Because of some organizational issues involving the society that I encountered at that time, I resigned as president of the Long Branch Historical Society on June 19, 2012.
A selection of archival materials, otherwise destined for appraisal by an archivist from the Toronto Archives, have been moved to a storage facility on Birmingham Avenue. Whether or not this material was moved with prior authorization of the Society is a matter of debate.
Other materials have subsequently been moved to a storage facility near the Queen Elizabeth Way. Barry Kemp and Jaan Pill organized the second move.
A third set of materials — large pieces of furniture and the like — have reportedly been moved to a storage facility in Brampton.
The long-term preservation and conservation of the archives remains in doubt. A previous plan involved arranging for an appraiser from the Toronto Archives to review the archival materials.
This was to be a first step in the eventual handing over, to the Toronto Archives, of paper documents from the Long Branch archives.
The plan was that the archivist would write a report, after which the director of the Toronto Archives would make a final decision regarding whether or not the archives would be suitable for receipt by the Toronto Archives. The next step would be the negotiation of a letter of agreement between the Society and the Toronto Archives.
There was support for the move of materials to the Toronto Archives among a majority of members who shared their views regarding the next steps for the archives (to access a report, click on the following link):
The Society was founded in 1983 or close to that year. The Society has done a great job of inviting speakers to discuss topics of historical interest. It also organized many other community events in the early years. I’m highly inspired by the work it has done in the past — such as its sponsorship of a preliminary archaeological dig in 1984 at the Colonel Samuel Smith homesite — and I have the hope that it will do productive work in the future.
Barry Kemp, in his role as president, has done an exemplary job in the previous twelve years in keeping the Society going. For many years, Barry had been seeking a volunteer who would take on the role of president in his stead. Barry asked me in the summer of 2011 if I would be willing to take on the role of president. I agreed and was elected at a meeting on March 20, 2012. That meeting featured a well-attended talk about the history of Canadian aviation, by Honourary Colonel Gerald Haddon, grandson of J.A.D. McCurdy, Canada’s first aviator. I wish the Society every success in the future under new leadership.
Nov. 4, 2013 update: As you may know, the Long Branch Historical Society is currently no longer functioning. It’s in a state of hibernation, so to speak. It’s my hope that someone will start it up again in future decades.