The Month That Was – November 1917

Canadian Statesman, 4 Nov 1917, p. 5
Local and Otherwise
A Grand Masquerade Carnival will be held at the Oshawa Roller Rink next Tuesday night, Nov. 6th, See large bills for list of prizes. Doors Open at 7pm. Admission 25c, skates 10c extra.

Churches
The Jubilee services of Simcoe-st Methodist Church, Oshawa, on Sunday Oct. 21 will long be remembered as an event of great importance and interest.

Newspaper ad for the Military Service Act
Port Perry Star, 8 Nov 1917, p. 8

North Ontario Observer, 22 Nov 1917, p. 2
Union Mass Meeting
Wm. Smith, Esq., ex-MP Unaniously Nominated
Meeting Large and Enthusiastic

Whitby, Nov. 17 –  Nomination as Union candidate to represent South Ontario in the Dominion Parliament was offered to an accepted by William Smith, ex-PM (sic) for the riding, at a meeting called to choose a Union candidate, held in Whitby this afternoon. There was a large attendance made up of adherence to both political parties, and on the platform were men who in the past have been lively and even better opponents. F.L. Mason, Warden of the County, was chairman. The names in first nomination comprised almost as many liberals as conservatives, and were: William Smith, ex-MP, Columbus; FL Fowke, ex-MP, Oshawa; Dr TE Kaiser, Oshawa; Dr. Captain James Moore, Brooklin; George McLaughlin, Oshawa; Robert M Holtby, Manchester; Col. JF Grierson, Oshawa; Peter Christie, Manchester. All withdrew except Wm. Smith, and on motion of Dr. TE Kaiser and Col. JE Grierson, the nomination was unanimously offered to Mr. Smith, amid prolonged and enthusiastic applause.

Mr. Smith, in a kindly and amiable address, accepted the nomination and put himself up on record as in hearty accord with the principles the motives of the motives of the Union Government. He sympathized with those who were called upon to give up the sons to this awful struggle for human liberty, but there was no other way to in victory. The Military Service Act was inevitable when voluntary recruitment failed. He pledged his loyalty and hearty support to the union government, if elected.

Black and white photo of W.E.N. Sinclair, who was nominated as the Liberal Party Candidate in 1917
Port Perry Star, 22 Nov 1917, p. 1

Canadian Statesman, 29 Nov 1917, p. 2
Oshawa Boy Pays Price
Mr. A.A. Crowle, Oshawa, has received the following telegram:

“Deeply regret to inform you 745947 Pte. Delbert Crowle, Infantry, officially reported died of wounds, 44th Clearing Station, November 3, 1917, gunshot wound head.” Pte. Crowle enlisted with the 116th Ontario County Battalion. He went overseas on July 20, and reached France on 20th October, 1916. He was on active service until the 4th of May, 1917, when he was wounded. He was in England until September 1st, when he again returned to the firing line. Delbert was well known in Oshawa being born there 22 years ago, attended school, and was his father’s able assistant in the Luke Burial Company’s office when he enlisted. Capt. Garbutt, of Simcoe Street Methodist Church, held a memorial service Sunday evening to the memory of the deceased soldier.

Page 5
Local and Otherwise
Ernest Drinkle, Oshawa, was fined $5 for allowing his son to remain out of school. We see boys of school age too often on streets during school hours.

The Ontario Reformer, November 30, 1917, p. 4
The Late JO Henry

There passes away at his home on King St. east, Inst. Thursday afternoon, a member of a well known family in this County, in the person of Mr. James Orrin Henry.

He was one of the first exporters from Canada of apples to the British market, where his brand of fruit remained popular for many years. He was in his 86th year. As one of the pioneers of this locality, he had a large circle of acquaintances and many relatives.

He was the first of the twelve sons of the late Elder Thomas Henry, who was a local preacher of reputation 50 years ago. Elder Henry, along with Barton stone, founded the Christian Connection Church of Canada. Mr. Henry retired from his business 26 years ago. He is survived by two sons, Mr. EN Henry, who is a member of the Oshawa Exemption Tribunal, and Dr. Frank Henry, of Oshawa. He was a life-long Liberal and a Methodist. He was twice married. His first wife was a daughter of Samuel Hill, a pioneer of the district, and his second wife, Miss Carrie Major of Port Perry.

The funeral took place Saturday afternoon at 3:30 and was largely attended, interment taking place in Union Cemetery.

