APRIL 1944

NO. 10

Published at the Hespeler, Ontario Plant of Dominion Woollens and Worsteds, Limited


Wilfred Lefty Johnson

A69332 L/Bdr. Wilfred
“Lefty” Johnson

48th Bty.—R.C.A. (A.F.)
M.P.O. 1108
Prince, George, B.C.

Lefty Johnson was born in Hespeler on May 18th, 1914, the son of Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Johnson. He received his education at the Public School in Espanola where he lived for a short time, and in the Hespeler Public and Continuation School.

On leaving school, Lefty’s first job was with the Hespeler Wood Specialties. Then, taking a fancy to the textile industry, he became a member of the D. W. & W. staff on January 25th, 1939. He commenced his employment here in the Cloth Examining and Shipping Department as a wrapper and trucker. He remained there for approximately three months and then was transferred to the Warping and Drawing-In Department as a floorman. After several months at this work he returned to the Examining and Shipping as cloth shipper.

Lefty was extremely fond of all sports, particularly baseball and hockey. He was an active member of the local teams for a number of years.

He entered the service on June 29th, 1942, and reported to London. He joined the Artillery, and was posted to Petawawa for training. After leaving Petawawa he was stationed in Vancouver, Terrace and Nanaimo, British Columbia, Wainwright, Alberta, and then returned to British Columbia and was stationed at Prince Rupert, Courtenay and Prince George where he is stationed at present, training as a cook.

Women’s Wartime Residence In Operation 

The new Women’s Wartime Residence, under construction for the past several months on a site just a stone’s throw up Cedar street from the plant entrance, was officially opened last week with an “at home” on Tuesday. The handsome two-story dwelling already has upwards of seventy girls in residence, and will eventually hold about 145 as more girls come to Hespeler to keep the production lines of the mill working full time.

It’s a good looking building. The construction is frame, faced with grey asbestos shingle and trimmed in cream. Built on a modified “E” plan, the impressive gothic entrance in the middle wing opens into a comfortable reception lobby. On the one side of the lobby are the administration offices, and on the other side are several “beau parlors” comfortably furnished with chesterfields and easy chairs and designed to give the girl residents at the house a pleasant spot to entertain their friends and families as they would in the privacy of their own homes.

The dining room, at the rear of the entrance lobby, is operated on cafeteria style under the supervision of the graduate dietitian, and its staff is trained to provide well-balanced, interesting meals. The dining room doubles as a recreation centre when the tables are pushed back and the pingpong equipment brought out. There’s a juke box for dancing, with the proceeds being turned over to the girls’ council for recreational purposes.

The second floor of the middle wing is given over largely to an exceedingly comfortable lounge. Walls are done in knotty pine, and the furniture is blonde maple with the many chesterfields in pasted colours. Facing the lounge across the corridor is a sheltered sundeck.

Each of the end wings are given over to bedrooms. Most of the rooms are doubles, but whether the girl shares her room or occupies it by herself she has her own bed, a blonde maple wardrobe, dressing table and comfortable armchair, and her own mirror. Soft colors are used with pleasing effects throughout the bedrooms, and they add a quiet, homey touch to each girl’s room.

The staff are all experienced in working with and for girls, and are under the direction of a superintendent house mother. She has two assistants, one of whom is a trained nurse, and every effort is being made to see that the girls are well looked after.

The grounds are in a rough state at the present, but plans are ready to proceed with landscaping just as soon as better weather breaks.

Wartime Residence

Wartime Residence

Wartime Housing’s Residence for Women War Workers now in operation.


Karl Cusack

A89015 Pte. Karl Cusack,

3rd Canadian Inf. Troops, W S
Canadian Army Overseas

Karl Cusack was born in Hespeler on July 23rd, 1905. He joined D. W. & W. staff on December 29th, 1930, and left the Top Manufacturing Office on September 12th, 1942, on entering the Army. He is with the Ordnance Corps and has been overseas since September 3rd, 1943.

Shirley Harlock

AW2. Shirley Harlock

No. 1 Wireless School,
Montreal, Que.

