andli. R. Swenerton. H. LeRoy Straw was elected President; William Hall was elected Treasurer; H. R. Swenerton was elected Secretary; A. A. Bittue: was elected Sergeant-at- Arms; and Hugh Mackay was elected Honourary Solicitor. A week later the first official meeting of the club was held during which the Constitution and By-laws were adopted. Tho official membership for this meeting was 14. The entrance fee was fixed at$25, and the annual fee at $10. At a subsequent meeting, however, this provision was changed to $10 dollars for the entrance fee and $15 for the annual.

With the adoption of uic by-laws, the club established to practice of a weekly meeting. On October 16, the Sterling Bank was chosen as the official bank, and eligibility for membership was discussed. Numerous suggestions were put forward and various points of view expressed, but it was eventually resolved that membership would be open to all person', regardless of race, colour, or creed. For the first year, the club seemed to concern itself wit interns matters, such as the appointment of committees and individuals to carry out specific functions. Mr. A. McKirn was selected as Vice-President; 3. S. Lawis as Editor of the bulletin; and Messrs Slade, Wilson, Wells, and Robson as the Entertainment Committee. what entertainment was undertaken during the next few months is not mentioned anywhere. As a matter of fact, the  club did not appear to have embarked upon very many activities, except those of a token nature around Christmas. A decision to establish" The World and Torch" as the club emblem we adopted. In May it was decided that the annual meeting was to be held on June 25. Various references indicate that membership had reached 30 by the end of 1913.

THE WAR YEARS
The club had not reached its first birthday when World War I broke out. Attention was turned towards war activities and problems created under these adverse conditions.

Throughout the year 1914/15, funds were allocated for relief purposes. Donations were made to the Victorian Order of Nurses, Red Cross, and other organizations. In July of 1915, the club allocated $1,000 for the purchase of mac~hine guns for the Sixtieth Battalion. Later, however, these hinds were diverted to the club's Relief Programme because the guns were not needed, and besides there were none available. As some members were now becoming involved in military service themselves, the club undertook to raise funds for officers' messes and, in particular, the Grenadier Guards where H. LeRoy Shaw, the founding President of the club, was now an officer.

During the same period, the internal structure of the club continued to be improved. For instance, the rule of asking a member to resign if he missed four consecutive meetings was adopted and apparently enforced. This rule, however, did not apply to those joining the Forces; they continued to be members but were exempt from paying fees and maintaining attendance for the duration of hostilities. When H. Leroy Shaw joined the Forces, T. 0. Wells was appointed President. T. 0. Wells was also elected Governor for the Ontario and Quebec clubs.

An interesting project of the club during 1916 was the promotion of Clean- Up Week. Boys and girls were encouraged to clean up areas near their homes. Prizes exceeding $1,000 were awarded to those who had done the best job.
Due to the shortage of food, the club encouraged individuals to use vacant lots as fruit and vegetable gardens by financing the plowing and cultivation. It appears that this programme was immediately successful.
In accordance with the By- laws, the annual meeting was held in June; J. R. Doane was elected President.
War work continued during the summer of 1916. Membership had grown to 100, so more ambitious programmes could be undertaken. Some members were lost during the war. One of these was John Simon Lewis. On November 18, Major John Lewis, the first member of the club, was killed in the line of duty. It was decided that a plaque in his memory be designed by Rotarian Archibald.

On January 16 the guest speaker of the day was Owen Dawson. He addressed the members of Newboys' Club, Juvenile Court, and Boy:' Farm. This talk had a profound effect on the club's nature and Boys' Work became the main activity for a number of years:.

During May 1917, the club undertook to raise funds for the construction of a cottage for the Shawbridge Boys Farm. 'The cottage was dedicated to the memory of Mr Lewis. It was also agreed that the Lewis memorial plaque should be placed in the cottage. gnus project was really the first major undertaking of the club.

