Annual report of the Department of Education 1890-91

“Reports of Inspectors of Schools: Dartmouth has provided a house, in the north end, with two departments. The site is retired, dry and pleasant, surrounded with forest trees. What has been known as Tuft’s Cove school occupies one of the rooms. The “Greenvale” house has four large and well ventilated rooms. The basement is well … Read more

Annual Report 1894


Mayor’s Report for the Year 1894 Ladies and Gentlemen, -I have the honor to submit for your information and approval, a report of the proceedings of your Council for the year ending December 31st last. I have decided for your better information to give you the detailed reports as submitted by the Chairmen of the … Read more

Annual Report 1890


Ladies and gentlemen: The second year of my official duties as mayor of this town having closed, it affords me the opportunity to place before you the following report of the several services that have engaged the attention and exertions of your council. The most important of which are the ferry, between the Town and … Read more

Annual Report 1889


MAYOR’S REPORT Ladies and Gentlemen,- Having had the honor of your suffrages in filling the office of Mayor for the past year, I have much pleasure in laying before you the following reports of the present condition, the future requirements, the several steps that have been taken by your council for the purpose of improving … Read more

Annual Report 1888


MAYOR’S ADDRESS Ladies and Gentlemen, At the close of my term of office as Mayor, it gives me pleasure to report the satisfactory condition of the business affairs of the Municipality of Dartmouth. Legislation Since the last animal meeting, two important acts have been passed by the Legislature which affect the Town of Dartmouth in … Read more

Annual Report 1951

The Mayor’s Report

Citizens of Dartmouth, Ladies and Gentlemen:

I have the honor to submit my report as Mayor of the year 1951. The year just closed marked another year of progress for Dartmouth, one in which the official census figures showed a population in excess of 15,000, an increase of 40 percent over the 1941 census.

During the year 1951 we marked the completion of our new Junior High School, which is widely acclaimed as the most modern in its field, and also observed the official opening of the Dartmouth Memorial Rink. Both of these were in. operation during the year and are filling a long-felt need in the Town. An addition to Notting Park Elementary school was also started late in the year.

Good progress was made in the special water project involving the construction of a reservoir outside the Town. Further progress was also made in the Windmill Road widening project. Both of these undertakings are scheduled for completion in 1952.

The Harbour Bridge came a step nearer with the expropriation of land by the Bridge Commission and the removal of many homes from the site.

Curb, gutter and sidewalk work was slowed somewhat due to credit restrictions as was new housing, however, business expansion continued with the completion of the Dominion Store and the Wool-worth building. Building by-laws were approved and are now available in a convenient booklet.

Debenture issues by the Town were very well received; we continue to enjoy an excellent reputation in financial circles. The re-assesment survey started in January was completed ahead of schedule, raising our assessments to approximately $21,000,000.

For the first time in history, Town elections were held on the first Tuesday in December with the newly elected members of Council taking office on January first. These elections were marked by the election of our first lady councillor.

Two hundred and fourteen prefabricated houses were purchased from the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation at $1000 each and were permanized by placing concrete foundations under them and making ether repairs at an additional cost of approximately $1000 per house. These houses were offered first to the occupants and then to other citizens at $2800, $3000 and $3200, making low cost housing available to many. They will ultimately show a substantial profit to the Town.

The Civil Defence program made steady progress through 1951. Three members of the organization took special courses in Ottawa at the expense of the Federal government and others plan to take courses during 1952. The nucleus of an organization is set up and plans are being carried out to expand further during 1952.

Traffic conditions were given special study by a committee of the Chamber of Commerce and Town Safety committee and some measures to improve conditions were undertaken immediately and recommendations concerning traffic lights were referred to the in-coming Council.

The Works committee budget was the largest in the history of the Town and many new streets were constructed, particularly in the south end of the Town. The patching program was started earlier and the street sweeping service extended. Flood conditions at the Lake Road and at the foot of Synott’s Hill were corrected during the year and a section of the Lake Road was resurfaced. We should look forward to further development of a paving program in 1952-53.

Welfare costs rose sharply in 1951 due to increased hospital rates. The Police and Fire Departments continue to expand with the increased demands being made on them.

I should like to express my thanks to the members of Council and the various committees and also to Town employees and citizens generally for the co-operation afforded me during the year.

I have the honor to be, Yours faithfully, C. H. MORRIS, Mayor.

Finance Committee

The steadily rising cost of living index made its weight felt in Dartmouth finances In 1951 with the result that the tax rate showed a slight increase, fifteen cents over the previous year, or $4.40 per $100 of assessment. Continued expansion and need for further services and facilities also contributed towards the slight increase in the rate.

Total revenues in the Town during that period amounted to $670,558, the largest ever recorded in the Town’s history. Despite this fact, however, a deficit of $25,000 was shown on the year’s operation.

Main reason for the deficit was an unexpected increase in the cost of hospital services to the Town which in themselves resulted in a deficit of $10,000. In addition temporary borrowing debt charges, covering the Memorial Rink and Bicentennial Junior High School amounted to $12,000 while the Works Department was over-expended an amount of $5000. These combined with the small surpluses shown by several committees resulted in an overall deficit.

The Finance committee points out that during 1951 an amount of $13,500 was included in the budget covering the Town’s costs the Halifax County Vocational High School in Halifax. This had not been paid at the end of the year, but was due and is being held in a special reserve account for this purpose.

Total assessment for the Town of Dartmouth during the year 1951 was $12,000,175. The amount of taxable property in the town amounted to $9,455,475. During the year a reassessment survey was undertaken and this is dealt with under a separate report.

New Town Clerk Appointed

town hall

During the year R. D. Thomson, Town Clerk who had been in the employ of the Town for 13 years, resigned from that post to accept employment in private business.

The loss of such an efficient employee, and one who was held in such high regard by the Department of Municipal Affairs and leading Municipal figures throughout Nova Scotia was a serious blow to the Town.

Fortunately the Town was in the position of having a capable Deputy Town Clerk in Clifford A. Moir who was able to step into the vacancy resulting from Mr. Thomson’s resignation and who has since carried on in a well qualified and capable manner.

A full time tax collector in the person of Reginald Bonang was appointed during the year and he aIso served in the dual capacity as collector of public welfare accounts an d tax collector. As a direct result of his efforts; a marked increase was shown in collection of accounts.

Revenues for the Water Department stood at $132,423.49 during the year as compared to revenues of $128,978.10 in the previous year. All properties in the Dartmouth area are now metered and number approximately 3000. Gross surplus for the Water Department as of the end of the year stood at $43,362.82.

During the past year the Town put off the issuance or further debentures and as a result overdraft interest running as high as $1000 a month was being paid the bank. Purpose of delaying the Issuance of debentures was the higher rate of interest which would have had to be paid during that time because of the unsteady fluctuation of the bond market. This item alone contributed materially towards the over-expenditure experienced during the year.

During 1951 the Town purchased 214 prefabricated houses in North Dartmouth from Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation and permanized them with the installation of permanent foundation walls and other minor improvements. These were then offered for sale, first to the original tenants and then to eligible purchasers as they became available. The buildings were sold at prices of $2800, $3000 and $3200, depending upon the size.

The Dartmouth Park

Virtually all the efforts of the Dartmouth Park Commission in 1951 were concentrated in one section, the downtown corner of the Town Park bordered by Synott’s Hill and Park Avenue.

Chairman of the Park Commission Walter Meredith explained that the $2250 allotted by the Town to the Park Com-mission during the year was expended in this section, as the Commission felt this area was most often seen by motorists passing through Town, and most used by residents of the Town.

Construction of a lovely rock garden was the main project of the beautification program and this to date has met with considerable public favour. Due to the roughness and steep slope of this area it was decided that a terraced rock garden was most practical. Footwalks were cut through the garden and these were gravelled. Retaining walls were constructed and the whole area was planted with shrubs, many of which were donated by Towns· people and which helped greatly to beautify the garden. Other donations of suitable plants or shrubs will be accepted gratefully by the Commission.

Most of the money available was expended on labor and the remainder went towards providing grass seed, fertilizer and plants.

Regular maintenance of other Park districts, including upkeep of paths and driveways, was also continued throughout the year by the two man staff. Only tree planting undertaken in the Park during the year was a donation by the Dartmouth Lions Club in the form of a group of trees planted around the cenotaph in the centre of the Park.

During the year the Birch Cove property at the Dartmouth Lakes was turned over by the Town to the Commission and plans for beautification and clearing out of this area are now under consideration.

Public Health and Welfare

Increases in costs of hospitalization and medical care were responsible for almost half of the total amount the Town budget was over-expended in 1951. Of an estimated expenditure of approximately $21,000. total costs of Public Health and Welfare to the Town amounted to $31,125.90, a $10,000 increase.

Some of this amount is recoverable, but under the present legislation hospital debts incurred by Dartmouth residents are the responsibility of the Town for immediate payment, and the Town must collect payment from the persons responsible. Far example in 1951 total hospital costs to the Town amounted to $24,067.95 of which $5064.79 was recovered, leaving a balance of $19,003.16.

Grants to private charity organizations throughout the year totaled $3950. This amount was’ made u p of donations as follows: Victorian Order of Nurses $3000: Halifax Visiting Dispensary $200; Canadian National Institute of the Blind $200; Children’s Hospital $250 and Salvation Army $300.

Maintenance of inmates in charitable institutions during the year cost the Town of Dartmouth $6,266.47 of which $5,642 was expended at the Halifax County Home.

One bright spot , attributed to the relative prosperity of this area, was the fact that the cost of food, fuel and burial charges for indigents amounted to on1y $208.87.

Child Welfare investigations and ·work undertaken by the committee in the 1951 period cost a total amount of $Z773.95 including payment of $1943.77 to the Department of Child Welfare.

The polio epidemic which struck Nova Scotia last summer paid a visit to Dartmouth and sent a number of patients to hospital resulting in an unexpected expenditure in this field. The total cost of the epidemic to the Town of Dartmouth was $3742.85 of which $1197.40 has already been collected leaving a balance of $2545.45 uncollected, some of which is recoverable.

Medical Health

Medical Health in Dartmouth lost one of its Fathers in the death of the Town’s beloved Medical Health Officer Dr. H . A. Payzant.

Committee members, especially ‘appreciating the amount of time and effort the deceased had put into his work as Medical Health Officer in Dartmouth, have expressed their sincere regret in hi s passing. The Town Council meeting in a special session passed a special motion of regret at the passing of a man who had done so much to keep Dartmouth school children well, and the Town’s health at a high standard.

His efforts were centered around the work of the Victorian Order of Nurses in Dartmouth who achieved a great amount of work in Dartmouth schools during the 1951 period.

During the year the V.O.N. continued their educational program including Well Baby Clinics, School Nursing, Immunization Clinics and Health Supervision.

In 1951 the Nurses held 80 well baby clinics with 1353 babies examined. and advice offered. to mothers, 312 babies were immunized against diphtheria and whooping cough, while 132 were vaccinated. A total of 708 visits were made to babies in their homes for health supervision.

In the school nursing service provided by the V.O.N. the nurses checked 2867 children attending classes, having to exclude only 17 children for various reasons during the year. Defects discovered in various checks were reported to parents. A rapid inspection of all students was done three times during the year, while 90 children received free dental care at 7 dental clinics. 702 students were immunized against diphtheria, whooping cough and tetanus. 1500 students were given the tuberculin patch test with all positive re-actors and high school students being x-rayed by the MobiIechest x-ray unit. No active cases of tuberculosis were found.

Public Works Department

Expenditure of over $70,000 on street construction 2nd maintenance in 1951 highlight-ed a busy year for the Public Works Department. During the year a general policy of maintaining present good. streets and doing a small amount of new work was initiated with an overall plan which is hoped within the next few years to put all Dartmouth streets in good repair.

Of this amount approximately $10,000 was expended on an extensive patching program throughout the whole Town, designed to keep present streets from deteriorating as much as possible. The Town Engineer, J . Walter Lahey explained that many of the older Town streets are worn out and the Town is confronted with the same repair work year after year, until gradually these areas can be completely replaced.

After the patching program in 1951, came considerable construction of new streets. Included among those which received primer and penetration asphalt during that period were sections of Church street, Park Avenue, Thistle Street and Victoria Road, while complete jobs were done on Stairs, Howe and Wallace streets. In addition to this treatment, application of more material was given to the end of Haig Street, the upper end of Hester Street, all of Johnstone Avenue. all of Dustan Street, Fenwick Street, Rodney Road, Milverton Road, Murray Hill Drive, Blink Bonnie Terrace, part of Old Ferry Road, Newcastle Street, part of Maitland Street. Erskine Street, George Street, Bligh Street, part of School Street, Harris Street, Cairn Street, Graham, Murray and Francis Streets, and part of Crichton Avenue. Some street construction, in conjunction with sewer extensions was undertaken on Best Street which was reconstructed from Fairbanks Street to Shore Road, out of virtually solid bed rock. Catch pits were installed on Mott Street.

In addition to these, a considerable amount of time and money was expended in a tremendous improvement to the Prince Albert Road entrance to the town where a storm sewer was constructed in front of the MicMac club, and the street was repaved. This project, costing approximately $15,000, was financed half by the Town and half by the Province. There were no excessive snow removal costs in 1951, but from five to six thousand dollars was expended in sanding and salting streets. Three carloads of salt were put on Town streets using the new salt spreader, a modern piece of equipment purchased. by the Department during the year. It proved to be a most efficient and economical piece of machinery.

Other pieces of equipment purchased by the Town Works Department during the year Included the Hough loader at a cost of $16,000. This versatile piece of equipment proved exceptionally valuable to the Town and performed far more efficiently than anticipated. Complete with a snow plow attachment it was used for this purpose, as well as a bulldozer during the remainder of the season, and as a loader for both snow and earth. Another versatile piece of equipment was the self-propelled tractor compressor which was purchased in the Fall and was used in addition as a sidewalk snowplow in the winter. Dartmouth was a step ahead of most other places in the Province in purchasing this type of modern equipment but since their value has been proven locally many other areas have purchased the various new machines mentioned.

The long-overlooked drainage problem at the Dartmouth Park at the corner of Park Avenue and Commercial Street was solved during 1951 by the construction of a storm sewer up the side of the hill and across the Park to the juncture of School Street and Wyse Road. As a result of this work there have been no floods or wash-outs since, in this area.

Water and sewer extensions handled by the Works Department during 1951 included work on Milverton Road, Crichton Park Road, Clear View Crescent, Murray Hill Drive, and Victoria Road. A major undertaking during the year in this phase of the work was the commencement, and near completion, of a sewer installation up Prince Albert Road to Hawthorne, to connect with the Crichton Avenue sewer and aimed at alleviating a serious problem resulting from the small sized sewer originally serving this fast-developing section. This important installation will cost approximately $35,000.

