— A Sci-Fi movie club situated in St. Thomas, Ontario, circa 1981/1982 run by Brad Haiste, a reporter for the St. Thomas Times-Journal, who also functioned as faned for the club’s zine of the same name. The club held meetings in a used-bookstore owned by Ron Kowalski on Saturday nights after closing.
Desmond Emery, a former member, writes: “The group was mainly teens and high school seniors, and a few older guys. It lasted that fall (1981), over the winter, then folded in the spring…Brad Haiste was the one whose energy kept the club afloat. Brad went to a great deal of trouble to set up the bookstore where the club met to get seating for all and to work on the proper distance from the projector to the screen, not to speak of the movies involved. One of the first movies shown was that Canadian masterpiece of ironic humour. ‘Bambi Meets Godzilla’. Brad rented that and other shorts to complement the regular screenings of movies we held to go along with the conversation and general discussion.”
“I remember showing up at the bookstore with many of the teen members, who looked longingly at the promos for the movie ‘Star Wars’ [ finally showing at the Capital Theatre opposite the bookstore, years after its initial release ] and, once critical mass was achieved, deserted en masse and roared across the street to the real theatre. And for the life of me I can’t recall what movie we had on schedule that night.”
THE CREATIVE COSTUMER’S GUILD
— “A Canadian-based organization run by and for costuming fans” organized in the fall of 1983. “The main organizers are Yvonne Penney and Barb Schofield (who appeared on CANADA AM this Halloween to display some Worldcon award-winning Toronto costumes). The Guild is planning a quarterly newsletter, a referral service, and information centre and an apa. The basic aim is to help others in costuming.” Based in Toronto.
Only 2 issues of the Guild’s newsletter A BOLT OUT OF THE BLUE were published, the last in 1984. The Guild defunct by Oct 1985. But at least for a while it did well. Lloyd Penney wrote in MAPLE LEAF RAG #4 (Mar 1984): “the Creative Costumer’s Guide is not a dinky club, but an organization to link costuming fans in a cooperative effort. Guess what? It’s working. The Guild trades information, connects fans with each other to trade tips, information, skills, etc.”
Lloyd continued: “Costuming may have been laughed at in the 50’s, perhaps, but this IS the 80’s, and we must change with the times. Isn’t that what SF is all about? Why are we, readers of a very liberal literature, so conservative and traditional?” Ah, an age-old conundrum. Even today, costumers face a certain amount of prejudice on the part of elitist-minded SF fans.”
Yvonne Penney, as part of her fanac with the CCG, started up YRP Productions “to produce costumes for other fen on order.”
[ See A BOLT OUT OF THE BLUE ]
— Members of the Toronto Sf Society circa 1947 – 1959 “Old Derelicts”, then members of the Ontario SF CLUB 1966 – 1984 “New Derelicts”. For details:
[ See TORONTO DERELICTS ]
DESERONTO SF SOCIETY
— Deseronto is a small town on the road between Napanee & Picton, located just across the Bay of Quinte from the Tyendinaga Indian reservation. That’s right, you’ve got it! We’re talking East end of the North shore of Lake Ontario. Here, sometime in the fall of 1948, the Deseronto SF society was formed, an event no doubt inspired by the earlier creation of the just-down-the-road Picton SF Society in June 1948, or at least by the presence of Jack Bowie-Reed, whom Harry Warner Jr. credits organizing the DSFS.
Like the PSFS, the DSFS joined the Canadian Science Fiction Association right away, but unlike the PSFS (which lasted at least as long as the CSFA lasted), the Deseronto SF Society was the first of the constituent clubs of CSFA to collapse, in late 1949. So the Deseronto club existed for only about a year, whereas the Picton club survived for at least 5 years. Both are small Ontario towns. I wonder why the different fates? (JBR)
One Deseronto fan listed in the 1952 CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY may possibly have been a member of the Deseronto SF Society. His name: Wm J. Holden.