Walter J. Francis became President for the year 1917/1918. As with his predecessors, the main emphasis of this year was on the war effort, particularly food production. To some extent the club also became involved in politics for, in October, it forwarded a letter to the Honourable Prime Minister Sir tamer Gouin. This letter endorsed the action being taken at that time to put an end to Montreal's long governmental mismanagement. Pour months later1 the Public Affairs Committee endorsed a resolution advocating a judicial inquiry into the Montreal police force. Both these actions indicate that the club was deeply concerned with creating better conditions in tin city. The same committee also went on record as favouring a IffUng of the city by-laws which prohibited the raising Or pigs and chickens within city limit:.

An interesting occurrence that year was Harry Lauder's speech, which took place in November. Hi. address dealt with the question of flill- out support for the war effort. He was critical Or the lack of support among the citizens of Quebec. A complete transcript of his talk is contained in the Rotary records for that year.

For the balance of the year, the club continued it: activities in support of the war effort and, at the requcs0t of a. Provincial Association of Protestant Teachers of Quebec, a became involved in urging the government to pass a School Attendance Act.

In February the Reverend L£s1w~ Pidgeon, Rotary's International Governor, gave an address. He collar agate" the manber: for the work in support of the variow -chcsOrthc serrice. It is also interesting to note that he congratulated the club for having the but attendance in the District over this four-month period. Many of the names which appear in the records ~ those year' can atm be found in current or recent club membership lists. Townsend, Elder, Ritchie, and Lindsey &e examples.

The year ended on a quiet note. Walter 3. Francis was replaced by Ernest Latter as President.

By the annual meeting in Jun.1918, it became obvious that the war was corning to an end. Accordingly, the activities of the club began to focus on postwar reconstruction. Li August six district conirnittees were established: Public Affair:, Frat~ruai, Vacant Lot, Education, Boys' Work, and National Reconstruction.
 
Paralleling the work connected with the war, fund- raising for the John Lewis Cottage at Shawbridge continued. The necessary $12,000 for construction was realized, and the construction contract was given. Member firms donated materials for the building which was the gift of the electrical fittings by the McDonala ~ Co. The cornerstone was transported to the site by the Canadian Pacific Railway, the arrangements being made by Fred Lydon, an employee of the C.P.R. As many older members know, Fred continued active membership for many years. The cottage was officially opened on May9, 1919.

With the formation of the Education Committee, members became more deeply involved with education in the city. Resolutions were passed urging the government to improve the lot of school teachers and to pass compulsory education laws. Also. at this time, the club strongly endorsed the movement of Daylight Saving Time in Canada and the United States.

Throughout this particular period, the activities were shifting from a wartime to a peacetime focus. The club became involved with assisting returning soldiers and their wives and children. This and the John S. Lewis cottage appear to have been the main activities for this particular year. Ernest Latter was replaced by D. D. Thornton as President.

For the next several months, no new projects appear to have been undertaken. In August the club went on record condemning the establishment of the Committee of Sixteen which, we gather, was a private committee set up to deal with commercialized vice in the city. Rotary felt that this matter should be in the hands of the government and that the government should assist in the rehabilitation of the girls involved. A resolution to this effect was forwarded to the provincial government.

Towards the end of 1919, Rotary was invited by the Canadian Club to become part of a committee to put pressure on authorities for the establishment of Daylight Saving Tirne.
The John S. Lewis Cottage was completed and the question of furnishing the cottage arose. A concert by the Apollo Singers was organized, the proceeds of which were to be used for this purpose. The venture was extremely successful and over $1,000 was raised.

With the end of the war and its aftermath, the club settled down to local matters. Membership had increased substantially and, as a result, the various committees were able to undertake new programmes. The club's involvement in Boys' Work continued. From 1919 to 1922 some $30,000 was raised to assist the Boy Scouts and additional grants for encouraging youth activities were made to the University Settlement.

