Accession GA198 - Muskoka Lakes Association fonds : 2006 accrual.

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Muskoka Lakes Association fonds : 2006 accrual.

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Physical description

ca. 3.1 m of textual records and other material. Includes 12 maps, 9 architectural drawings, 9 photographs, and 1 computer disk.

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Biographical history

The Muskoka Lakes Association was organized in 1894 by a group of summer cottagers, and since then has worked on behalf of permanent or part-time residents of Lakes Muskoka, Rosseau and Joseph. "The Association was established to unite all those interested in the lakes and their vicinities in order to protect and promote the interests of property owners, cottagers and tourists, preserve the safe, healthful and sanitary condition and scenic beauty of the lakes; and to encourage skill and prudence in aquatic sports ... Association members were instrumental in forming the Muskoka Lakes Golf and Country Club, which is the scene of the annual regattas and other Association-sponsored activities. The Association has had a major influence on the history of the lakes since the beginning of the century."
Issues of interest to the Association since its beginnings have always included both political and environmental concerns: roads and other transportation facilities serving the area, sanitation standards, well-marked waters, fishing, fire and police services, taxation, water and air quality, acid rain, boating safety, and any other factors contributing to the health, security and pleasure of those living in and around the lakes.

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Scope and content

Accrual consists of material documenting aspects of the administration and activities of the Muskoka Lakes Association and some of its committees, mainly during the period from 1978 to 2003. During this time, the primary political and environmental concerns of the association included land use and resort development, taxation, water quality, and relationships with municipal and provincial governments.

Accrual contains records created and accumulated by chairs of political, environmental, and land use committees and by several presidents, as well as records relating to office administration and other committees and activities of the association.

Includes correspondence and memoranda; reports; presentations; committee minutes and agendas; newspaper clippings; publications; handwritten and typed notes; notices and decisions of provincial judicial boards; official plans, by-laws and other municipal documents; maps and architectural drawings; ephemera; and other material.

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Donated in 2006.


The accrual is arranged in 11 series as follows:

1. President's Files : Phyllis Parker
2. President's Files : Michael Vaughan
3. President's Files : William F. Clark
4. Political Portfolio Chairperson's Files : Robert Topp
5. Environmental Portfolio Chairperson's Files : Peter W. Hand
6. Committee Files
7. Administration : Office Files
8. Publications
9. Newspaper Clippings
10. Reports and Theses
11. Centennial Celebration

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General note

Accrual and series level measurements are very approximate; measured when in banker's boxes before physical processing.

In the early 1970s there was a reorganization of local government. District Municipality of Muskoka became upper tier and Township of Muskoka Lakes (plus 5 other Township/Town governments) became lower tier of two-tier system of local government.
In the late 1970s, mega-projects and large resort developments began creating great concern for the association; the first was the proposed Rosneath development at Beaumaris and the MLA devoted considerable resources to fighting this development. The association was concerned with over-development, the environmental impact of such resorts, etc. The development was opposed at the OMB but developers kept fighting; MLA decided that increased political pressure was needed in the region and decided to get more involved in local government by endorsing candidates best representing interests of association members. This involvement began in the lead-up to the 1982 municipal elections. Also at this time, the MLA began attempts to foster a more consultative relationship with local governments. (See 1994 yearbook, former president's reflections.)

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Arranged and described, and finding aid created by Anita Streicher (2009-2010).

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