Shirley Harlock was born in Preston on July 23rd, 1924. She became a member of D. W. & W. staff on May 13th, 1942, and enlisted from the Worsted Cap Spinning Department on September 17th, 1943, with the R.C.A.F. She is taking a wireless course at No. 1 Wireless School in Montreal.

Howard Armstrong

Cpl. Howard Armstrong

No. 2 Can. Gen. Pioneer Corps
Canadian Army Overseas.

Howard Armstrong was born in Fisher Mills on August 23, 1916. He became a member of D. W. & W. staff on December 23rd, 1938, and left the the Cloth Weaving Department on February 17th, 1942, when he entered the Army. He has been overseas since June 23rd, 1942, and at the present time is a clerk in the orderly stores.


The Editor:

Well, I’ve finally managed to write this rather belated letter. Whatever the reason for the delay it is not due to a lack of interest in the D. W. & W. News, the mill, or good old Hespeler. I’ve received some of your copies of the D. W. & W. News over here and believe me it’s good to read about what’s going on back there. I’m just a little sorry that they didn’t have those dances for the mill girls while I was still there, but I console myself in the thought that all the fellows from Hespeler who are now over here doing their jobs, fell the same way. I think those dances are the best entertainment that could be given to the girls on night work.

As to what we do over here, we just keep at our jobs the same as we did back home. At first you feel a bit lost, the same as when I first walked into the Worsted Spinning room, but it doesn’t take long until we feel quite at home.

I wish to thank you for the D. W. & W. News and also for the cigarettes I received at Christmas along with the card. They were a little late but came in mighty handy.

I can’t tell you anything about actual operations for the simple reason that I have not yet finished all my training. However, I expect to know what it is all about by the time you receive this letter.

Thank you again for the news and cigs.

Sincerely yours,

R193145 Sgt. John Unger,
R.C.A.F. Overseas.

George Smith

George Smith operating yarn scouring train.



Aug. 25, 1943, Edna Hilton of Middleton, England, to Gnr. Earl Davis, who is now serving in Italy with the R.C.A.

June McComb to Harvey Woods. Reside in Hespeler.

Robin Lowe has enlisted with the Army and is stationed at Petawawa.

Mr. and Mrs. Wilkins received word that their son P/O Edgar Wilkins, who is serving overseas with the R.C.A.F. has been promoted to the rank of flying officer.

Best wishes to June McComb who became the bride of Harvey Woods on Saturday, March 25th. June was presented with a set of cornflower crystalware by the office staff.

Word has been received by Mr. and Mrs. J. J. Shaw of the promotion of their son, James, to the rank of flight lieutenant. Flt. Lieut. Shaw has been stationed with the R.C.A.F. on the west coast for some time.

Robert Pearce, 18-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Jack Pearce, died on Friday March 17th in Hamilton general hospital after a brief illness. He had been employed at D. W. & W. for the past two years. He was a member of the laboratory staff.

The Burling & Mending Department donated $10 toward the local project of supplying comforts to the crew of the corvette, H.M.C.S. “Hespeler.”


We are glad to welcome Lorna Westlake after her recent operation for appendicitis.

We join in welcoming Rufine Hahn of Ayton to Nelson House.

Marie Morton


Maybelle Adams of the R.C.A.F. (W.D.) at Rockcliffe, visited the girls at Gordon Hall.

The girls at Gordon Hall all enjoyed a very delicious St. Patrick’s dinner.

Evelyn Drury and Florence Palmer returned after spending a couple of weeks at their homes in Grand Valley.

The girls all enjoyed a very nice time at the dance Saturday night.

Talking about good times the girls are still enjoying the bowling Wednesday afternoons.

We welcome Norma Ritchie and Cecil Wilson of Lucknow, and Ethel Montgomery of Grand Valley to Gordon Hall this month.

Eileen Weber

Recreation Club News

Activities of the Club so far have been successful, but there are still quite a number of employees who have not joined the Club because they are not interested in the type of recreation so far offered.

If you have some form of activity you would like to see the Club participate in, see your representative so that the activity can be discussed at the next meeting of the Club. Let us be the judge as to its possibilities, don’t keep it to yourself. Or write a short note about it, address it to the Recreation Director and leave it in the Employment Office.