The Windmill Road ·widening project, a plan which has been under consideration by the Town of Dartmouth since 1918, finally bore fruit in 1951 when property was acquired from residents bordering along the street to enable a wider street construction. The subsequent disposal of a building, and straightening of the street was undertaken but; due to a failure of the Provincial government to finalize negotiations covering the cost of paving the artery, this work had to be delayed until 1952.

An estimated two miles of curb, gutter and sidewalk were constructed in Dartmouth in 1951. Streets to. receive this attention included Johnstone A venue, Dahlia Street, Pine Street, and Wind:: mill Road (section Lyle Street to School Street). Due to the fluctuating bond and financial market the Department of Municipal Affairs advised against borrowing any further money for such work this year, although petitions for several more miles of work were on hand.

The newly purchased power lawn mower came in for considerable use during the summer especially on the new Memorial Park which was graded and seeded during the year. The Town undertook an extensive street cleaning program during the past year; several extra men were hired on to handle the street sweeping and washing, and all streets with curb, gutter and sidewalk came in for attention in this regard. Favourable comment on this was heard from all over Town.

Inauguration of a garbage pick-up system for the business district proved successful and this additional service was extensively used by the downtown business firms. Street lighting continued to improve. as new light fixtures were installed and new lights added.

Other highlights of a busy year for the Public Works Department included the construction of a number of catch pits; to reduce the possibility of floods on Town streets, and aimed at decreasing maintenance costs. This was a very necessary undertaking and fairly expensive. The aerial survey was completed during the y.ear and maps and plans turned over to the Town. Snow removal in the downtown business district, for the first time in history, resulted in additional parking space for patrons of downtown business places. This was done in a year of record high snowfall for the Town, a creditable achievement.

A number of new subdivisions in the Town were opened up and developed during the year, making way. for further residential development. Included among these was work in the new Murray Hill subdivision, Crichton Park subdivision, and the Hazelhurst subdivision.

Board of School Commissioners

Rapid expansion and consolidation of school facilities through-out the Town, to keep pace with a fast increasing population of children partly from the influx of Naval families into this area, resulted in the Board of School Commissioners experiencing one of its busiest years in the Town’s history.

It was during this time that the Bicentennial Junior High School, costing approximately half a million dollars, furnished, was completed and put into use, and that plans were finalized for the construction of a new school building on the Notting Park campus as a replacement for old Victoria School, and to handle increased enrollment from this district.

Physical Assets

The Dartmouth school system is now composed of six schools Including the new Bicentennial Junior High, along with Hawthorn, Park, Findlay, Notting Park and the High School.

Latest addition to the school system, the new Junior High, is believed to be at least the equal, and in many respects the finest Junior High School in Nova Scotia. It has many assets such as a spacious auditorium, efficient household science and industrial arts rooms and large sized, well lighted classrooms which will stand Dartmouth in good stead in future years.

At the close of the 1951 Board meetings plans were well along for the construction of a new Primary school at Notting Park, to be connected with the present Notting Park building by a breeze-way.

Considerable progress was made in improving school grounds following a plan laid out several years- ago. Paving of sections at both Hawthorne and Findlay schools at a cost of about $6000 was the highlight of this phase of the work.

The fruits of a year of testing various light systems was seen in 1951 with the complete installation of fluorescent lighting throughout Hawthorne school. As a preliminary to this, a special test room had been installed at the school.

The regular program of painting and decoration throughout the school system was continued, keeping all property in a Good state of repair.

School Operation

In 1951 total cost of operations of the Dartmouth school system was $207,417.45 of which the biggest item, teachers’ salaries amounted to $129,291.

Of the total revenue the School Board received $152,660 from the Town general account while the remainder was made up in grants received from the Municipal School fund and mainly the Provincial government grants.

The total teaching staff amounted to 63 members including Supervisor of Schools Ian K. Forsyth. More than twenty-five per-cent of these teachers are men. Every effort is made by School authorities to select the finest teachers available, from the Province and beyond, to replace teachers who have retired.

In curriculum, especially the academic section, the high standard of teaching was maintained throughout. This is especially evidenced by the fact that when Dartmouth students wrote Provincial matriculation examinations their marks were well above the average for urban districts in the Province.

Thoroughly modern Household Science departments were set up and operated during the year at the new Junior High School with a staff of two trained instructors. This year for the first time. in the past 30 years a fun time Industrial Arts Department was established and operated at the Junior High. These facilities were made available, in so far as the Industrial Arts course is concerned, to Grades 7 to 10 inclusive and in the case of Household Science to Grade 11 as well.

In the field of physical education a program which has attracted interest throughout the Province was. carried out with two competent instructors employed. The field of music also saw two teachers employed, thus- enabling the teachers to inculcate the gift of song to all students.

There were a wide variety of extra-circular activities throughout the year, and one which attracted considerable interest was the Evening Vocational classes under the joint sponsorship of the Department of Vocational Education and the Board of School Commissioners which carried four adult classes in home sewing to a successful conclusion.

The other extra activities, including sports of all types, and inter House competition filled important niches in the school life and assisted the students in making themselves more valuable and efficient in future life.

Cemetery Committee

Continuing a long range program to improve Dartmouth cemeteries, the 1951 Cemetery Committee cleaned out a large section of the old Public cemetery (Park Avenue and Victoria Road).

All dead brush, trees and rubbish were cleaned out of this section and gravestones were straightened. Plans were laid for the seeding of this section in 1952. A section of property cleared of all’ rubbish and shrubbery in 1950 was loamed this year and then seeded, following the policy which will next year see the same action taken on the piece cleared in 1951. This sectional Work is planned to continue until the whole cemetery is completed, probably in 1954.

Some work was also undertaken on Mount Hermon cemetery where a low section was filled in, and a new Roman Catholic section opened above School street, approximately opposite Shamrock Drive. The roadways through the cemetery were leveled and the road edges trimmed back to provide a 16 foot driveway. Some small trees and perennials were planted and this beautification plan will continue.

To continue this work and still keep the cemetery self-sustaining it was found necessary to increase both lot rates grave opening charges in 1951.

Water Committee

Undertaking of one of the greatest water system improvements ever seen in Nova Scotia be-came a realization in Dartmouth in 1951 after a number of years of planning.

After ratepayers of the Town had voted $700,000 for this important project, immediate action was taken to commence the proposed plan laid out by the Engineering Service Company of Halifax and this firm was retained by the Town to supervise the project.

During the year an enormous reservoir, capable of holding more than five million gallons of water was gouged out of the top of a hill 375 feet above sea level. An extensive pipe line system to carry this high gravity pressure supply of water into the higher sections of the Town was installed, including 14,000 feet of 24-inch pipe and 1300 feet of 16-inch pipe, to bring this new supply of water to the Town boundary. This main will connect with the new -water system laid in the Town during the past year and will help to serve these higher level customers. In reality, when this project is completed and in use sometime this coming summer, the Town will be provided with two complete and independent water systems.

Mr. John Kaye of Engineering Service Company has reported that costs for the project have run very close to the original estimated amount of $700,000 but he believed that the total cost of the project would not exceed this estimate.

This includes the purchase of property on which the reservoir is situated, plus considerable watershed area, also the cost of purchasing and installing almost three miles of pipe line, plus the construction and equipping of a modern pumping station at the water source, Lake Lamont.

The main water project, including excavation of the reservoir and laying of the pipe, has been handled on contract by the Atlantic Construction Company, while the pump house is being Constructed by Foundation Maritime Limited. Spokesmen for the Engineering Service Company have told the Town that the new system will probably be filled with water early in the summer at 1952 but actual use of the water by the Town will depend upon the length of time .it takes the mud and sediment to settle from the water in the reservoir, and also upon how many leaks are discovered in the more than three miles of newly laid, and yet untested water mains.

Routine Operations

The routine operation of the Town’s water system continued as usual in 1951 wit h very few major breaks or similar problems arising during the year, according to Town Engineer Walter Lahey.

Total revenues received by the Water Committee during the year from sale of water amounted to $132,482.49 as compared to $128,978.10 during the year 1950.

Throughout Dartmouth itself all water was provided on a metered basis,· as was all water sold to the Municipality of Halifax County, or other outside purchasers. The gross surplus for the Water Department for the year stood at $43,362.82 according to figures provided in the financial statement.

Public Safety Committee

Laying the preliminary groundwork for the Civil Defence organization in Dartmouth, and attempting to educate the public in the importance of this work proved to be one of the most important undertakings of the Public Safety Committee in 1951.

Appointment of Mr. J. J. MacIntosh as Director of Civil De-fence in Dartmouth, and organization of a committee which included responsible and civic-minded men in the Town was successfully undertaken and the nucleus laid for a sound Civil Defence group.

As in 1950, the Public Safety committee again in 1951 directed the operations of both the Town Police and Fire Departments. Combining of both Forces under one central direction proved. highly successful and avoided duplication of plans.

The committee expended much effort and time in 1951 drafting out plans for a metered parking lot in the downtown area on Commercial Street opposite the Dartmouth Ferry. It was decided to recommend that several old buildings on Commercial and Portland Street, owned by the Town, be torn down to make way for a 32 car parking lot. It was proposed that the parking lot be graded and paved to provide a permanent parking area.

Considerable study was given to the traffic problems in the downtown business area and it was recommended to Council that four sets of traffic lights be installed. Consideration of the proposed extension of a new artery, to provide a new route for through traffic connecting with Newcastle Street on one end and Commercial on the other, was also passed on to Council.

A new Police car was purchased, and three men were taken on the Police force, two as replacements, and one new man, to strengthen the force. There was no increase of men in the Fire Department. In both of these Forces a salary scale was established, with a minimum of $1900 and a maximum of $2300 for regular Firemen and Police constables.

A big step was taken when all the Union Protection Company equipment was moved to the Fire Station. Now all equipment, including clothing and truck, is housed in the new Fire station building.

There were no major expenditures in the Fire Department, except for the purchase of a 35 foot aluminum ladder thus completing a full set of ladders on the ladder truck, replacing all the wooden ladders of the Department.

A breakdown of activities and expenditures for each Department follows:

Fire Department

The high standard of efficiency in the ·Dartmouth Fire Department, under the direction of Fire Chief George Patterson, was maintained during 1951 when the Department responded to 189 alarms. Total fire loss during the twelve month period was $28,512. of which $23,372 was covered by insurance, and $5140 was uninsured.

This fine record was accomplished with a force composed at 40 volunteer firemen and ten regular men, including the Fire Chief. Total expenditure for the Fire Department in 1951 amounted to $69,255.75 of which the biggest item, $39,000, covers the cost of providing water for fire fighting and also provides funds for the installation of fire hydrants and connections. Actual cost for operation of .the Department amounted to $30,255.75.

Police Department

Under the leadership of Police Chief John Lawlor, the Dartmouth Police Force had a busy year during 1951 with increased traffic patrols, and checking on traffic violations in the downtown area, taking considerable extra time.

A considerable number of hours was spent in actual traffic direction during the past year, accentuating the early need for installation of traffic lights. The regular Police Force in 1951 was composed of 14 men with a Reserve force of 25.

A total of 539 cases were taken before Police court during the 12 month period, with a total of 496 convictions. Six offenders were sent over to County Court and two went before Supreme Court, with two convictions resulting.

In addition to regular duties a total of 1386 complaints were received and investigated during the year, with a total amount of $3380 in fines being collected, along with $1904.75 in costs.

A new patrol car was placed in use during the year.

Recreation and Community Services

The development and promotion of sport for the youth of the Town, aiming towards the successful development of sound future citizens, was accentuated in endeavours pursued by the Recreation and Community Services committee of the Town in 1951.

The efforts of the committee were also turned towards the development of the D.A.A.A. grounds and ball park, with a view to milk:n g necessary improvements in this valuable property so that residents of the Town could continue to enjoy top flight baseball on a field comparable to any east of Montreal. Negotiations were undertaken with officials of the Arrows Ball Club wit.h a view to negotiating a satisfactory lease for the Park.

Baseball was also highlighted in efforts to construct and grade out a ball field for the smaller youngsters, at the foot of Summer House hill in the Town Park.

Approximately $300 was expended at the Commons field in re-surfacing the field, and also for the erection of the backstop and construction and repairs to bleachers. Considerable work was done on the playing field here with a view to improving its condition for use by pupils from the “Bicentennial Junior High School, which is located nearby.

The public swimming pool at the corner of Commercial Street and Park Avenue, a mecca for youngsters of all ages, was patronized even more than usual in 1951. To encourage use of the facilities provided here by the Town for the benefit of the community the committee had both the swimming and the wading pools completely re-cemented and put in good condition, They were also disinfected to ensure safe, clean bathing for the children. Again this year two supervisors, one male and one female, were in charge while the pools were in operation between Dominion and Labor Day. A large number of children was given instruction in the principles of Water safety with a number receiving Red Cross swimming badges.

One of the most important community services coming under the direction of this committee during 1951 was the Tourist Bureau operated throughout the summer months by the Dartmouth Junior Board of Trade. Efforts were made to landscape the property and the complete program here w ill be completed next year.

Painting of benches and general maintenance and upkeep of grounds in Victoria Park was another committee effort, together with general maintenance in Wentworth Park. These areas are important to the Town with the rapid residential growth of the past few years.

An important service provided partially through the efforts of the committee, the Dartmouth Public Library, has again proven its value to the cultural and educational background of the Town. Attendance more than doubled the population of the Town in 1951 with 29,906 persons visiting the library while circulation reached a new high of 32,778.

Town Planning Board

Completion of the revised building by -laws and their enactment by Town Council was one of the main accomplishments of the Town Planning Board in 1951. They are now available in convenient book· let form to the general public for a fee of $1. They provide a more up-to-date building code for what has proven to be tremendous development in the building field in Dartmouth during the past few years.

Construction of single dwellings remained at a high peak in Dartmouth during 1951 although the total building figures in that period dropped slightly over the previous year. Total value of building permits issued in the year was $949,963, almost one million dollars.

Of this amount two thirds, or $618,832, accounted. for single dwellings for which a total of 73 building permits was granted. During the year also permits were issued for 38 apartments, com-posing a total value of $51,300. Continuing their trend towards improving the appearance of the Town’s business district, various merchants applied for applications to remodel store fronts with a total estimated! value of $15,500.

Biggest individual building permit granted during the year was to Dominion Stores Limited for a master market on Canal Street at a total estimated cost of $80,000. Other big items include the $30,000 expansion of the Dartmouth Medical Centre; construction of the Woolworth store valued at $50,000; and a number of minor items including a $20,000 service station construction, and consider-able work in alterations and additions.

Some consideration was given to the laying of a groundwork for the preparation of Zoning by-laws to be used in conjunction with the new building by-laws, and it was decided to pass this item on for action to the incoming Planning Board.

