Chronology of events relative to Ragnarokr
A U.S. destroyer is allegedly attacked off the coast of North Vietnam by Vietnamese patrol boats. U.S. aircraft attack North Vietnam bases in reprisal and the U.S. Congress gives the President authority to escalate U.S. involvement in the civil war between the National Liberation Front of Vietnam and the Government of South Vietnam.
Lyndon B. Johnson is elected President of the United States.
The US Air Forces begins to bomb North Vietnam.
Civil right leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. leads 4,000 demonstrators in an attempt to march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.
U.S. students demonstrate in Washington, D.C. against the bombing of North Vietnam.
Race riots destroy much of the Watts district of Los Angeles, California.
International Days of Protest against U.S. policy in Vietnam.
Hanoi City attacked by U.S. bombers.
50,000 persons demonstrate against the Vietnam War at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Martin Luther King leads a large anti-Vietnam War march in New York City.
Philip Mullins is a student at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. The previous year he had joined a new-left student group on campus called the Young Liberals. He applies to his draft board, Local Board 49 in Pensacola, Florida, for status as a Conscientious Objector to war.
Israel and its Arab neighbors fight the Six-Day War.
While working a summer job in New York City, Philip reports to the Whitehall Induction Center in Manhattan for an Army physical. Despite his best efforts to fail, he passes the physical.
Philip Mullins returns to Florida State University for his last year of university. He refuses to apply for a student deferment from Selective Service Local Board 49 in Pensacola, Florida, for the upcoming school year and begins the Tallahassee Anti-Draft Union.
Philip returns his draft cards to his draft board on October 16 along with hundreds of other students across the US as part of a nebulous anti-draft movement called the Resistance.
Che Guevara is killed by the Bolivian army.
Local Board 49 in Pensacola sends Philip a Notice of Delinquency for failure to have draft cards.
Philip receives new draft cards from Local Board 49 and is unexpectedly graduated from Florida State.
Local Board 49 in Pensacola immediately gives him the classification of 1-A Delinquent.
Manual for Draft-Age Immigrants to Canada”, written by Mark Satin, is published by the Toronto Anti-Draft Program (TADP) and distributed by mail to many student anti-war groups in the US.
Don Holman, Chuck Wall, Greg Sperry, Janice Spellerberg and Lisa Steele share Don Holman and Chuck Wall’s Studio in Westport, Kansas City, Mo.
Philip Mullins has returned to New York City and is staying with Marty Bunyan when he receives his first Notice of Induction into the US Army. Marty Bunyan is a recent graduate of FSU and a member of the Young Liberals student group. Jean Staples arrives from Pensacola, Florida, for a visit and stays for a month. She is a member of a group professing to use LSD as a sacrament.
Bruce and Colleen Anderson are living in the mountains near Santa Cruz, California and become involved in the anti-war movement at San Jose State. They begin to worry about alternative to Bruce’s imminent induction into the US Army.
Mary Rauton in Atlanta, Georgia is a participant in a Catholic group called the Community of Christ Our Brother. She is married and has five children. The parish meets in various locations, engaging in civil rights and charitable work on Saturdays and celebrating Mass together on Sundays. Her husband is supportive of her involvement in Civil Rights demonstrations and the reforms in the Catholic Church begun by Vatican II.
Steve Blossom of Massachusetts comes by Mary Rauton’s house in Atlanta looking for his girlfriend and he and Mary become friends.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte are art students at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.
Tom Bonanno is a student at Dade Junior College in Miami, Florida. A Hialeah policeman punches him in the mouth for having long hair.
The National Liberation Front of South Vietnam (NLFSV) launches the Tet Offensive and drives the Americans and their allies out of the South Vietnamese countryside, bottling them up in the towns.
Philip Mullins is hired by the Southern Student Organizing Committee to work in the state of Tennessee. However he is temporarily assigned to the state of Florida while Nik Levin goes to Cuba to cut sugarcane with the SDS contingent of the Venceremos International Brigade. During a demonstration against Dow Chemical Company recruiters on the campus of the University of Florida, Philip and a dozen others are arrested for trespass. They are sentenced to three days in jail on February 13. In the meantime his induction has been transferred to Nashville, Tennessee, for February 12. He writes to his Local Board for instructions and is told that it is his responsibility to stay in one place long enough to be drafted.
Bruce Anderson passes his pre-induction physical despite haven taken methadone to dramatically speed up his heartbeat. The doctors do not really check the thousands of men at the Oakland US Army Induction Center. Bruce also demands a mental examination because of a family history of schizophrenia but is denied. After searching for two days, he finds a hidden office at San Francisco State College where counselors give him a copy of TADP’s Manual for Draft-Age Immigrants to Canada and details of Canadian Immigration procedures.
Steve Blossom, still searching for his girlfriend, is arrested and goes to jail in Florida for sleeping on the beach. The Community of Christ Our Brother in Atlanta bails him out.
Philip Mullins receives the TADP Handbook in the mail and reads it while in the city jail in Gainesville, Florida. He and his cellmate, Steven Jones, both decide to immigrate to Canada. After a brief visit to his parents in Pensacola, Florida, Philip borrows $200 from his younger brother and leaves by train for Canada. He arrives in Toronto by bus and is directed by the TADP to the 127 John Street Hostel where 23 draft dodgers already live. George Mullins’ father offers to pay George’s passage to Canada as well so he can escape the draft but George remains in the US living from one student deferment to the next.
Seven draft dodgers, all of them affiliated with the Southern Student Organizing Committee of Nashville, Tennessee, volunteer to help Naomi Wall find employment opportunities for the American exiles. The group, which includes Steven Jones, Jessie Dean, Bob Dewart, Ross Ashley and Philip Mullins, is nicknamed the Southern Contingent by the TADP staff. Naomi Wall is the person charged by the TADP with finding work for the incoming draft dodgers.
A group of American draft dodgers meets almost weekly to organize a self-help group. They are known variously as the Housing and Job Information Committees of the TADP, the Draft Resisters Employment Service, the Social Committee, as a chapter of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) In Exile and as the Union of New Canadians. These groups become the nucleus of the Union of American Exiles.
Mary Rauton’s home in Atlanta becomes a gathering place for troubled priests, nuns and lay Catholics. Steve Blossom moves into the house and sets up a leather shop in the basement.
Bruce and Colleen Anderson leave California and spend six weeks traveling to Toronto by car. The Toronto Anti-Draft Program counsels an average of ten Americans daily, including a weekly average of 35 deserters from the US military. Between 1967 and 1975 an average of 24,000 Americans a year immigrate to Canada. During the 1950s and early 1960s the annual average number of US immigrants to Canada had been 11,000. In 1983 the number of US immigrants to Canada had declined to 9,500.
There are 510,000 U.S. troops in South Vietnam. US President Lyndon Johnson realizes that the war can not be won. He announces that he does not intend to run for a second term as President.
At the end of the month, Philip Mullins is driven to Sarnia, Ontario, by some friends of the TADP and becomes a Landed Immigrant along with another draft dodger.
The Spring Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam organizes a large anti-war demonstration in Toronto.
The Union of New Canadians changes its name to the Union of American Exiles. The group meets weekly at the Newman Centre at the University of Toronto.
