A look at Millet In 1945

White Lunch Café changed its name to Dolly’s Café

The year 1945 was a big one in world history. The United Nations was founded, atom bombs were used in war for the first, and so far, only time and the Second World War came to an end.

In Millet, plenty was going on as the world around everyone began to change and a new era was ushered in. Today, we are going to look at Millet during that year.

On Feb. 8, the Millet Navy-League held a dance at the Millet Community Hall to raise funds, charging 50 cents for men and 25 cents for women to attend. That same month, a waste paper drive was held in the village. Paper was stored at the school until it was all collected. One room alone collected 1,200 pounds in total.

On April 16, a choir practice was held in the community hall under the leadership of Mrs. Ralph Newbolt. She oversaw the music for the V-Day Program. Also, in April, the Millet Branch of the VVR held their last meeting on Vimy Day. They received their stand down orders from OC E.R. Hoskins. Through their activities, they had organized the Millet VVR salvage committee. They sold the salvage for $332 and most of this money went to charity. A farewell party for Mrs. Sam Vining was organized as she was moving to Edmonton on May 1.

On May 7 at 7:45 a.m., V.E. Day was announced unofficially, followed by an official announcement the next day. A V.E. celebration was held on May 8 in the afternoon. Everything began at 1:30 p.m. when Captain Hoskins served as parade marshal. The parade was led by the Sea Cadet drum and bugle band. Veterans of the First World War, and 300 children, marched behind Reverend Father Donahue. Addresses were given to the crowd by all the religious leaders. Lunch was served for the entire community.

In June, M. Furuness purchased the B.A. Garage from Mr. Pitchard. He purchased it along with R. Womacks. Furuness was a well-known and well-liked mechanic in the area. That same month, A.P. Mitchell retired after forty years as an auctioneer.

In September, Thomas Cochrane took over as the new Alberta Pacific elevator agent.

The next month, the White Lunch Café changed its name to Dolly’s Café. The café had been owned by J.E. Maller but was sold to Cliff and Dolly Thomas. The road gang that had been working in Millet for the past several months finally finished the hard surface work of the highway between Edmonton and Wetaskiwin. Lastly, William Nahirnik, who owned Millet Motors, remodeled his garage and show room to increase the overall floor space.

Suggestions for columns or questions? E-mail Craig at crwbaird@gmail.com. Listen to his podcast by searching for “Canadian History Ehx” on your podcast platform. Find his show on YouTube by searching for “Canadian History Ehx”.

Information for this column comes from Tales and Trails of Millet Vol. 1.

Craig Baird writes a regular local history column for The Wetaskiwin Pipestone Flyer.

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