The Chronicles of Oakland Township is a collection of photos and oral history interviews collected between 1973 and 1980 that document Oakland Township as it was from the late 19th century through to the time it was compiled. It was created by the following students, working for the Oakland Township Public Library:

  • Duane Brandow
  • Laurie Hayes
  • Jane Shaver
  • Joanne Vamos
  • Debbie Urban

Slide show Edit

  • Mr. and Mrs. Paul UrbanGo to
  • Mr. and Mrs. Harry TownsendGo to
  • Eletha SutherlandGo to
  • Painting by Mrs. LearmouthGo to
  • Goldie RiddochGo to
  • Mr. & Mrs. RammageGo to
  • Herman PersallGo to
  • Reta MalcolmGo to
  • Former Grantham houseGo to
  • Margery GatwardGo to
  • Donald EddyGo to
  • Mrs. Con Eddy's houseGo to
  • Ruth Cunningham's houseGo to
  • Irene CampbellGo to
  • Lewis BurtchGo to
  • Hazel BeckhamGo to
  • Mrs. Dell AbbottGo to
  • Back view of Vivian's Mill
  • The pond at Vivian's Mill
  • Lion's Park in Oakland
  • East Oakland School
  • Oakland Public School
  • East Oakland Pond
  • Oakland Pioneer CemeteryGo to
  • Oakland Cemeery
  • Bradshaw's Fuels & Fast Food
  • Smith's Mills
  • Back view of Smith's Mills
  • Water power at Smith's Mills
  • Waterfalls at Smith's Mills
  • Entrance to Crystal Springs Bible Camp
  • Crystal Springs camp site
  • Crystal Springs Pond
  • CKPC towers
  • Former location of bandshell & hotel
  • The Scotland Gore
  • Jehovah's Witnesses
  • Scotland Cemetery
  • St. Mark's Anglican Church
  • Scotland Baptist Church
  • Scotland Post Office
  • The corner store
  • The Oakland Township LibraryGo to
  • The Royal Bank
  • Huggin's Clover Farm
  • The barber shop
  • Simon's Service Station
  • Hunter's Lumber
  • Hunter residence
  • Donn's Construction
  • Glave's Funeral Home
  • Former site of Schwart's Lucky Dollar Store
  • The former site of the Masonic Hall & VanDusen Block
  • Entrance to the Iron Cat
  • Building where glass blowing was done
  • A pond located on the grounds of the Iron Cat
  • The bench where glass figurines were made
  • Borghoff Motors & White Farm Equipment
  • The Scotland Agromart
  • Willow Lake Park
  • Playgrounds at Willow Lake Park
  • Lovely antiques in Mr. Vivian's home
  • More treasurable items in Mr. Vivian's home
  • Another view of Mr. Vivian's furniture
  • A clock with a photo of Mr. Vivian
  • Eliakim Malcolm's chair
  • View of Lion's Park pond

Original introduction Edit

This introduction was printed at the beginning of the original 1980 edition of the Chronicles of Oakland Township.

At the time of this writing almost 130 years have passed since the area known as Oakland Township officially came into being. It would have been people our great-great-grandfather's age who first settled in this nutshell township, I wonder if they intended for this community to spread into a voluminous megalopolis? Probably not. Oakland and Scotland had that small town flavour: the taste of homemade ice cream and freshly squeezed lemonade; the aroma of garden parties, bob sleigh riding and fishing at the old pond. All these memories still linger in the minds of many of the people who remain in this locality. With the hope that we do not lose sight of the past we have completed a book that will retain the evidence of times gone by.

Our primary aim in this project was to compile a date line starting with the year 1850 to the present day. We have completed that to the best of our abilities. During the first few weeks of the project we searched through old files, council minutes, newspapers and various historical books. Finding specific information on Oakland Township was a very difficult task. Resources are limited and whenever we did find a book with a chapter on Oakland Township the information was very general or else repetitive.

There are a lot of blank spots in the history of this tiny vicinity. One reason for this phenomenon is that Oakland Township has a relatively slow pace as compared to larger centres such as Brantford. Growth is fairly stagnant. Net necessarily because people do not want to live here; but rather because the strict Township by-laws emphasize the preservation of rural agriculture. The future does not anticipate rapid growth or industrialization to this area. Inevitably the residents will live here in much the same fashion as they have been. Things have not and will not change that drastically.

Does this mean that Oakland Township is of no historical significance? Quite the contrary. The past is everywhere; you just have to go out there and acquaint yourself with it. One of the best ways to peruse the past is to meet it face to face. There are so many elderly people who are just brimming with anecdotes and opinions about the way things were. That is what we have tried to accomplish in this project. We thought that if we visited and interviewed various people in the community we would be able to fabricate a very personalized collection of memoirs from Oakland Township.

Some may say that hearing small-town interviews could be compared to seeing home movies. How could they interest anybody except for the select few that were involved. Well just think of it... One hundred years or even fifty years from now someone may listen to these tapes. Hopefully our world will still be going strong. One old farmer said in an interview, "You can't believe it! You just can't believe we really did that." If he thought that I could not believe it, can you imagine the reaction of someone a hundred years from now.

Most of the people we interviewed have witnessed a lot of changes in their life time. Phenomenal technology has occurred in the Twentieth Century and I can only anticipate what is yet to come. Imagine seeing your first talkie movie or bombing around in a Model T. Television, telephones, phonographs, radios, jets, electricity, indoor plumbing, refrigerator-freezers... Now just fancy being without them all. You will find that many of the interviews involve people who have been through such a transition.

Joanne Vamos
August 14, 1980

Acknowledgements Edit

Mrs. Ruby Dell AbbottMrs. Nora Haggard
Mr. & Mrs. Jim AllanMrs. Margaret Kaufman
Mrs. Hazel BeckhamMr. Joe Keresturi
Mrs. Edith BonhamMr. & Mrs. James Lamky
Mr. Lewis C. BurtchMr. & Mrs. Jack Learmouth
Mrs. Irene CampbellMrs. Reta Malcolm
Mrs. Evelyn ChandlerMrs. Pearl Messecar
Mr. Wes ClarkMr. Herman Persall
Mrs. Ruth CunninghamMr. & Mrs. Russel Rammage
Mrs. Florence EddyMrs. Goldie Riddoch
Mr. Donald EddyMrs. Ola Shellington
Mrs. Verna EddyMr. Clarence Stratford
Mr. Harry FranklinMrs. Eletha Sutherland
Mr. Ellis FranklinMrs. Helen Takacs
Mrs. Margery GatwardMr. Harry Townsend
Mr. William GranthamMr. Lloyd Vivian
Mrs. Ethel GravesMr. & Mrs. Paul Urban


  • Mrs. Glenne Bell, Head Librarian, Waterford Public Library.
  • Mrs. Molly Frederiksen, Assistant Librarian, O.T.P.L.
  • Mrs. Margery Gatward, Oakland Township Clerk.
  • Ted Kingdon, Project Co-ordinator, Summer Youth Employment Program
  • Mrs. Anna McNelles, Head Librarian, Oakland Township Public Library
  • Dave Ricard, History Department, Brantford Public Library
  • Adrian Schuman, Audio Visual Department, Head-Office South Central Regional Library System.
  • Barry Walker, Building Inspector.

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