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King is assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. In Miami, Tom Bonanno joins a march to mourn Dr. King’s death.
Following the assassination there is rioting in Kansas City. The National Guard in tanks enforces a curfew there. Greg Sperry immigrates to Toronto and stays at the John Street Hostel.
Bruce and Colleen pass through Detroit late in the afternoon and find tanks in the streets and a 6 p.m. curfew. “We crossed the bridge to Canada but we were turned back because we had no proof of our dog’s rabies shot. We were nearly out of gas, it was almost 6 p.m. and all the gas stations were boarded up. Soldiers in helmets were everywhere and people were shouting at us to get off the streets. We finally got on the freeway and out to the suburbs where we got gas and dinner. The next day we got our dog another rabies shot from a veterinarian who didn’t charge us. He guessed why we wanted to get into Canada and was sympathetic. That day we were allowed to cross the bridge into Canada.” Counselors at the TADP office direct them to the John Street Hostel.
Mary Rauton is working at a day care center in Atlanta for black children. Her son, Randy, drops out of high school and becomes a hippie, hanging around a commune in downtown Atlanta. The Bishop of Atlanta orders that the floating parish to which Mary belongs be disbanded. Sometime later the Community of Christ Our Brother is threatened with excommunication by the Bishop and it dissolves.
Jim and Pat Wilson, from New York City and North Carolina, and Dave Woodward from Virginia and Winnepeg, arrive in Toronto. They move into the TADP hostel at 127 John Street along with Greg Sperry, Bruce and Colleen Anderson and others.
Jean Staples arrives in Toronto from Pensacola, Florida, and she and Philip Mullins move to Naomi Wall’s house at One Admiral Road. Philip continues to canvass the job market for professional jobs. He applies for teaching jobs throughout Canada while learning how to sell encyclopedias in the suburbs of Toronto.
A federal election is called in Canada. Philip canvasses for the New Democratic Party (NDP) and Colleen finds employment working on the lists of eligible voters. “The newspaper kept me on afterwards as a permanent employee, making me the only American I knew with a job. I bought a lot of groceries.”
The Liberal Party wins the elections and Pierre Elliot Trudeau becomes Canada’s Prime Minister for the first time. His personal popularity among young people is described as “Trudeaumania”. In Atlanta, Mary’s husband suddenly and without cause becomes jealous of her parish priest, Conald Faust. He asks for a divorce and orders Mary to leave the house. Mary’s mother examines Mary’s eyes and arms for evidence of drug use. Her husband evicts Steve Blossom from the house and Randy is forcibly removed from the hippie commune where he had been living.
Tom Bonanno spends the summer welding Chevrolet automobiles at a General Motors plant in New York State. He spends a great deal of time on the Boston Commons smoking dope and listening to anti-war speeches.
Formal peace talks begin between the U.S. and other warring factions in Vietnam.
Chuck Wall and Lisa Steele leave Kansas City and become landed immigrants in Canada. Later in the summer Don Holman and Barbara Bondurant join them. Together with Colleen and Bruce Anderson, Greg Sperry and Janice Spellerberg, they rent a house on St. Paul Street in the Cabbagetown area of Toronto.
Senator Robert Kennedy is assassinated in California while campaigning for US President. Tom Bonanno attends the funeral in Washington, D.C.
Jean Staples returns to Pensacola, Florida, to give birth to her child and to arrange for his adoption.
Philip Mullins finds employment with the design firm of J & J Brooks on Yorkville Avenue in Toronto as a driver and warehouseman. He shares an apartment on Brunswick Avenue with Ross Ashley and other exiles from the South. George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte visit for a few days before moving to New York City from Tallahassee, Florida.
The number of southerners in Toronto continues to grow and a chapter-in-exile of the Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC) is formed. The FBI begins monthly visits to the home of Philip’s parents in Pensacola looking for him. The FBI agents tell his mother that SSOC is an affiliate of the Communist Party USA.
Mary Rauton and her husband attempt reconciliation in Atlanta. The two of them and Randy Jr. go to family counseling together. Mary and Randy Jr. learn to make sandals from Steve Blossom.
Bruce and Colleen move to a room at the Beverly Street Steambaths at Beverly and Dundas because of overcrowding at the house on St. Paul Street. Bruce searches daily for employment and begins to do leatherwork on a custom order basis for friends in Yorkville. His parents write of their shock and anger at his leaving the US. He begins to show symptoms of schizophrenia.
The parents of Philip Mullins, along with their youngest son Jeff, travel from Pensacola, Florida, to spend a week visiting Philip. They camp out at Bass Lake Provincial Park near Barrie, Ontario.
The Kansas City people, consisting of Chuck Wall, Lisa Steele, Don Holman, Greg Sperry and Janice Spellerberg, move to a cheaper apartment on King Street near Parliament Street. At the end of the month Chuck Wall, Lisa Steele and their cat, Rosie, move to Vancouver, B.C. They hope to find work, buy land and build their own home in the country there. Unfortunately they find that jobs are almost non-existent there and they barely survive.
George Mullins graduates from Florida State University and he and Madelyn Averitte move to Staten Island, New York
Philip Mullins is accepted by the Peace Corps and is sent an airplane ticket to California for training. He calls to accept the invitation and to explain that the FBI has a warrant for his arrest. He asks for a training location outside of the US. In September the Peace Corps responds by withdrawing the invitation.
Philip’s parent return to Pensacola full of enthusiasm for Canada.
Dave Woodward, Bruce and Colleen Anderson, Philip Mullins and Jim and Pat Wilson lease a house at 224 McCaul Street.
The Yellow Ford Truck craft store opens for business in the living room of 224 McCaul Street.
The Union of American Exiles (UAE) organizes a demonstration in front of the US Consulate on University Avenue in Toronto.
Sunday picnics and softball games at High Park sponsored by the TADP and the Union of American Exiles continue to attract sizeable groups of Americans.
Janice works at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) and Lisa Steele finds work at the Toronto Telegram newspaper. Greg and Chuck wash windows in suburbia. Greg works briefly at the Rochdale construction site at Huron and Bloor Streets but quits because of unsafe working conditions.
Randy Rauton moves to live with his science teacher near Stone Mountain, Georgia, to escape the hostilities at home. On Labor Day, Mary Rauton’s husband gives her an airplane ticket to New York City and seventy dollars and orders her to go away for a few days. She leaves in the middle of the night so as not to upset the children.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte are living on St. Marks Place in New York City with Marty Bunyan, a friend from Florida State University.
Steve and Mark Burdick immigrate to Toronto from Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.
The house at 224 McCaul is furnished largely from a shed in the back yard that was full of old furniture. A flurry of refinishing and painting involves all the tenants. A US Marine deserter named Herb Lane makes everyone laugh when he paints his room a very military shade of green. He calls it a relaxing color.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte find a house on Staten Island to rent for only $35 per month.
Mary Rauton stays in New York City for two weeks. While there she visits some “house churches”, the Catholic Worker farm and the War Resisters League. At the War Resisters League office on Bleeker Street she learns about the draft dodgers in Canada. Mary Rauton arrives in Toronto by bus to visit Brenda Matthias, a ballet student at the National Ballet. Mary wants to talk to draft dodgers and is referred by a chance acquaintance to 224 McCaul Street where she meets the residents.