As mentioned earlier, it is not the intention of this brief history to emphasize the dollar donations; instead, emphasis is towards what the club felt it must do to assist boys and young men towards leading fuller lives. Money was made available to turn the vacant lot at the corner of St. Catherine and Bleury into a playground. The actual clean-up work and the city's Parks and Playgrounds Department entered into an agreement to pay for an attendant for several hours every day. Another project involved taking 1000 children on a boat trip down the river as far as Three Rivers. The club also entertained a number of boys at an annual Christmas dinner held during a regular meeting.

Fund- raising activities appear to have occupied a fair amount of time In April of each year the Apollo Singers presented a concert, the proceeds of which always went to a Rotary charity. For example, in 1921 proceeds went to the University Settl5ment, and the following year directly into the Charitable Fund. A uhniiar venture with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir ended in a financial disaster; the dub was forced to raise extra money to cover expenses. A golf tournament took place at Whitlock on July27. ["August the organizer, Norman Holland, announced that 250 had been raised and was donated to the School for Crippled Children. It was also about this time that the club began raising money for a boys' home.

In 1921, the Rotarians were awarded a Rotary wheel for one hundred percent attendance over a period of time. R would be extremely interesting if this wheel could be found and kept as a souvenir.

The establishment of Daylight Saving Time continued to be of interest. The club endorsed a resolution approving the movement and forwarded it to the city council. Petitions endoning the proposal were drafted and Rotarians encouraged nick employees to sign them.

Other minor undertakings were sponsored, but the apparent emphasis was always on young people, especially boys. Donations were made to Rotary International for flood victims in the southern United States, but the main activities were concentrated in the Montreal area. H. Philip:, W. R. Allen, andE. 0. Webbe rserved as President specifically for the years 1920/21, 1921/22, and 1922123. With the dose of Webber's year, the first decade offlic Rotary Club of Montreal came to an end.
 
The Second Decade: THE ROARING TWENTIES AND THE DIRTY THIRTIES

As we know, the 1920s were regarded as the Roaring Twenties. By the beginning of the 1923/24 Rotary year, when Dr. A. W. Thornton became President, most of the dislocations caused by the war were under control. In a way the war years had made it extremely easy for service organizations to find causes to espouse. By 1923, however, this was not the case.

Entertainment appears to have been a very popular undertaking. Frequent visits with entertainment groups were made to such places as St. Anne's Muhary Hospital and the Laurentian Sanatorium. The Mackay Centre and file School for Crippled Children were supplied with entertaining films and slides. Bus rides for groups such as the children and residents of the Montreal Association for the Blind were organized on an annual basis. The Shawbridge Boys' Home had its share of visits from Rotarians. These included "Sports Days," where prizes were distributed to the winners of the various events. Although the records do not indicate it clearly, it appears that the club continued to be concerned with the problems of the boys at the Shawbridge Boys' Farm. The club must have worked closely with the juvenile courts for, in December 1923, Judge Choquette was presented with a gold-headed cane by the Rotary Club, and a silver sink stand by the boys on the farm.

The fund-raising efforts took various forms. In November 1923 at His Majesty's Theatre, the famous Dumbells group presented a benefit concert. Fifty percent of the proceeds were given to the Rotary Club for its charitable work. Under the auspices of McDonald College, a fund¬raising competition where participants attempted to guess the number of apples in a barrel was promoted.
 
The Shawbridge Boys' Farm was still very much a concern and the annual" Sports Days" continued to be held. On one occasion a hockey game was organized between the boys at the farm and the Rotarians. Sad to say, the Rotarians lost. Since the records do not mention the score, it was probably very one- sided.

In order to focus attention on the needs of young people, a parade of 10,000 boys was organized in 1927. The parade terminated with a march past a reviewing stand on the steps of the Royal Victoria College on Sherbrooke Street. The salute was taken by General Sir Arthur Currie and Major Philip A. Curry, then President of the club.

