Events

As Covid-19 restrictions are lifting the Oxford Historical Society will once again hold in persons meetings at the Woodstock Museum, NHS. Meetings will begin at 6:45pm. Masks are required.


For all Zoom meetings use this ID#: 81906248857, no password is required.

The Zoom link is: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81906248857

The Zoom link will open approximately 10 minutes before the start time of a meeting.


2022 Events

Wednesday, September 28, 2022: Laura Green – Women’s Institute 125th Anniversary

More information about this event will be posted as it becomes available.


Wednesday, October 26, 2022: Doris Weir – Cold Springs Farm in Thamesford

Mr. Harvey Beaty (photo provided by Doris Weir)

From Doris Weir:

“Mr. Harvey Beaty was a huge employer and contributor to the town of Thamesford and surrounding areas.  He started Cold Springs Farm in 1949 and up to his death in 1994 he created a business with over 100 farms, processing plants and was starting to build a mini town in Florida. 

When I received his memoirs I wanted to ensure everyone knew who he was and what he had done for Thamesford, Oxford County and many other areas in Ontario, Michigan and Florida so I digitized the memoirs and created a book for everyone to read and enjoy.

I will be talking about Mr. Beaty’s memoirs book, his upbringing, how he crippled himself (his word) and how he started in to the poultry and feedmill business and more.”

More information about this event will be posted as it is becomes available.


Grand Day Out – Saturday, June 25, 2022!

Castle Kilbride

Hello Everyone,

The OxHS is quite pleased to announce the return of our Grand Day Out event! This year’s event includes a visit to Castle Kilbride, lunch in New Hamburg, and the Plattsville & District Heritage Society’s (PDHS) exhibit at the Chesterfield United Church.

The Grand Day Out will take place on Saturday, June 25, 2022 beginning at 9:30am and ending between 4 and 5pm. The group will meet at the Woodstock Public Library parking lot and carpool together to the various locations.

Our first stop on the tour is Castle Kilbride, the former home of James Livingston: flax industrialist, politician and entrepreneur. It was named Castle Kilbride after his birthplace in East Kilbride, Scotland. The tour is scheduled for 11am and tickets will be purchased in advance by the Society. Admission price is approximately $11.00 – 12.00 and tickets are non-refundable. Reimbursement for the tickets will be collected on the the day of the event. If you do not wish to be part of the tour group to view the inside of Castle Kilbride you may explore their grounds while the tour is going on, there is no charge to view the grounds.

After Castle Kilbride the group will make their way to Huron St. in New Hamburg to view the dam and waterwheel located in Scott Park. Lunch reservations will be at the Imperial Market & Eatery in New Hamburg. Individuals are responsible for their own lunch costs.

Following lunch will be the exhibit at Chesterfield United Church by the PDHS. Admission is free for the exhibit but donations are always welcome.

RSVP is required for this event. To reserve your spot please respond by Wednesday, June 15.

To RSVP: email the OxHS at info@oxhs.ca. Put Grand Day Out 2022 in the subject line. In the body of the email include your contact information and if you wish to be part of the Castle Kilbride tour group, thank you.

Event costs are the responsibility of each participant.

PDHS Exhibit Summer 2022

Wednesday, May 25, 2022: Ella Shelton – Canadian Olympic Gold Medallist

Please join us on Wednesday, May 25 at 6:15pm at the Woodstock Museum, NHS as we welcome Ella Shelton – Canadian Olympic Gold Medallist 2022.

The Oxford Historical Society is honoured to have one of Team Canada’s Hockey Gold Medallists from the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, Ella Shelton, as our next speaker. Ella is from Oxford County and grew up on a farm near Ingersoll. Her love of hockey began at a very young age and her dream of playing for Canada came true in 2020.

Please join us at 6:15pm on Wednesday, May 25 at the Woodstock Museum, NHS to here Ella Shelton speak about her experiences growing up in a small town and how her love of hockey led her to an Olympic gold medal. Ella’s talk will begin promptly at 6:30pm.