Margaret Thurlow visits from Kansas City.
Janice Spellerberg leaves for California for a visit of two months.
A City of Toronto Inspector informs Jimmy Wilson that 224 McCaul Street is zoned residential and that the Yellow Ford Truck store will have be closed. Jim, Pat, Dave Woodward and Philip Mullins rent the storefront at 11 Baldwin Street and move the store there. Known as the old Kensington market, Baldwin Street had been a center of the large Toronto Jewish community but in 1968 was in decline. Many of the storefronts were vacant and other had been turned into living rooms. Rent was cheap. As the Jewish population of Baldwin Street declined Hong Kong Chinese moved in and the population became of mix of hippies and Chinese by 1975. By then it was known as the Baldwin Street Village as opposed to the more famous Yorkville Village a few miles to the north. The Yellow Ford Truck was the first of many hippie and counterculture businesses to open on the street.
The Union of American Exiles organizes a counseling service for new arrivals and begins a series of meetings at Newman Hall at 89 St. George Street.
Rochdale College opens its new high-rise residence at Bloor and Huron Streets. It is intended as a residence for students attending the University of Toronto but quickly attracts a large number of hippies and radicals.
Colleen finds out that she is pregnant. Bruce’s condition worsens. Late one night he flattens the roof of his VW sedan with a sledgehammer in the garage behind 224 McCaul Street. He begins to see a psychiatrist at the mental health hospital at 999 Queen Street West.
Mary Rauton returns to Atlanta briefly. She and her son Randy leave for Toronto on what is supposed to be a two or three month trip. She and her son Randy move into the dining room at 224 McCaul Street after the Yellow Ford Truck store moves to Baldwin Street. She borrows show-money from Philip and she and Randy immigrate at Buffalo. Mary finds a job as a secretary with the Toronto Separate School Board.
Improvements at 224 McCaul Street include a new exterior door to the kitchen that frees the summer kitchen for use as another bedroom. The house is always very full with new exiles staying briefly. The cooking and shopping is done entirely by the women residents who are just beginning to discuss Women’s Liberation and the sharing of responsibility with the men. The evening meal is eaten together every night around a large dining room table.
Tom Bonanno enrolls in Western New England College in Springfield, Massachusetts, a conservative business school. He and a friend start a chapter of the Students for a Democratic Society at the school.
Dave Woodward is arrested in front of the US Consulate during the UAE sponsored International Days of Protest against the War. He spends the night in jail and everyone is worried that he will be deported to the US.
Herb Lane immigrates to Israel. Herb, a US Marine deserter and demolitions expert, had been living at 224 McCaul Street with the Yellow Ford Truck tribe. He immigrated to Israel with $50 in his pocket and an airplane ticket financed by a US Jewish immigrant aid organization.
The Union of American Exiles continues to meet at the Newman Hall at UT every other Sunday.
Philip purchases silkscreen supplies and he and Mary Rauton begin making burlap shopping bags with the Yellow Ford Truck logo. These are sold through the Yellow Ford Truck co-operative store on Baldwin Street.
The residents of 224 McCaul Street and many of their friends crash three different Halloween parties during a night of insanity and weirdness.
George Mullins, living on Staten Island near New York City, begins casting lead medallions of his own design.
Bruce Anderson’s mental condition worsens. He and Colleen leave the house at 224 McCaul Street and move to an apartment on Bathurst Street hoping that the privacy and calm will help him. He begins to fast for three weeks and lives on strong coffee and Hershey’s chocolate. This makes him even worse, nervous and moody. Mary Rauton’s husband arrives at 224 McCaul from Atlanta, Georgia, along with divorce papers. Mary signs the papers on the understanding that this is only a technicality and that the divorce will not be finalized. Randy Rauton enrolls at Jarvis Collegiate at his father’s insistence but quits after one day. Steve Blossom flies up from Boston searching for Mary and sees Randy walking down the street while Steve is in a cab on the way from the airport. Mary finds a room on Henry Street while Randy and Steve Blossom continue to live at 224 McCaul.
The Student Council approves Tom Bonanno’s three person SDS chapter after a three-hour debate. Nevertheless, the Dean of Students vetoes it. Two weeks later the Student Council reaffirms its decision and the chapter is approved as a campus organization.
The Union of American Exiles has 44 draft dodgers and deserters living in its hostels. It is trying to organize the exiles for political action and self-help.
Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins both contribute $25 a month to help buy store stock for the Yellow Ford Truck.
Janice Spellerberg returns from California and finds a job at the University of Toronto.
The 12 residents of 224 McCaul Street include Philip Mullins, Randy Rauton, Jim and Pat Wilson, Steve Blossom, Dave Woodward, Don Holman, Margaret Thurlow, Greg Sperry, Janice Spellerberg and Chuck Wall. There are usually several people staying there temporarily as well. Randy Rauton finds a job shelving books in the public library at Gerrard and Parliament Streets. He and Steve Blossom begin selling leather goods at the Yellow Ford Truck.
Colleen Anderson and Mary Rauton move together to a small third-story room on Henry Street but eat every night with the household at 224 McCaul Street. Bruce checks himself into the mental hospital at 999 Queen Street but leaves and wanders the streets without a home.
A dance hall called the Rock Pile opens at the Masonic Hall on Yonge Street near Davenport. Paul Butterfield, Frank Zappa, Credence Clearwater Revival and Canned Heat play in Toronto that summer.
Tom Bonanno’s delaying tactics with his draft board come to an end and he is ordered to take a physical. He had delayed his draft physical by shuffling his address between Miami and New York City and then by hiring a lawyer to keep a speeding ticket pending as long as possible. He takes speed for two and a half days prior to the physical and passes out when the blood sample is taken but still passes the Army physical exam.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte visit Philip Mullins in Ontario.
George Mullins hires a sympathetic psychologist in New York to write a diagnostic letter guaranteed to get him a 4-F classification at his draft physical in Birmingham, Alabama.
Richard M. Nixon, promising to end the Vietnam War, is elected U.S. President.
Don Holman leases the house at 418 Dundas Street and the Kansas City People along with Dave Woodward and Myra Kaplan from Philadelphia, Pa. move into the house. Greg Sperry and Janice Spellerberg are married there on Christmas Day. The wedding guests sing Happy Birthday to Chinese Communist Party Chairman Mao. This upsets the Unitarian minister and he quickly leaves. An all day feast and party follows with the entertainment provided by the guests themselves. The Yellow Ford Truck tribe brings a dark candle in the form of a cross as their wedding present. Colleen and Mary share a room in 224 McCaul Street. Other residents of 224 McCaul Street at this time include Philip, Randy, Steve Blossom, Jim and Pat Wilson and innumerable guests. Philip makes more structural improvements on the house include flooring the attic and wiring it for lighting to make another room.
The Union of American Exiles housing service locates housing for 55 new arrivals.
Word filters to Steven Bush in Atlanta, Georgia, that the Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau smokes dope and that Canada is a fairly good place to go in case the Selective Service gets heavy.