Note: James was the sixth of eleven sons for Thomas Henry, not fifth of twelve as reported.

Newspaper ad for Henderson Bros., New Linens for Xmas
Ontario Reformer, November 30, 1917 Page 12

The Ontario Reformer, November 30, 1917, p. 9
Archie Law Killed in Action
Word was received Wednesday morning of last week that Lance Corpl. Archie Law, one of Oshawa’s brightest and best known young men was “killed in action” on Oct. 30th. He enlisted in Montreal with the late Will Garrow, Will Bowden, Walter Hobday and Will French, in the Princess Patricias, and they went overseas Sept. 4th, 1915. He had not been wounded before, although he was in the hospital for a short time with a throat disease incurred by drinking bad water. All of these boys have been put out of the fight. Two have paid the supreme sacrifice. Will Bowden is a prisoner in Germany, Will French was wounded, and not being able to go back to the trenches, is being used as a bombing instructor in England. Walter Hobday returned to Canada incapacitated for further service a couple of months ago, bringing with him a bride from England.

Archie Law lived with his sister, Mrs. McAndrews, and father, William St. He also has five young brothers. His mother died when he was three years old, and was working for Luke Bros. when he enlisted. He was a member of Simcoe St. Church and S.S., and a good living boy who made friends wherever he went. He was expecting a six weeks’ leave to visit friends to Ireland at Xmas time.

Page number not specified
“Tanks” Pass Through Oshawa

On Tuesday afternoon the armoured tank, three armoured cars and the armoured motor cycle, which are being used in Canada in promoting the sale of Victory Loan Bonds, passed through Oshawa on the C.P.R. The tank, which is in charge of its own crew from the front, is like a huge tractor, and travels by means of two endless chains, on the caterpillar style. It is about 25 ft. long and about 10 ft. high. On account of the short notice given of their arrival but few were at the station to see them go through.

The Multiple Grave Markers of Charles A. Bracey

By Tom Craven

*Tom was on our September Union Cemetery Tour and was as curious about the two grave markers on the plot for Charles A. Bracey as we were! Thank you to Tom for taking the time to research this soldier and sharing your research with us.

Two flat laying grave markers. One is long and rectangular, while the other is smaller. They are both for a man named Charles A Bracey
Grave markers for Charles A Bracey in Union Cemetery

After looking at the military records for Charles A. Bracey I can only conclude that the reason for the smaller marker directly below the large grave marker is possibly to attempt to correct an error that appears in the larger marker, although I’m not sure it accomplishes this goal if, in fact, that was the goal. 

According to the military records, Bracey has two military numbers.  The first was 220072, and in that document, he has stated a Date of Birth of September 21, 1871.  He is deemed fit to serve on September 29, 1915 and his attestation papers were signed on September 27, 1915.  In the papers he acknowledges having served for 11 years in the Middlesex Regiment.  His age is listed as 44 years which, based on his acknowledged date of birth, would be correct.

A Casualty Form for Active Service appears under the 220072 military number dated November 5, 1915 in which he is deemed medically unfit to serve.

Bracey’s second attestation paper has a military number of 814065.  This is the number that appears on the larger grave marker.  His date of declaration is November 8, 1915, three days after his initial Casualty Form was created.  On these attestation papers he does not list the 11 years of service with the Middlesex Regiment that he had mentioned in the previous attestation document (under military number 220072).  His date of birth is once again listed as September 21, 1871, and his age is now recorded as 44 years and 2 months. He was certified as medically fit on November 8, 1915.  He lists a wife, Frances, and four children, Frances (age 9), Muriel (age 6) Lily (age 2), and Benjamin (9 months). 

He is eventually assigned to the 139th Battalion and stationed at Valcartier, Quebec.  On August 25, 1916, he is, again, deemed medically unfit as he is diagnosed with mitral regurgitation (aka a heart murmur). He is also diagnosed with Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).  He is described as looking much older that the age of 46 and then 48 that he admits to being (when, in fact he is only 44, a month from his 45th birthday).

So, he is discharged having never left Canada and never serves again.  The large grave marker states that he died in 1933 at the age of 66 however, being born in 1871 this would make him only 62 years of age.  The smaller marker may be an attempt to correct this error however, it states that he was born in 1872 which, according to the two sets of attestation papers is also incorrect.