Dartmouth Rink Commission

A new era in the sports development of Dartmouth was herald-ed in 1951 with the official opening and operation of the Dartmouth Memorial Rink.

Authorized by vote of the ratepayers in 1950, the $175,000 structure, located virtually on the same site as the old Mar k-Cross arena, fills a long-felt need in the Town. Built of permanent type materials, including brick tile, and especially designed structural steel the new building came in for a terrific amount of use during the Spring of 1951, just after it opened, and during the Fall and Winter season to follow.

Actual opening date of the beautiful new rink was slated for early in January but due to delays experienced in the installation of the freezing equipment this was held back until February when at a special ceremony Han. Geoffrey Stevens, M.L.A. officially tossed in the first puck to open operations.

Included among the varied activities to take place at the ice palace in 1951 were the operation of a large number of hockey leagues, ranging all the way from midgets and bantams up to the participation by the Chebuctos in the Valley Hockey League. Other promotions held at the rink included the Dartmouth Kiwanis Club’s Ice Follies show which promises to grow bigger each year, plus numerous public skating sessions, and rental of ice to private parties and firms. During the year every effort was made to insure provision of skating session and hockey time for the younger children and this is expected to increase annually through the efforts of such organizations as the Dartmouth Minor Hockey Association headed by Colenso Bowles.

Financially, during its first year of operation the Rink showed an operating profit of $142.48. This is before payment has been not in full operation during that period, this profit might not have operated only for a portion of a year, and the leagues, and such attractions which would bring money into the Rink coffers were not in full operation during that period this profit might not have. been as large as hoped for but this situation is expected to improve following a complete year’s operation. Rink Commission members were confident of a successful operation, especially if arrangements can be completed for a permanent type flooring to be laid over the brine pipes so that the Rink. building can be used for special money making attractions during the summer months. Arrangements are now underway in this regard.

The Reassessment Survey

While it may not have been the major undertaking of the year. 1951’s general reassessment survey in Dartmouth will have a far reaching influence on the Town’s financial structure for years to come, and will serve one of its main purposes in seeing that each citizen pays a just and equitable portion of taxation.

In the words of the Assessment committee composed of Chairman James L. Harrison and members, Mayor Claude H. Morris and Deputy Mayor D. T. Marsh, this is what was done:

“The Assessment committee in 1951 was composed of the same personnel who in 1950 had studied assessment procedures in Dartmouth and had recommended a complete overhaul to ensure a modern and equitable system.

The committee reported in part- “In order that each citizen pay a just and equitable portion of taxation, complete revaluation should be carried out in Dartmouth – – – a person familiar with modern assessment systems and procedures should be engaged to completely overhaul our assessment department – – -this supervisor should prepare the various tax maps, the necessary records and forms, the proper scales and tables of land and building values, and from the co-ordination of these and actual physical measurements, arrive at the goal of a scientific appraisal of all properties in Dartmouth.”

During the past year a revaluation and reclassification of all property was undertaken with a modern system of assessing and recording instituted.

Mr. M. E. Mullan was engaged at a salary of $4500 to organize, supervise and conduct the reassessment. Mr. Mullan has had experience in the construction field and in assessment work in Ontario and had recently been engaged in reassessment work in Halifax County.

In commencing the reassessing in Dartmouth, the Town was divided into sixteen pricing zones for the purpose of evaluating land in different sections of the Town. In the downtown area a lot with a 40-foot frontage was taken as the standard; in residential areas a lot 50 by 100 was decided upon as a standard. A system of graduated plus and minus factors was set up to provide for wider, deeper, narrower and shorter lots, and formulae were set up to calculate values for unevenly shaped or extraordinarily situated lots. Minus factors were also applied to land assessments to allow for lack of pavement, sidewalks, water or sewer, and other physical conditions.

Valuations on buildings were calculated from reproduction costs obtained by co-coordinating physical measurements with costs of material and labor and allowing for depreciation and condition factors. Other factors influencing the building value that were taken into account were: type of heating plant and plumbing; particulars of interior and exterior construction and finish, plus unfavorable exposure influence, such as proximity to railway and fire stations, cemeteries, old buildings and undue noises.

“A field sheet was designed with sections for recording all information dealing with the land and building values and showing each step in arriving at each individual assessed value.

“An assessment manual for the use of our Assessment Department was drawn up with all formulae and factors included as well as a schedule of rates for personal property.

“During 1951 the sum of $13,259.57 was expended on the re-assessment work.

“In 1952 the various Tax Maps will be completed and toe remaining details of the survey cleaned up. A study will also be made of alternate methods of assessing personal property and applying poll taxes.

“Your assessment committee is confident that completion of the reassessment work will result in equitable and just distribution of the tax’ burden among the ratepayers.”

The Dartmouth Ferry

Entrance to Dartmouth as seen from the ferry.

With total assets less accumulated depreciation standing at $983,377, almost one million dollars, the Dartmouth Ferry Commission could look over the past year as one of consolidation, in which a policy aimed at keeping the Town-owned industry on as sound a financial footing as possible, had been successfully pursued.

The Dartmouth Ferry Commission is keeping a close watch on its immediate future plans, and the effect on its vehicular and possibly pedestrian traffic when the Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge is completed. At the annual meeting it was decided to increase the rate of depreciation on a number of items, so as to leave the Ferry as free of debt as possible in case a changeover should become necessary.

The annual financial statement of the Ferry at the conclusion of 1951 showed an operating profit on the year of $9284.92 which was turned over to the Town of Dartmouth according to statute. It also revealed that total financial revenues from ferriages during the same period amounted to $531,440.81, the second highest recorded in the history of the Town.

Gross revenue for the year totaled $536,683.02 a total second only to 1950’s revenue. The highest number of pedestrians carried on Dartmouth ferries since the peak year of 1944 used the service in 1951, a total of 4,585,218. The second highest number of motor vehicles also used the facilities in 1951 with 551,423 being carried across the Harbor. Last high was in 1950 when 561,076 vehicles were transported.

The importance of the Dartmouth Ferry operation to the economic stability of the Town is accentuated by the fact than in 1951 almost quarter of a million dollars was paid out of revenue for salaries and wages of employees. Actual total was $227,206.18 In addition to this Dartmouth merchants and business men benefited directly to a consider able extent. by the approximately $70,000 expended for operational purposes with Dartmouth business firms.

Another direct contribution made to the operation of the Town by the Ferry was the payment of $30,531.63 covering taxes and water rates in 1951.

The Commission’s fixed assets were increased during the period. by $5824.54 covering improvements to the main dock in Halifax. with reductions of $46,898.56 due to the sale of the steamer S.S. Chebucto to Upper Canadian interests for $5000 leaving a balance on fixed assets as of December 31, 1951 of $1,141,470.46.

The Ferry’s debenture debt at the end of 1951 totaled $246,500. which amount is being retired by annual payments from revenue.

As the result of unusually heavy repairs on the ferry steamer S.S. Halifax a portion of the cost of repairs, $28,345 was charged against the unforeseen contingencies reserve fund leaving a balance at credit of $134,854.03. The financial report of the auditors shows an underappreciated balance on boats and property of $362;220.01 with provision made in 1952 for depreciation of an amount totaling $44,834.

Annual Report 1952

Citizens of Dartmouth,

Ladies and Gentlemen: I have the honor to submit my report and comments on the civic events of 1952.

Dartmouth continued to march forward during 1952 but it is difficult to single out any particular event as the main highlight of the year.

We saw the completion and taking over of the new additions to the water system, i. e., new pump house, reservoir and new water main which were finished within the original estimate of $700,000. The benefits in an improved water system were immediately evident and there was an early reduction in insurance rates of 17% which is worth many dollars to Dartmouth citizens.

Taxable Assessments rose to $20,965,395, as a result of the reassessment survey, making possible a reduction in the Tax rate from $4.40 to $2.58. It is evident that a rate of $5.00 would have been necessary under the old system of assessment. The benefits will be increasingly evident as new properties are added under the new system. Plans were made to relieve householders of the household personal property assessment effective in 1954.

It is worthy of note that in the total budget of $894,743, $300,712 was applied to either capital expenditure from revenue or repayment of capital debt. Our capital debt is high due to large expenditures in the post war years but provision has been made for a very rapid retirement of same and the bulk of it will be retired during the next ten years. It is also worthy of note that revenue from sources other than real property have shown a large increase and $305,900 were received from these sources.

The street program was the best in many years, patching was started early, the street sweeping program was continued, a substantial amount of seal coating was done and in addition a considerable amount of permanent paving was done during the year.

Traffic lights were installed in Dartmouth for the first time in history and have done much to help out with our traffic problems.

Improvements in the Dartmouth Park came in for considerable favorable comment and it is hoped to continue further with this program.

The sale of prefabricated houses was completed during the year resulting in a net profit to the Town of $232,685 which is represented by a 2/5 interest held by the Town in the mortgage on the various properties. These net proceeds will accrue to the Town annually for fourteen years at the rate of approximately $19,000.00 per year.

Construction of the Harbour Bridge is well under way and as came to a close the concrete work on the Dartmouth side was approximately completed and we may look forward to using the Bridge in late 1954.

We were honored during the year by a visit from His Excellency Governor General Vincent Massey, who signed the register book at the Town Hall and was presented with a scroll on behalf of the Town. We were also honored by visits from the Minister of National Defence, the Chairman of the National Research Council and other dignitaries on the occasion of the opening of the Naval Research establishment in October.

The facilities of the Dartmouth Rink continue to be very widely used, the summer operation being of particular value. The Rink Commission were able to show a small surplus on operating account before providing for debenture debt charges.

Revenue at the Dartmouth Ferry was the highest in its history and the reserve account which has been built up in recent years, plus the current cash assets. now exceeds the total debenture debt charges. New pedestrian commutation tickets introduced during the year were received with favor by the traveling public.

The Town took over all rights held by the Starr Manufacturing Company in Sullivan’s Pond and the locks at Lake Banook for the sum of $1.00. This made it possible for the Town to make certain repairs necessary and to effect some improvements in the area.

I should like to express my thanks to the members of Council and the various Committees and Commissions and also to Town employees and citizens generally for the co-operation afforded me during the year.

I have the honour to be, Yours faithfully,

C.H. Morris, Mayor.

Dartmouth’s Financial Review: Finance Committee

First effects of the general reassessment survey which was undertaken in Dartmouth in 1951, and which was anticipated to have a far reaching influence on the Town’s financial structure in future years was felt in 1952 when a tax rate of $2.58 was struck, the lowest rate to be set by the Town since 1918 when it was $2.00.

In 1951 the tax rate was $4.40, as compared with $2.58 per $100. of assessment in 1952. Based on 1951 assessment figures and maintaining the same expenditures and revenues the tax rate this year would have been $5.76. However, with a more equitable distribution of the tax burden, and with a number of new additions to the tax rolls, the ratepayer in 1952 in general paid less in actual taxes to the Town than in 1951, a situation which is very creditable after taking due consideration of the steadily increasing cost of living index.

The total revenues for the year 1952 amounted to $860,859.65, the highest in the history of Dartmouth. Total revenues for the year prior, 1951, amounted to $670,558.

In addition to other high expenses during the past twelve months, the Town Council in 1952 provided an amount of $17,723. to be paid over to the Halifax County Vocational School in Halifax. This amount was in excess of the previous year’s payment by more than $4,000.

One of the big changes resulting from the reassessment survey which went into effect this year, was the total assessment figure for the Town. In 1951 the Town’s total assessment was $12,000,175. while in 1952 it had increased by more than one hundred percent to $28,521,345. Of this amount $20,965,395 was subject to taxation.

Changes at Town Hall

The rapid growth of the Harbour Town, steadily increasing population, and influx of additional business at Town Hall resulted in some necessary changes being made during the year at Town Clerk Clifford A. Moir’s office in order to facilitate this boom.

The rapid growth is strongly accentuating the need within the immediate future for a new Town Hall building to replace the inadequate and obsolete facilities of the old structure now in use. Even such changes as were made in 1952, the tearing out of a section of the wall and making an arched counter in the centre of the hallway to handle bill payments and other transient business is only a temporary solution to a problem which must soon be faced.

Expenditures for 1952 out of current revenue were the highest ever undertaken by the Town. Increased operational costs were prime factors accounting for the budget of $849,743. Heaviest expenditures were accounted for by education where $192,510 was accounted for with the School Board taking approximately $163,000. General government amounted to $48,581, while protection costs, including fire, police and civil defence cost $137,360.

Revenues in the main came from general taxation with $539,851 out of the budgeted $849,743 being raised in this manner. Other revenue included $15,000 from poll tax payments, $12,000 from licenses and permits, and $28,989 from service charges.

Revenue for the year 1952 in the Water Department from Water rates amounted to $145,223.80 with a total of 3,238 metered properties now being serviced in the Town. The gross surplus from the operation of water utility was $54,279.87, prior to the payment of debenture debt charges of $50,078.50 leaving a net surplus of $4,279.87.

During the year the construction of a $700,000 improvement to the Town’s water system was completed at a total cost of $699,724.75, or only about $273 under the estimated amount of money needed for the big project. The new pumping station is now in full time operation and open to inspection by Town ratepayers at any time.

Appointment of a full time Building Inspector, operating out of the Town Clerk’s office was one of the big changes made in the personnel at Town Hall in 1952. This was the appointment of Welsford Symonds to the Building Inspector’s post, on the recommendation of the Town Planning Board. His appointment provides for a central checking point for all building applications and permits and a close check is now being kept on all construction in the Town.

Outstanding taxes to the end of December 1952, amounted to $90,752.90, out of $630,473.59, Town Clerk C. A. Moir said. This included all outstanding taxes over the past three year period, in addition to the 1952 tax assessment. In the tax arrears over the past three years, approximately 12 percent has not been collected to date. The Town Clerk’s office urged payment of any taxes as soon as possible by the ratepayer, so as to provide a better civic operation and in the longrun save the ratepayer money.

Debentures sold during the year 1952 by the Town, included an issue of $27,000 for sewer extensions bearing 4% percent interest, which was sold at par to the Dartmouth Ferry Commission. Another issue of debentures for water purposes, amounting to $19,000 and bearing 4 and 4% percent interest brought a yield of 99.261 when placed on the market. Another issue of $325,000 covering a phase of the water project was also sold along with $350,000 more of debentures for school purposes (Bi-Centennial Junior High School), bearing 4% percent interest which brought the price of 100.323 on the open market at a time when the general bond market was very low. The Town recorded the best prices of any municipality in the Province, a credit to its sound financial position.