Bruce goes back to California by train. His parents have him committed to Agnew State Mental Hospital where he is given a series of 43 shock treatments and eight months of Thorazine therapy.
The Yellow Ford Truck liberation tribal commune includes two leather craftsmen, three dressmakers, a cape maker and two sand-cast candle makers. Philip makes silk-screened tote bags with the store logo and large flags with the symbol of the British nuclear disarmament movement. This symbol is now called the peace symbol.
The Union of American Exiles finds accommodation for 88 new exiles.
After a snowfall dumps three feet of snow on Toronto, the residents of 224 McCaul Street spend most of a Saturday shoveling snow from the lane behind the house so they can drive to Scarborough Bluffs to see the lakeshore.
Steve Spring writes from Gulf Breeze, Florida, with questions about immigration to Canada.
George Mullins of New York City begins selling his lead medallions through the Yellow Ford Truck.
Steve Blossom and Randy Rauton build a small leather workshop in the basement of 224 McCaul Street and sell their goods in the Yellow Ford Truck.
Steven Bush of Atlanta, Georgia, attends US President Richard Nixon’s Anti-Coronation festivities in Washington, D.C., and gets confused and depressed by the”proto-fascist” behavior on the part of some of the demonstrators. He decides to come to Canada and sort things out will avoiding a bit of heat from the Selective Service System.
Frank Tettemer, a US Army deserter from Pennsylvania, arrives and crashes in the living room at 224 McCaul Street. The residents there are actively searching for an additional house to relieve the chronic overcrowding in the house.
Tom Bonanno’s Students for a Democratic Society chapter in Springfield, Massachusetts, rents a storefront to do draft counseling. He attends a regional SDS conference at SUNY Albany and invites a guerilla theater troupe from New York City to perform at Western New England College. He attends the presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C. and is impressed by the US Army’s display of force.
Mary Rauton and Colleen Anderson, along with Frank Tettemer and Steve Blossom, rent the house at 218 McCaul Street. Steven Bush soon joins them. “In early February, I (Steve Bush) arrived in Toronto on a bright, chilly afternoon. Mary Rauton and others welcomed me most graciously at 218 McCaul Street. In late February, I was invited to stay, rather than simply crash. I accepted enthusiastically and Frank Tettemer generously set to work putting up walls to make an actual room in the basement of the house.”
The Union of American Exiles becomes involved in the United Farm Worker’s Union Delano Grape Boycott. It is assigned to picket the Dominion Food Store at 750 College Street every Saturday.
An extensive media campaign by Canadian anti-draft groups exposes discrimination by Canadian Immigration officials against American military deserters. The US government propaganda tells the American people that all deserters and draft dodgers are routinely returned to the US by Canadian authorities.
Jerry Ruben, a New York anti-war activist and self-appointed leader with Abbie Hoffman of the Yuppie Party, attempts to enter Canada but is denied entry at the border. His wife arrives instead and denounces the draft dodgers.
The Toronto Anti-Draft Program has eight staff people. Four are Americans including Naomi Wall. They earn $50 a week. It is the largest of the 26 anti-draft groups in Canada.
Jim Wilson wrecks his Yellow Ford Econoline van on Highway 401 near Montreal. He destroys a $300 lamppost and the Yellow Ford Truck at the same time. The van’s namesake store has three names: the Yellow Ford Truck, a socioeconomic alternative (SEA) and a Liberation Tribal Store. Janice Spellerberg sews clothing for sale at the Truck and Steve Blossom and Randy Rauton work full-time in the basement of 224 McCaul making leather goods for sell there. Philip Mullins shares his job at Pax Designs with Lee Welch while Philip learns how to do leather work from Randy. The Yellow Ford Truck commune looks for a second storefront on Baldwin Street.
Janice Spellerberg, Lisa Steele, Margaret Thurlow, Patty Wilson and Mary Burdick all model part-time at the Ontario College of Art (OCA). Don Holman is teaching part-time at the Humber College of Applied Arts and Technology.
Janice Spellerberg and Greg Sperry separate and she and Margaret Thurlow move to 64 Beverly Street with Dave Zimmerman. Dave Zimmerman is an exile from New Jersey.
A landowner from Killaloe in Renfrew County, Ontario, meets with about twenty people at 224 McCaul Street to discuss the hippie back-to-the-land movement. He offers his property as a temporary place to stay and describes the many abandoned farms available for purchase near Killaloe.
In Springfield, Massachusetts, the combined SDS/MDS chapters begin researching the power structure of the city. The SDS chapter begins showing films from Newsreel in New York City. Tom Bonanno first notices that he is being followed and photographed.
Chuck Wall and Lisa Steele rent a warehouse in the alley behind 33 Baldwin Street for an art studio and community center. It is christened “The Slum Goddess.”
Steven Bush finds work playing the role of Abe Lincoln in the Toronto Workshop Productions version of Mr. Bones, a neo-minstrel show. Toronto Workshop Productions already employs Jack Boschulte and Mel Dixon, both American ex-patriots. Other theaters in Toronto, notably Studio Lab, also help American exiles by helping them to secure Landed Immigrant Status.
Steve Spring of Gulf Breeze, Florida arrives in Toronto and is invited to live at 218 McCaul Street. Colleen quits her job at the newspaper where she has worked for ten months. Her baby is due in three weeks.
In Springfield, Massachusetts, the SDS, the Movement for a Democratic Society and Black Student’s Coalition are planning an anti-war rally for April. The Guerilla Theater Troupe electrifies the student body and members of the town’s Unitarian Church donate money to purchase a printing press. Tom Bonanno is elected to a Student-Faculty Committee and invitations to chat with the Dean of Students become more frequent. The door to the group’s storefront draft counseling center is smashed.
Abraham Blank officiates at a Passover Seder at 218 McCaul Street using a radical Hagadah from the Ramparts Magazine. Twenty-one people are present for the dinner, seated around a low table in the living room. Roast lamb is served with 12 bottles of wine. Colleen cooks and washes dishes. The dishes, silverware and crystal are borrowed from Pat Wilson.
Seth Anderson is born at Mt. Sinai Hospital in Toronto on April 7. Colleen’s friends bring strange gifts to the hospital room and this upsets the nurses.
On April 15 the Yellow Ford Truck moves to a new storefront at 25 Baldwin and a leather shop is opened at the old location at 11 Baldwin Street. The leather shop is named the Ragnarokr Cordwainery, a Liberation Tribal Store. Randy Rauton and Steve Blossom work full time at the leather shop. The Yellow Ford Truck contributes half a months rent, Colleen Anderson gives $50 and Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins keep their day jobs to finance the shop. Philip and Mary announce that they are in love. Lee Welch, who used to be a gold miner, loans Ragnarokr four hundred dollars before leaving for an extended visit to Europe.
The Yellow Ford Truck advertises itself as a Liberation Tribal Store and the South Village’s Only Dream Merchants. About one half of its stock for sale is consignment goods from neighborhood craftspeople.
