Speaker Details

Speaker:Joanna McEwen and Sheila Craig
Topic:Local Rural Culture in the 1900’s **
Profles for Sheila Craig and Joanna McEwen
Sheila Craig, retired educator, historian, volunteer, lives at Craighurst, formerly in Flos Township. Her family settled on the Penetang Road 200 years ago, and the village is named for them. She worked on the Penetang Road Signage Project with Joanna McEwen, and created the Craighurst signs. As well Sheila is part of the Barn Quilt Trail project for Simcoe County Tourism. A member of the Women’s Institute, Sheila has leadership rolls with them, Branch President, Area Tweedsmuir History Curator, Area Membership Chair, and serves as the W I appointee on the Simcoe County Museum Board. She is a volunteer at WR Best Elementary School with the French Department. In the summer she golfs and gardens, and in the winter she gives talks.
Profile for Joanna ( McEwen) .
Joanna McEwen
I have lived in Oro Township for 68 years growing up on a farm, E1/2 lot 24, Conc. 4. It was called Watt’s Crossing and our neighbours were Howard and Jean Campbell; we were not by any stretch original settlers in this beautiful area, as were the Campbells who arrived c. 1830, from Islay Scotland or the Craigs, who settled on the Penetang road, 200 years ago. Imagine the horrendous journey from Great Britain to Simcoe County in those days .
I attended SS # 1 Shanty Bay, later collegiate in Barrie. A history/economics degree from Queen’s University was followed by B.Ed’s from U of T and York; and later an MFA from Norwich University, Vermont USA. Interest in local history began in a serious way when as the first woman Councillor for the Twp Oro ( 1976) , then Reeve Howard Campbell assigned me to the history committee. I do not think that he knew what to do with a woman on council, imagine !!!! At that time the first edition of The Story of Oro had just been published and it was already into a major, major revisions whereby we set the story straight concerning black settlement in Oro; and we added much, much more material. This was followed by Kith ‘N Kin & The history of Knox Church.
I taught history and visual art at Barrie North Collegiate and Twin Lakes Secondary in Orillia between 1964 and 2004, and Visual Art and Art theory at Georgian College. 2005 -09.
Married to Peter McEwen ( Toronto & Orr Lake) , mother of three( Sara, Ian & Joel) and grandmother of 7