There was another C. A. Bracey (Cecil A. Bracey) that enlisted however he was much younger than Charles and was from Toronto with no ties to Oshawa.  He claimed to be born September 24, 1898 and enlisted on January 12, 1917 however, it was later discovered that he lied about his date of birth and was actually underage when he enlisted and therefore discharged.


Thank you Tom for sharing your research! On our September tour, we were asked why some plots had more than one grave marker, like Bracey’s did. In the following weeks, we will follow up on the story of Bracey, sharing about his life before the First World War and what steps we took to learn about this man.

Oshawa Sea Rangers

By Melissa Cole, Curator

One of the main projects I have been working on is the creation of a virtual exhibit for the Digital Museum of Canada, looking at the history of Oshawa’s waterfront with a focus on the harbourThis exhibit is a collaborative project with content sourced from various community archives and our local community.  Here is a sneak peak at one of the stories that will be highlighted in this virtual exhibit.

Oshawa Sea Rangers

The Sea Rangers were a branch of Guiding for teens until 1964 that eventually became known simply as “Rangers.”  The Sea Rangers merged with the Air Rangers and became “Rangers,” who would specialize in sea or air activities, where facilities are available. 

A white hat on a wooden hat block; there is a triangular scarf tied at the bottom of the wooden hat block
SRS Crusaders, Oshawa Cap and Scarf, Oshawa Museum collection, 022.4

The Sea Rangers gave their members a sense of pride working with others and created many long last friendships. Sea Rangers provided young women with the opportunity to develop their confidence and responsibility through the mentoring of other women.

Blue and white crest. The centre features a stylized steering wheel with a boat and oars in the middle, and the words on the crest read: SRS Crusader Cutter Champs, 1960
Crest, commemorating SRS Crusader Cutter Champs, 1960; part of album, Oshawa Museum archival collection (A021.9.1)

The Oshawa Sea Rangers, known as the Crusaders, would meet at the Oshawa Navy League, Cadet Hall, to practice precision drills.  The Cadet Hall, located at 44 Oshawa Boulevard North, is still in the same location today. 

The Oshawa Harbour was the location where Oshawa’s Sea Rangers, practiced drills on the lake and their cutters were stored in the boat house that was located on the east side of the beach.  The sea cadets and rangers both used the boathouse at the lake to store their cutters.  The cutters were rowed by a team of ten with a coxswain who steered the cutter and set the pace.  Practices took place once a week at the harbour, sometimes more as the regatta got closer, practices would increase to twice a week. When practicing, the cutter would be rowed out of the inner harbour, along the jetty and out into the open lake.

Sandra Gaskell
Newspaper photo of nine Caucasian women posed for a photo. Six are wearing white shirts, dark skirts, and white hats, while three are wearing dark coats and dark hats. Under the photo, the caption reads: Sea Ranger Crew, SRS Crusader, Receive Well-Earned Awards
From the Oshawa Times, 1960; image part of album, Oshawa Museum archival collection (A021.9.1)

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Sea Cadet (Navy Club) boat house was located at the lakefront, west of the Yacht Club.  The Sea Cadets took the cutters out in the spring, where it would be tied up, usually on the west wall or the south wall.  In the fall the cutter would be placed back in the boat house.  During this time, it was possible to drive right over to the inner harbour near where the cutter would be tied up.

A group of 11 Caucasian women, wearing white shirts and white hats, posed for a photo with a trophy.
SRS Crusaders Cutter Champs, 1960; image part of album, Oshawa Museum archival collection (A021.9.1)

There is a group of friends who talk about our Sea Ranger days every time we get together. All these Sea Rangers married Sea cadets except for two of us. The boat house at the lake was where we kept the cutters that both the sea cadets and rangers used. Several boathouse paintings of the boathouse hang in at least 4 homes. My sisters, Marg & Pat won the cutter races in the ‘50s. Cathy and I crewed wins in the ‘60s. We have photos to prove it. Not to mention the blisters on our hands and backsides. All the sea rangers kept log books and photos. Mine are long gone but a few others have theirs.

Mary Ellen Cole

The Month That Was – October 1870

Oshawa Vindicator, October 5, 1870, page 1

For Sale
A Brick House, 36 x 24, 2 ½ stories high, with stable, shed, driving house, &c., connected to the Lot on which they stand, being 58 square perches, the property of John Robinson, Port Oshawa. Terms liberal. Apply to either Ralph Robinson, Oshawa, or John Thompson, Paitley Mills, Whitby.

