The year 1926 saw Fort Frances town council passing a bylaw to deal with “the congested traffic on main streets.”
Regulations included that “. . . no vehicle shall stop with its left side to the curb . . . horses must stand parallel to the curb . . . and vehicles shall only stop on the right-hand side of a street.”
Parking was indicated by curb colours, with red included as parking for taxis, black and yellow for discharge and take on of passengers only, and yellow stripes at an angle to indicate parking space for cars.
When it came to turning, stopping, or changing course, the driver shall “extend and wave the hand or whip to give some visible sign outside of the conveyance as a signal to persons driving vehicles behind them, of their intention to make such a movement.”
Fines were $10 for the first offence and $25 for the second for any violations of the bylaw.
Streets were under consideration for the town, with Scott, Second, and Front Street experiencing change and development. Of concern for Scott Street property owners was that the street between Portage and Victoria be widened to conform with the street west of Portage.
In February, a resolution had passed to the provincial government to recognize that Third Street West and Scott Street were part of the trunk highway, taking the place of the former “Colonization Road” now unused.
Council also took steps to prepare for the opening of Second Street through the Shevlin-Clarke mill yard. To open the street to the east end, sufficient time was to be allowed for the mill to remove some three million feet of lumber and clean the site.
Construction of a new papermill resulted in the closure of a portion of Front Street, and the relocation of a dock at Portage Avenue. Work was expected to be completed by February, 1927 and included enlarging the barking room and grinding room.
A new double deck steel bridge was constructed across the canal to connect with the grinding room. Thirty-ton transformers were being installed on special tracks in the new substation.
Construction also was happening on Scott Street. S. Roseman moved from the corner of Church and Mowat to a very attractive building on the south side of Scott Street.
Mr. L.J. Marsh was erecting a 38 x 60 foot stucco building to be used as an automobile show room while Mr. L.J. Truax built a brick business block on the east corner of Portage for a butcher shop.
On April 9 (Vimy Day), a meeting was held to organize the British Empire Service League. By September, the “Legion” was established in Fort Frances.
With president Fred Breckon, committees included Housing, Entertainment, Refreshment, and Advertising. The first event planned was a Labour Day picnic and sports at Pither’s Point Park.
The May petition from businessmen and merchants for the usual weekly half-holiday was received and authorized to proclaim that Thursday afternoons from May 20 to Sept. 23, inclusive, were a half-holiday.
In August, the six-day Chautauqua program promised Fort Frances its first introduction to real Chautauqua. The high-class entertainers offered 11 complete performances.
Held in the big tent opposite the post office, the program featured Bible and health lectures conducted by a group of experienced evangalists. The health lectures were two-fold in nature—preventative and curative—with practical demonstrations.
The program was to appeal to lovers of better music, and higher ideals of literature and art. “The efforts of those behind Chautauqua work is to uphold ideals and build better citizenship. Their efforts seem to be first educational, second inspirational.”
The countdown to the centennial is on. The Fort Frances Museum and Fort Frances Public Library have prepared an address book for the 100th birthday.
Featuring historic buildings painted by local resident Vi Plumridge, this is sure to be a souvenir to get.
One hundred years! One hundred ideas! One hundred volunteers! 2003 should be a year for celebrating community—let’s make it one to remember.