Night Hawks
Happy Gang
Black Hawks
Games Won
Points Won
Individual records have taken an upset—Marjorie Thompson now leads high singles with 230, topping Beth Walsh’s 229. In the high three Marjorie Thompson and Beth Walsh lead again with 544 and 543 respectively.

In the handicap division Orma Hickling still leads high single at 249, and Marjorie Mick still holds down high three with handicap, at 585.

Home From Overseas

Bdr. George Oliver who has been stationed overseas with an artillery unit for two years and eight months, is spending a short furlough with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. George Oliver. Bdr. Oliver went to England two years ago last July and was married over there September 18/43. Oliver was returned to Canada to undergo an ear operation before returning to his duties overseas.

Incidentally, George is making good use of his furlough. He is helping out in the Woollen Card room for a couple of weeks.

A Smile for Daddy

 Sharon O'Krafka

Sharon Ann, daughter of Sgt. And Mrs. Harry O’Krafka.

Scouts and Cubs

Scouts and Cubs

Hespeler points with pride to her up-and-coming young men – The Boy Scouts and Cubs with their leaders.


Well, this is Victory Loan and Income Tax month—some headache. Perhaps those of you who have additional income tax to pay, have by this time gotten over the shock. It is rather disappointing after being under the impression that 95% of your tax has already been paid. Somebody has to pay for the fun. Thank goodness we have until August 31st to make the extra payment.

The Victory Loan? Well, as an investment it can’t be beaten, and there is no doubt the objective will be met. By the time this drive really gets rolling you will, no doubt, be told of many more reasons why you should put the kitchen stove in hock to buy more bonds.

We still need more blood donors. Ask Miss Baker for an enrolement card.

What about the safety record? We were well on the way to creating a good record. We had operated 60 days without a lost time accident, but that, apparently, was too good to last. There is no use making the excuse of green help. The last three accident victims have been experienced workers. Check your job. Are you being a little careless? Are all the guards O.K. Do you think the rest of your staff is working safely? Talk it over with your foreman or overseer. Let us get this safey record back where it should be.

The regional War Labour Board has made some adjustments to the female day workers’ rates. The Union and the Company made a joint application for the survey some time ago, but the wheels of a Government Board turn very slowly. At least they turned and that’s what counts.

President, W.W.U.


The Editor:

Just a line to thank you for the paper which I have been receiving regularly since I entered the Army and for the cigarettes which really are appreciated.

I suppose you are having a real winter over there now. I for one really miss the snow as you don’t see any over here.

I guess the mill is the same as ever, except for a number of new faces, but even then it would be the same. Say hello to all the old gang in the Weaving and Winding departments where I used to work and tell them to keep up the good work. I figure we’ll all be back soon and Hespeler will be a pleasant sight for all the chaps over here.

Well I guess I’ll sign off now, so thanks again for everything and all the best for ’44.

A105242 Gnr. Leslie McIntosh,
No. 2 C.A.R.U., C.A. Overseas.


Army……………………. 116
Air force ………….……. 74
Navy………..……………. 14

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  1. Harry O'Krafka

    I can vouch from my own experience and from those around me that your gift of smokes has brought many a happy moment and smoking pleasure to us all. While I am in the mood for handing out bouquets, which is seldom for a sergeant, I wish to congratulate the many gorgeous girls who take time out to pose for the boys. Being a married man with a family, of course they hold little interest for me, ha! ha! But I have a few single sergeants with me who have already made plans to visit our fair town.

    A67857 Sgt. O’Krafka H. R.,
    “D” Coy., H.L.I. of C.,
    Canadian Army Overseas.

  2. John Reid

    I had the greatest experience of my life while on my last leave. I was on my way home from a picture show. The sirens started to wail and I took cover in a pub. After about 15 minutes’ wait there had been no enemy action so I continued on my way to the Knights of Columbus Hostel at which I was staying when the incendiary bombs started to fall. On reaching my destination I stood with a few others in the doorway and watched the raid. When, in the morning, we were out looking around to see what damage had been done, I found to my great surprise that the pub I had been in had been hit and burned out.


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