Ajax Public Library Digital Archive
Ajax Public Library 60th Anniversary Memory Boards - 1950's, October 2012

Mystery Question:
Do you know the names of any of the children in the storytime photograph?
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Media Type:
Item Type:
Colour photograph of the Ajax Public Library 60th Anniversary Memory Board 1950's
1950s The Boom Years

Post World War II, moms stayed at home and served “comfort” foods such as Meat Loaf, Chili Con Carne, and Tuna Noodle Casserole with homemade pies, Ambrosia Filled Angle Cake, Nanaimo Bars and chocolate chip cookies for dessert. Entertaining at home was a Rec Room buffet with chips and dip. Outside of the home, diners with juke boxes and soda fountains were popular.

Historical Highlights

- Citizens, led by John Cameron, petitioned for a public library in the Improvement District of Ajax. “Every one of these children and teenagers will grow into a happier person, a more useful citizen, if in his formative years there are available to him the benefits of a good public library”. A 1952 petition campaign amongst Ajax households showed two out of three supported a free public library in Ajax.
- December 13, 1952 the new library was opened at the corner of Harwood Avenue and King’s Crescent in the building that once housed the DIL Inspection Department and then the Bank of Commerce.
- It had 1,175 books to serve a population of 4,057.
- June Munroe was the first librarian; on loan from the Public Library of London, Ontario.
Maureen Hutchins became the first official librarian before John Vickers’ arrival in 1956.
- January, 1956 the Library moved to new quarters; the DIL Department of Munitions and Supply building which later housed the Royal Bank and a barber shop. The library was located on the ground floor.

On the Silver Screen

The Greatest Show on Earth, Titanic, Singin’ in the Rain, The War of the Worlds, Rear Window, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

Bestsellers & Canadian Literature

East of Eden by John Steinbeck
On the Beach by Nevil Shute
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
Lost in the Barrens by Farley Mowat
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler

Vinyl Records

Diana by Paul Anka
You Belong to Me by Jo Stafford
Love Me Tender by Elvis Presley
Wake Up Little Susie by The Everly Brothers
Heartbreak Hotel by Elvis Presley
Jailhouse Rock by Elvis Presley
Mack the Knife by Bobby Darin

What’s Cooking in 1952?

Perfect Lemon Meringue Pie

Pastry for One Crust
Lemon Filling
¼ cup cornstarch
3 Tbsp flour
1 ¾ cups sugar
1 Tbsp butter
¼ tsp salt
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten
½ cup lemon juice
1 Tbsp grated lemon peel
¼ tsp cream of tartar
4 egg whites
½ cup sugar

Extra Historical Note:

Pianist Glenn Gould recorded Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” in 1955 and became world famous.


1)Photo of the fist Library Board
Caption: Board members in 1952: Standing (l to r): Paul Corbett, John Sherburne, Ian Hamer. Sitting (l to r) Teresa Falby, John Cameron, and appointed librarian June Munroe.

2)Photo of children enjoying storytime
Caption: Storytime in the first library 1953.

3)Photo of children’s area of the library
Date of Original:
Date Of Event:
October 2012
Personal Name(s):
Cameron, John Corbett, Paul Falby, Teresa Hamer, Ian Sherburne, John
Language of Item:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 43.85012 Longitude: -79.03288
Copyright Statement:
Protected by copyright: Uses other than research or private study require the permission of the rightsholder(s). Responsibility for obtaining permissions and for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Copyright Date:
Copyright Holder:
Ajax Public Library
Location of Original:
Ajax Public Library
Ajax Public Library
WWW address
Agency street/mail address

55 Harwood Avenue S.
Ajax, Ontario
L1S 2H8

Ajax Public Library 60th Anniversary Memory Boards - 1950's, October 2012
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Ajax Public Library 60th Anniversary Memory Boards - 1950's, October 2012

Colour photograph of the Ajax Public Library 60th Anniversary Memory Board 1950's