In 1925 Vern McAdam joined the club. Through his interest and instigation, a 1928 resolution was adopted to raise $250,000 to purchase a new site and erect a new boys' home. Improved and increased accommodations were urgently needed to meet the demands caused by the city's growth. Within eight months some $275,000 had been collected and the total amount required, $280,000, was reached a short time later. This was the first major undertaking of the club since the Lewis Cottage in Shawbridge. The Weredale Home for Boys was built and continued to operate until very recently.

Although concentrating on providing entertainment for various groups, the club did not neglect entertaining itseff from time to time. Apart from regular speakers, it did have some outstanding programmes. In May of 1926, a group from the Metropolitan Opera Company from New York was the guest of the club. In April 1929, the d'Oyly Carte Company of England successfully entertainment Rotarians and their wives with Gilbert and Sullivan. An outstanding speaker for the meeting of August 13, 1929, was Sir Winston Churchill who, as we all know, became a very important figure within a few short years.

Throughout the 1920s and early 1930s, the programmes were very similar. The club seemed to be exploring the need of the community and the various avenues of service. In 1931 it financially assisted the Canadian National Institute for the Blind to establish an office in Montreal. On the political side, it made representation to the city to establish a twice- a- week garbage collection and it urged the city executive to take immediate action to complete the Trans- Island Boulevard. Through petitions, it also urged the federal government to continue supporting wildlife preservation and to take a census of crippled children across Canada.

Over the years the club demonstrated its interest in the growth of the Rotary movement. It was reported in 1930 that the fledgling Westmount club was progressing satisfactorily and that the nucleus of a new club in Drummondville had been founded. Individual members were active with Rotary International; for example, William Allen served as District Governor. During the 1930 international convention held in Vienna, the club presented a resolution to the executive of Rotary International, requesting that the textbooks of each country be examined and that the respective governments be urged to delete any racially prejudice material. The records do not indicate if the resolution was passed, but the fact that it was presented is an indication of the club's concern for the rights of others.

By highlighting the events of interest which occurred in the late 1920s and the early 1930s, we have not yet mentioned specifically those men who filled the position of President during that period. As we peruse the records, we begin to recognize names - names which the older members of the club will recall very clearly. For the year 1930, Ernest B. Mills served as President. He was followed by St. Clair C, Holland. In February 1931, Holland, recognizing the value of the former Presidents, formed the Past Presidents Council. St. Clair Holland was succeeded by Fred T. W. Saunders, who was followed by Arthur McMaster. With the close of Arthur McMaster' S year, the second decade in the Montreal Rotary Club's existence came to an end. Membership stood at 251, including six Honourary Members. Even though the Depression was in full swing, the club continued to move ahead. Much of its energy was directed towards assisting individuals and groups caught up in the hardship of the times.
 
The Third Decade: THE DEPRESSION YEARS
Throughout the years of the Depression a great deal of interest, energy, and money was spent on programmes for boys. Shawbridge Boys' Farm, Camp Lewis, Weredale Home, Camp Weredale, and other summer camps were visited frequently. Field days were organized and camperships for underprivileged boys to attend such camps were made available. The club helped to ease the effect of poverty caused by unemployment. In addition, h encouraged projects to train boys in skills necessary for employment.

Club fluids and energies were freely given in the interest of the crippled child. For several years in a row, Rotarian Bert Clark, under club auspices, entertained 200 crippled children at his summer place in St. Genevieve. Arrangements were made for the Hamid & Morton Circus to entertain the children at the Children's Memorial Hospital. The Quebec Society for Crippled Children was given funds for the purchase of orthopedic appliances. Arrangements were made with Duckett's Studio to have such supplies at a 20 percent discount.

The Social Service Committee was very active on a year round basis. It was responsible for the organizing and carrying out of entertainment for various institutions such as Old Brewery Mission, Children's Memorial Hospital, Chinese Community Centre, Grace Dart Home, and several senior citizens' homes, just to mention a few. The records show that, on an annual basis, between 50 to 30 concerts were given. These were varied and included performances by orchestras, choirs, acrobats, and small musical groups. A large number of Rotarians was always involved in these outings and at one particular event some 150 members were in attendance.