[ See CANADIAN SCIENCE FICTION ASSOCIATION & PICTON SF SOCIETY ]
DRACO FILM SOCIETY
— Founded in 1974 by Elizabeth Pearse of Mississauga. Unlike Toronto’s OSFiC, which was fanzine orientated, the Draco Film Society was a general interest SF club devoted to “SF, fantasy, wargaming, Dorsai Irregular philosophy (at least one member, Phil Stevens, at one point Chair of Draco, also belonged to that American club), Dungeons & Dragons, rocketry, scale model building, stamp collecting & filksinging” but with particular emphasis on horror films and Star Trek. Not surprisingly, it actively recruited teenagers. Also unlike OSFiC, which tended to be laid back and anything but organized, the Draco Film Society was a tight ship where dissent and apathy were not tolerated.
Members even wore uniforms (at least when attending conventions) which Taral commented made them look like Toronto Transit Drivers. Draco’s club persona was deemed by some OSFiC members as quasi-military and not to their liking. In general, Taral summed them up as “…part of that part of fandom in the Midwest that fraternizes with Dorsai Irregulars, habitually votes Foglio for Hugo awards, and thinks that SF fans and Trekkies are all fans together.”
Although the two clubs did not compete, or even interact, with each other — Taral wrote “Draco has never materially affected the mainstream of Toronto fandom” — members of Draco, Pearse most of all, often participated in Conventions, especially the art shows. They played a major part in Canada’s first Star Trek convention, in July of 1976, TORONTO STAR TREK ’76, which lost $27,000. Later, in October 1976 Draco lost $6,000 with a convention of their own, ALPHA DRACONIS. Taral wrote: “Elizabeth, not directly at fault in either disaster, must be admired for personally undertaking the debts incurred by Draco.” At least four more cons were put on by Draco: BETA DRACONIS in 1979 (?), GAMMA DRACONIS in 1980 (?), DELTA DRACONIS in 1981, and EPSILON DRACONIS in 1982.
According to Garth Spencer: “Draco was eventually succeeded by another group, DRAGONSTAR.” (GS) (TW)
[ See DRACO NEWSLETTER ]
THE FOLLOWERS OF RASSILON
— Essentially a Dr. Who club based in Welland, Ontario circa 1987-1989 & perhaps longer. Their club magazine was titled OMEGA. Former member Martin Hadamek writes: “While the core of the club was Dr. Who, members also enjoyed STAR TREK, and various British Sci-Fi shows such as RED DWARF and BLACK ADDER. We also attended Sci-Fi conventions and did volunteer work at the PBS station in Buffalo, N.Y.”
“I have good memories of the club and the two years I was a member of ‘THE FOLLOWERS OF RASSILON’ ( 1987-1989 ). The name of the club was voted on by the members and picked out of about ten other possible names. ( The name picked was one of my suggestions actually. ) Club founder and President was Darte Miller.”
The following story by Martin really captures the flavour of youthful fannish enthusiasm:
“Meetings were held in Welland, Ontario, on the third Sunday of each month. I attended along with my best friend Steve Mackie, usually with the assistance of one of our fathers, who would drive us there from St. Catherines, Ontario. One time however, we were unable to get a ride. So, we took the Saturday bus from St. Catherines to Welland and stayed up all night ’till Sunday morning. We tried sleeping in a park but were unable to sleep. It was a long but fun next day. In 1989 I started working and was unable to attend further meetings. That marked the end of my childhood I think….”
[ See OMEGA ]
GUELPH SCIENCE/FANTASY GUILD
— An Ontario club active circa 1979 & early 1980s. Their first clubzine was called NIGHTWINDS and subtitled VOICE OF THE GUILD. Lasted at least 3 issues. Their next clubzine, or at least a zine associated with the club, was called THE ALIEN PARCHMENTS and included a brief history of the club in issue #5/6. (LP)
LAKEHEAD SF SOCIETY
— The first SF club to be organized in Hamilton, Ontario, founded in 1947. Perhaps the 4th SF club to be created in Canada (only the Ontario Science Fictioneers, the Montreal SF Society, & the Toronto SF Society predate it, as far as I am aware).