The remaining Jewish businesses on Baldwin Street include Jack Handler’s used burlap bags at 9 Baldwin; Rab Korolnik’s used bottles at 35 Baldwin; Mr. Grossman’s used wholesale clothing at 41 Baldwin; Mr. Kirsch’s used wholesale clothing at 22 Baldwin and Mr. Grossman’s used barrels at 47 Baldwin.
The Downchild Blues Band is formed at 418 Dundas Street with Chuck Wall and later David Woodward playing piano and saxophone.
Chuck Wall and Lisa Steele live at the Slum Goddess. On a Sunday Colleen’s baby Seth is christened in a ceremony presided over by Chuck Wall. The participants wear costumes and process down the alley with the celebrants carrying dandelions. Those in attendance include Philip Mullins, Dave Woodward, Greg Sperry, Lisa Steele and Chuck Wall.
Greg Sperry and Chuck Wall are still washing windows in the suburbs of Toronto under the name of the Liberation Tribal Window Washers.
A strong sense of community and a conviction that the world is on the verge of change grows among the American exile hippies in Toronto. Long evenings are spent discussing the state of the world, politics, life and art. The diversity of opinion ranges from those of Maoist Marxism to those of the Catholic Worker movement and from radical urban activism to those who advocate dropping out altogether and moving to the country. The strength and acceptance of the growing American exile community in Toronto encourage diverse opinions and spontaneous activism.
In Springfield, Massachusetts, the anti-war rally is a huge success. The city grants a parade permit and the police and FBI attends in large numbers. The State Police stop longhairs who are driving into Springfield for the day. The windows of the SDS draft counseling storefront are smashed and the landlord threatened. A benefit concert for the SDS campus chapter raises $1,500, some of which is used to buy a complete set of the works of Karl Marx for the school library. The Dean of Students at Western New England College where Tom Bonanno is a student has become aware of Tom’s difficulties with the draft board and Tom feels that he is about to be set-up.
The US has 543,400 troops in Vietnam.
Canada Immigration finally opens the border to US deserters after a successful campaign by the Toronto Anti-Draft Program and other Canadian peace groups.
The Dodgers/Deserters softball games resume at High Park on Sunday afternoons. The Union of American Exiles sponsors the games.
Chuck Wall organizes a successful Pig Roast at Scarborough Bluffs to celebrate May Day. All three households (224 McCaul, 218 McCaul and 418 Dundas Streets) attend. Each commune contributes breads, pies and wine. Three buckets of potato salad were made the day before and various cooks try different ways to mask the odor of chopped onions. Chuck tries saran wrap on his glasses and nose. Sheila Street works with a silver fork in her mouth pointing out.
The City of Toronto Building Inspector orders Chuck Wall and Lisa Steele to stop living in the Slum Goddess since it is zoned non-residential. Without sufficient money to pay the rent, it is shut down.
Lee Welch and his French-Canadian girlfriend Claudette leave for France. They hitch hike to the Maritime Provinces and work their passage to Europe on a freighter. Claudette subsequently dies in North Africa in an automobile accident.
Steve Bush in invited to work with the Toronto Workshop Productions Theater Company for the upcoming season and gets work in a TV film for OECA.
The Ragnarokr commune consists of Steve Spring, Mary and Randy Rauton and Philip Mullins. Steve Blossom has returned to the US. Philip and Mary live in the summer kitchen at 224 McCaul Street and later move a new room in the front part of the basement.
The SDS chapter at Western New England College in Springfield, Massachusetts ends the school year with strong support from the student body. The Student Council gives the SDS chapter a budget that is second in size only to that of the school newspaper. Tom Bonanno finds unexpected support in the Student-Faculty Committee of which he is a member. During a public debate with Tom, the student body boos the Dean of Students, Tom’s nemesis. After school is out Tom visits Toronto with his friend Art and stays at 224 McCaul Street.
Dave Humphries posts a note on the community bulletin board at Ragnarokr looking for communal housing. John Anderson replies and Dave moves into the Whole Earth commune on Howard Street. John Anderson meets Michael Ormsby at the Union of American Exiles and he and his wife Linda join the group as well.
A large group from the Baldwin Street community attends the Toronto Pop Festival at UT Varsity Stadium. Festival performers include John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Dr. John, Eric Clapton, Ronnie Hawkins and Sly and the Family Stone. Ragnarokr makes hundreds of leather change pouches for venders at the festival, most of which are returned unsold.
Jimmy Wilson organizes a street party on Baldwin Street that he calls the Festival of the Little Big Horn. Ed and Sheila Street, Chuck Wall and others provide the music.
John and Laura Phillips open a photo gallery on Baldwin Street. It is named the Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography.
The residents of 218 McCaul Street include Frank Tettemer, Marita DeGive, Steve Bush, Steve Spring, Steve Blossom, Colleen and Seth Anderson and Ed and Sheila Street. Frank and Marita join Philip, Mary, Randy and Steve Spring at Ragnarokr. Mary sells her diamond engagement ring and quits her secretarial job to work full time at the leather shop. Philip works as a night janitor at the Bond Street Separate School in addition to working at Ragnarokr.
Philip Mullins receives his last visit from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. He tells them that he has decided to stay permanently in Canada. For several months the American Friends Service Committee had been trying to organize a mass return of draft dodgers to the US as a publicity stunt and the FBI had asked the RCMP to keep in touch with Philip because he was a likely participant. However after a long correspondence with the Florida State Board and the US Attorney in Pensacola, Philip realizes that they will insist on jail time should he return to the US.
Life Magazine publishes photos of most of the 242 American soldiers who died in one week of the Vietnam War.
Pat Wilson, Don and Judy Holman move to Beverly Street. Janice Spellerberg leaves to spend the summer in Mexico and Greg Sperry goes to Europe for six months with his girlfriend Frieda.
The Ragnarokr commune accepts Barry and Susan Woolaver as members. The leather shop rents the upstairs of the building at 11 Baldwin Street when the Chinese owner moves to a new home in Scarborough. Steve Spring, Randy Rauton and Mary and Philip move into the upstairs along with Margaret Thurlow and Dave Woodward.
Jimmy Wilson overturns his newly purchased truck on the highway to Stratford, Ontario, where he has established a second location. The Yellow Ford Truck has evolved into a headshop. It had been originally conceived as an outlet for hippie craftsmen but both supply and demand were lacking.
The Whole Earth commune grows to include John Anderson, Dave Humphries, Michael and Linda Ormsby, Bud McClain, Jonathan Borah and Amy. Dave, John and Jonathan each contribute $300 and rent the storefront at 160 McCaul. They start a natural food store there called Whole Earth Foods. At the time there were no natural food stores in Toronto and the store found a ready market for natural food products.
Steven Bush has a good time getting stoned and lying on the roof of the summer kitchen at 218 McCaul Street. He spends his time reading and writing and worries about whether to stay in Canada or to return to the USA and about his political and moral responsibilities.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte both are working at the Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan and living on Staten Island. Their friend from Florida State University, Steve Shatz, lives next door and Mike Stuckey, also from FSU, crashes there.
Lillian Mordes, Philip’s friend from Florida State University, visits in Toronto prior to returning to her job with the Peace Corps in Sierra Leone, West Africa.