During 1952 the Town of Dartmouth made capital expenditures from revenue totalling $81,121.79, covering such items as a new police patrol, traffic lights which were inserted at three intersections, a Fire Department Utility truck, and payment of $5,000. to the Junior High School capital fund. This last payment saved the issuing of an additional $5,000 in debentures. The total cost of the Junior High School was $450,000 of which the Town issued debentures covering $350,000. The remaining $100,000 was made up of the cash payment of $5,000 by the Town and the $95,000 grant by the Provincial government.

Capital payments from revenue amounting to $63,000 for paving were also made, and an additional grant of $2,000. was paid over to the Park Commission.

During the year the Town retired serial debentures totalling $124,000. Interest on the debenture debt and payments on sinking fund requirements faced by the Town in 1952 amounted to $95,590.32, with Temporary debt charges amounting to an additional $8,576.62 Discounts on the current years taxes amounted to a further $7,627.67.

During the year 1952, the following debentures were paid off from the sinking fund: Schools, $40,000.: Sidewalks, $15,000: Permanent streets, $21,000.: Water, $25,000: Permanent streets, $19,000, making a total of $120,000.

This represented retirement of approximately a Quarter of a million dollars of Town indebtedness in 1952. By the year 1956 all of the Town of Dartmouth‘s current sinking fund will be retired, and at present the Town has no debentures outstanding beyond the year 1982.

The Total debenture debts of the Town, including general, schools, water, and ferry, amounts to $2,665,600 at the end of 1952, of which an amount of $143,122.34 is set up in sinking fund reserves. In the Town general account the credit bank balance to the end of 1952 amounted to $36,705.61.

The Dartmouth Memorial Rink

Although sufficient revenue has not been forthcoming to date from the operation of the Dartmouth Memorial Rink to provide for the debenture debt charges, the Rink Commission, and the Commission Chairman, Mayor Claude H. Morris have hopes that with continued careful management in future years the operating surplus of the rink may be made to equal the interest payments.

An operating surplus of $2,749.41, before providing for debenture debt requirements, has been achieved by the Rink Commission’s operation of the Rink during 1952.

In his annual report on the Rink operation, Mayor Morris outlines the activities undertaken at the Rink during the year, pointing out that a partial wooden floor constructed to place over the brine pipes, in order to permit a summer operation was very profitable, showing a revenue for the summer operation of $5,700.45, thus paying the $2,000 cost for the wooden floor in one year and still showing a profit. It also shows promise for future years as attractions at the Rink during the Summer months build up into a full time operation.

Last winters program at the Dartmouth Memorial Rink was featured by many skating sessions, and considerable hockey all of a local nature. Very wide use has been made of the facilities by the youth of Dartmouth. Skating sessions have been made available three afternoons per week at a nominal charge of fifteen cents, and also on Saturday mornings for a two hour period.

In addition to this, the Minor Hockey Association is using a total of nine hours per week for practice sessions for younger boys, and also for organized minor hockey league games.

Much credit must also be given to the Bluenose Skating Club which holds a two hour skating session every Saturday afternoon, and has done a great deal towards instructing the younger skaters.

The evening hours have been devoted in the main to adult skating sessions, and for the Suburban and Halifax-Dartmouth Senior Hockey leagues. During the past year also the Halifax-Dartmouth St. Mary’s Juniors played out of the rink and provided some top notch hockey for local fans. They played the famous Montreal Junior Canadiens here in one match.

In his annual report on the finances of the Rink, Mayor Morris, the Chairman of the Commission, points out that in addition to the operating surplus of $2,749.41, the Commission has paid to the Town in 1952 taxes and water rates. a total of $5,505.28.

After providing for taxes, and for debenture debt charges to the Town of Dartmouth over the year, the Rink is faced with a deficit amounting to $15,95?.59. An increased summer operation and steadily increasing winter revenue is hoped to cut this amount down as the operation of the Rink continues.

Public Works Department

Much credit from ratepayers and motorists in the Town of Dartmouth was handed out during the year 1952 to the Town Works Department and the Public Works Committee for the unusually fine job done in repairing and maintaining the Town’s streets after they suffered considerable damage as the result of an unusually bad winter.

The money provided for the Public Works Department general street maintenance and repair budget was unchanged from 1951 at $75,000.

Considerable additional work was handled during the period however out of the amount totalling $46,476 provided by Council for permanent paving under capital expenditures from revenue. It is unusual when a Town can go ahead with such capital expenditures out of the current revenues.

The paving work done last year (1951), on the Lake Road was to have been covered 50 percent by the Provincial government, but since this payment was not forthcoming by the end of the financial year, an amount of $5,000 had to be provided, contributing partially to the Town’s deficit of $25,000 on the 1951 operation of the Town in general.

Under Town Engineer Walter Lahey’s direction the street repairing and maintenance program carried on speedily from the first of the season.

First step was a general checkover of all Town streets, with all holes or breaks in pavement being filled in or covered with hot patch mixtures so as- to provide a permanent type repair to the damage.

Primer coats and penetration asphalt were provided for a large number of streets, following up the Work’s Department program of putting some new sections in good repair each year. thus keeping up partially at least with the current demands for new streets in the many rapidly opening sub-divisions.

The winter program was quite light excepting for the usual sandings and saltings of streets and hills. Very little sand is in use now with virtually all salt being used to cut down the glassy skim ice surfaces which form over the streets. A relatively mild winter kept the operational costs down fairly low with little heavy plowing or trucking of snow having to be provided for.

One of the biggest jobs of the year, which was provided for under the capital expenditure from revenue was the widening and paving of the entire length of Windmill Road from the Tufts Cove highway intersection at Albro Lake Road down through to Jamieson street. Cost of this project is being borne jointly by the Provincial government and the Town since the use of Windmill Road as part of Route number 7, a trunk highway extending down the Eastern shore from Bedford has now become official.

The work on Windmill Road in addition to the paving program also involved considerable curb and gutter work along sections of this route, now making it the Town’s most attractive entrance. The widening and paving program is eventually planned to carry on down over the incline past Jamieson street and across the Jamieson street storm sewer, which has been covered over with a large amount of fill left over from various Town projects. This work, however, is being delayed pending the removal of Teasdale’s grocery store from the straightened road site.

The year 1952 saw a number of new subdivisions opening up, including further additions to the Crichton Park subdivision, and the huge new Wyndholme subdivision on Silver’s Hill. New streets are being rough graded in these subdivisions and gradually being taken over by the Town, thus continuing to increase the program each year to be followed by the Works Department.

The Dartmouth Ferry Service

Keeping a cautious eye on its financial structure. the Dartmouth Ferry Commission. headed by Mayor Claude H. Morris, achieved a highly Successful year in 1952 for the Dartmouth Ferry service, despite some unusually high maintenance and repair costs.

This Town owned service, which is operated through a Commission, last year paid a net profit to the Town of Dartmouth of $8,710.21, in addition to paying out other large sums of money to the Town coffers through tax assessment, and in water rate charges.

The Ferry service provides employment for a large number of Harbour Town residents, and in addition continues to provide a low cost transportation service between Halifax and Dartmouth, the purpose of which it was originally set up by ratepayers of this Town.

Ferriage revenue reached an all time high in 1952 of $587,000. but expenses were also high due to the unexpected repair and maintenance bills covering ferries, and also due to increased salaries. The operating profit shown over the 12 months period of 1952 was $57,000. out of which the Commission replaced in the reserve fund for unforseen contingencies an amount of $28,000. which was withdrawn in 1951 to meet unforseen repairs. Also an additional $20,000 was placed in this fund leaving a net profit to the Town of nearly $9,000 as previously mentioned.

The reserve now stands at $186,800. in investments and cash, and the current account stands at $62,000., making a total in cash and investments of $249,000.

The debenture debt of the Dartmouth Ferry service now stands at $231,000., which places the Ferry in a very strong liquid condition. This is a situation for which the Ferry Commission has been striving to achieve before the completion of the Harbour Bridge. which is scheduled for August 1954. As a result this gives the Ferry Commission an additional year and one-half to further strengthen the Ferry’s financial position.

During the year 1952, a new agreement was negotiated with the unlicensed personnel of the Ferry service, calling for increases on a graduated scale ranging from $10.00 to $33.00 per month. These benefits were also extended to the licensed personnel of the Ferry.

Possibly one of the most important changes to be noted by the Ferry during 1952 took place on October 1st when a change was made in the pedestrian monthly books. This change resulted in the replacing of three books then in use with one monthly book and introducing a new book of transferable tickets good at any time. This action. which greatly simplified the handling of pedestrian tickets, appeared to be very well received by the general public, and both classes of tickets are being widely used.

In 1952 the Dartmouth Ferry service observed its 200th anniversary, and an interesting paper on this subject was read before the Nova Scotia Historical Society by Mr. John P. Martin, who has done much to preserve the history of Dartmouth and this vicinity.

A move, which was financially sound for both the Ferry and the Town of Dartmouth, which was undertaken in 1952 was the purchase during the year by the Commission of Town of Dartmouth debentures, including $30,000 in March, and a complete issue of $46,000 in December. This move keeps the Town debt in Town hands and still provides the Ferry with a good rate of interest on its investment, to the benefit of the ratepayers of the Town. Since the Town owns the Ferry, it means essentially that the Town is only paying itself interest rather than outsiders.

During the year a general appraisal was made on all ferry property, including ferries. and it was all found in good repair. An increase on the real estate insurance carried, from $25,000 to $40,000 to keep the value based on increased real estate values, was authorized.

Possibly one of the highlights of the Ferry was that one of the most distinguished passengers ever carried by this service, His Excellency Governor General Vincent Massey was taken to and from Halifax during the official visit to Dartmouth of the Governor General, on the Ferry steamer Scotian.

The Water Department

Many years from now ancestors of present Dartmouth ratepayers will point with pride to the foresight of their forefathers in providing the Town of Dartmouth with one of the most up to date and well planned water systems in the Maritime Provinces.

Completion of the $700,000 expansion of the Harbour Town’s water system to service increased Town needs and to fill requests for the purchase of water by both the Provincial and Federal governments was announced in the latter part of 1952. after almost one and one-half years of extensive construction work.

The new water system will eventually pay for itself over a period of years, and revenue from this source in the future will place the Town in a very favourable financial situation in this regard.

The water system project was guided very capably by the Engineering Services Company, which handled all phases in the construction of the system. This included the laying of 16 inch mains through the Town, also the construction of a five million gallon capacity reservoir. one of the most impressive engineering feats ever seen in this area. It also included the laying of a 24 inch water main from the reservoir to a point in the Town near Rodney Road a total of three and one-half miles of pipe. The construction and equipping of a modern new pumping station at Westphal was the final step in the three quarters of a million dollar development, designed to completely replace old. Town water mains which have become obsolete.

Considerable public criticism has been made concerning the time of completion and breaks in the pipe during work on this project. The facts are that that except for some delay in connection with the pump house, due largely to difficulties in delivery of equipment the job was finished in good time. It was in the main timed to meet the requirements of Federal and Provincial developments, and every demand for service has been met with very little interruption to Town services.

The design of the new system called for concrete lined pipes to be used so that the building up of material within the pipes with consequent loss of capacity, would be avoided, and also to do away with the necessity of scraping mains in years to come, thus lowering maintenance costs. This pipe was not readily available in Canada at the time, although prices were obtained from both Canadian and English manufacturers. The actual price for the English pipe landed on the job was $201,300, and an approximate price from the Canadian manufacturers was $213,000 f.o.b. cars. It was estimated that it would cost an additional $12,000 to deliver the pipe from the cars to the job. On this basis the special water committee decided to order the English pipe which represented an 11 percent saving.

After laying of 1,025 lengths of pipe, 26 sections had to be replaced during the test periods at a cost of pipe and labour of $22,149. This represents 2.5 percent of the pipe laid, and is not considered excessive in work of this nature. Some pipe was damaged in shipment from England, but this was checked closely and any damaged pipe discovered was not paid for. After a final tabulation of the cost of this project at the office of the Town Clerk, it was announced that the final expenditure out of the estimated $700,000 for the project was $699,724.75. Its completion brings to a culmination the efforts of the Town Council to provide the proposed additions and improvements in the water system as recommended in an inspection and survey of the Town’s water system made by the Engineering Service Company in 1950. Its results include an improved high pressure water service to Town and area water customers, it has already resulted in a sizeable drop in the Town’s fire insurance rates, and in addition provides this area with two separate water mains bringing water into the Town, in case of any type of disaster striking the area. It also provides the Federal government and Provincial government projects in this district with needed water, which eventually will give the Town valuable water customers and providing a sound investment for the Town in future years.

General Operations

In addition to completion of the new water system, the routine operation of the Water Department during 1952 showed a successful year with the revenue for the year being the highest ever recorded in the Town’s history.

Revenue from water sales during 1952 amounted to $145,223.80 as compared with $132,438.49 the previous year and $128.978.10 in 1950.

This increase was resultant mainly from consumption in the Commercial areas with $26,000 being realized from this source in 1951 as compared to $37,000 in 1952, an $11,000 increase.

There was an increase during the year 1952 in the number of metered establishments being provided with water in the Town. The total number of meters was raised to 3,238 during the year as compared to 3,062 the previous year.

The Water Department showed a gross surplus of $54,279.87 on the sale of water during the year prior to the payment of debenture debt charges amounting to $50,078.50, leaving a net surplus of $4,279.87.

Pre-Fab Housing Report

Proving false the old adage that you can’t have your cake and eat it too, Dartmouth Town Council culminated the purchase and resale in 1952 of 214 prefab houses in Notting Park in a double pronged effort which in addition to providing permanent homes for more than 200 Dartmouth residents, also will net the Town government a profit of over $200,000.

Chairman of a special committee on Pre-Fab housing set up by Town Council, was Mayor Claude H. Morris who led the negotiations between the Town of Dartmouth and the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation which led to the eventual purchase of the wartime housing units.

After approval of Harbour Town ratepayers had been received, Town Council borrowed by means of temporary borrowing from the Royal Bank of Canada the sum of $214,000 with which they purchased at a cost of $1,000 each, 214 prefab houses from the Central Mortgage and Housing corporation.

An agreement was entered into between the Town of Dartmouth on one hand and the Eastern Canada Savings and Loan Company and the Nova Scotia Savings, Loan and Building Society on the other hand, and under the terms of this agreement a schedule of prices for the houses was setup. It was arranged that following the down payment the balance of the purchase price was to be realized from a mortgage under the terms of which the company paid over to the Town three-fifths of the mortgage and the Town retained a two-fifths interest in same.

Tenders were called and contracts let for the permanentizing of the houses, which involved the placing of concrete foundations under the buildings, replacing of any timbers necessary, the extension of chimneys previously hung, to a sound footing, exterior painting of the woodwork and other minor repairs necessary. Of the 214 houses sold, three were paid for outright, the remainder being carried on the mortgage arrangements.