The LSFS was one of the founding trio of clubs affiliating to form the Canadian Science Fiction Association in 1948. Members of LSFS formed the first executive of the CSFA, including Paul Revey as CSFA President, according to Jack Bowie-Reed.
[ Note: Harry Warner Jr. describes “James Templar as President & Paul Rebey (Revey?) as Secretary-Treasurer,” but this is one of his rare inaccuracies. ]
The LSFS “issued several circular letters and established correspondence with outlying fans so as to bring about the formation of additional clubs” such as the Picton SF Society which formed in June 1948, or the two correspondence clubs (National Fantasy Fan Federation & the Fantastellar Association) founded during the CSFA meeting at Torcon I in July of 1948.
1949 saw the LSFS putting out a newsletter on behalf of the CSFA. With a membership expanding to near 50, things seemed to be going well. But then Paul Revey resigned as CSFA President, & was replaced by LSFS member Clare Richards. Several founding members of LSFS, probably the most active, moved away. Membership dropped, activity declined. A project to publish indexes of SF literature was put on hold.
By early 1950 the LSFS had stopped pubbing the CSFA newsletter. Then the club folded. However, Clare Richards & a few others carried on representing CSFA until the Winnipeg SF Society was able to replace them in early 1951. (JBR) & (HWJ)
The CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY published by the Canadian SF Association in 1952 lists a few contemporary Hamilton fans. Some or all may possibly have been members of the LAKEHEAD SF SOCIETY. They are:
David Beasley, W.H. Braden, Stan Bryant, Leon J. Buta, Greg Cranston, John W. Farlam, James A. Gull, Arthur Hays, R.E. Kilgour, Jack Leith, Andrew McDonald, Bert Murdock, Art Payton, Jack Perrow, Paul D. Revey, J.C. Richards, Bertha M. Tait, James Templar, William H. Webb, & Evan Wilms.
[ See CANADIAN SF ASSOCIATION ]
— NESFAS stands for NEWTONBROOK SCIENCE FICTION ASSOCIATION which was a high school SF club at Newtonbrook Secondary in Willowdale in/nearToronto. The club flourished circa 1977, and was apparently inspired by a different high school SF club called NASFA (NORTHVIEW SCIENCE FICTION ADDICTS) at Northview Heights secondary school. Take into consideration that Mike Glicksohn taught at a high school while producing ENERGUMEN, and that Robert J. Sawyer joined OSFiC fresh out of high school, and that other members originally belonged to similar school clubs, and one begins to suspect there was a plethora of such high school clubs in the Toronto area in the mid-to-late 1970s. A passing fad? One wonders how long they lasted.
At any rate, NESFA can be taken as a representative example, and it’s members were nothing if not ambitious: “This club is primarily interested in writing and selling SF but does also welcome members who are interested in just discussing and reading SF also. We are also looking for people who know anything at all about ASTRONOMY… $3.00 for a charter membership. This membership entitles you to receive all club publications and gives you a discount on your ticket to their convention which they will be running (hopefully) at the end of the academic year. They also hope to produce a paperback edition, to be sold in stores, of their member’s best SF writings…”
One NESFA publication which did get published was their newsletter ECLIPSE.
[See ECLIPSE ]
— Certain Members (but by no means all) of the Ontario SF Club which formed in 1966 and lasted till 1984. As Taral explains:
“New Derelicts — more like 1972 to 1984, interpreting the term in its broadest sense of a certain group associated with OSFiC. The name was thunk up by Patrick (now Nielsen) Hayden, which is odd since he was only recently from Phoenix AZ in 1975 or 76. But he was a student of fan history before I knew much about it, and insisted we all call ourselves the Derelicts after the original bunch in the 40’s/50’s. I recall not being very keen about it, since nobody among us but Patrick knew much about the originals. By the late 70’s though, I was reconciled to the name, but tended to use “New Derelicts” to hedge my bets.”
