The History of Angus, Ontario
By Hugh Hardy
After lumbering had finally disappeared, many of the tracts were turned into farm lands. A great many of these, however, were too poor for good farming so that farm houses were often few and far between. The village from this time on became a hamlet in the midst of a farming community.
The next period, and one which will be touched on briefly, has to do with war years. When war broke out in 1914, the Government was faced with the task of training large bodies of men. The country was searched for suitable camp sites. The sand plains of Simcoe County were selected for Ontario, due to their central location, accessibility, good water supply and the sandy nature of the soil, which is very essential for good and rapid drainage. During war years, the village was a busy place. Its population grew, and it was more like a mushroom mining town of the north than anything else. The streets lined with quickly built stores, refreshment booths, temporary hotels and amusement places of all kinds. The village even had its own theatre. This influx of population of course brought much business to the place, but when the war was over, it dropped away as fast as it had come. It is doubtful in the minds of many whether the war days brought any lasting good to the village. It was some years before all the remaining hot dog stands and refreshment booths were done away with. Even today, more than 1 0 years after, some of the old signs are discernable.
From the close of the war to the present is not a long span, but during that time and especially within the last year or two, events have transpired which indicate that Angus is on the way to become an attractive and prosperous village. One of the factors which has influenced the town to a certain extent in recent years is the activities of the Ontario Forestry Branch. In 1920, the writer first went to Angus and secured help from the people in gathering tree seed, In that year an old camp building was used for storage purposes, known as guardhouse No, 1. This stood one third of a mile south of the village. In 1923, the Forestry Branch purchased property of its own and commenced the present group of buildings, This plant is the Ontario Government's only seed extracting plant and is one of the best equipped on the continent. Through it, employment is given to several men, and as time goes on, this plant together with the enlarging plantations on Camp Borden, should give work to many more.