The total sale price of the houses was $672,671.12 The cost to the Town was the purchase price of $214,000, plus the cost of permanentizing $250,199.75, making a total of $464,199.75. The net Profit to the Town of Dartmouth will amount to $208,471.37.

The Pre Fab Housing committee reported that the cost of the permanentizing was fully paid in 1952. The temporary borrowing of $214,000 was also fully-retired, and there is now a small credit to the Town which will be increased each month during the term of the mortgages, most of which do not mature until 1966.

It has been estimated by the Pre Fab Housing committee that the Town may expect to receive annually from this source about $20,000. This totals more than the $208,471.37 profit mentioned earlier, and is explained by the fact that the money is bearing interest at six percent out of which is paid administrative costs of one and one-half percent, leaving the net interest to the Town of four and one-half percent.

Legislation provides that the proceeds are to be paid into a special fund which can only be dispersed by Council with the consent of the Minister of Municipal Affairs.

The Dartmouth Park

Located in the heart of Dartmouth, the Town Park showed tremendous advancement during the twelve months of 1952 under the guidance of Park Commission Chairman F. D. Ross.

Work was commenced early in the year under the funds provided in the regular Town budget and by mid—surnmer the lower section of the Park, facing on the corners of Park Avenue and Synott’s Hill was taking on the appearance of a beautiful rock garden.

his work was started in 1951, but only the groundwork could be started at this time due to a shortage of necessary funds. In 1952, beautiful paths and walks were cut through, built into the sides of the craggy bluff overlooking the swimming pool, and the whole setup “was attractively set out with shrubs, rock garden flowers and many forms of wildlife.

Some Harbour Town citizens joined in the program to beautify this most obvious section of the park and donated some plants for use here. More of these are needed when ever someone has them available according to Park officials.

As much as possible the natural lay of the land was utilized in the construction of the rock garden setup. Its naturally rough appearance blended in perfectly with the Park Commission’s scheme.

As the year progressed the Town Council voted a further $2,000 to the Park Commission and another flurry of activity was commenced by the Park Commission which has long been curtailed in its work by a lack of necessary funds.

Biggest job commenced in the Park in 1952 was along the extension of Thistle street. south of the Bicentennial Junior High school. Here workmen were engaged in rooting out hundreds of old shrubs and undergrowth. long an eye-sore to this area. Special equipment was rented to facilitate this work and much was achieved on both sides of this new street in clearing up the Park.

Plans were also laid for further clearing out and levelling of this Park area and planting of grass and flowers in the coming Spring.

The general maintenance work of other paths and walks at the Park was continued, so as to keep the whole area as generally presentable as possible, while special efforts were made to spruce up the districts most visible to newcomers and tourists visiting the Town.

No definite action was taken at Birch Cove because sufficient funds to commence a full scale program here were not available However, Park Commission authorities opened negotiations with the Dartmouth Junior Board of Trade with a view to that civic minded organization commencing the clearing out of matted growth and other debris as soon as weather permits in the Spring.

Public Health And Welfare

The costs of hospital and medical care continued on the up-trend in 1952, and the Welfare Department in Dartmouth reflected this rise in their operations over the 12 month period.

The total costs of hospital and medical debts incurred by Dartmouth residents in 1952 amounted to $36,514.14, in hospitals throughout the Halifax area, and of this amount only $5,625.95 was recovered during the period.

Because of this fact the total net expenses of the Welfare Department in 1952 were $30,888.22, being an over expenditure of $3,038.22, over the amount estimated at the first of the year.

Under Provincial law in Nova Scotia, person admitted to the hospital, from the Town of Dartmouth becomes the responsibility of that Town. Any debts incurred by these persons are charged to the Town and it is the responsibility of the Town where persons do not have the necessary funds, to receive depositions from the individuals and to arrange collection.

In recent years the Town has become responsible for a number of persons whose settlement may be outside the Province of Nova Scotia and the Town is at present endeavouring to take some action to collect these outstanding accounts.

Grants made by the Town to charity organizations through 1952 did not change from the previous year with $3,950, being distributed as follows: Victorian Order of Nurses, $3,000, Halifax Visiting Dispensary, $200.00, Canadian National Institute of the Blind, $200.00, Children’s Hospital, $250.00, and Salvation Army, $300.00.

Maintenance of inmates in charitable institutions during the year cost the Town of Dartmouth $4,733.51. during 1952 a considerable drop from the amount of $6,266, spent for this purpose in 1951. This expenditure was in the main made at the Halifax County Home.

Charity expenses, food, fuel and burial charges for indigents cost the Town of Dartmouth $1,426.93 in 1952.

Public Health

Under the direction of the Town’s Medical Health Officer Dr. L. A. Rosere, who was newly appointed to succeed the late Dr. H. A. Payzant in 1952, the Town’s medical health was closely watched. The Dartmouth branch of the Victorian Order of Nurses also played an important role in this watchdog post.

Dr. Rosere as the Medical Health officer, directed regular checks of Town Lakes, water supply, and every other source where possible contagion could develop to harm Dartmouth resident’s health.

Both the Medical Health Officer and members of the V.O.N. made regular calls at all the Dartmouth schools, examined the hundreds of students in the public schools, and conducted dozens of well baby clinics, school nursing, immunization clinics and general health supervision.

An important part of the Victorian Order of Nurses work during the year was the Child Health clinics with 1,045 babies and pre-school children attending a total of 92 of these clinics.

The school program consists of rapid classroom inspections done three times during the year, physical examinations on all students in Grades one, three. and five, which are done by the nurses, medical examinations by Dr. Rosere on all new admissions and follow up visits to the home whenever necessary.

A total of 1,643 children were given a physical examination by the Nurses during 1952 and 161 were given a medical examination by Dr. Rosere.

During the year five dental clinics were held treating a total of 56 children. Dentists of the Town gave their time voluntarily to make these clinics a success.

With the co-operation of the Medical Health Officer and the V.O.N. a series of 23 Immunization clinics for Infants, Preschool and school children were held throughout 1952 with 300 children being vaccinated against smallpox. 924 children received booster doses of toxoid, and 1,069 were immunized against diphtheria, whooping cough and tetanus.

A total of 482 children were given the Tuberculin Patch test and of these ten were found to have positive reactions. These ten children and all the students at the Junior High School were X-rayed by the Mobile chest X-ray unit and not one active case of Tuberculosis was found.

There were some changes made on the V.O.N. staff during the year with Miss M. Adams resigning in August and Miss MacKenzie in September. These two were replaced by Miss Daphne Harriett and Miss Louise Gillis, both of whom took over duty in September. Miss Marion MacKaracher is the Nurse in charge of the Dartmouth office of the V.O.N.

Harbour Bridge Progress Report

Construction work on the Dartmouth approaches to the Halifax-Dartmouth Harbour Bridge, got well underway in 1952 and by the end of the year the stretch of land running down to the Harbour front from Windmill Road to Shore Road was liberally sprinkled with huge concrete arches which will eventually bear the road bed for the Harbour span.

Since Dartmouth ratepayers will eventually be hearing a portion of the financial responsibility for the construction of the Harbour Bridge, it is only fitting that an outline of the progress on the project should be carried in this annual report of the Town.

In addition to completion of the concrete arches, Bridge workmen finished the huge concrete abuttment at the upper end of Lyle Street, just off Wyse Road. This huge “V” shaped concrete bowl was filled in with earth, and topped with gravel and will eventually provide the Harbour Town exit for the Bridge with six to eight exit routes radiating out from the Bridge mouth.

Down closer to the waterfront, a tiny footbridge eased its way out into the Harbour, permitting workmen access to the site of one of the main under water supports for the Bridge on the Dartmouth side of the Harbour.

Final negotiations for Bridge land were ironed out in 1952 and tentative plans were being laid by the Town to widen and improve streets in the Bridge area to provide adequate exit ways for the influx of traffic expected to come from the span which is to be completed about August of 1954.

Public Safety Committee

The uniting of the Police and Fire Departments under the direction of the Public Safety committee was again successfully accomplished during 1952.

Highlight of the year was the installation of traffic lights at two busy downtown intersections, the Commercial and Ochterloney Street corner first. and later a traffic actuated set of lights at the King and Portland intersection.

Plans were also finalized for installation of a set of lights at the very hazardous Five Corners intersection. School safety was studied carefully during the year and every effort was made to provide good traffic markers, warning signals and street crossing patrols as a protection to school students.

Two new Police Patrolmen were added to the regular Police Force and one new Fireman to the Fire Department.

Plans were laid during the year for the construction of a Safety Island to be constructed at the intersection of Prince Albert Road and Ochterloney street, and this work will be completed in 1953.

Special equipment in the form of white gloves and belts were obtained during the year and provided for Police, patrol-men and traffic officers.

Provision was made at the first of this season for funds for the Civil Defence committee to provide for stenographic services, training, buildings and the like. Arrangements were made for some quarters for the committee’s various branches.

Police Department

Addition of several officers to the regular Police Force, brought the Dartmouth Department up to a better size to handle the steadily increasing needs for law enforcement in the fast expanding Harbour Town.

Headed by Police Chief john Lawlor, the Department recorded the busiest year in the history of the Town in 1952 handling some very difficult problems, including a series of breaks which were solved when the responsible parties were apprehended, through Police detection.

Lodged in the Police Departrnent’s lockup during the year were 645 male and 21 female guests, with 78 men being sent to the County jail, while 2 women were also sent to the County jail. Six convicted prisoners left Dartmouth for Dorchester Penitentiary. A total of $5,701.50 were collected by the Department in Town Police court with court costs amounting to $2,374.72. Making a total of $8,076.22.

In police court there were 219 cases of intoxication under the Liquor Control Act, four persons were charged with disturbing the peace. while 41 persons were charged with driving motor vehicles while their ability was impaired. Other minor traffic violations amounted to 142, plus a further 222 parking meter violations. 26 People operated radios in the Town without licenses. and a total of 17 vagrants, one female, were picked up by Police. Twenty-nine Criminal Code violations were tried with three being sent to Dorchester.

Fire Department

With completion of the new high pressure water system the Fire Department operation at the end of 1952 was entering a new era. Now there is plenty of pressure in the Town water mains to provide adequate water for fire fighting purposes in any area of the Town.

This was one of the recommendations of the Board of Fire Underwriters in a survey made in the Town some years ago, and backed up by the Engineering Service Company, and has already resulted in a drop in Town fire insurance rates.

Total fire loss during the twelve months of 1952 amounted to $31,442, according to the annual report of Fire Chief George Patterson.

Of this amount insurance companies covered a total of $26,013. while the uninsured loss amounted to $5,429. and had to be borne by the persons owning the property. There were no serious conflagrations in the year.

A total of five general alarms were responded to during the year, out of a total number of alarms amounting to 216. The good record of the Dartmouth Fire Department and its group of forty volunteer firemen plus the 11 regular men, including the Fire Chief, have received warm praise from Provincial fire authorities.

Board of School Commissioners

The official opening of the magnificent new addition to Notting Park school in North Dartmouth was the highlight of the educational year in Dartmouth in 1952.

The steady increase in population in the Dartmouth district since the end of the War and the resultant jump in the number of the younger school children had forced the Town to provide additional school accommodations for the younger grades with the result that a new school building in itself costing approximately $100,000 was constructed next to the old Notting Park school building, being connected to it with a breezeway.

Gone from the school lineup in Dartmouth is the obsolete old Victoria School on Wyse Road which was razed in 1952 to make way for the modern new school.

Notting Park’s newest addition is worthy of a visit by any ratepayer. Its modern design, well planned and lighted interior, and special equipment aimed to attract and suit the younger pupils is something which is unexcelled anywhere in the Maritimes.

Even with this new school building completed however, the School Board finds itself faced with even more problems, and on the recommendation of the Supervisor of Schools Ian K. Forsyth, and following a thorough investigation by their own committee, the Board recommended at its closing meeting in December of 1952. that immediate action be taken to procure a suitable site in the Prince Arthur Park subdivision in Dartmouth’s south end on which to start the immediate construction of a new “bungalow type” school to provide for the overflow of younger students in this section of the Town, which will be an actuality in 1953.

Use of the Bicentennial Junior High school, almost as a community center at times, continued through 1952 and its spacious design is proving over and over again the need that Dartmouth had for such a building, especially in its beautiful auditorium which has a capacity of more than 1,000 persons.

Home and School Associations, private groups. school groups, sports meets and virtually all musical programs are now being conducted in this school’s auditorium and the school shows promise throughout of being one of the best investments the Town made in the educational field in many years.

School Finances

Expenditures by the Dartmouth Board of School Commissioners in 1952 to cover the operation of the continually expanding Dartmouth school system were the highest ever recorded by the Town.

The total budget called for an amount of $267,081, or an increase of approximately $60,000 over last year’s total expenditure of $207,417.45.

Accounting for the biggest amount of the increase in the budget was the provision for increased teacher’s salaries which jumped from $129,291. in 1951 to about $171,000. in 1952. Increase in fuel costs as accounted for some of the increase in the School Board expenditures. and also the fact that additional staff members were needed at the Junior High School helped send the budget higher. This was actually the first year that the Junior High was operating at about a full capacity for its number of classrooms.

Besides the regular school expenditures in the Town, a further amount of $17.700. had to be provided by the Town to cover Dartmouth‘s proportionate share of the cost of operation of the Halifax County Vocational High School in Halifax. This amount covers only until the end of 1952.

Again in 1952 the schools were very capably directed by the Supervisor of Schools. Ian K. Forsyth. and a very competent staff of teachers which have been described as some of the most capable in the Province.

The addition of Jens Thorup to the Physical Education staff of the schools proved to be a tremendous advantage to the Town, and his efforts in establishing a well-planned training program are meeting with favourable comment all over Nova Scotia.

The high standard of Dartmouth’s public school teaching is also evident in the large number of graduates from Dartmouth students participating in the Provincial Matriculations. Dartmouth rates well above the average in this field it was indicated.

Very efficient Household Science and Industrial Arts classes were conducted during 1952, and the new setup at the Bicentennial Junior High also added much to this program with National mention coming of the setup of machinery and its use in the Industrial Arts section.

Again this year under the joint sponsorship of the Vocational Guidance Department of the Department of Education, and the Dartmouth Board of School Commissioners. a very comprehensive program of adults’ home sewing classes was conducted. and plans are now underway to expand these home classes into several other fields if there are sufficient interested adults.

Town Planning Report

For the first time in the history of the Town, a permanent building inspector was appointed by the Town Planning Board in 1952.

In view of the rapid growth of the Town, tremendous residential development, and prospects for an enormous potential in future years, the 1952 Planning Board decided to recommend to Council that Welsford Symonds, the Town’s Chief Assessor, be appointed as Building Inspector.