Randy Rauton visits Tom Bonanno in New York City. After a six-hour waiting game with the Immigration Officer, Tom Bonanno is given landed immigrant status in Prescott, Ontario, and moves into 11 Baldwin Street.
Ragnarokr rents an old hotel in the community of Lakefield near Nepton on Stoney Lake for $85 a month. It has 14 rooms. Between August 1969 and February 1970 members of the Ragnarokr commune rotate living in Toronto and at Stoney Lake. A small leather shop is built at the hotel and the products sold to a store in Peterborough and at the leather shop in Toronto. Dave Woodward joins Ragnarokr and Frank Tettemer leaves to become a carpenter. Tom Bonanno and his girlfriend, Bobbie Harding, live above the leather shop at 11 Baldwin Street and learn to do leather work.
Janice Spellerberg returns from Mexico and moves into 224 McCaul Street with the Burdicks. She sews clothing for the Yellow Ford Truck and gets a job at the University of Toronto.
Philip Mullins’ parents, Madelyn Averitte and George and Jeff Mullins all come to Toronto for a visit. Mary joins them all for a camping trip to Arrowhead Provincial Park north of Huntsville.
Marita DeGive’s mother, Elena, visits from Atlanta.
Steven Bush visits with Michael Meyer, Ruth Nichols and others who are renting a farmhouse and making candles somewhere near Allison, Ontario. Jim Bearden and Linda Certain arrive from Atlanta in an old car that then sits in the garage at 218 McCaul Street for years. Jim Bearden finds work with Studio Lab and goes on the road with a show for children. Camille Bush passes through on her way from Woodstock, New York, to Vancouver, British Columbia.
The Baldwin Street hippie community holds another big barbecue at Scarborough Bluffs with lots of good food, nude swimming in the lake and a great feeling of sharing in a common event.
A crew from the British Broadcasting Corporation interviews American draft dodgers in Toronto.
Ragnarokr rents a booth in the Automotive Building at the Canadian National Exhibition, a huge agricultural fair on the lakeshore in Toronto. Sells are brisk. Later that month Ragnarokr exhibits several items at the Ontario Craft Foundation booth at the Christmas Gift Show in Toronto. Ragnarokr receives $600 in wholesale orders from the show, which is considered to be a success. Ragnarokr continues to exhibit with the Ontario Craft Foundation for several years and builds a small wholesale trade with gift stores throughout Ontario.
Frank Tettemer and Marita DeGive both enroll in the Sheridan School of Design and leave Ragnarokr. Ragnarokr now has eight craftspeople: Tom Bonanno, Steve Spring and Randy Rauton at 11 Baldwin Street and Philip, Mary, Dave Woodward and Barry and Sue Woolaver at Stoney Lake. Sue Woolaver gives birth to her son Jason at Mr. Sinai Hospital in Toronto.
George Mullins is accepted at the Graduate School in Eugene, Oregon, and he and Madelyn stop by Stoney Lake en route from Staten Island to Eugene.
Steve Bush is performing in Mr. Bones and Che Guevara with the Toronto Workshop Productions theater group at the Biennale de Venezia in Italy.
Colleen and Seth move back to California to join her husband Bruce who is now working and has rented an apartment in San Jose. They again become involved in protests with friends at San Jose State and Stanford University. They attend a demonstration at the International Industrialist Convention in San Francisco where David Rockefeller is the keynote speaker. Police wearing helmets and body armor chase the demonstrators down the hills in the rain. Some of the crown broke storefront windows as they ran. Colleen decides that she will never again participate in this type of demonstration.
Wayne Myers, a friend of Randy Rauton and Helen Gilbert’s long-time boyfriend, follows Helen to Vancouver and convinces her to return to Toronto. They move into 11 Baldwin Street and Helen begins working at Ragnarokr.
Ruth Lyons, Bryan Richmond and his girlfriend Faith are all students at Toronto’s first alternative high school at 190 Beverly Street. It is called Superschool and is highly controversial.
The Ragnarokr group meets at Stoney Lake for Thanksgiving. Frank and Marita Tettemer join them there for the holiday. Tom Bonanno leaves Ragnarokr to attend the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. Barry and Sue Woolaver inherit $3,000 and leave to purchase a cabin in Renfrew County.
A friend of Dave Woodward’s, Carol Huebner, returns from Beirut, Lebanon, where she has been attending college as an exchange student from Antioch College in Ohio. She had written her thesis about the draft dodger community in Toronto. When she returned to Toronto, she and Dave Woodward expected to marry but he had recently fallen in love with Margaret Thurlow and so backed out only days before the wedding. Dave Woodward leaves but Carol joins the Ragnarokr commune and stays in Toronto. Three Canadians, Wayne Myers, Helen Gilbert and Judy Wapp, also join and work in the leather shop in Toronto. Doug and Judy Wapp had been housemates of Wayne Myers on McCaul. When Randy left for Lakefield, Helen and Wayne moved into his room on the second floor. Helen brings with her a young collie bitch that is not yet housetrained. Judy Wapp’s two year old daughter, similarly untrained, adds to the confusion in an already overcrowded and volatile household.
Jim Bearden joins the Toronto Workshop Productions for a production of Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest”.
George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte move from the city of Eugene to a communal farm near Brownsville, Oregon, and call it “the Mud Farm”. It was initially called the Organic Mud Farm but few people knew what the word “organic” meant.
The Union of American Exiles continues to host a “new arrivals night” every Thursday at its office at 44 St. George Street in Toronto. The UAE organizes picketing of the Loblaws food store at Bloor and Bathurst Streets as part of the United Farm Worker’s California Grape boycott.
Janice Spellerberg moves to 158 McCaul Street, above Pasquale’s BarberShop. She begins attending a women’s conscience raising group at the University of Toronto.
The November 1969 issue of AMEX magazine lists two storefronts on Baldwin Street: The Yellow Ford Truck at 25 Baldwin and the Liberation Tribal Store Leather Shop at 11 Baldwin Street.
The Toronto American Deserter’s Committee is formed to address the needs of the growing community of US deserters.
Divisions within the leather shop reflect growing divisions within the counterculture movement. The political activists led by Judy Wapp, Wayne Myers and Helen Gilbert refuse to provide funds and supplies to the hippies at the hotel on Stoney Lake. This forces the group living there to develop a market for their leather goods in Peterborough. Steve Spring leaves the shop in Toronto and moves to join the group at Stoney Lake. The differences between the factions are aired at a Christmas meeting at Stoney Lake. Attending are Dave Woodward, Carol Huebner, Judy and Doug Wapp, Wayne Myers, Mary Rauton, Philip Mullins, Randy Rauton, Frank Tettermer and Marita DeGive, Helen Gilbert, Steve Spring, Michael and Paula Letki, a crasher and a television crew. The dispute pits the majority of utopian socialist hippies against the minority of urban terrorist hippies.
Steve Spring, Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins write a proposal for a rural based crafts community as an alternative to urban terrorism and begin to seek backers and land from the Ontario Government.
George Mullins drops out of the graduate school at the University of Oregon due to poverty and incompatibility with his professors. He and Madelyn discover the joys of rural life at the Mud Farm.
