Dennis Gannon, special to the Standard

Stories

Left: The photo, which looks north from the intersection of Front Street N. and Regent Street, was taken on July 29, 1956, during one of the NS&T "fan trips." - R. J. Sandusky photo, in the A. W. Panko Collection Right: The intersection of Front Street North and Regent Street in Thorold, which was the location of an old NA&T trestle. — Julie Jocsak/Standard Staff

YESTERDAY & TODAY: Could I interest you in a second-hand bridge?

The Niagara Central railway, opened in 1881, extended southward from St. Catharines through Thorold. After its long climb up the Escarpment it proceeded from there on an elevated wooden trestle that cut across the northern part of the town in a southwesterly direction, passing over Carleton Street, Ormond Street, and Front Street, and then behind t

Edward, the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VIII, descends the steps leading up to the Cenotaph here in St. Catharines, in Memorial Park on St. Paul West, next to the CKTB Radio headquarters in 1927. — Photo Courtesy of the late Col. Clifford R. Baker. Right: The St. Catharines Cenotaph as it looks in 2017. Bob Tymczyszyn/Postmedia Network

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: Weekend of remembrance

The gentleman carrying the straw hat and descending a few steps in our old photo this week was Edward, the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VIII. He was descending the steps leading up to the Cenotaph here in St. Catharines, in Memorial Park on St. Paul West, next to the CKTB Radio headquarters. The Prince had just placed a wreath at the base of

Left: The old photo this week shows the new NS&T terminal sometime prior to 1907. — Edwin Poole photo, published 1907. Right: The original NS&T terminal used to occupy roughly the middle third of the site where the PAC sits today. — Standard photo

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: Before the PAC

The Niagara, St. Catharines and Toronto (NS&T) Street Railway had its remote origins in the St. Catharines Street Railway, a horse-powered service that commenced in late 1879.

Left: Our old photo this week, taken in 1863, shows horse-drawn vehicles, most of them in front of the stores that lined St. Paul Street, plus two or three parked right in the middle of the wide spot where St. Paul and Ontario met. —Submitted photo. Right: The intersection of Ontario Street and St. Paul Street today. Julie Jocsak/Standard Staff

Yesterday and Today: The heart of St. Catharines

Our old photo this week shows us the heart of the City of St. Catharines, the seed from which today’s City of St. Catharines has grown over the last 200- plus years — the place where, from the earliest days of Upper Canada, people spontaneously settled at the intersection of two thoroughfares that had existed here long before the coming of European

Left: This photos shows the lush side yard of a house that once stood on the north side of Church Street east of Court Steet. — Courtesy of Ron Workman Post Cards . Right: Community Care on Church Street in St. Catharines, the former site of Maple Hill. Julie Jocsak / St. Catharines Standard

Yesterday and Today: Bright Spot on Church Street

Our old photograph this week shows the lushly landscaped side yard of a house that once stood on the north side of Church Street east of Court. What we see in that photo (probably taken in the 1930s) is a far cry from what had been there back in the mid-1800s.

Left: The rear of Rodman Hall as it looked probably in the 1920s or 1930s — Courtesy of Ron Workman Post Cards. Right: The rear view of Rodman Hall as it looks today. — Bob Tymczyszyn/St. Catharines Standard/Postmedia Network

Rodman Hall: From mansion to arts centre

Our old photo this week shows us the rear of Rodman Hall as it looked probably in the 1920s or 1930s. Our focus today is on the additions that allowed that grand old heritage building to become the arts centre that it is today.

A tornado struck St. Catharines and Merritton on September 26, 1898. Many homes were seriously damaged (upper right). The North Ward School, located on Smythe Stree, was left a ruin (upper left). Merritton's Presbyterian Church, at the corner of Oakdale Avenue and Merritt Streets, was demolished (lower left). The Lincoln Paper Mill was badly damaged. (lower right).

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: The disaster of 1898

For the past several weeks the news has been filled with reports of one horrifying natural disaster after another – Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria ravaging the islands of the Caribbean and the Gulf coasts of Texas and Florida, and an earthquake devastating Mexico City and vicinity . . .

 Left: This photo, taken in November 1925, documents a re-working of the “Five Points” intersection where Geneva, St. Paul, Queenston and Niagara streets all meet. — Special Collections Room, St. Catharines Public Library Right: The city plans to re-configure the “five points” intersection, show in this photo from Wednesday, by re-routing Niagara Street away from intersecting with the other three streets. — Julie Jocsak/Standard Staff

Yesterday and today: Five Points intersection

The Standard recently reported that in 2018 the city plans to re-configure the “five points” intersection where Geneva, St. Paul, Queenston and Niagara streets all meet. The plan includes re-routing Niagara Street away from intersecting with the other three streets.