“Exactly when the ND faded out of the picture, I’m not sure. The group had mostly been in Patrick’s and Phil Paine’s minds, and they had pretty much given it up around 1977 or 78, when Patrick left Toronto. Victoria and I were left carrying the banner into the 80’s, but I’m not sure whether it represented anyone other than the two of us when we began DNQ. Others covered by the banner in the mid 70’s had never been all that conscious of being a “group,” and had their own ideas of the boundaries of the social circle they moved in, that in some cases didn’t especially include Victoria and me. Jim Allen, who was a very central figure in Toronto zine fandom in that period, flatly refused to call himself a Derelict! The explosion of fanzine activity in Toronto in the late 70’s was mainly a Derelict thing, but not identical with it.”
“Not knowing for sure who to call a Derelict, and many of them not calling themselves that, it becomes hard to say when the name died. The final issue of DNQ would certainly have been the last gasp. Since that last issue was pretty much all my show, I’d go further and say that Derelictdom had perished with the previous, regular, issues in 1982 or 83.”
“Among fans I thought were core Derelicts (in no particular order), were:”
Myself, Victoria Vayne, Phil Paine, Patrick Hayden, Bob Webber, (aka WebBob or FakeBob) Bob Wilson (Robert Charles Wilson to be exact, aka Uriah Cuthbert Poon or PoonBob), Bill Brummer (now Steven Black)
“Less central to the group, but would be included in some people’s lists:”
Steve Muhlberger, Celeste Erendrea, Dorothy Grasette, Karen Pearstein, Michael T. Smith, Jim Allen, Jennifer Bankier, Jo-Anne McBride, Anne Sherlock, Robert (Bob) S. Hadji (Now Robert S. Knowlton), Grant Schuyler, Alan Rosenthal, Catherine Crockett.
“Other active fans in Toronto in the late 70’s could not be called Derelicts at all. We knew them, but they were not a part of group, often coming from the Draco/Draconis organization out in the west end.”
Mike Wallis, Mike Harper, David Warren, Peter McGarvey (aka “the Bheer Fairy”).
“At some point it was just a matter of a new generation of OSFiC members, who hadn’t been around in the Derelicts heyday:”
Keith Soltys, Lloyd Penny, Bee Stuckless (the last OSFiC newsletter editor), Robert J. Sawyer, Carolyn Clink.
“I have to sum up by saying that doubtless I’ve forgotten some names…”
[ See OSFIC, TORONTO DERELICTS, TORONTO INSURGENTS, TORONTO SF SOCIETY ]
— Members of the Toronto SF Society 1947 – 1959. For details:
[ See TORONTO DERELICTS ]
ONTARIO SCIENCE FICTIONEERS
— Possibly the first organized sf fan club in Canada. I suspect it was based in Toronto. Don’t know when it formed, but it disbanded in 1941 when its President, Ted White, entered the armed forces. (HWJ)
— The Ontario Science Fiction Club, founded circa 1966/67 and centered on Toronto, Ontario. Lasted at least 17 years. A newsletter produced in various incarnations throughout this period. The club now defunct.
Early members of OSFiC included club founders Mike Glicksohn & Peter Gill, plus Ken Smookler, John Mansfield, George Henderson, Derek Carter, Gar Stevens, John Douglas, Gordon van Toen, Rosemary Ullyot, Angus Taylor, Alicia Austin, Paul Doherty, Dave Price, Vaughn Fraser, and even Don Hutchinson ( an ‘Old Derelict’ from Toronto SF Society days ).
According to Taral: “OSFiC was founded in 1967 by a small number of fans who had met at the Worldcon the previous year. They organized themselves under the hopeful banner of the Ontario Science Fiction Club and, with “Capt.” George Henderson’s assistance, launched FanFair I and II. On the basis of those successes, they bid on the 1973 Worldcon. Toronto fandom also established a reputation for fanzines in those years. While not a club zine, Mike Glicksohn & Susan Wood’s Energumen was unmistakably a showcase for club talent. Torcon II was an enormously poplar Worldcon, but unfortunately burned out the first generation of the club. Energumen went on to win a Hugo the same year, and folded.”