The problems which confronted the Public Affairs Committee are similar to those facing the club today. The sale and abuse of drugs became a concern and resolutions for tighter control were forwarded to the government. The Public Affairs Committee joined tlie protest when the city considered allowing automobile traffic on the Mountain. The matter was postponed. When the city decided to close a day centre for the unemployed, Rotary objected with strong representation and it was re-opened. In conjunction with other bodies such as church groups, a very strong resolution designed to control the spread of venereal disease was prepared and forwarded to various levels of governments. The club suggested that this become a concern of all civic-minded organizations across Canada.

In 1935 the records indicate that an International Service Committee was established. Its activities were directed towards assisting foreign students who were attending universities in the Montreal area. It also suggested that the captains of ships visiting the Port of Montreal should be invited to attend meetings and be entertained by the club. The idea was well received and over the years numerous captains were invited. In October 1935, the committee recommended the drafting of a new by¬law, whereby foreign visitors to the city would be given special membership status. This membership would be granted on a yearly basis and no more than 30 international guests should be invited each year.

No startling changes to the programme of the club took place during the three years pri9r to the Second World War. Entertainment groups maintained their programmes. The Cripples Aid Committee continued to provide entertainment, outings, and orthopedic equipment for disabled children. In 1939 funds were provided to the Quebec Society for Crippled Children for the building for three new huts at the St. Alphonse de Joliette summer carnp. Boys' Work continued and more camperships were made available. A new hut was also built for the Old Brewery Missions' Camp Chapleau. The main undertaking, however, was the raising of$90,000 for the Rosemount Boys' Club. This project was conceived and quickly completed.

The club in those days was not averse to become involved in political matters. It lent financial support to the Chy Improvement League and, by resolution, strongly endorsed the league's attempt to bring about reform in city administration. It also, through resolution, made representation to the province for the construction of a mid- island boulevard from St. Annes' to Bout de l'Ile. The distribution of obscene literature received Rotary's attention; petitions were sent to the appropriate governments. In conjunction with the Safety League, the club urged that legislation be formulated to make lights on horse- drawn vehicles compulsory. Throughout this period, the club was anxious to bring about improvements to the City of Montreal.

In the fall of 1939, the club decided to organize a boys' public speaking contest. At first it was confined to the Island of Montreal. The finals for the first year of operation took place in February 1940. The first four winners were as follows: first prize, William R. Noble of Lower Canada College; subject, "Quebec Matriculation"; second prize, Bernard Berlin of Westhill High School; subject, "School Dramatics"; third prize, Richard Oulton of Mount Royal Righ School; subject, "Our Greatest Benefactor"; and lastly, Michael Perrault of Catholic High School; subject, "Old Montreal." This public speaking contest is still sponsored by the club, although it is now open to the entire province~of Quebec and part of Ontario, as well as to both boys and girls. Prizes and cash scholarships are still awarded on an annual basis.
 
In 1938 the club strongly condemned the atrocities being perpetrated against the Jews in Europe.

In 1940 many activities were underway. Funds were raised to furnish a recreational room for the Number 1 Wireless School on Queen Mary Road. Active service units were entertained by the club. Companies associated with Rotary were urged to employ the young men who were rejected from army service; other companies were encouraged to follow suit.

While there was plenty to do at home, the club's activities were not confined strictly to Montreal. The club undertook a programme to make Canada and the British Empire better known to the Americans. Towards this end a very active member, George Harris, visited many Rotary clubs in the United States. At a Rhode Island club he shared the platform with Sir Herbert Ames, President of the British Empire Society. The club published an article on cooperative Canadianism. This article, seeking to bring about greater cooperation between the French and English populations, was distributed to all Canadian Rotary clubs and universities. It sent funds to the Halifax club to help provide entertainment for the large number of French and English sailors who were thronging to the Port of Halifax.

