The Heritage Corner, Springhill Record

September 12th, 2012

First Annual Decoration Day 

Springhill Record, March 22, 1935Barber Burned By Blazing Gasoline

     John Leslie, well known local barber, was severely burned about the hands and face Saturday evening when flames from an ignited can of gasoline caught his clothing as he was carrying the blazing can from the house.  Only the prompt action of his wife, who threw mats around him and beat out the flames, saved him probably from far worse burns.  He will be confined to his home for some time as a result of the accident.

     The accident occurred when Mr. Leslie’s young son Logan, 8 years old, was seeking a hammer in a small closet and the lighted match ignited a can of gasoline which had been used for cleaning purposes.  The cries of the boy brought his father to the scene and he attempted to carry the blazing can out of the house.  It was then his clothes caught fire.

Aug. 30, 1935Hundreds Attend First Annual Decoration Day Service Sunday

Springhill, N.S. Aug. 16th -

     For the first time in their history, Springhill societies united in a fully organized decoration day program, when on Sunday they paraded to Hillside Cemetery and decorated the graves of those who are remembered as former members but as friends and comrades who a little time before have ceased from their labors and passed into the Great Beyond.

     The great parade arranged along the Main St. at 1:30 o’clock, accompanied by the Citizen’s Band under Bandmaster Thos. BarrowCol. D. Murray acted as Grand Marshall, with Assistant Marshall Sgt. Major Goldrich

     The following societies were included in the line of march: Canadian Legion, Orangemen, Knights of Pythias, Oddfellows, Buffaloes, Sons of England and Springhill Firemen.  These orders were augmented in the decoration ceremonies by representatives of sister orders as follows: Pythian Sisters, Rebekahs, Eastern Star, True Blues (2), Daughters and Maids of England and Daughters of the Empire.

     The parade proceeded to the field overlooking Hillside Cemetery where the various orders took their places surrounding a platform decorated with flags and bunting.  Rev. E.C. Robertson of Charlottetown, speaker for the day at St. David’s, a member of the First Contingent C.E.F. and Past President of the Canadian Legion officiated as chairman.

     The following program was carried out:

“O Canada” Band and mass choir

Opening remarks: Rev. E.C. Robertson

Hymn – “O God Our Help in Ages Past”

Address – Rev. G.R. Harrison of All Saints Anglican Church, Honorable Chaplin Canadian  Legion

Hymn – “Abide With Me”

Hymn – “Lead Kindly Light”

Decoration of Graves followed with appropriate individual observances and with distinctive symbolisms.

Canadian Legion – Cross, flag and poppy

“Cumberland” K. of P. – Triangle, flag and flowers. Ceremony at K. of P. lot, with Rev. G.R. Harrison, speaker.  Roll Call and placing of flowers with large triangle in memory of all deceased members,

“Eureka” I.O.O.F. – Memorial banner bearing the All Seeing Eye and motto “Honor the Dead”.

“St. Aidans” S.O.E. – flowers

“Union Jack” R.A.O.B. – Flowers

Loyal Orange Lodge – Flowers

“Lady Minto” Rebekahs – Flowers with emblematic pink and green ribbons

Pythian Sisters – Flowers

Daughters of England – flags

“Lady Wellington” L.T.B.A. – Triangle and flag

“Lady Queen Victoria” L.T.B.A. – Bouquet

Daughters of the Empire – Flag and flowers

Firemen – Small ladder with broken rungs, the top rung being broken in the ladder placed in memory of ex-chief Somers.  Flowers

     Following the decoration of the graves the societies re-assembled in the field where the ceremonies were concluded.

Hymn – “Nearer MY God to Thee”; ‘The Last Post” and “Reveille” sounded by Bugler Barrows, prayer and Benediction by Rev. J. R. Miller of St. Andrews United.

     There was a very large attendance and a splendid turnout of all societies.  In many ways the individual observances were deeply touching.  It is hoped that the combined ceremonies as carried out on this occasion may be continued as an annual event. 

     Great credit is due to all who helped making the event an outstanding success, particularly the Canadian Legion which sponsored and had charge of all arrangements.