As a result of this action. which was approved by Council, all building permits are now first examined and either approved or rejected by the Building Inspector. If they meet with the Building By-law requirements and are recommended by the Inspector they are then given official approval by the Planning Board and Council.

This new system has been working out exceptionally well, providing the Planning Board with opportunity to study more fully other problems faced by the fastest growing Town in the Maritimes, such as Zoning.

The up-to-date building code, passed in 1951, came into full force in 1952, and as a result, a greatly improved building program existed in the Harbour Town during that period. The Planning Board passed on a large number of smaller sub-divisions in 1952 permitting commencement of further private construction of dwellings.

In addition to these, approval was given to the sub-division of the Wyndholme sub-division on Silver’s Hill, one of the largest to be developed in 1952. Construction work is proceeding apace in this sub-division with half a dozen houses well underway and some already occupied.

Further sections of the enormous Crichton Park sub-division were also approved for development and continual construction work is evident in here as new proposed streets are being bull-dozed out to make way for construction equipment waiting to commence erection of new homes. Construction of single home units, and private dwellings of all kinds broke all records ever established for this type of development in a 12 month period. During 1952, the Planning Board gave the o.k. to a total of 125 applications for new buildings, as compared to 73 building permits issued in 1931, an increase of over 50.

Very little commercial or industrial work was commenced in 1952 although work was progressing on establishments for which permits were issued the year previous. Preliminary negotiations were also being opened for new projects which did not receive final approval by December of 1952. Total value of building permits issued in 1952 amounted to $1,153,875, as compared to $949,963 the previous year.

Recreation and Community Services

Further development of baseball diamonds in scattered areas all over the Town in order to promote junior sports and pee wee baseball was undertaken by the Recreation and Community services in 1952.

With a budget increase of approximately $1,000 the committee was able to go ahead with some of the clearing of property for these small midget diamonds. This work is rated as one of the most important items on the list for the committee in an effort to promote the development of the younger children in the various sports.

Further work was undertaken at the Commons field during the year with general levelling of the grounds and repairs to the new bleachers.

Corning under the classification of community services, the committee operated in very close conjunction with the Dartmouth Tourist Bureau, and its sponsors the Dartmouth Junior Board of Trade.

Through arrangements with this committee it was possible for special markers to be erected throughout the Town, directing visitors to the Ferry or other exit points, or also showing them the route to the Tourist Bureau.

A beautifully coloured welcome sign was erected at the main Dartmouth Ferry entrance on Ferry Hill and here the hospitality of the Town was extended to all visitors.

Considerable work was also done in the Tourist promotion field with special cards being distributed to Townspeople to place on tourists cars, extending them a welcome to the Town and pointing out some of the attractions The total registration of tourists through the year as a result climbed to almost 1,400, and this does not touch whatsoever the large numbers of tourists from outside the Province who did not visit the Tourist bureau.

At Victoria Park considerable work was commenced with some extra funds made available for this purpose. The grounds were plowed up and levelled and will be eventually seeded and laid out with suitable walks and gardens to make it an attractive play and rest sport for residents of the North end.

Operation of the Dartmouth swimming pool at the corner of Synott’s Hill and Park Avenue continued as in other years with hundreds of boys and girls participating in the planned Water Safety and Red Cross Swimming competitions arranged through the competent swimming instructors provided by the Town.

The Town grant to the Dartmouth Public Library was increased to $2,000. in 1952 in keeping with the hope of the Committee to add further good reading material to the shelves of the busy library. and also for the provision of other services which have been lacking in the past. Attendance at the library continues to show an upward trend with many persons now availing themselves of the opportunity to visit and read right at the Library rather then taking their books home.

The Cemetery Committee

Working with limited finances the Cemetery Committee continued its long range program of improving Dartmouth cemeteries during 1952 by clearing out of a further large section of the old Public cemetery.

This work has now been underway on the Public cemetery for several years. with each year an additional section being taken in hand, cleared out of old bushes and debris. loamed and seeded with grass to put it in a presentable condition. There still remains two sections of this cemetery go be done and the Cemetery committee hopes to have this completed on the similar basis. of one section a year. Insufficient funds are available to do both sections in one season.

The usual maintenance and repair work was done around Mount Hermon cemetery in 1952. One of the important improvements was the installation of two sections of water pipe, which are now connected with two stand pipes and provides Town water for use in the cemetery, rather then having to rely upon an old spring on the cemetery grounds for this purpose.

A new power mower was purchased during the year and the use of this new equipment has greatly facilitated work at the cemetery and improved the appearance of the grounds. The Cemetery Committee also arranged to have the road and walk edges leading into the cemetery trimmed during the past year and this operation in itself improved very greatly the general appearance of the cemetery.

Although the Committee does not have too much in the way of funds for its operation it has been found that with the newly established lot and grave opening rates as set in 1951 the cemetery is now operating on a self-sustaining basis which is very desirable.

Annual Report 1953


Ladies and Gentlemen:

I have the honour to submit my report and comments on the civic events of 1953. The year 1953 showed acceleration in the progress and expansion which has been evident in recent years.

The sale of Town owned land at Maynard’s Lake and on Boland Road opened the way for tremendous apartment developments, which as the year came to a close were well on their way to completion. A total of 638 apartments will be provided in these two projects which should do much to alleviate the housing shortage in the area. The opening of new subdivisions continued and many new homes have been built.

A block of Town owned land near the bridge head was also disposed of for the purpose of building a shopping centre. Upon completion this centre should add materially to the commercial assessment in the Town.

Road construction in new subdivisions continues to pose a problem. but with the expenditure of $30,000. out of revenue for this purpose we have been able to keep up fairly well with the demand. The Council has laid down more rigid restrictions in the matter of road construction applicable to the subdividers which we hope will help out the situation.

Legislation was obtained providing for the abolition of the household personal property tax. The effect of this legislation is reflected in the assessment notices for 1954.

Authority was given to the Fire Department for the purchase of an aerial ladder truck. A two—way radio was also provided in the Fire Department which has already proven its value. Another set of traffic lights was installed, this time at Five Comets. Special constables were appointed during the year to handle traffic in school areas.

Continued improvement in the street program was noted with the purchase of a patching machine which has speeded up the program very materially. Further widening of Windmill Road was carried out during the year and is scheduled for completion during 1954.

An arrangement whereby the Town Assessor, Mr. Symonds, could carry out the duties of Building Inspector, was entered into and has worked out very satisfactorily.

The Year 1953 saw the passing of an old landmark with the demolition of the old Park School. This was in line with the general program of improvements carried out in the park area during the past few years.

We are grateful to the Junior Board of Trade for the project started in 1953 to clear out the undergrowth on the Birch Cove property and improving this beautiful site as a picnic area.

Plans for two new elementary schools, one in the north end and one in the south end, were approved and are scheduled for completion in time for the 1954 school term.

With the completion of the new Work Shop building downtown, The Works Department building in the north end as well as the D.B.C. building were disposed of.

Work on the Harbour Bridge continued on schedule, drawing another year closer this long dreamed of improvement in our transportation.

Revenue at the Dartmouth Ferry again touched the highest point in its history and profit was satisfactory. The Commission are, however, faced with the problem of major dork repairs and anticipate some adjustments as the impact of the Harbour Bridge competition begins to make itself felt.

I should like to express my thanks to the members of Council and the various Committees and Commissions, and also to Town employees and citizens generally for the co-operation afforded me during the year.

I have the honour to be,

Yours faithfully, C. H. MORRIS, Mayor.

Newcastle Street
A view of Newcastle Street, perhaps from the water, as the railroad trestle is visible at bottom. A child at the bottom right is making their way across the trestle while two others can be seen along the shore. Johnstone Avenue is seen atop the hill with water tower.

FINANCIAL REVIEW Town of Dartmouth — 1953

While costs everywhere have been on the climb the Town by careful financing and by developing new sources of revenue made big news with the announcement in 1953 that it’s tax rate would be dropped by ten cents per $100. of assessment. The tax rate of $2.48 for that 12 months period was the lowest mark the rate had struck since 1918.

Net assessment for Dartmouth during the 1953 period was $21,602,000, which was a new high. This resulted largely from the reassessment survey_ of two years ago. Revenues from this source provided $535,725 for the town coffers with revenues from Poll Tax amounting to an additional $25,015. Revenues from other sources amounted to $328,940. making total revenues for the year of $889,680.

During the year however, total operating expenditures exceeded revenues by the amount of $25,780. This deficit was charged to the Revenue Fund Surplus account which at the end of the Town’s financial year stands at a deficit of $4,675. This amount will be rated for in the year 1954.

The deficit resulted from several of the departments exceeding their budgets. Most notable of these were Education. Police and Sanitation departments.

The over—expenditure in the education field is accountable by the fact that the Town was faced with considerably higher financial demands than originally expected to cover its share of operations and capital cost of the Halifax County Vocational High School in Halifax. It was felt when the 1953 budget was drafted that sufficient funds were in reserve to cover this account but unfortunately this was not the case.

During the year also, Town Council authorized the start of the School Safety patrol, involving the hiring of several additional Police officers on a part-time basis. The work of these officers has as a result released regular Police officers for routine Police work. An extensive program was also undertaken to replace and renew Traffic signs throughout the Town and these items together with the increased cost of operating Police equipment accounted for the over-expenditure in this department.

Town clerk's office

Main reason for the Sanitation budget exceeding its preliminary estimates was the cost of necessary repairs to the incinerator together with the purchase of a new truck for garbage collection, both of which had not been anticipated.

A big item on the credit side of the Town operations during the past year was the revenue arising from the sale of a number of Town owned properties. A total of $87,810 was realized by Dartmouth ratepayers from this source. Of this amount the sum of $30,000 was earmarked by Town Council for capital street construction work. Another $4,000 was voted by the Town for Park beautification. An amount of $17,000 was transferred to the Windmill Rd. widening account which enabled the continuation of this project also an amount of $15,000 was voted for the widening of Wyse Road and Windmill Road in conjunction with these arteries being used as main routes from the Halifax – Dartmouth Bridge. The sum of $2,500 from this money was used to purchase land from the Province of Nova Scotia at Maynard’s Lake, which was subsequently sold by the Town to Maxwell-Cummings and Son for the construction of one of the biggest housing projects ever undertaken in the metropolitan area, the Lakefront Garden Apartments.

With the rapid growth of this area, each year brings a new high in operational costs for the Town.

This past year operational costs showed an increase of some $53,000. over 1952, with the cost of Education being the leader in this increase.

The cost of providing adequate protection to persons and property in the Town also continues to grow as the Town expands. With an expanding Town like Dartmouth also goes the added costs of providing additional sewer and water facilities, street lighting and innumerable other items.

Some of this additional cost in providing services for the newly developing areas is offset by the additional revenue received in taxes and other ways from these new sections, however for the first few years these districts do not begin to carry the cost of providing many of the services they receive.

The Town received a grant from the Dartmouth Ferry Commission during the year. This grant represents the net profit or surplus of the Ferry operation and amounted to $8,710.21.

An amount of $157,000. in serial debentures was retired during the past year plus interest of $98,624.75. This was composed of the following amounts: Genera1—$76,000.; School —-$24,000.; Water— $41,500. and Ferry $15,500. No sinking funds retired during the year but an amount of $15,155.65. was paid into Sinking Fund accounts.

Ferry Purchases Debentures

The Town had only three small issues of debentures during the year and all were purchased by the Dartmouth Ferry Commission.

One of the debenture issues was for $40,000. for school work, bearing 4 percent interest. It was bought for par value by the Ferry. There was also an issue of $25,000. water debentures and $25,000. sewer debentures, which were sold together, at 4} percent interest. These were also purchased at par.

With the Town owned Dartmouth Ferry Commission purchasing these debenture issues out of its reserve fund it meant that the Town received par value for their debentures, and did not necessitate the Town going to the Bond market, which was decidedly low during the year.

At the end of the year the Town’s debenture debts amounted to $2,694,261.03 which is made up as follows: General-—$936,600.: Schools -$434,000.; Water –$999,000.; Ferry -—$215,500, and the Town’s share of the Vocational High School $109,161.03.

During the year a total of $44,671.45 was expended on capital expenditures from revenue, and this was divided as follows: Police Department [car] –$1,331.45: Fire Department (mobile radio)— $1,140.: Street construction $30,000. Park Commission $4,000.: and Water and Sewer construction $8,200.

There are still some ratepayers who are slow in paying their tax accounts as evidenced by the fact that at the end of 1953 the amount of $97,104.61 was outstanding as Taxes receivable. Of the $560,740.13 current tax levy an amount of $68,130.38 is still outstanding.


Annual Report

Continuing a program aimed at encouraging minor hockey and developing the younger boys of the Town in hockey talents, the Dartmouth Memorial Rink Commission during the past year provided reduced rates for minor hockey so that more of the younger boys could participate. Through the assistance of interested citizens, such as Colenso Bowles, President of the minor hockey league, the Commission hopes to lay the groundwork for greatly increased hockey activity, and resulting increased revenue in the years to come.

Over the past year the Commission has also supported other minor activities in the skating field such as the work the Bluenose Figure Skating club is doing in developing skating talents in the young ladies of the Town. This groundwork is necessary in a Town that has been without a rink for the use of its young people for many years.

During the past year, according to the financial statement released by the Commission the operating profit before providing for Debenture Debt charges was $105.86.

The total revenue figures amounted to $31,201.84 including skating revenue of $11,340. ice rentals of $13,417., plus smaller amounts from dancing and wrestling events.

In the expenditure column salaries took up the biggest single item of $10,290. while light and power amounted to $5306. and maintenance costs on building and equipment totalled another $5,829.

The debenture debt charges, still very high on the initial borrowing for the rink, amounted to $18,240., resulting in a gross expenditure of $49,335.89 for the year. This amount less the revenue resulted in a deficit of $18,134.14 which has been provided by the Town from taxation.

One of the ways in which this deficit might be overcome in ‘ future years is the holding of a brand of senior hockey competitions in the Town which would develop a good following. Currently a proposal is being considered for the new year which would give a number of big league games per month to the Dartmouth Rink, and might be the first step to place the rink on a paying basis. Eventually the development of Allan Cup hockey or something similar might be the boost that is needed.

The Rink was sold out on several occasions last year, breaking records on two occasions, for playoff matches in the semi-finals of the Big Four league when Halifax came over here to play. Such support on an increased basis would solve all financial problems.


With a budget of $70,000. the Works Department concentrated on several big projects, and on other work did mainly maintenance and repairs during the past year. Biggest job of the year, and one which will have far reaching results on the development of the South end of Dartmouth was the installation of what can best be described as the Brook street sewer.

This is a thirty inch sewer, and extends parallel with Portland street draining the area in the valley between Portland and the hill sloping down from Rodney Road. Originally considered in the 1920’s when the late Mayor Vidito was in office, the big installation was finally undertaken and completed in 1953 at cost of $40,000.