During the spring of 1940, the International Service Committee devised a unique programme to assist child refugees from England. It was proposed that Rotarians open their homes to these children and, in a sense, adopt them for the duration of hostilities. This suggestion was well received and immediate steps were taken to make the necessary arrangements. Unfortunately, this humanitarian venture had to be abandoned because of ruthless submarine action in the Atlantic.

Despite the war, the Rotary movement continued to grow. The Montreal club, whose territory was originally the entire island of Montreal, began to release sections of it for the formation of other clubs.The City of Westmount was given over the Westmount club. N.D.G.,Lachine, and Montreal West were given over to the Westward club which officially became part of Rotary International in January1940.

By the close ofthe 1939/40 year, the club was deeply involved in war matters. Its programmes were greatly assisted by a legacy of $5,000 from the estate of former member Sir Charles Lindsey. Other bodies, such as Imperial Tobacco, recognized Rotary war activities by making donations to its charitable fund. The three Presidents for the years just prior to, and for the first year of the war, were:l937/38, T. B. Dundas; 1938/39, William Harrison; and 1939/40, WUliam S. Emery.
  
THE WAR YEARS
The news coming out of Europe became darker and darker with every passing month. It became evident that the club would have to concentrate increasingly on activities, directly or indirectly, connected with the war effort. New committees were established to explore avenues along which energies could be channeled. While stress was placed on war work, the other commhtees did not neglect their responsibilities. Boys' Work continued, although in most instances with a military flavour. The Navy League was became darker and darker with every passing month. It became evident that the given substantial financial assistance. In November 1941, the club organized a concert at the Montreal Forum; Gracie Fields was the guest entertainer and the proceeds went to the Navy League.

The Second World War brought aviation into full flower. The air raids on England, and the heavy casualties occurring among the pilots, made it essential to formulate plans for the recruiting and training of new air force personnel. Early in 1941 a committee composed of Jack Cole, Earle T. Moore, and Campbell Budge organized the Griffintown Air Cadet Squadron. A short time later, the Abuette Air Cadet Squadron was established. Both these squadrons were patterned after the Villeray Air Cadets. Funds were provided to these three units for the purchase of uniforms, equipment, and other essential items. The Abuette Squadron has survived and continues to be assisted annually. The Boys' Work Committee still made funds available for summer camps, Field days, and other like matters. However, as a means of redirecting Rotary money into what was considered to be urgent war- related matters, it was decided to cancel its annual financial grant to Shawbridge Boys' Farm. Since the establishment of the Lewis Cottage, the club had been making $2,000 available to the farm each year.

In addition to the usual programmes of the Cripples Aid Committee, plans were established to train disabled young people for work such as watch repair, shoe repair, and other similar occupations. Through the club, a number of handicapped young men and women were placed in war industries. This opened a door to long range benefits, for it gave disabled people the opportunity to prove, beyond a doubt, that if properly placed they could prove productive.

The club strongly voiced its concern regarding handicapped children. They encouraged agencies to separate the mentally retarded from those who, although handicapped, were otherwise normal. This, in our estimation, is yet another demonstration of Rotary's forward looking attitude.

During any wartime period, it is difficult to separate war problems from others. Frequently they are inter-related. During the years 1941 to 1943 the Public Affairs Committee became involved in several important matters. For example, because industrial strikes were felt to be detrimental to the war effort, a strong resolution was adopted urging the government to forbid strikes and walk-outs for the duration. With industry at full wartime production, accident rates among workers were higher than during normal times. The committee, in cooperation with other groups, endorsed a movement to establish a system to rehabilitate victims of industrial accidents. It was felt that this would prove beneficial to all concerned.

The committee supported a movement for Compulsory Education legislation across Canada, legislation which had recently been introduced in the Province of Quebec. The question of pasteurization of milk also gained Rotary's support as a result of an address presented by the health department of the city.