Dick Bennett, Simone Bulger and her friend Sonya Cunningham live in the attic at 212 McCaul Street. Downchild Blues Band with Chuck Wall performs at a house on McCaul Street
The conflict with Judy Wapp, Wayne Myers and Helen Gilbert lessens after their project, a cooperative grocery store located on the corner of Henry and Baldwin Streets, fails. Helen’s collie dog comes into heat and attracts an immense following of male dogs. The residents of 11 Baldwin Street care for the dog but eventually someone calls the humane society and she is taken away. The dogcatchers also nab three of her suitors who were hanging around the front door of the leather shop. It is not until weeks later that Helen learns that her dog is gone.
Ragnarokr begins weekly meetings at the leather shop at 11 Baldwin Street to discuss the craft school proposal. Among those participating in the discussions are Chuck Wall, Lisa Steele, Frank and Marita Tettemer, Steve and Mary Burdick, Carol Huebner, Ed Street, Judy Wapp, Philip Mullins, Mary Rauton, Don Holman, David “Red” Anderson and Jeff Samuels.
The remnants of the Union of American Exiles organize the Red, White and Black a political organization that continues to exist for several years.
Ragnarokr ceases to be a commune and becomes a cooperative. In the past every one produced leather goods for sale in the shop and helped run the store. In return everyone received rent and food money and a little pocket change. In the new arrangement the co-op provides all materials and supplies as well as tools and a workshop and each craftsman is paid a percentage of the value of his or her production. Administrative and clerk duties continue to rotate among all the members.
Steve Spring visits with Barry and Sue Woolaver in Renfrew County. Tom Bonanno and his friend, Bobby, visit Ragnarokr from London, Ontario.
Sheila Street terminates the lease on 224 McCaul Street and returns the deposit money to the wrong people. Steven and Mary Burdick move to Robert Street and Sonya and Simone Bulger move into the house at 224 McCaul Street.
The play, “Daganawida”, opens at Toronto Workshop Productions with Steve Bush, Jim Bearden and Mel Dixon in the cast.
The Vietnam Mobilization Committee and the Red, White and Black co-sponsor a demonstration at the US Consulate in Toronto to protest the conviction of the Chicago Seven Conspiracy.
The Ontario Craft Foundation begins its wholesale marketing program at the Gift Show at the CNE. Ragnarokr is invited to participate and pays a small commission for all sales made there.
Ragnarokr decides to regroup in Toronto following the failure of the craft school idea. The lease on the hotel at Nepthon is dropped and the shop purchases a 1964 VW van for $150 to move its equipment back to the city. Philip and Dave Woodward research light shows and electronic devices with the idea of opening another business. Ragnarokr’s new cooperative arrangement results in the virtual expulsion of Helen Gilbert who refuses to work and is now living with Dave Zimmerman at 17 Baldwin Street. She angrily demands that she be given a sewing machine so she can work at home. To enforce her demand she sends four men to pick up the machine including Wayne Myers, Doug Wapp and Dave Zimmerman.
Lillian Mordes in Sierra Leone sends a parcel containing African-made textiles that Mary uses to make herself a shirt.
Tom Bonanno shares his apartment in London, Ontario, with two deserters who have been referred to him by the local Catholic priest. He later drives them to the TADP office in Toronto.
There is a rally at the University of Toronto Convocation Hall for the benefit of the Chicago Seven Conspiracy Defense Fund.
Helen Gilbert, Wayne Myers and Judy Wapp have left Ragnarokr with a debt of $500. This ends the open door policy in which anyone who wanted to work in the shop was allowed to do so. Hereafter craftspeople are admitted by invitation only. The remaining group, consisting of Philip Mullins, Steve Spring and Mary and Randy Rauton, invite George Mullins and Madelyn Averette to join them in buying rural property. Philip and Mary visit Barry and Sue Woolaver near Golden Lake in Renfrew County to acquaint themselves with the area.
The Toronto Workshop Productions theater group opens their play Chicago ’70. The play is a theatrical collage of parts of the Chicago Conspiracy Trial transcripts, bits of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and a lot of rock and roll music. It is one of the first “collective creations” attempted in Canada. Expatriate Jack Boschulte sends up-to-the-minute transcript material from the Chicago office to the cast members in Toronto and they work as quickly as possible to turn it into theater.
Dick Bennett and Simone Bulger continue to live in the attic at 212 McCaul Street. Dick, a US Army deserter, makes wooden toys for sale.
The Whole Earth commune rents a larger house on 10 acres of land at Steeles and Kennedy in Scarborough. Preparation and packaging is done in Scarborough and the work of running the storefront at 160 McCaul Street is rotated among the members. Room and board is provided for everyone in the group but rarely any cash money. Linda Ormsby is the bookkeeper.
The Union of American Exiles closes after two years and the Red, White and Black moves into the old UAE offices at 44 St. George Street.
The Rochdale Peace Center begins Monday evening vigils at the US Consulate in Toronto.
The Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography has an exhibit of photographs from the demonstrations at the Democratic Convention in Chicago. Some of the cast of the TWP play Chicago ’70 perform the Allen Ginsburg testimony given at the Chicago Seven Conspiracy Trial at a concert of the Perth County Conspiracy at Town Hall in Toronto.
Greg Sperry and Philip Mullins form a company called Fourth World Imports to import merchandise from Europe. Janice Spellerberg, Greg Sperry and Ray Edge go to England together. Janice shares a flat with three English girls in Hampstead, an old village section of London. She works as a waitress, learns a lot of history and sees a lot of art.
Madelyn, living on the Mud Farm in Oregon, has twenty laying hens that she hopes to bring to Ontario to the farm Ragnarokr hopes to buy.
U.S. and South Vietnamese troops invade Cambodia.
Fifteen American exiles are arrested in front of the US Consulate during a large demonstration protesting the US invasion of Cambodia and the killing of students at Kent State University. Tom Bonanno learns with satisfaction that the students at his old school in Springfield, Massachusetts have occupied the school to protest the invasion of Cambodia. The year before many of these students had supported the war in Vietnam. The Montreal American Deserters Committee hosts a major conference of exile groups. The Toronto American Deserters Committee operates a coffeehouse and a counseling service at 75 Huntley Street.
A group headed by John Anderson of the Whole Earth commune leases an old meeting hall at 15 Huron Street. The group, consisting of the Red, White and Black, the Baldwin Street Gallery and the Whole Earth commune, name the building the Hall and hope to use it as a community center. John Anderson furnishes the building with cast off items he finds in the trash.
The Toronto Free Clinic opens at Rochdale College at Bloor and Huron Streets. “The Alternative” newspaper is published by the Red, White and Black.
The Harbinger alternative newspaper sponsors a Free Music Festival at High Park. The Group of Young American Women resumes the Sunday picnics and softball games at High Park to which American exiles are invited.
The play, Chicago ’70, is filmed and released under the title, “The Great Chicago Conspiracy Circus.”
Jimmy and Pat Wilson of the Yellow Ford Truck and two other groups in the Baldwin Street community are ready to buy land in the country. Ragnarokr, now consisting of Philip Mullins, Mary and Randy Rauton and Steve Spring, have saved $700 by depositing all checks received into a savings account and by operating the business on cash receipts.
