Sixteen interested community members gathered at the recreation hall, here September 19, and agreed that the history of this area is important enough to them, to work to do something to preserve it.
As a first step the group decided and agreed that they will form an organization called the South Dundas Historical Society.
The group will meet again next month, and at that time they may name an executive.
At the meeting, it was suggested that the South Dundas Historical Society needs to decide if its mandate will be to preserve historical artifacts of the area or to take on projects that aim to educate the public about the history of South Dundas.
No matter the direction, Phillip Blancher, one of the organizers of the inaugural meeting, suggested that they start small. “I think simple is better, to start.”
According to Blancher, the first goal of the South Dundas Historical Society is a digital history project, to be documented on southdundas.net
“With this meeting, we really wanted to gauge the community’s interest in re-starting a historical society with a focus on the entire South Dundas area,” said Blancher. The meeting was organized and hosted by Blancher and Sue Peters with the help of Evonne Delegarde.
“Across South Dundas, everyone seems to talk about the importance of its history and the importance of promoting history, but there is no organized group to do that,” said Blancher.
All who attended the meeting agreed that the formation of this society is important and worthwhile.
“It’s important to know where you come from, if you want to know where you are going,” said Robert Gillard.
“There is a great potential to build a corridor of historical excitement,” said Howard Kirkby, mentioning South Dundas in relation to Upper Canada Village and the Lost Villages.
Alec Ball, who travelled from Metcalfe to attend the meeting, pointed out that the only historical society in all of Dundas County is a Chesterville group. He, and others who attended, said they would join the group simply because of their interest in local history and learning more about it.
Others who have long been advocates for the preservation of local history, such as Jim Jordan and Glen Cunningham, attended the meeting to support the formation of the group, in hopes that interest in this area’s history is not lost with their generation.
“This doesn’t stop here,” said Delegarde, adding that she believes there is much more interest, in the community, in the formation of this group, than the 16 people in attendance.