We mentioned earlier that the club established special committees to deal with programmes connected with war activities. Early in 1941, a special group known as Rota- Revue was established to entertain the armed forces. Those participating lent their talents free of charge. Rotary financed all other expenses except transportation, which was provided by the federal government. This entertainment group visited military camps as far afield as Rimouski. It also provided entertainment in such institutions as senior citizens' homes, hospitals, etc. It is estimated that from 1940 to the end of 1943, some $10,000 had been expended in support of this group.

The club's efforts, however, were not all directed towards entertainment. It continued to purchase furniture and other equipment for the Lachine Manning Depot, Number 1 Wireless School, several hospitality centres, and other similar establishments. It did not always give away the equipment it purchased. Much of it was lent to the centres with the understanding that the club would reclaim it when it was no longer needed. According to the records, two hospitality centres were leased and furnished by the club for military personnel. The centres were greatly appreciated by all three branches of the service. An information booth for officers was established in the Mount Royal Hotel. This booth, along with the hospitality centres, was manned in cooperation with the Junior League of Montreal.




 
Summarizing in a few paragraphs the club's work during the hectic war years does not tell the story of the tremendous amount of work accomplished by the club as a whole or by the individual members. Good leadership was evident throughout the period. For the years 1940 to 1941, 1941 to 1942, and 1942 to 1943, the following filled the position of President: deGasp6 Beaubien, George H. Harris, and Arthur C. Morton. They, in cooperation with the committee chairman, were responsible for what was accorn~ished and it is a credit to them and to the members at large for giving full support when it was an absolute necessity.

FROM WAR TO PEACE
When C. Hugh Hanson assumed the Presidency in 1943, the war in Europe was still raging with unabated fury. Naturally, he continued with those activities which were directly connected with the war. The Hospitality Centres, the Information Booth, and the Entertainment Group continued to be financed. During the years 1943/44 and 1944/45, Rota-Revue presented close to one hundred entertainments at military camps, manning depots, and institutions of one type or another. A substantial amount of money was collected for the Birthday Fund and most of it was sent to England to assist the bombing victims. This need became even more acute during the closing months of the war when England was being attacked by rocket buzzbombs.

Everything possible was done to help with the entertainment and comfort of the military personnel in the Montreal area. During the spring of 1945, it became evident that the war would soon be coming to an end. The need for the Hospitality Centres, the Information Booth and other similar facilities disappeared and each centre was closed; the furniture and other equipment was reclaimed by the club and redistributed to other institutions.

Although the work of the War Services Committees was coming to an end, the other committees continued to be very active. Boys' Work still made funds available for campers hips to the various summer camps.

Funds were made available for the building and equipping of an additional sleeping cottage at the University Settlement Camp (then known as Camp Ewing in memory of Rotarian Bill Ewing), and to Camp I-ewis. Also, a new dining and recreation hall was built for the Old Brewery Mission Camp. In the spring of 1945 the Boys' Work Committee undertook at considerable cost to replace the wharf at Weredale Camp. Since its first involvement in the early 2Os~ the club's interest in Weredale activities had been keen.

Although the club had ceased giving an annual grant to the Shawbridge Boys' Farm, it still retained an interest. Funds were provided for the furnishing and equipping of a reading room, and annual concert parties and field days were organized. During the year 1943/ 44, Boscoville, a farm similar to Shawbridge, was founded for French-speaking boys. The Montreal club supported this move and provided some funding. It also organized field days similar to those at Shawbridge. About this time, the club became interested in assisting the Montreal Police under the direction of Constable Pelletier, to establish a boys' club. There was some opposition, but the club felt that the endeavor was worthy of encouragement and support.