Newspaper ad for Weaving at Columbus
Oshawa Vindicator, 5 October 1870, page 1

Page 2
Whitby and East Whitby Fair
Every preparation is being made by the directors to make the Fall Fair to be held here on the 26th, better than any that has preceded it. Fifty three dollars have been collected in the town, as special prizes for equestrianship. Two of these are a portrait valued at $15, to be given to the best lady rider, and one valued at $8, to the best lady equestrian under fifteen years of age, both presented by Mr. JE Hoitt. The prizes for equestrianship have been divided into four classes, three prizes being offered to young ladies under 15, and three to boys under 16 years of age. Several new prizes have been offered in the photographic department, for the purpose of inducing a strong competition. Mr. J Porter offers for special prizes of $18, for suckling colts after Sir Walter Scott. The bills have been issued to the several directors and can be had of them.

Newspaper ad for Walter Wigg & Son, furniture & undertaking
Oshawa Vindicator, 5 Oct 1870, p 3

Died
In Oshawa, on the 4th inst., Louisa, wife of JB Warren, Esq., aged 64 years. The funeral will leave the residence of her husband for St. George’s Burial ground, at 3pm to-morrow (Thursday).

Newspaper ad for Wolfenden's Marble Works
Whitby Chronicle, 6 Oct 1870 p4

Oshawa Vindicator, October 12, 1870, page 2
As the funeral of the late Mrs. Warren was on its way to the St. George’s Burial Ground Thursday, it was met by the waggon of the Dominion Telegraph Company, which frightened some of the horses. In the fright, the carriages were backed upon each other, and one, that of Mr. Burk, of Bowmanville, was forced into the ditch and broken.

Mr. W. Rundle has a bill against the town of $17.50 for damages done to his horse by a broken street crossing. The hole is repaired now.

Wanted
A first-class servant girl, two kept in the family. Good wages given. Mrs. JO Guy. Port Oshawa, Oct 10, 1870

Newspaper ad for George Gurley's tailoring business
Oshawa Vindicator, 12 Oct 1870, p 3

Whitby Gazette, October 13, 1870, page 2
The Harvest of 1870
The following is the annual report of the GTR officials of the harvest in this locality: …

Oshawa – hay, very light and not an average crop; Wheat, very light crop, average not over 10 bushels per acre; Barley, average 15 bushels per acre; Peas, average 20 bushels per acre; Oats, an average crop; root crops good; Quality of grain very fine, having been secured in splendid condition.

Oshawa Vindicator, October 19, 1870, page 2
The schooner Kate, of this port, was blown ashore in the gale Monday night, near Cobourg. She was loaded with barley belonging to R & A Smith. The grain was insured. No one was lost.

In the same blow, a schooner loaded in the harbor carried off posts and a portion of the wharf to which she was fastened.

By the New York papers we see that Mr. Carswell is keeping up his old time reputation in that city. He leaves soon on a lecturing tour in the Southern States, under the auspices of the National Division of the Sons.

Stolen or Strayed
From Lot 6 2nd Concession East Whitby, on the 2nd Oct., a RED COW, with white spots on left hip and left shoulder, with star in her forehead, three years old. Anyone returing the same will be liberally rewarded.
Sarah Terry, East Whitby, Oct. 18, 1870

Newspaper ad for Atkinson's Drug Store
Oshawa Vindicator, 19 Oct 1870, p 3

Whitby Gazette, October 20, 1870, page 2
Masonic Charts – We have received from Dr. Vars, of Oshawa a sett of masonic charts, copies of which should be in the hands of every “brother of the mystic” in the country. The charts are magnificently engraved, and cleanly and neatly printed and, besides illustrating the different grades and forms of Masonry, are beautiful ornaments for the parlor at home. Parties can be supplied with the charts by Dr. Vars, Oshawa, or at this office.

Newspaper ad for hats
Whitby Gazette, 27 Oct 1870, p 4

Oshawa Vindicator, October 26, 1870, page 2
Oshawa Fire Brigade – The following offices were duly elected at the regular annual election for 1871:

Brigade Officers – PH Thornton, re-elected Chief Engineer and Treasurer; Jos. Craig, Assistance Chief Engineer; R. Dillon, Brigade Secretary

Fire Co. Rescue No. 1 – Thos. Hall, Captain; R. Burdge, 1st Lieut; T. Kirby, 2nd Lieut; B. Robinson, 1st Branch; E Martin, 2nd Branch; ——- Best, 3rd Branch; W. Trewin, Sec’y; T. Lukes, Treasurerl T Hern, Steward.

