historic scenes, Midland

Midland ontario symbol in bronze with blue water, bronze pine trees and yellow sun

Scattered around downtown Midland Ontario are quite a few murals with scenes of bygone days.  Many of these were originally painted by Fred Lenz in 1996 & 1997 and then repainted ten or eleven years later by Terri Milley and Ruth Hurdle.

below: Midland train station and railway yard.

downtown midland ontario, street with reddish brick building, 2 storeys, with a large mural painted on the side

In 1871 the area was the village of Mundy’s Bay.  That year, the Midland Railway chose Mundy’s Bay to be the terminus of a new railway line – the railway already ran between Port Hope and Beaverton and they wanted to extend it to Georgian Bay.  The small community of Mundy’s Bay was renamed Midland City.   By 1879 the railway was completed.

railway mural in Midland Ontario, five panels, train station, two large engines, people,

scene in a mural from Midland train station many years ago, women in long dresses and men in suits

vintage scene, men at railway yard, boy watching

below: Midland is on the shore of Georgian Bay which is part of Lake Huron.  Lumber and grain passed through this harbour and the town prospered.

mural of an historic scene in Midland Ontario, people in fashion of the time, standing on dock looking at a boat in the water and a grain elevator

below: Sewing in the window, with a view of the woolen mill across the street. small mural behind a tree on the upper storey above a store, a woman in a long blue dress is sewing at on old fashioned sewing machine

below: European explorers and their First Nations guides canoeing on the lake.

mural in bad shape (peeling paint) of a European explorer standing beside a lake scene, First Nations people and Europeans in canoes

below: A red and white lighthouse with a brilliant blue sky

along the whole side of a building, painted bright sky blue with some puffy white clouds. A large painting of a red and white lighthouse

below: Maybe when the first car came to town?

mural depicting a farm scene from a porch, with old fashioned car driving through. Barn with horse and child, also horse drawn wagon

below: Above an Italian restaurant is this small picture of horses bringing logs to the saw mill to be cut into lumber.

small mural above an Italian restaurant, horses bring a load of logs to the saw mill to be cut

below: HMS Bee, a schooner

a man with a beard stands with his arms crossed looking at a picture of a schooner with 3 sails, the HMS Bee

below: A portrait of James Playfair.  A the bottom of the pillar on the left: “A successful Midland lumberman turned to shipping in 1896.  In 1901 he formed the Midland Navigation Co.  In 1910 he established the Midland Dry Dock Co. renaming it in 1915 the Midland Shipbuilding Co to build ocean ships”.  At the bottom of the pillar on the right: “James Playfair’s Company completed in 1917 a large new shipyard on the Midland Waterfront to build Government contracted ocean cargo steamers.  The first one launched was the ‘War Fiend’ (1918-1920).”

a portrait of James Playfair in a mural, long with images of some of the boats that his shipyard built

below: Playfair Mills

a car is parked in front of a mural of a man balancing on logs in the water, playfair mills, midland history series murals.

below: Midland’s first post office opened in 1872

picture of man with grey hair, beard & mustache standing outside the post office,

below: A tribute to Canadian Girl Guides

vintage Girl Guides in blue hats tending to a wounded dog, with a sore paw, tent in the background.

below: The cleaners, delivering clean clothes.

car parked in front of a mural showing the interior of an old cleaners with a man working inside hanging up a dress

The murals were funded by Midland BIA & The Ontario Trillium Foundation

after the last departure

The last train left Buffalo Central Terminal station on October 28, 1971.  Many of the platforms remain, abandoned for more than forty years. It was a modern structure when it was built in 1929 but now it lies in disrepair. The upper level offices and waiting rooms are open to the elements and the tracks are overgrown.

graffiti on the walls of an abandoned building, blue and green tags

There are few reminders of its former life

pink concrete post with an old painting on it, red circle with white words that says fire extinguisher here. Someone has written in yellow below it, not anymore.

but most things that could be removed were ripped out long ago.

crumbling brick pillers in front of a wall on which someone has written Slime heads

large pink hand giving a thumbs down sign, graffiti on a wall. the words Urban scar have been written beside it. The hand is in a large yellow oval shape

graffiti painting - a man with the words Can't you see? The foundation is crumbling. Trashman is written in large red letters, also a mock coca-cola logo
hole in a brick wall, through the hole can be seen graffiti writing on the wall that says Dawg tag klew memba only!

 

An x has been cut into the edge of piece of corrugated metal. Someone has painted two white dots above it to make it into a face

graffiti painting of a person's head with wide brimmed red hat covering the upper part of the face. Words coming from his/her mouth are: For adult intellectuals only. On a wall in an abanded train station

walls in a state of decay and crumbling, with scrawls and graffiti on them

broken brick wall with an orange and yellow bright tag on it.

a wall with yellow and white tags, an abandoned train station, the room is now open to the elements

a blue tag that says youlok on a wall in an abandoned building

red and white horizontal striped square painted on a wall of an abandoned building with a drawing of a padlock on top of it. Brand name of the lock is master.

pink and purple stencilled butterflies on a concrete post

Words and other graffiti written on grey walls of an abandoned train station in Buffalo, one set of words says This place is a prison. Another set of words says Our work was good

street art paintings on the walls of an abandoned train platform.

red and white horizontal stripes in a square with a large H.A. painted on top of it. Someone has made the first period into an exclamation mark. Written in black on top it are the words Life Lyfe Nigger

a large spiral made with spray paint on a concrete block wall