Simpson Court

Mayor Simpson and Simpson Dry Cleaners

Mayor elect David Simpson and family beam as election victory is announced

One of seven streets named by the city council in 1966, in honour of former municipal officials, Simpson Court was named for A. David Simpson, the mayor of Stratford in 1951-52. The other six streets in Mornington Heights, named at the same time, were Dixon Road, Dorland Drive, Graff Avenue, Kemp Crescent, Mayberry Place and Riehl Court.

Alfred David Simpson was born in 1910, in Pittsburgh, Pa., a son of Alfred O. Simpson of Logan Township, and Elizabeth Moorehead. Shortly after David was born, the family moved to Stratford. A. O. Simpson was a painter with the Grand Trunk and Canadian National railways.

David Simpson attended Shakespeare and Avon elementary schools and then graduated from Stratford Collegiate Institute. After working in local factories for several years, he apprenticed as a plumber and steam-fitter in the CNR's Stratford motive power shops. With an interest in softball, he played on the Merchants' A championship team in 1939. About 1934, he left the shops and learned the dry cleaning trade. Eventually, he became proprietor of Jarmain's (Stratford) Ltd. at 83 Downie St. He changed the name to Simpson Dry Cleaners.

He entered municipal politics with an unsuccessful run for city council in 1944. But he won in 1945 and held the seat through 1950. In 1951 and 1952 he was the city's mayor, and a player in Tom Patterson's efforts to start a Shakespearean festival in Stratford. By Stanford Dingman, photo by Lloyd Dark, Beacon Herald

Mayor Simpson and Alan R. Moore were in Winnipeg in 1951 representing the Stratford Public Utilities Commission at the American Waterworks Association meetings. Tom Patterson was there as an associate editor of Maclean's magazine to report on the meetings. During their time together, Patterson talked of his dream of a Shakespearean Festival and found a receptive audience. That Winnipeg conversation was important for Patterson gaining financial and moral support for his dream from the city council.

David Simpson had just been re-elected district president of the Ontario Municipal Electrical Association when he died on Sept. 9, 1965, at age 55. Source: Streets of Stratford, 2004

SCVI 1951 Yearbook Ad: Bob Meldrum FB