Hose Co. Rescue No. 1 – O. Manuel, Captain; G. Graham, 1st Lieut; J Mitchel, 2nd Lieut; Ed. Nickle, Sec’y; Geo. Wilson, Treasurer.

Dreadnought Hook & Ladder Co. – Geo. Kelly, Captain; C. French, Lieut; A. Cameron, Treasurer. Sec’y not elected.

All members in connection with the Oshawa Fire Brigade, are requested to meet at the Fire Hall to-day, at one o’clock, sharp. They will muster in the evening at the appointed time to form a torchlight procession, (weather permitting).

Newspaper ad for Village taxes to be paid
Oshawa Vindicator, 26 Oct 1870, p 3

Whitby Gazette, October 27, 1870, page 2
DEATH OF DR. ROLPH
Dr. Rolph died at Mitchell on Wednesday afternoon of last week, at the advanced age of 78 years. As his name and efforts have been very intimately connected with the history of Canada, it is but right that his death should receive more than a passing notice. He was a man of most excellent parts –in science and the law, as well as in politics. Referring to him, a contemporary, the London Free Press, says: He was a reformer that always had a “policy,” and the downfall of the family compact was due, in a great measure, to his exertions. Being implicated in the rebellion of 1837 intentionally or by mistake…, but after the subsidence of political troubles returned to it, and entered the government in 1851 under Mr. now Sir Frances, Hincks. During his day he aided in the settlement of the Clergy Reserves difficulty; saw Reciprocity gained; was present at the birth of the Railways in Canada; and witnessed Upper Canada rise from the condition of a wilderness to the dignity of a nationality. In later years he established the Medical School, in connection with the Victoria College, and labored assiduously and with much success as it Principal. He was a man of kind heart, and a sound head. His natural abilities were great, but were heightened by a wide culture. As an orator his eloquence was proverbial, and no man of the day was listened to with more pleasure and instruction by the people than the “old ma eloquent.” The flow of his language was steady and uninterrupted, his articulation sweet and distinct, and he always made a deep impression.

His life has been a most useful one ; devoted to his fellow-creatures rather than to himself, and his memory will be dear to all that knew him or were acquainted with his career. Since 1856 he has not taken any active prominent part in political affairs, though his counsel was not neglected. He leaves behind him an honored name an unblemished reputation, which will long live, and with may make the wise prevail, upon recounting his history, that there were more like “good old Dr. Rolph.”

Newspaper ad for Lowes & Powells
Whitby Gazette, 27 Oct 1870, p 4

Page 2
THAT EARTHQUAKE – On Thursday morning last, between the hours of ten and eleven o’clock, Canada was visited by a slight shock of earthquake. The “quake” appears to have visited nearly every place in Ontario and Quebec, (if we are to believe the telegraph reports.) and to have shaken several towns in the United States. At Greenwood village, the shock was felt by Mr. Fred Meen, in his store, and by Mr. Samuel Green, while a person a few years distant in a hotel was entirely ignorant that there had been an earthquake. Again, some men working in a barn, a mill or so from Greenwood, were terribly frightened at the shaking of the building, and ran out, fearing it would fall. The shock appears also to have visited Whitby, and – a telegram to the Toronto paper affirms – lasted from three to five minutes. This startling item may be true, but, after diligent inquiry, we have not found the first person that knew a word about the earthquake, until the Toronto papers were received on the following morning. Nevertheless, the report MAY be true ; and of such be the case, the people of Whitby ought to be ashamed of themselves, to have a real live earthquake in their midst and to be ignorant of its whereabouts. It is really too bad. Where, we ask, were the police? We will candidly admits that, at the time mentioned, there was a good deal of shaking in town; but we really thought it was caused by the Court of Assizes, then in session. Most assuredly there was staggering, but, honestly, in our innocence, we believed that rot-gut played a lone hand in it. But we may have been mistaken, and a real earthquake might have been with us. If so, we are really sorry that we didn’t know.

Married
On the 19th inst., at the residence of the bride’s brother, in East Whitby, by the Rev. Dr. Jeffers, John S. Larke, Esq., publisher and editor of the Oshawa “Vindicator,” to Miss Elizabeth Baine, of Oshawa.