Organizing outings was the main thrust of the Crippled Children's Committee. On an annual basis, large numbers of disabled children were taken to see the Ice Follies, Ice Capades, and other events at the Forum. The club received cooperation from the police and fire departments of Montreal on all these occasions. Many of the children had to be carried into the Forum and the personnel of these two city departments did the carrying. Roy Rogers and his famous horse Trigger was one such outstanding programme which was very popular with the children.

The programme of providing funds for artificial limbs and other prosthetic equipment continued. The various summer camps for crippled children were supported. In the 1944/45 year, refrigeration units were purchased and installed for the Quebec Society for Crippled Children's Camp at St. Alphonse de Joliette. Another substantial money outlay was the purchase of orthopedic operating tables for the Shriner's and St. Justine's Hospitals. During this same period, although not specifically for crippled children, the committee made a substantial donation to the fundraising campaign of the Homeopathic Hospital, now known as the Queen Elizabeth.

The Public Affairs Committee was kept busy with a large number of problems of a local and national interest. The influx of people into Montreal during the war created a housing shortage. The committee became involved with a study of this thorny matter, and presented resolutions urging the City and Province to take action. The Bonsecours Market, which had become a bottleneck, fire hazard, and sanitation problem, also drew Rotary's attention. The committee drafted and presented a strong resolution to City authorities. Other problems such as juvenile delinquency, venereal disease, prostitution, and gambling also came under the scrutiny of the committee. A resolution dealing with child protection was drafted and forwarded to the Quebec government; it urged the immediate formulation of a child protection act. There appears to have been no lack of public matters to be discussed. In February 1945, a resolution urging the establishment of a better ambulance service for the City of Montreal was drafted and forwarded to government authorities. It pointed out that the existing service was slow and inadequate, frequently causing an accident victim to remain on the street fdr periods of 20 minutes to half an hour before an ambulance arrived.

One item of interest which the Public Affairs Committee sponsored was a move to have the club continue encouraging use of vacant lots as gardening areas. The committee pointed out that, during the war, fruit and vegetables for over 500,000 cans had been grown on such vacant lots.

Although many individual Rotarians were very involved with war activities and with other programmes during the five years of the war, there was one Rotarian who was frequently mentioned in the minutes and other records. This Rotarian was Tommy Gorman. His contribution seems to have been in the area of fund- raising. He was instrumental in organizing a parade and an Old Timers hockey game between the Montreal Canadians and the Montreal Maroons. This effort generated some $13,000 for the charity fund. Later, he promoted a similar event in Ottawa which netted in excess of $7,000. Other members became involved in special projects, perhaps not so spectacular. For instance, a group of72 Rotarians was organized to serve as counsellors to returning service men and assist them in re-establishing themselves in gainful employment.

There is very little indication of fellowship activities in the records. One event, however, was mentioned. It concerned a debate between the Montreal club and the Westmount club. The subject of the debate was whether bachelorhood or marriage was preferable. There is no mention as to the outcome.

With the advent of peace, the club turned its attention to fund- raising projects. It realized that it would not be as easy to raise money now that the pressure of the war was over. In the spring of 1945, it discussed sponsorship for the Golden Glove Tournament for Montreal with the Amateur Athletic Union of Canada. Eventually, a special committee was established to organize this project.

From 1943 to the end of the Rotary year 1945, several new Rotary clubs were organized and established through the efforts of the Montreal club. Among these were Joliette, St. Jerome, and Maniwaki. The Joliette club ran into problems due to a Roman Catholic bishop, who spoke out strongly against the Rotary movement. Attempts were made to re-instate the club as a member of Rotary International, but all efforts were unsuccessful.

Hugh Hanson was followed by Wurtele Rankin and Don Stewart as President. Don Stewart was given the task of re-organizing the club following the war. An incident occurred at this time which caused the club some embarrassment. The club's secretary, A. Okill, was accused of illegal distribution of alcoholic beverages. After investigation, however, he was completely exonerated by the club and was given a large birthday cake. It was eventually revealed that the whole matter was a hoax and had been organized purely for fun purposes.