Left: An aerial photo of the area around where the St. Catharines Centennial Library was built on Church Street in 1977. Right: The St. Catharines Library as it looks in 2017. Standard Photo

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: Library leaps ahead

Readers in St. Catharines have been able to borrow books since the establishment of the Mechanics’ Institute in the 1840s, but that was essentially a private institution and patrons did have to pay a fee for the books they borrowed.

Left: An arch built by local firefighters of the tools of their trade — ladders and hoses — embellished with evergreens greets Governor General Lord Dufferin and Lady Dufferin on St. Paul Street in 1874.— Photo courtesy of the St. Catharines Museum, X1988-91-1A Right: The view down St. Paul Steet at it appears today looking toward the Geneva Street and Queenston Street intersection. Bill Sawchuk/Standard Staff

YESTERDAY & TODAY: Firemen greet Governor General

In late August 1874, Governor General Lord Dufferin and Lady Dufferin undertook an official visit to southern Ontario — London, St. Thomas, Simcoe, Cayuga, Welland ... They finally reached St. Catharines on the afternoon of Friday, Aug. 28.

Left: The Upper Steel Arch Bridge, illustrated in the accompanying drawing, was built in 1897-98. — Supplied phot. Right: The Rainbow Bridge in Niagara Falls. Julie Jocsak/ St. Catharines Standard/ Postmedia Network

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: Bridging the Niagara Gorge

The first bridges across the Niagara River (first for pedestrians and carriages, later also allowing for railroad traffic) opened in the late 1840s and early 1850s. They were a good distance away from the Falls, crossing the Niagara Gorge where the CN crosses today at the eastern end of Bridge Street in Niagara Falls.

Opening of the Welland Ship Canal. (Library and Archives Canada)

YESTERDAY & TODAY: Triumph and tragedy

Aug. 6, is the 85th anniversary of the official opening of the latest Welland Ship Canal, the fourth realization of the vital economic link between Lakes Erie and Ontario that has meant so much to Niagara and to all of North America since the first canal opened in November 1829.

Left: Twelve Mile Creek between Glendale Avenue and downtown as it looked in 1934 — Brock University Map Library. Right: The East side of Twelve Mile Creek between Glendale Avenue and downtown as it looks today— Google Maps

Yesterday and Today: Straightening out Twelve Mile Creek

While out walking recently along the east side of Twelve Mile Creek between Glendale Avenue and downtown, I began to wonder about the path that the Creek is taking today. There are places where the shapes of the slopes down into the Creek valley, and related depressions in the adjacent land – especially at one place below Glenridge, just north of t

Left: Henry Wise owned the City Planing Mills in 1907, when this old photo of the building appeared in a booklet published by the Standard. (That’s Geneva Street in the foreground of the photo.) — Special Collections Room, St. Catharines Public Library; Edwin Poole, photographer. Right: View of Geneva St. from Centre St. where the Henry Wise lumber company used to stand. Bob Tymczyszyn/St. Catharines Standard

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: The Old Planing Mill

For upwards of a century, the southern half of the large triangular plot bounded by Niagara, Geneva and Church streets was mostly occupied by a huge planing mill producing lumber and all sorts of trim for local builders.

Left; Demill Ladies College moved into the old Stephenson House on Yates Street in St. Catharines. — St. Catharines Journal, Veterans’ Edition. July 23, 1898. Right: The view at 41 Yates Street today. Julie Jocsak/Postmedia Network  

YESTERDAY AND TODAY: A corner with a history

Of all the sites along Yates Street, from St. Paul West up to Adams Street, the southwest corner of Yates and Salina has probably had the most varied history.

Left: St. Denis Church takes shape. The photo looks at the Lake Street end of the church and was taken in early November of 1960. By that time just half of the supporting steel framework of the ceiling of the church’s nave had been set in place. — Standard file photo. Right: Current view of St. Denis Church on Lake Street and Carlton Street. — Bob Tymczyszyn/St. Catharines Standard

Building a parish, one step at a time

Recognizing the need eventually to establish new parishes for local Roman Catholics as the city grew in the 1930s and 1940s, Monsignor Denis Morris acquired land on Russell Avenue at the foot of Henry Street as a possible site to serve the city’s north end.