This sewer drains much valuable property including a large block of about thirty town owned lots in what is known as the Prince Arthur Park sub—division. Completion of the storm sewer makes these lots available for development. It is in this same area that the new 16 room elementary grade school is to be constructed, and is just across the street from the Lakefront Garden Apartment project.

In all $50,000 worth of sewer and water extensions were handled during the year by the Works Department to assist in development of new subdivisions. Some work was done in the Wyndholme sub-division, also on Mount Pleasant Avenue. Crichton Park Road and the south end of Hershey Road.

Sewer and water extensions went to Scott Street. McNeil Street, Fenwick Street, Hillside Avenue and on a portion of Thistle Street between Beech and Mayflower Streets.

No permanent paving projects were undertaken during the year, and the street program was confined mainly to maintenance work. The Department purchased a mobile patch unit at a cost of $4,000. which while not elaborate. proved very efficient in quick patch work. It has been in use almost steadily since being purchased.

No other new equipment was purchased during the year excepting a vehicle for the garbage department. No curb and gutter work was done during the year due to the fact that the ratepayers of the Town turned down a plebiscite authorizing money for this purpose.

One big job undertaken and finished during the past year was the moving of Teasdale‘s grocery store back from Windmill Road at the corner of jamieson Street to make way for a general straightening and paving of this section which was quite hazardous. This project had been proposed as far back as 1920.

In the north-end of the Town the three Notting Park prefab Streets of Symonds, Russell and Chappell came in for considerable discussion by the Works Committee which laid out an overall plan whereby each year for three years one of the streets would be rebuilt and resurfaced with the aim of putting all in good shape. Last year a big job was done on Symonds Street. It was graded and levelled, and given a coating of penetration asphalt. It will be given a further coating this year and grading work will move on probably to Russell Street.

A similar type of program was undertaken on Crichton Park Road. This was a major job, costing close to $10,000. and involved grading of the street, installing storm sewers and catchpits, and coating the street with penetration asphalt. A storm drain was also installed up Forrest Road in addition to the sewer.

Slayter Street came in for some repairs and the Town made a start on construction work on streets in the newly developing Wyndholme sub-division.

The winter turned out to be generally light and the snow removal program was not too expensive, although motorists are now demanding more special attention each year with the result that snow removal and street maintenance in the winter is becoming an expensive problem. The Department now uses only salt on the streets because of the big saving in labour costs in cleaning up after, and also in the saving on catchpits and sewers which formerly became clogged with the sand and ashes used on the streets.

A better program of street cleaning was inaugerated and was especially followed out in the downtown area. Plans are to increase this service in the coming year.


With the new high pressure water system having now been in service for a complete operational year, many of the operational wrinkles have been ironed out and the installation is providing the Town and its customers with a water service of the PUMP HOUSE highest standards.

With this new service come additional costs and these expenses, coupled with the natural annual expansion of the water utility has made it necessary for the Utility to make application for a new rate structure. (This application will be heard by the Public Utilities Board early in 1954).

A misunderstanding over terms of an agreement between the Town of Dartmouth and the Municipality of the County of Halifax for the supplying of water to Halifax County was settled out of court by legal counsel for the two bodies, on December 31, 1953.

During the past twelve month period the utility had a gross surplus of $82,905.18 after providing for operation costs, taxes and depreciation. Out of this gross surplus the Debenture debt charges had to be paid and these amounted to $81,074.50, leaving the utility with a net surplus of $1,830.68.

Sinking fund payments during the year amounted to $2,542. Serial debentures retired amounted to $41,500. and interest payments were $37,032.50. The Tax payment to the Town of Dartmouth was $23,534.99.

Revenues for the Water Utility during the past year showed an increase of approximately $34,000. This actually represents a payment by the Municipality of the County of Halifax for water supplied during a three year period, and billed for under terms of an agreement. These accounts were not paid until December 31. as previously mentioned.

The Water Utility continues to make capital expenditures from revenue, using the depreciation funds to pay for these expenditures.These expenditures include new services, the cost of installing hydrants, etc.

To get a clear picture of what the Water Utility represents as an investment to the Dartmouth ratepayer it is well to realize that the Total Fixed assets of the Utility amount to $1,900,462.93. The total debenture debt of the Utility stands at $999,000.

The Utility continues to expand as the Town grows and every year Water service is being supplied to new developments and areas.


It is with profound regret as we prepare the annual report of the Dartmouth Ferry Commission that we must record the sudden death of the Ferry Superintendent, the late Captain Charles H. MacDonald. The late Superintendent passed away just shortly after giving his final report on the Ferry operations. He had served as Superintendent of the Ferries since the end of the Second World war.

With assets of over one and a quarter million dollars, and outstanding debenture debt of $215,500, the Dartmouth Ferry Commission faces the year 1954 in excellent financial standing, an aim which has been foresightedly sought by members of the Commission with a view towards being financially fluent in case of unfavourable developments with the opening of the Halifax—Dartmouth bridge.

Ratepayers of the Town again in 1953 benefitted as the owners of the Ferry service with the amount of $8.10.21 being turned over to the Town coffers, being the net profit for the 12 month period. An amount of $50,000. which also could be considered by any standards to be profits for the same period was transferred by the Commission to the Ferries contingency Reserve Fund to bolster even further its sound financial status.

Whether future years prove either prosperous or disasterous financially for the Ferry service, the Commission by making it financially fluent, has guarded against it becoming a burden to the owners, the ratepayers of Dartmouth.

According to the audited financial statements of the Ferry operations, revenues reached an all time high in 1953 of $597,565., making it one of the Town’s three top industries.

Expenses also reached an all time high in 1953 of $534,062., an increase of $7,000. over 1952. Salaries showed an increase of $20,000. reflecting the increases granted late in 1952 as well as the extra remuneration granted in December 1953.

A substantial decrease was noted during the past twelve months in the cost of maintaining the boats due to the extensive program of repairs carried out during the two previous years.

With the exception of the main dock in Halifax, which has been giving considerable trouble, the plant and equipment of the Ferry Commission are in good shape as the result of repairs and renovations carried out during the year.

Current assets in cash and investments at the Ferry have now reached an all time high of $340,000. While the debenture debt now stands at $215,500. In other words every cent of indebtedness could be paid off by the Commission and the plant and boats turned over completely paid for, to the Town at any time.

To increase even more solidly its standing, the Ferry, with some of its cash assets purchased two issues of Town of Dartmouth debentures during the past year, including 540,000. in July and $50,000. in December. In other words the Town of Dartmouth is in the situation that it is just borrowing money from itself for these two debenture issues, which is an excellent situation from the point of view of the ratepayers.

As previously mentioned, ferriage revenues for the past twelve months were the highest ever recorded in the Commission’s history. They amounted to a grand total of $597,565. as compared with $584,191. the previous year, which had been a previous high. It marked a two percent increase in revenue over the year.

Big reason for this increase was the tremendous jump in vehicular traffic on the ferries, with 592,473 being carried across the Harbour during the 12 months as compared with 568,841 in 1952 and 551,423 in 1951. This phase of the ferry operations has shown a steady climb.

The number of passengers, including all fares, showed a drop in numbers carried in 1953. During that period 4,03?,324 crossed on the Ferries as compared with 4,821,443 in 1952.

Cost of repairs on ferries during the year, together with maintenance of machinery. amounted to $18,937 for the S.S. “Scotian”, $l2.0?1 for the S.S. “Dartmouth” and $7,379 for the S.S. “Halifax.”

The capital fund balance sheet shows the general fixed assets of $1,228,092. are made up as follows:

Land and buildings -$87,818.; Ferryboats—$630,921.; Docks, wharves and bridges—–$413,432.; Machinery and equipment—~ $12,920.; Office furniture and equipment—$1,976. and Due from revenue fund -$81,021.



The Town’s Medical Health Officer, Dr. L. A. Rosere, in conjunction with the Victorian Order of Nurses provided Dartmouth with a sound Public Health setup during the past year. The school nursing service, carried out on a part time basis by the V.O.N. was an important phase of this program. Dr. Rosere and the nurses reported on the program carried out explaining that rapid classroom inspections were carried out three times a year in six Dartmouth schools. Records Show that Harbour Town students are almost 100 percent innoculated, and 100 percent vaccinated. In addition to this regular preschool immunization clinics were held.

Every new student in the schools was given a medical examination and in addition students in Grades 1, 3 and 5 were given special physical examinations. It was noted that in these examinations over 50 percent of the school children had dental defects. It was pointed out that no prophylactic dental program was in force in Dartmouth and the few dental clinics held were providing parents with a false sense of security about work being done which was incorrect. Only extractions were made at dental clinics, it was pointed out.

Proposals concerning fluoridation of the water supply were under way by the Water committee when the year came to a close.

During the year a very close check was kept on the Town water supply, and the condition of Town water, and schools were also rigidly inspected for health conditions by the Medical Health officer, and generally they were reported in good condition. Several minor health hazards in private residences were noted and the Board of Health took appropriate action.

The Health program by the V.0.N. was also extended outside the classroom with a total of 28 immunization clinics being held for infants, pre—school and school age children. A total. of 191 children were vaccinated against small pox, 553 children were immunized against diphtheria, whooping cough, and tetanus and 306 children were given reinforcing doses of toxoid. Arrangements were made during the year for patch testing and x-rays of students making use of the Province‘s mobile x-ray unit.

There were some changes on the V.O.N. staff during the year. Miss Daphne Harnett and Miss Louise Gillis resigned in the Fall, and were replaced by Miss Isobel Patterson and Mrs. Violet Orton (Mrs. Orton later resigned in January).


There was a certain amount of good news from the Public Welfare department in 1953 as the year end budget total revealed that the cost to the Town for services provided through this source had taken a drop during the year.

The total costs of hospital and medical debts incurred by residents in the Town of Dartmouth during the year in hospitals throughout the Halifax area amounted to $15,950.97, of which a portion is recoverable by the Town.

Total net expenses of the Public Welfare committee during 1953 amounted to $28,931.21 as compared with $30,888.22 in 1952

Under Provincial laws the Town is responsible for debts at hospitals in the Province incurred by residents of the Town, and that body must make its own arrangements for collection of these debts.

Charities and miscellaneous welfare costs were quite low during the year. They amounted to only $63.83 for groceries and coal, reflecting on the general prosperity of the area. Burials and sundries faced the Town with an additional $402.

Child Welfare costs included payments to the Department of Child Welfare. and the Children’s Aid Societies of Cape Breton, Lunenburg, and Halifax. Three institutions the St. Joseph’:-; Orphanage, St. Patrick’s Home and Maritime Home for Girls also cost the Town nominal amounts.

Maintenance of inmates in the Halifax County Home and other charitable institutions during the year amounted to $5,781., slightly more than the $4,733. cost last year.

Grants made by the Town to charity organizations in 1953 included V.O.N. $1,000., Halifax Visiting Dispensary $200., Canadian National Institute for the Blind $200., Children’s Hospital, $250., and Salvation Army, $300.


Like a giant mushrooming on every side, the development of the Town of Dartmouth reached an all—time high in the year 1953 with approved building permits totalling almost seven million dollars. Not even the total assessment of the Town stood at this high a mark a quarter of a century ago.

This big problem of providing adequate direction for this unprecedented growth fell to the capable hands of the Town Planning Board and its newly ap pointed Building Inspector Welsford Symonds.

The appointment of a building inspector to study all applications for building permits, and to . handle all preliminary details, ‘- – l leaving only major decisions for WELSFORD smouos Planning Board discussion, resulted in considerable additional time being made available to Board members for important discussions on zoning plans and other over—all building details.

With the building by-laws finally approved, and published in a booklet form, available to contractors and other builders, the Board finally saw one of its aims reach completion. A great deal of study was placed during the year on the Zoning by—laws and these will be placed before the Town Council for consideration in the immediate future.

Lakefront Apartments under construction at Maynard's Lake
Lakefront Apartments under construction

One big step was taken by the Board during the year, and it is one which will result in considerable criticism from builders, but must be faced with the rapid growth of this area, and with a view to keeping building under control, The Board asked Town Council to instruct the Building Inspector not to issue any permits to build, until sewer and water facilities were first installed, and streets graded to Town specifications. Council approved this step and placed it in the hands of the Town Solicitor to draft the necessary by-law.

During the past twelve months the total value of building permits issued was placed at $6,975,600. by the Building Inspector. The most amazing thing about this is that this figure did not include the permanent buildings being constructed at the Naval Armament Depot at a cost of $1,600,000. including a gun mounting and electrical shop. Nor did it include the millions being expended by the Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge Commission on the Dartmouth approaches of the Bridge.

A total of 152 single unit new buildings at a cost of $1,460,500 were constructed during the year, along with 5 duplexes amounting to $68,850. plus 55 new apartment buildings totalling 660 units, a tremendous development adding $5,125,000. to the building figure, also residential alterations and additions placing 56 more units available for the rapidly increasing population at a cost of $130,000. New commercial and industrial buildings added $41,800 to the total, while commercial alterations totalled $92,300.. and 42 private garages resulted in another $17,950. Completing the figure was another $39,200. resulting from small additions and repairs.

To climax the building year in Dartmouth for 1953 a total of 394 permits were issued adding a total of 880 units to the Town’s housing accommodations.


The sale of one house, the last of 214 prefabricated houses purchased by the Town from the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation in 1952, completed the final sale of these housing units by the Town to private ownership.

The amount of $2,800. received by the Town for the sale of the small four room pre-fab, together with mortgage interest received for the year amounting to $10,293.75. gave the Town of Dartmouth a gross income during the past year from the pre-fab houses of $13,093.75. From this amount a slight deduction for repairs was made, leaving net income over expenditures for the period of $13,048.81.

The balance sheet shows assets on hand in the Prefabricated Housing fund of $12,429.06 on deposit in the Royal Bank of Canada. together with $1 1 7,2 26. in mortgages receivable through the Eastern Canada Savings and Loan Company, and $84,079. in mortgages receivable from the Nova Scotia Savings, Loan and Building Society gives the Town total assets of $213,735.56, after all expenditures of permanizing these units have been taken care of.

This will represent a profit to the Town of close to a quarter of a million dollars on the transaction. The funds have to be paid into a special fund. which can only be dispersed by council with the consent of the Minister of Municipal Affairs


Board of school commissioners

Two new schools were born in the minds of School Board members during the past year, and tentative plans were considered for a third.

The year 1953 was another period of growth. Keeping pace with the tremendous development, both residential and commercial, throughout this area the population has been climbing steadily, and with it the student population in the Dartmouth schools has been increasing out of all proportions and facing local school authorities with dozens of problems.