“Then was the first of many changes of hands. The revitalized OSFiC continued a tradition of fostering talent. There were many more cons run by the club – some successes, some failures. While the club maintained a monthly flow of highly readable and attractive newsletters, many of the members pubbed noteworthy zines on their own, such as Simulacrum, Orca, DNQ, Carefully Sedated, and Thangorodrim,. Inevitably there was a third wave, and a fourth… OSFiC’s fortunes rose and fell with each wave, but inevitably the club began to lose its vitality. The newsletter changed names with every new editor, and sometimes more often. Schedules were missed, the material became wildly uneven, and editorial goals varied radically. Eventually, it was felt that there was no viable younger generation to hand the reins over to, and whether or not to disband the club became the object of the next official election. When the ballots were all counted, it turned out that the members had voted for a slate promising to refund membership fees, and close up shop. What had been, up to that time, the longest lived fan club in Canada came to an end.”
Describing the end of the Ontario SF Club, Garth Spencer reported in MAPLE LEAF RAG #10 (Dec 1984): “Bee Stuckless, former Secretary of OSFIC, has sent around a circular announcing the dissolution of OSFIC. The decrease in membership, attendance, meeting quality and interest in executive positions, as well as the rise in the cost of LUNA AND…., have forced this move. A caretaker committee (Bob Hadji, DoMing Lum, and Taral) are returning outstanding membership fees.”
[ See (in order of publication) OSFIC MAGAZINE, OSFIC SUPPLEMENT, OSFIComm, OSFIC QUARTERLY, NOR, OSFIC EVENTUALLY, SYNAPSE, NIT WIT, MIMEOGRAPHED LONDON SUNDAE THYMES, THE TORONTO STELLAGRAM, LAST WHOLE OSFiC LONDON SUNDAE THYMES, INPUT/OUTPUT, ISHUE, OSFIC NEWSLETTER FOR THIS MONTH, OSFIC MONTHLY, GOOGLE, OSFiC UNCONSTITUTIONAL NEWSLETTER, ANOTHER UNOFFICIAL OSFiC NEWSLETTER, UNNAMED OSFiC NEWSLETTER, DAZZELATIONS, A VERY SHORT OSFiC NEWSLETTER, CHRONIC, OSFiC ELECTION BULLETIN, GATEWAY, ALL AGOG, LUNA & BEYOND, LUNA AND…, DEAR OSFiC MEMBERS ]
[ See also NEW DERELICTS, TORONTO DERELICTS, TORONTO INSURGENTS, TORONTO SF SOCIETY ]
OTTAWA SF SOCIETY
— The first organization with this name formed in late 1948 and promptly affiliated with the Canadian Science Fiction Association (of fan clubs). “The President was Lew Holland, with Ron Anger as Secretary, & Jack Bowie-Reed as as Liaison Officer.” – (HWJ)
Alas, the OSFS “quietly declined to nothing early in 1951.” (JBR)
Since both Ron Anger & Lew Holland are listed in the CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY published by the Canadian SF Association in Fall of 1952, it is possible the other Ottawa fans listed may have been members of the OSFS. They are: Ronald J. Albert, Stuart Brown, Margaret Byagate, A.M.W. Carter, Henry Eastwood, David W. English, Stuart Fenton, Kenneth Stanley Freedy, Moe Gencher, H.C. Green, A.S. Jones, Dr. Lloyd McDermot, Don McLeod, Barbara C. Molins, J.A. Obarue, Joe V. Pelisek, & Dr. S.D. Simpson (who worked in the Dept. of Defense Research Chemical Labs).
— The second organization by this name was founded in 1977 by Marc “Star-Wolf” Gerin-LaJoie who was President for the first two years, Vice President in 81, President again in 82, and frequent clubzine editor.
“The original membership of OSFS expanded explosively to roughly 150 in the first year. But it went down due to scholastic and job-move attrition to the 80-100 level after a couple of years, and pretty much stayed there since.” – writes MGL in the March 1984 issue of THE MAPLE LEAF RAG.
“Back in 1978 I decided the club needed a ‘direction’. After our first year (quite successful), it was getting time to try our hand at a con. A 150 member club needs something to tie it together from year to year, and to draw new blood.” (Thus MAPLECON was born in 1978.)
