The Way We Were: Archives Collection and Image of the Month Series

The main role of the City Archives is to manage government records with long-term business value. The City of Vaughan Archives also collects, preserves and makes available for research permanently valuable non-government records from the Vaughan community that document the rich and diverse heritage of the City of Vaughan. Every month we’ll share pieces of Vaughan’s heritage in a regular feature called The Way We Were.

To view more from the City’s archival collections, visit the City of Vaughan’s Facebook page.


Image of the month: Dominion of Destiny pageant, 1953

In August 1953, members of the Elder’s Mills Women’s Institute participated in the Dominion of Destiny pageant, a special Canada Day event that took place during the Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW) Conference held in Toronto. Performed as a drama, the pageant recreated several major events in Canadian history, from pre-settlement to the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Thirty-five scenes were performed in total and included full costume, lighting and music. Pictured here are ACWW members recreating scenes from the June 16, 1936 Peace Bridge event where the Canadian President of the ACWW presented a plaque called The Pilgrimage of Friendship to the American president. The pageant also featured performances from a choir and ballet group, the military and Air Force, the Red Cross, the YMCA and YWCA, and the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides.

Collection of the month: Woodbridge Horticulture Society fonds

The Woodbridge Horticultural Society was established in 1923. It boasted a membership of 107 by the end of that year, and by 1930 numbered 475. The Society has hosted numerous flower shows which are the main social event of each season. Members have exhibited at several garden shows, the O’Keeffe Centre, the Canadian National Exhibition and the Gladioli Show, and have undertaken many projects such as planting trees, flowers and shrubs in public areas. Spanning the years 1934-2000, the fonds consists of annual year books and show books (which provide lists of officers and members of the Board of Directors, programs hosted by the Society for the year, show rules, essays on a variety of subjects related to horticulture by members and non-members, general membership lists and lists of junior members), and a series of scrapbooks and albums containing photographs and news clippings from past shows.
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