Anniversary Years for Two Oshawa Polish Landmarks

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

This year, 2022, marks anniversary years for two of Oshawa’s landmarks of importance to the Polish community. Branch 21 of the Polish Alliance of Canada is celebrating 100 years, while St. Hedwig’s Catholic Church is commemorating its 70th anniversary.

Oshawa’s Polish community grew throughout the early years of the 20th century. In August 1922, 19 Polish residents met at the home of Stanisław Leśniak to discuss establishing a Polish organization in the community; this came to realization in September of that year when the Polish Society of Fraternal Help was established. The first president was Józef Mazurkiewicz.  The group changed their name to the Polish Society in Oshawa in 1924. 

In 1925, the organization decided to build a Polish hall, and construction began shortly afterwards at 219 Olive Avenue.  All members donated $10 towards construction, and an interest-free loan from members was also approved. Fundraising initiatives looked outside the Polish community as well with a door to door collection.  The hall was completed in 1928, and this year, 2022, saw improvements to the façade of the hall.

Red brick building. At the top, it is flying a Canadian flag and a Polish flag, and there is a sign at the top centre reading "Polish Alliance of Canada" and a sign in the right window reading "Poznan"
Polish Alliance Hall on Olive Avenue

A number of community groups began operating out of the hall, including a library, choir, Polish language school, and amateur theatre group. As well, a Polish Veterans group started their base operations from the hall. During the Second World War, the group supported Poland and organized fundraising towards a relief fund. Members of the United Polish Relief fund visited each Polish family in Oshawa, held dances, and organized banquets, raising over $1800 towards the cause.

In April of 1944, the Polish Society of Oshawa decided to join the National Polish Alliance of Canada; they merged with another Branch in Oshawa, Branch 16, and together became Branch 21 of the National Polish Alliance of Canada. Wincenty Kołodziej was the first president of Branch 21.

Building with beige stucco facade and brick detailing around the bottom. It has signs reading 'Polish Alliance of Canada' and 'Poznan,' and there is a Canadian flag and a Polish flag
Polish Alliance of Canada, Branch 21 Hall, 2022; photo taken by OM Staff

Branch 21 has actively participated in Oshawa’s annual Fiesta Week for decades with dancing and traditional food being served. They operate as the “Poznań Pavilion.”

St. Hedwig’s Roman Catholic Church was built in a number of stages. There had been talk in Oshawa’s Polish community of establishing a Polish church since the late 1920s; by the 1950s, the work began. Before the establishment of St. Hedwig’s, Catholics in the community worshipped at St. Gregory’s or Holy Cross (which was built between 1940-1945). In 1952, the first mass for the Polish parish was celebrated, taking place at the Polish Hall at 168 Banting Avenue, and immediately after the mass, St. Hedwig of Silesia was chosen as the patron of the parish. That same year, a plot of land was purchased at Olive Avenue and Central Park Blvd., and fundraising began. The cornerstone was blessed in 1954, which was when the first mass was celebrated in the ‘lower church’ (basement).

A yellow brick church with a tall steeple at the front of the building. There is a large white cross to the left of the building, and there are many stairs and railings going to the front doors. There are many clouds in the sky.
St. Hedwig’s, 2021; taken by OM Staff

Construction of the upper church began in 1960, and the church was blessed by Archbishop Philip Pocock on June 25, 1961. He remarked in his homily, “The new church is now blessed and set aside for divine purposes. This means that you the parish have given it to God. Today He has accepted it. You have put your offerings, sacrifices and prayers into it. I offer my congratulations to the Pastor and parishoners for a job well done, in building this beautiful temple to Almighty God.”  There were approximately 700 people in attendance for this dedication mass.

In the 1970s, Pope John Paul II visited the church; at the time, he was a cardinal and not yet the Pope.

The church offers services seven days a week in Polish and an English mass on Sunday.

Since the early years of the 20th century, Oshawa became a place of settlement for Eastern European settlers. The longevity of several community hubs, including the Polish Alliance and St. Hedwig’s church, is a legacy of the hard work and dedication of the early settlers and of those who continue with them to this day.

To learn more about Oshawa’s Eastern European communities, particularly the stories of the Displaces Persons who arrived after the Second World War, visit the OM and see our exhibit, Leaving Home, Finding Home in Oshawa: Displaced Persons and Stories of Immigration.

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