|Can you spot the Laura Secord shop in this picture? Click image for larger version. Streetcar track work at Queen, King, and Roncesvalles, April 23, 1923. Photo by Alfred Pearson. City of Toronto Archives, Series 71, Item 2058.|
|A Laura Secord shop hiding behind a pole at the southeast corner of Yonge and Bloor. Maybe it was feeling shy when this shot was snapped on September 9, 1926. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 200, Series 372, Subseries 3, Item 646.|
|The rules for the Laura Secord Historical Essay Contest. The Toronto Star, September 25, 1923.|
Not that I would have complained going with Mom had I won this contest - she is a great traveling companion. But I would have wanted Dad to come along, if he could swallow his dislike of flying or, at the older end of the scale, just be a teenager let loose in the Big Apple without adult supervision. Actually, this wouldn't have been a worry, since Mom and Dad would have let me go my own way...unlike kids I witnessed on school kids whose parents were reluctant to let them out of their sight.
|Advertisement, the Toronto Star, October 19, 1960.|
|Advertisement, the Globe and Mail, March 22, 1978.|
My usual Laura Secord treat as a kid? Suckers. The branch at Devonshire Mall in Windsor was on a corner, with made it a easy diversion to run straight through. Sometimes I was successful in getting my parents to shell out for a square sucker, a shape nobody else in the area seemed to make.
When I told Mom I was writing about the history of Laura Secord, she laughed. "Don't put this in the piece," she told me over the phone, "but it's not as good as it used to be." Perhaps landlords agree - over the past couple of weeks, I've noticed that the chain's Toronto locations are disappearing. A store search on Laura Secord's website reveals there are no shops downtown, the closest being at the Yonge-Eglinton Centre. In the neighbourhoods were the chain originally grew, it appears the candy chain is as much a piece of the past as its namesake.
Additional material from the June 23, 1981 edition of the Globe and Mail.