Remembering Our Founding Members
by The Archives Committee
Our Big 75th Anniversary is now in the past. As our society moves on toward the 80th year marker, it is even more important to look back and admire the very first members and what they struggled to accomplish!
On a cold, snowy March 13, 1939 a lady by the name of Mrs. W.K. (Myrtle) Kettle saw her dream come true. She had finally convinced the Ontario Horticultural Society that although there were already flourishing Societies in both Peterborough and Lindsay, there was still a need for a Horticultural Society in Omemee. In order to form, the new society had to meet two conditions: (i) they had to have at least 20 members and (ii) they had to continue for at least 10 years. At the organizational meeting there were 29 paid members and they obviously lasted the 10 years. Mrs. Kettle later recalled that the organization committee knocked on doors, made phone calls and used personal contact to get things going. It has been rumoured that some even stood inside local grocery stores convincing people to join the new society. By the end of the year they had 110 members. Mrs. Kettle became the first president. According to the history book compiled by founding member Hazel Wilson: “the first meeting included a series of “Lantern slides” showing gladioli and some very fine gardens. The pictures were accompanied by an interesting address. The meeting ended with the election of officers.”
And here we are so very many years later, enjoying the fellowship and gardening pleasure that is rooted in a society started by those founding organizers. We do indeed have reason to celebrate.