This is free event and all are welcome to attend. As this is an in-person event all Covid-19 protocols will be followed.


Wednesday, April 27, 2022: Queen of the Con – Cassie Chadwick

Please join the Oxford Historical Society on Wednesday, April 27, 2022, at 6:30pm, for a Zoom presentation by Thomas Crowl. Thomas will discuss his latest work: Queen of the Con: From Spiritualist to Carnegie Imposter!

Thomas delves into the many schemes undertaken by Cassie Chadwick. He explores her life from her humble beginnings as Elizabeth Bigley, born in Oxford County, to her becoming a clairvoyant, a fraudster, an imposter posing as Andrew Carnegie’s illegitimate daughter and many other cons along the way.

This book is available for purchase from Amazon.ca using this link – Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie Imposter


Wednesday, March 30, 2022: Old Houses as Museums

Craigdarroch Museum,
Photo courtesy of Beachville District Museum

Please join us on Wednesday, March 30 at 6:45pm at the Woodstock Museum, NHS as we welcome Dr. Stephanie Radu, Curator of the Beachville District Museum.

The following is a summary of Dr. Radu’s upcoming presentation:

Historic house museums are a common, if often overlooked, feature of the Canadian heritage landscape. As national historic sites, and community museums, they address cultural, social, historical and political facets of the past. Whether they recount the life of a previous owner, focus on how chores in early households were completed, give visitors a sense of how their foundations were built or walls were decorated, they reflect different regional identities, varied stories of domestic life and different architectural traditions. This presentation looks across examples from the west coast (British Columbia) to the east (Nova Scotia) and offers references to local examples in between. It looks at how closets are transformed into display cabinets for historic housewares, how antique lighting fixtures are converted into appropriate “Exit” lights and how entire dining table sets become frozen for viewing.

In exploring these transformations, the presentation looks at how private, domestic spaces are re-envisioned as public institutions. It further looks at how multisensory exhibits, interactive displays and participative programs are used to restage the environment of historic homes for the enjoyment and education of museum visitors. Be ready to step inside of Canada’s historic homes and as well as back in time. 


Annual General Meeting – Wednesday, February 23, 2022 at 6:30pm, via Zoom

Gordon Stanley Boswell stacking wheat.
Photo courtesy of Brenda Boswell

The OxHS is hosting their AGM via Zoom due to Covid-19 restrictions. At this meeting the 2022 Executive will be voted in, all paying members will have a chance to vote for this year’s Executive.

The following is a list of the 2021 Executive:

President: Kathie Richards
Past President: Jim Groulx
Vice President: Vacant
Treasurer/Research: Dr. Elaine Becker
Secretary: Laura Centore
Communications and Newsletter: Laura Centore
Membership: Judy Klages
Archives/Architecture: Eleanor Gardhouse
Board Members at Large: Jim Groulx, Don Wilson
Museum Liaison: Karen Houston

Our speaker for tonight will be Brenda Boswell, presenting
Harvest Excursions: Featuring the Story of Gordon Stanley Boswell

This excerpt is from Brenda’s presentation:

Between the 1890’s and 1930 thousands of men participated in the fall wheat harvest in Western Canada.  Organized by the CPR and local government, call outs were made annually to Eastern Canada, the northern United States and Britain.  Tens of thousands of men would converge in Winnipeg over a 2 week period answering the call.

The stories of the Harvest Excursions stories vary between a crusade, an adventure, a binge, hard work, good money, hooliganism and violence.  The excursions were a noisy, colourful and important part of Canada’s history, but little was recorded at the time.  Gordon Stanley Boswell joined the excursion in 1923 with other members of his Woodstock baseball team Snowy’s Snowbirds.    His daughter Brenda Boswell recorded his story for a Canadian history project in 1972 and is proud to share it with the Historical Society.’


Keep checking our website as more information about upcoming events will be posted.