“See, we drew attention to ourselves, and other people grew interested. The next year, the local comics club joined in, and it became a joint venture.”
Next, Marc describes the effect of MAPLECON on the club, which I include as a precautionary tale, especially since it seems applicable to VCON/BCSFA today, and perhaps other club/con relationships:
“In a sense, Maplecon was partially responsible for OSFS never quite getting back up to the old level of membership. Now, the con overshadows lesser efforts such as OSFS monthly meetings, and the latter don’t get the same coverage as they once did. Also, people who might once have spent their sparse shekels on club memberships.. now wait to spend it on Maplecon. Maplecon also drains away enthusiastic help and promoters and supporters whose efforts could help maintain OSFS in the public eye.”
[ See The Ottawa Science Fiction Statement (OSF Statement — club newsletter) ]
GO TO: OSFS STATEMENT
PICTON SF SOCIETY
— Picton is a small town at the head of an inlet connecting the Bay of Quinte with Prince Edward Bay, and as we all know this concerns the North shore of Lake Ontario about halfway between Trenton (with its famous air force base)& Kingston (with its famous Fort Henry). Picton is not so famous, but nevertheless witnessed the founding of the 5th SF club ever to be created in Canada (predated only by the Ontario Science Fictioneers, the Montreal SF Society, the Toronto SF Society, & the Lakehead SF Society in Hamilton, as far as I’m aware).
The Picton SFS was founded in June of 1948 (Jack Bowie-Reed is given credit for accomplishing this), about a month before Torcon 1, and having affiliated with the Canadian SF Association, sent representatives to take part in the first Canada-wide meeting of the CSFA at Torcon. Now I’m guessing that the number of members in the PSFS was relatively low compared to some of the big city clubs, but after the CSFA fell from a height of 11 constituent clubs to a mere 3 viable clubs in 1951, the Picton SFS was one of them. So the club must have had something going for it, like active, enthusiastic members mayhaps. The PSFS was still a member of the CSFA in 1953. I wonder if the PSFS survived the demise of the CSFA in 1954 & continued on into the late 1950s? At any rate, existed for at least 5 years. (JBR)
Contemporary Picton fans listed in the CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY who may have belonged to the Picton SF Society include: Robert L. Clapp, Don Dodds, Robert L. Gibson, William S. Juniper Jr., Bill Skitterall, John Walton & Paul Walton.
[ See CANADIAN SCIENCE FICTION ASSOCIATION ]
— Stands for PENULTIMATE SCIENCE FICTION CLUB of Peterborough, Ontario. Flourished circa 1978. As club member (founder?) Barry Meikle reports in OSFiC’s ISHUE #7:
“We’ve got an official club in Peterborough… We think we have a membership of about ten, but it’s hard to tell, because we never get the same people at a meeting twice in a row…. I don’t know how solid a club we are yet. There hasn’t been time yet for any fannish social functions, and everyone is being very stiff and formal, but I hope to rectify that situation. I figure if we can survive the name, we can survive anything. And we’re underselling you (OSFiC), our major competitor, by $3.50.” This implies a membership fee of $2.50 a year as opposed to the $6.00 OSFiC membership.
About the name… We’d been tossing names around, trying to find something that wasn’t too formal or pretentious. You know: The Kawartha Regional Science Fiction & Fantasy Appreciation Society. And we couldn’t use the obvious Peterborough SF Club, because Jim Allan pointed out how PSFiC sounds… Finally we gave up, and wallowed in pretentiousness. The PENULTIMATE SF CLUB. (It still says PissFic though.)”
“It’s really fascinating the way everyone in Peterborough denies ‘being’ a fan. They’re all avid readers, but, heaven forbid, not fans. Really! Whose been spreading these nasty rumours about fandom? ‘Fans got leprosy’, ‘fans is second cousin to trekkies’, ‘fans is a bunch of mental and moral deficients’, and then there’s the real killer: ‘fans are juveniles’. Aaarrggggh! Anyway, I think there’s hope – they all read my fanzines when they’re over.”
