Forsyth Street, Marmora, in 1910, before the existence of Highway #7
1937 IN PRAISE OF THE 120 YEAR OLD ELM
"The big elm tree on the corner of Forsythe and Matthew streets, that has been a village landmark for so many years, is being cut down by the Ontario Department of Highways, Quite a number of citizens have been opposed to cutting down the tree, but after a lot at consideration and consulting a large number of residents, the Council gave their consent in the interests of safety. It was on the street about twelve feet from the sidewalk at the busiest corner in the village and with the ever increasing traffic, it was a source of danger at times and might have caused a serious accident."
So wrote the Marmora Herald in Oct 28, 1937, and over the next week they printed the following essays.
THE OLD ELM by Margaret Airhart
Last Tuesday, November 2, there succumbed to the axe and saw a venerable old landmark of Marmora - the Old Elm Tree. At first the Old Elm grew in a ditch. Then, as the road widened, the ditch was filled and several feet of the huge trunk were buried. Only a few years ago the tree suffered the severing of some of its roots to give way for the highway. If the tree had been able to speak, it could have told of the wonderful changes and improvements that have taken place during . its lifetime. If it had had eyes, it would have seen old wooden buildings pulled down, and brick or stone replace them. It would have known the impression created among the people when water power and electricity were first introduced into Marmora. In its earlyyouth nothing but stars lighted the streets which in its later life were illuminatedby electricity. If it had had ears, it would have heard the "toot" of the first train which came into Marmora, and the roar of the first plane which passed over. The Old Elm has lived through the years from the time when a dirt road wound past it, travelled in summer by wagons with wheels made from wood like itself and in winter by jumpers (a type of sleigh) to the present when a car horn honks at the intersection of two highways; from the time when the casual caller or a foreign paper was the only link with the outside world to the generation of the telephone, radio and village newspaper. The tree was once surrounded by lilacs and considered an excellent spot for hide-and-go-seek. It was an ornament to the village and will be missed for its shade' and beauty. It leaves to mourn its loss the residents of Marmora Village and vicinity. Internment took place at McEIwain's where the remains will be cremated. The pall- bearers were some workmen clad in overalls and smocks.
THE OLD ELM by Jack Gray
The Elm met an untimely death on the morning of November the third at the hands of several malevolent conspirators who have, for some time been plotting its downfall. The deceased has been a prominent landmark in Marmora since the village's beginning. It is regrettable that one that has been such an asset to our community should be removed from our presence so unwillingly as was demonstrated by the great death struggle It put up.
The Elm has held its position of prominence as far back as any of the residents can remember. The lot next to the Elm was formerly the site of Mr. Daniel Bowen's house, and the adjoining lot was occupied by Mrs. Devolin's house. In the days when Mr. Thomas Warren had a wagon-shop where the post office now stands, the Elm was a large flourishing tree. It served as a hitching-post, and the rings which marked its usefulness are there now, but completely grown over and covered with bark.
As the history of Marmora has unfolded for the past century the Elm has kept a silent vigil, witnessing the deeds of the people. We are sorry to see such a one meet an undeserved fate. We may say, however, that the executioners were justified in removing the' deceased which was, although unwittingly, an obstruction to progress.
The corpse of the Elm is now lying in state awaiting its inevitable cremation.