Faced with part time classes in several cases during the year 1953, school authorities laid preliminary plans for a ten room school to be constructed in the south end of the Town to handle the rapid increase in population resulting from new subdivision developing. Suddenly these plans were all thrown out as the Lakefront Garden Apartments started work on a tremendous housing development which meant another 450 families, and an approximate increase in the number of elementary grade students. Finally plans were being drafted by architect D. A. Webber on a sixteen room school. which it was hoped would accommodate the new student body. The school is to be constructed in the Prince Arthur Park sub-division.

Meanwhile in the Northend of the Town a similar situation was developing. Here several new housing projects were underway and in addition another apartment project, with accommodation for 250 families was being started. Faced with tremendous overs crowding of facilities at present in use the Board decided it would be necessary to have a new ten room school ready for occupancy when classes commence in the Fall of 1954.

At year’s end both of these projects were in the stage of having tenders called for a start on construction.

During the year the Board recommended to Town Council the razing of the old Park school, located on the bluff of land looking down over Synott’s Hill.

Meanwhile the Board, after studying recommendations from Supervisor of Schools, Ian K. Forsyth, was faced with the possibility of needing a great deal of additional Junior High school space in another year. Reports were being considered on heavy increases in junior high school classes as the elementary grades advance, and action may be taken sometime next year in this regard.

Considerable work was done during the past year on school grounds, with a program aimed at improving the properties and laying asphalt surfaces for game areas being continued.


The cost of education in the Dartmouth public school system continued to climb in 1953 as the student population showed a steady increase.

Total expenditures during the year by the Board of School Commissioners amounted to $284,454.86 as compared with approximately $267,000. the Year previous, or $207,417. in the year 1951.

This climb will continue next year with the opening of two more schools, and the following year if another junior high school is constructed.

During 1954 Teachers‘ salaries accounted for $180,172.61 of the total amount. Principal installments on serial bonds took $24,000. and interest on bonds another $17,327. Other high items included janitor service which runs to $14,000. and fuel, another $1I.313.

Prince Arthur Park School started

Additional funds were used during the year to promote such items as Household Science, Music, Physical Education, and Industrial Arts, and these classes were felt to be providing a much needed service in the public education system.

The program of adult education through capably supervised evening classes, in such fields as Household Science and Industrial Arts, continued to meet with a great deal of favourable comment and have big followings. This program is arranged in conjunction with the Vocational Guidance division of the Department of Education and will be increased in the ensuing year.

One of the big items last year was the physical education display arranged by the P.T. Instructors, the Music Festival held at the Junior High School was also highly successful and warmly praised.


Direction of the Police and Fire Departments of the Town of Dartmouth was handled during the year 1953 under a single committee, designated as Public Safety.

One of the big projects of the year, and one which has done much to provide for a steadier flow of traffic in the downtown area was the installation of a set of traffic lights at the dangerous Five Corners intersection. A drop in the number of accidents at this corner, and encountering of little difficulty in the winter months has made the third set of lights installed in the Town very successful.

During the year a new police patrol car was purchased, and funds were also expended on the purchase and installation of a mobile radio-telephone unit in the Fire Chief’s truck to provide for more maneuverability of equipment in case of several fire outbreaks at one time.

Plans were considered during the year for the purchase of a new aerial ladder truck for the Fire Department to replace the obsolete chain driven model which has been in use for over 30 years.

The Civil Defence organization was in full operation during the year and is strongly set up to operate in case of an emergency. A Civil Defence pumper unit was obtained and is stored at the Fire station, a warning air raid siren was also installed by the committee, and a practice air raid drill was held during the year.


The Dartmouth Fire Department, headed by Fire Chief George Patterson had a busy year in 1953, but through the efforts of this department the total loss by fire throughout the Town was kept very low.

The total fire loss in the Town limits amounted to $173,619. Of this figure the amount of $155,1_54 was covered by insurance leaving only $18,465. actual loss suffered by property owners.

During the year the Fire Department responded to 245 alarms an increase of 29 over the previous year. Seven of these were general alarms, responded to by the members of the Volunteer departments.

The largest fire loss was the Vincent warehouse blaze on October 17, which contained the stock of Simpson Sears Limited. plus other stored items, resulting in a loss to the buildings and contents of$l43,005., representing the major part of the fire loss in the Town for the year.

Two other buildings were destroyed, including a combined shop and dwelling on Fairbanks Street and a bungalow on Woodland Avenue. In all during the year 14 buildings were damaged.

According to the Fire Chief the Volunteer departments are up to full strength and giving valuable service. working in conjunction with the 12 men on the permanent force. The Department responded to seven alarms in the County during the year.

The Department revealed that a number of local business firms have installed automatic sprinkler systems in their business places, and indicated it was endeavouring to have others installed in other public buildings in Town.


Town officials moved to bolstered the Dartmouth Police Department during the year 1953 and one of the most important steps taken was the installation of a separate School Safety Patrol. Four additional men were taken on duty on a part-time basis to serve during school days at rush hours on busy intersections, directing traffic to a certain extent and aiding students proceeding to and from school in crossing the street.

The results at the end of the year proved that the move had been justified, as school accidents were completely prevented during the year, despite the fact that traffic has increased greatly in recent years, and also considering that the 1953 school population was the highest recorded to date.

The strength of the Police Department in addition to the safety patrol officers, remained at 16 men including the Police Chief ‘John Lawlor, and other officers, plus the utility man.

The year was a busy one and the Department was praised for its work and investigations in breaking up several crime waves. including a series of breaks, and a bicycle resale gang of juveniles.

In all the Town Police court handled a total of 11,218 cases in comparison to approximately 900 the year previous. Fines and court costs collected amounted to approximately $8,500.

Considerable time was spent during the year by traffic authorities in studying the growing problem of downtown traffic and the traffic lights were found to be of great assistance. The new light installed at Five Corners was found to be a great assistance in handling the heavy flow of traffic in this area.

Extra funds were used during the year in erection of additional signs, traffic signals, and road guides to handle the heavy traffic. Further work was done to develop the downtown Parking lot at the corner of Commercial Street and Ferry Hill.


Mount Herman Cemetary

Space is rapidly being used up in the Town’s biggest cemetery, Mount Hermon. This large property has been becoming increasingly filled as the size of the Town’s populace has increased with leaps and bounds during the years since the end of the War.

The problem of a site for a new cemetery was studied very carefully during the past year by the Cemetery committee and thought given to the possibility that with burial space becoming steadily limited that only residents of the Town would be accepted for burial, and that Halifax County residents in the surrounding suburban areas would have to be refused space in this cemetery.

Further work was continued during the past year at Mount Hermon in removal of old brush, weeds and accumulated debris from the northern section of the cemetery. The installation of Town water in the cemetery has made it much easier for maintenance workmen to keep the grass and shrubs watered and fresh looking.

Despite increased lot and grave opening rates as set in 1951 the cemetery operated at a deficit amounting to $1,925.48 during the year 1953. Burial charges only netted the Town $1,105. which together with $700. provided from Town tax levy was still short of the $3,730. needed to operate during the year.

The biggest expenditure faced by the committee during the year was labor costs of $3,346.

In the overall picture of the balance sheet the assets held by the Cemetery committee amount to $8,086.36 including property and equipment while deduction of accounts payable, and minus the deficit for the current year the balance is cut to $7,389.97 as of December 31, 1953.


Build Retaining Wall in Dartmouth Park

Highlighting the development of Dartmouth Park properties in the year 1953 was the start of a concrete program of work on the beautiful Birch Cove property, which was obtained by the Town from the estate of the late L. M. Bell, and which in the future may be one of the Town’s most valuable Park properties.

The work in clearing out the underbrush, removing debris, having the terrain levelled and sand provided for a bathing beach was the start of a program which the civic minded men of the Dartmouth Junior Board of Trade sparked, in co-operation with the Park Commission.

After getting the go ahead signal from the Park Commission, a special committee headed by Charlie Clarke did a great deal of the preliminary work necessary to put the property into condition for use as an ideal picnic grounds. Located as it is on the scenic shores of Lake Banook, with easy access from Crichton Avenue, the location is fast becoming a popular gathering spot.

With a budget of $2,500 plus an amount of $4,000 from sale of Town owned land the Park Commission continued its program of beautification and maintenance on the Dartmouth Park. Considerable more work was done by Park workmen in constructing retaining walls along walks in the lower section of the Park.

Further shrubs and plants were planted and during the latter part of the Summer the whole section of the Park bordering along Synott‘s Hill and the Park Avenue Hill was a glorious array of colourful flowers.

Further work was done by the Park Commission in conjunction with work on the rock garden. This work is limited because of the lack of sufficient funds but the Commission has been following a program in recent years of doing a small amount of work in one section rather than trying to spread the small budget over too big an area. This has begun to pay off and now further work is being started in the Thistle Street extension area, a section which is also becoming a very heavily travelled route.

Considerable grass was planted in the Thistle Street area extending down from the Bicentennial Junior High School, and trees and shrubs were given special attention here.

A power mower was purchased during the year by the Commission to be used in assisting the small staff of the Park in keeping the new lawn areas well trimmed. A further amount of $400. was used by the Commission during the year in beautification and maintenance work on the centrally located Memorial Park at the intersection of Crichton Avenue and Ochterloney Street.

Benches were placed in this section of the Park and the area was widely used when Band concerts and other special events were held there.

At Victoria Park, the Victoria Park Commission continued its program aimed at making that section of property in the North end of the Town more useable for the residents in general.

Further seeding of the ground was completed here after it had been plowed up, and levelled off. The Commission hopes to add to the Kiwanis Club’s work of installing playground equipment. by providing walks across the Park, and benches for the use of residents of the district. With construction of the Dartmouth Park Apartments nearby, this will become an even more important Park area. Only the ordinary maintenance work was carried on during the year at the Wentworth Park.

The Tree planting program, which is rapidly beginning to show results in the Town was furthered during the past year with the expenditure of approximately $500. during the period for trees. Throughout the Park, and on virtually every Town street the new trees which have been planted are growing well and will soon add a great deal to the values of properties and to the beautification of the Town.


Continuing in a program to support the youth of the Town in various fields of progress the Recreation and Community services committee assisted financially in the sponsoring of Band concerts for the enjoyment of the general public, serving a double purpose in one of their 1953 projects.

The Committee arranged for a series of special Band concerts to be presented during the Summer months at the Memorial Park by the Kiwanis Youth Band. Realizing the heavy expenses the Kiwanis Club is undergoing in its efforts to assist the youth of Dartmouth in advancing culturally in the field of music, the committee decided to pay the club a nominal amount for each Band concert presented, as a boost in the Bands operation.

The strong general support of this move was evident by the large audiences on hand for the concerts on each occasion.

The committee felt that the young people interested in the Youth Band work should be supported as well as youngsters anxious to make use of Town ball diamonds and sports facilities.

Although operating on a limited budget the committee was able to assist further in the work of improving and maintaining present playing fields in operation in the Town. Considerable work was done at the Common field with approximately $200. being expended in repairs and maintenance on both grounds and bleachers.

The Community swimming pool, operated at the foot of Synott’s hill in the Dartmouth Park was as usual well patronized by boys and girls from all over Town. Two capable instructresses were on hand every day to direct the classes in Water Safety and Red Cross Life Saving and Swimming Methods. This pool provides well supervised swimming and has proven invaluable in providing instructions to Dartmouth children who with the nearness of the Lakes and seashores spend much of the summer in the water.

The Dartmouth Public Library, operated by a Board of Trustees, and still located in the Service Centre, was given a grant of $2,000. for operations during the year. A considerable number of private and public donations of books helped the Library to add to its wide array of reading n-iaterial. Attendance at this centre again topped all records and the Library is faced with a problem of needing larger quarters in the near future to accommodate a steadily increasing patronage.

In co-operation with the Dartmouth junior Board of Trade the Tourist Bureau was again operated at the corner of Elliot Street and Lake Road. The number of visitors and home-town residents making calls at this centre for information and literature increases every year, accentuating the need for this service in the Summer months. Outside visitors alone during the past year topped the 1.500 mark.


Grading Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge approaches

As the curtain came down on construction work on the Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge for 1953 a great deal had been achieved.

Especially evident has been the progress made on the Dartmouth side of the Harbour. Concrete work had been completed and virtually all of the steel work stretching from the upper end of Lyle Street, down across Windmill Road to the waterfront, had been completed.

Construction work on the east main tower had been almost finished at the close of the year, and preliminary plans were being laid for the big job of erecting the catwalk and hauling the dozens of steel cable supports across the Harbour.

At the Wyse Road end of the Bridge, work on the approaches had been started at the end of the season. The approaches on the Bridge property itself had been levelled and given a preliminary coating of asphalt. Construction work had also commenced on the toll booths, administration and work buildings for the Bridge which would be located on the Dartmouth side of the Harbour.

The Town, under the direction of Mayor Claude H. Morris, who is the representative on the Bridge Commission was laying the first plans to start work on arteries which must handle most of the vehicular traffic from the Bridge. Through $100,000. obtained from the sale of a block of land to the Bridge Commission, and another $30,000. set aside in a special fund, the Town was planning to start work almost immediately in the new year on the Wyse Road approach. This would be widened and boulevarded for a distance of 100 yards in each direction of the Bridge entrance.

GENERAL MUNICIPAL STATISTICS(for year ended December 31, 1953)
POPULATIONDominion Bureau of Statistics Census (1951)15,037
Land. . .1,533 acres
Water. . .198 acres
Total1,731 acres
Land Exempt in Public Works and Playgrounds68 acres
AssessmentExemptionNet Assessments
Real Property. . .$23,538,970$7,156,550$16,382,420
Personal Property. . .$5,315,000$94,600$5,220,400
Total. . .$28,853,920$7,251,150$21,602,820
Government Property
Dominion. . .$5,223,400
Provincial. . .$24,000
Town. . .$242,800
Total Government Property$5,490,200
Property used for Educational,
Religious, Charitable Purposes
Widows. . .245,300
Total Exemptions. . .$7,251,150.
General Tax Rate 2.48%For General Purposes 1.40%
For School Purposes 1.08%
AsphaltConcreteGravel StoneBituminous
Streets. . .6.28Nil1116.55
Sidewalks. . .2.3014.0425.10Nil
Storm and Sanitary
Sewers. . .
Water. . .31.89
Total. . .58.32

Annual Report 1886

Warden’s Address To the rate payers of the municipality of the Town of Dartmouth Ladies and Gentleman — It is my privilege to report to you the “state and condition of the Town” at the close of this the fourteenth year since civic government, under the Act of Incorporation, began. Before reporting on the different … Read more

Annual Report 1887

Warden’s Address To the rate payers of the municipality of the Town of Dartmouth Ladies and Gentleman,— At the close of this my second term in the office of Warden, it is my duty and pleasure to report to you upon the state and condition of the Municipality of Dartmouth. This municipality has for so … Read more