To the above, Taral (editor of ISHUE) replied: “Personally, I like PSFiC as a name, but then I invented SOpSF, so what do I know? But you are right to call yourselves the PENULTIMATE SF CLUB. There’s only room in Ontario for one ultimate club, and that’s why we charge the other $3.50. I’m mystified that Jim didn’t like PSFiC; he liked Prunecon…”
[ See THE DEVIL’S ADVOCATE, PENULTIMATE TRUTH, PRUNECON ]
THAMES SF SOCIETY
— Founded in London, Ontario, in 1948. Immediately affiliated with the Canadian SF Association. But in the course of 1949 the CSFA itself became moribund as the Hamilton club, which provided the CSFA executive, declined in membership and activity. Shortly after the Hamilton club ceased to exist in 1950, the Thames club became extinct as well. Though the CSFA rebounded in 1951 with a new executive based in Winnipeg, the Thames club did not revive.
A few London fans are listed in the CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY published by the CSFA in 1952. These may possibly have been members of the Thames SF Society. They are: Sam McCoy, M.G. Miller, & B.C. Stonehill.
[ See CANADIAN SF ASSOCIATION ]
— When the Toronto SF Society was founded in 1947 its members soon took to calling themselves ‘The Derelicts’ after the title of a fan essay by prominent American fan Robert Lowndes. I’m guessing the essay described a new type of emerging fan, one that may have been either praised or condemned, and that the Toronto fans decided the description applied to them. They also called themselves ‘The Toronto Derelicts’. This group burned out after the Torcon 1 and slowly faded away until the Toronto SF Society was revived by an influx of new members in 1953, whereupon many of the original Derelicts became active again.
The core group of original Derelicts 1947-1951 included Joseph ‘Beak’ Taylor, Edward ‘Ned’ McKeown,, Jack Doherty, Don Hutchinson, and John Millard.
The ‘fresh blood’ newcomers who swarmed into the Toronto SF Society in 1953, a new wave of Derelicts as it were, included Gerald A. Steward, William D. Grant, P. Howard Lyons, Ron Kidder, Pat Patterson and Boyd Raeburn, among others. They were noted for “behaving in a lighthearted and irreverent manner”, particularly the subset of ‘Derelicts’ who came to be known as the ‘Toronto Insurgents’. (HWJ) (JRC) (GS)
[ See OSFiC, NEW DERELICTS, TORONTO INSURGENTS, TORONTO SF SOCIETY ]
— According to Harry Warner Jr., a small group of Toronto SF Society members — in effect a subset of the Derelicts — in the 1950s “epitomized by Gerald Steward, Boyd Raeburn, and Ron Kidder…. liked to dress in motorcycle caps, red shirts, black strides, and mustard-yellow jackets (although Steward, to dramatize the fact that he was the most insurgent of them all, wore orthodox garb to dramatize the extremity of his differentness). They were dedicated to fandom for fandom’s sake, to jazz, and to sports cars.” (HWJ)
[ See OSFiC, NEW DERELICTS, TORONTO DERELICTS, TORONTO SF SOCIETY ]
TORONTO SF SOCIETY
— A loose-knit SF club founded in 1947 by Don Hutchinson and John Millard, partly as a social, SF discussion society, but mostly in order to organize and sponsor a bid for TORCON 1, and then the Worldcon itself. Included members like Beak Taylor & Ned McKeown (both of CANADIAN FANDOM fame). Possibly the 3rd SF club to be created in Canada (predated only by the Ontario Science Fictioneers and the Montreal SF Society, as far as I’m aware).
Affiliated with the Canadian SF Association in 1948. Became moribund circa 1951, then came an infusion of fresh blood. By the early fifties ” a new set of active members had bobbed up, like William (Bill) D. Grant, Ron Kidder, P. Howard Lyons, Gerald Steward, and Pat Patterson.”
