Christmas Eve, 1923
To His Worship
Gentlemen of the Council and
Citizens of Simcoe and Norfolk County
If you will allow me, I will consider it a privilege was well as an
honor to donate the five acre field in the Town of Simcoe at the head of
Robinson street, and north of West street, as a site for a hospital.
I have been saving
this site for such a purpose for many years and will have the deed
prepared upon hearing from you that it is agreeable and also to whom you
wish the deed made out.
If this appeals to
you, might I be permitted to suggest the advisability of your taking
steps to bring into existence a strong and representative organization
of citizens whose special would be to work towards the objective of
establishing and maintaining a suitable hospital in the county town of
As to the need of
such an institution it is scarcely necessary to speak. It being pretty
generally conceded that we need a hospital and about the only real
reason why we have not got it is from a sheer lack of the necessary
funds to erect and properly endow such an undertaking.
However, with a
good strong hospital board in existence to consolidate and encourage
efforts along the right line no doubt we would soon find ourselves
much nearer the desired goal than otherwise.
As far as this
offer of a site is concerned, there are no strings on it other that that
I should like to have the privilege of use the property as at present in
the meantime until such time as it would be actually required for a
hospital building purposes, and also to remove any barns, fences, feeds,
etc. not useful for the purpose.
Wishing you a Merry
Christmas and a Happy New Year.
W. L. Innes
This article, transcribed from the 17 Jan 1924 Simcoe
Reformer, page 1, began with the following editorial comment:
"The following letter is addressed not only to the town council but
to the citizens of the town and county and will be read with interest by
everyone. The site donated is the most suitable possible for a hospital.
Electric light, water mains and sidewalks run to the property, and
sewers are but 150 feet away. And a hospital there, looking down
Robinson street, will have a beautiful setting."
Norfolk General Hospital was subsequently built on
this site. It opened in 1925, has been expanded several times since, and
is Norfolk County's primary health care centre to this day.
L. Innes inherited the donated land from his father, W.
P. Innes, who purchased it from John
Strathlynn (where this letter was written) was the John Jackson /
W. P. Innes / W. L.
Innes family home at the top (west end) of Union Street in Simcoe. The
house still stands and appears in our online video