All of the above (with the exception of Pat Patterson) are listed in the 1952 CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY published by the Canadian SF Association. Other Toronto fans listed may also have been members of the Toronto SF Society. They are:
Pat Abbot, John W. Anstee, Charles L. Avery, Albert A. Betts, Tom Birmingham, Michael Bishop, Anthony Boldt, Kenneth Boulanger, Sandra Brown, Eric Byars, Donald Cameron, Ronald Carr, Don Chandlar, L. Chapman, Alfred Charles Cole, Phillip Collins, Michael Cook, Bill Darker, Jack Doherty, Abion E. Doxse, Fred Drucker, Peter S. Favro, T.J. Ferris, Kenneth R. Frost, D. Gilchrist, F.A. Giles, S.C. Goldsmith, William Greatrex, Douglas Guscott, Harold Hallett, Tom R. Hanley, Fred J. Heal, Clare Howes, Don Hutchison, Paul Julkunen, Monty Katz, J. Lever, Jean Low, G.E. MacKenzie, John H. Mason, Tom McGillian, Joesephine Medhurst, John L. Millard, Ronald Monkman, Morton A. Montgomery, Bart Mulliver, Evelyn Pannell, Fred Rannharter, M.J. Redman, Bruce Robertson, Wallace H. Rockett, Stanley Ross, Howard W. Russell, Douglas Rutherford, Alex Saunders, Robert M. Schultz, A. Sheppard, Lewis Sivanson, Jack Sloan, Philip F. Smith, Howard Somers, Bruce D. Spoule, David Stone, Frank Sullivan, A.C. Uttley, Harold P. Wakefield, Miss Sydney Waugh, Ted White & James T. Williams.
Some members began referring to themselves as ‘The Toronto Derelicts’ and this name was quickly associated with the club as a whole, so that the two titles became synonymous in the minds of fans everywhere.
Harry Warner Jr. wrote: “The dog days that Canadian fandom was in during the 1950s are best illustrated by the fact that even the Derelicts didn’t flourish as a club as long as might be imagined from their fame and energy and from the continuing appearance of memoirs and reprints involving members. In 1954 the club’s monthly meetings were lasting all night, during which the principal activities were listening to music, watching old movies, and talking. Within two years, meetings among club members were a rarity, and the bull sessions of the past had been transformed for the most part into long telephone conversations between this and that Derelict.”
The long, slow death of the club began in 1956 and finally rattled its ending circa 1959.
After the OSFiC ( the Ontario SF Club ) was founded in 1966, some of its members took to referring to themselves as the ‘New Derelicts’ beginning about 1972, and termed the former members of the Toronto SF Society the ‘Old Derelicts’. (HWJ) & (JBR)
[ See OSFiC, NEW DERELICTS, TORONTO DERELICTS, TORONTO INSURGENTS ]
WINDSOR SF SOCIETY
— Founded in 1949. Immediately affiliated with the Canadian SF Association at a time when the CSFA itself was slowly becoming moribund as the Hamilton club, which provided the CSFA executive, declined in membership and activity. Shortly after the Hamilton club ceased to exist in 1950, followed by the Halifax & Thames clubs as well. The Windsor SF Society found a unique method of survival, it “coalesced with the Michigan Science Fantasy Society” which was undoubtedly based in Detroit just across the river, (Bizarre factoid: Did you know Detroit is NORTH of Windsor?) (JBR)
Though the CSFA rebounded in 1951 with a new executive based in Winnipeg, I do not know if the former Windsor club members retained their CSFA memberships despite having joined the Michigan group. In any event, the CANADIAN FAN DIRECTORY published by the CSFA in 1952 lists a few fans who were probably still active in the contemporary Windsor SF Society and may have been members back when it was still affiliated with the CSFA. They are:
R.A. Bindner, George Chan, Mrs Richard Dimock, H.S. Evzovitch, Ronald Green, J. Hranka, Mark Johnston, Jack Kopstein, W. Mennie, C. Stewart Metchette (who lived in Detroit, but must have joined the WSFS to be counted by CSFA as a Canadian fan, or perhaps he was a Canadian who had moved to Detroit), E.G. Smith, & Kenneth M. Smockler.
[ See CANADIAN SF ASSOCIATION ]