Madelyn Averitte is making and selling tie-dye clothing in Oregon. The Mud Farm begins to support itself by supplying Eugene’s first cooperative grocery store with homemade bread, soap, homegrown herbs and vegetables. George collects and sells cascara bark from wild Buckthorn trees. His mother writes to suggest that he is so thin that he will freeze if he keeps moving north.
Colleen Anderson is forced to call the police to protect her from Bruce who has again become mentally ill and violent. She decides to move from San Jose, California, and begins to search for jobs in other areas of California.
Don Holman makes a trip England to interview for a job there.
Ragnarokr leather shop is given an “Award of Excellence” for its leather crafts at the Sheridan Spring Craft Fair in Oakville, Ontario.
Four students are shot and killed at Kent State University in Ohio by soldiers of the National Guard.
8,000 students at the University of Florida in Gainesville participate in a march protesting the US invasion of Cambodia.
The Chicago ’70 show plays in New York City, at the Saint Lawrence Centre in Toronto and at the Wolfville Festival in Nova Scotia.
The Ragnarokr group has $1,000 in the bank for buying land.
Colleen Anderson gets a newspaper job in Auburn, California, and moves there with the baby Seth.
Carol Huebner leaves Toronto and moves to California.
Ruth Lyons and her boyfriend Peter Judd move to Doyle’s Mountain near Killaloe. They live in a farmhouse without electricity or water and a mile from the road. Ruth finds the situation depressing and unhealthy.
The Toronto American Deserters Committee operates hostels on Wellesley and Dundas Streets for American deserters.
A demonstration on Baldwin Street to protest the Hydro Block leads to several arrests when a group attempts to occupy one of the empty houses. For several years Ontario Hydro had been quietly buying the houses on the block bounded by Baldwin, Henry, Beverly and Cecil Streets with the intention of building a transformer station there. The East European immigrant owners willingly sell their properties but the hippie residents object to the scheme.
The THOG theater project is formed and begins to work at the Bathurst Street United Street. George Taros, Jim Bearden, Linda Certais, Gary Stephens, Anne Bannister Stephens and Steve Bush are among the Americans involved in the THOG.
Madelyn Averitte sends tie-dyed clothes from the Mud Farm for sale in the Ragnarokr storefront.
A rock concert called Festival Express performs at the CNE for a two day show. Artists include The Who, Ten Years After, Traffic, the Grateful Dead, The Band and Janice Joplin.
The Toronto American Deserters Committee and the Red, White and Black merge to form the Committee to Aid Refugees from Militarism (CARM). An attempt to include the Toronto Anti-Draft Program in the merger is unsuccessful.
The Ragnarokr leather shop moves from 11 to 33 Baldwin Street when the building is sold. The contents of the store and workshop at 11 Baldwin are carried piece by piece to the new storefront and reassembled. The leather shop occupies the storefront and the middle room upstairs is made into the workshop. The monthly rent is $300. Steve and Mary Burdick move into the large upstairs front room overlooking Henry Street. Steve Spring moves to an apartment on Spadina Avenue. Philip and Jeff Mullins and Steve Spring hitchhike to Algonquin Park for a weeklong canoe trip. George and Madelyn arrive in Toronto from Oregon in a VW beetle and join the Ragnarokr group.
Rick McKenna and Steve Bush write the first draft of a play based on Shakespeare’s play “Richard 3rd.” The play is about US President Richard Nixon’s life and the demented hallucinogenic political visions of the authors. It was first called Richard 3rd Rate but later changed to Richard 3rd Time.
Janice Spellerberg, in England, goes to the Isle of Wright Pop Festival to see the last performance of Jimi Henrix along with hundreds of thousands of stoned hippies. Other performers include Joan Baez, Melanie and Guess Who.
THOG sponsors the first of a series of all day Sunday music and theater festivals at the Bathurst Street United Church. The range of material performed includes readings by Milton Acorn, music by the Perth County Conspiracy and skits and music drama pieces emphasizing psychodrama and political satire by THOG.
Ragnarokr gets a Federal Excise Tax license and develops a complicated bookkeeping scheme to minimize Federal excise and provincial sales taxes. The system involves separate manufacturing, wholesaling and retailing entities. The wholesaler, Fourth World Imports, distributes its 1970 Catalogue of goods manufacturer by Ragnarokr and the Mud Farm. Its logo is a beaver sitting on top of a globe. Michael Ormsby of the Whole Earth Food Store places a large cedar table in the Ragnarokr storefront as a sample of his woodwork. It remains in the store for years and is eventually moved to the kitchen where it is used as a dining table. The parents of George and Philip Mullins arrive for their third annual visit. The Mullins group, including Mary Rauton and Madelyn Averitte, spend a week camped at the Graff’s place near Clarendon in Frontenac County. The leather shop had been invited to share the property by the owners but the two groups proved to be incompatible. George Mullins, Jr. gives his sons their first chain saw.
Alice Burdick is born at Wellesley Hospital to Steve and Mary.
Colleen Anderson helps start an alternative school in Auburn, California. She and Carol Huebner become friends and plan a trip to Toronto the following summer.
Mary Rauton is elected to sit on the Ontario Craft Foundation’s Craftsman’s Advisory Board. The following year Philip takes her seat on the Craftsman’s Advisory Board.
A cell of the Quebec Liberation Front in Quebec City kidnaps a British Trade Commissioner named Cross. Another cell kidnaps and murders a member of the Government of Quebec. The Government of Canada imposes the War Measures Act giving the police extraordinary powers. The American exile community prepares for police raids that never come.
The three American Deserters Committee hostels become self-supporting housing cooperatives.
The Committee to Aid Refugees from Militarism moves into the Hall and expands their switchboard message service. Films are screened weekly at the Hall with admission by donation. The donations rarely meet the cost of film rental.
Greg Sperry meets Pancho Ohem and Oton Ortez of Mexico in Grange Park. They are political refugees from Mexico where the police want them for their involvement in the student movement at the Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Greg brings them to Ragnarokr where they stay for several weeks in a room in the basement. This begins a series of visits from various people from Tapachula, Chiapas, and Mexico City that continues for more than five years. The Mexicans come to learn English and to earn money working on tobacco farms in southern Ontario or at menial jobs in Toronto. These men include Pancho Ruiz, Guillermo Jaeger, Gustavo and Tono Parlange and Rudolfo Morales, all of Tapachula, and Ricardo Seminario of Peru.
George Mullins immigrates at Niagara Falls with a job offer from Ragnarokr. He builds a greenhouse in the yard behind 33 Baldwin Street.
In England, Janice Spellerberg and her friends Sylvia Frost, Ray Edge and Al Gross host an American Thanksgiving for their English friends.
New draft age arrivals to Canada helped by the various refugee aid groups in Toronto decline from 25 per day in October of 1970 to eight per day by January of 1971.
George and Madelyn locate 100 acres of land near North Bay, Ontario. It is purchased jointly for the six members of Ragnarokr. The price is $3,600. After a few months the property is named The Frostpocket because the neighbor says it lies in a valley and is therefore susceptible to early frosts.
The legal ownership and name of Ragnarokr changes from Ragnarokr Cordwainery to The Ragnarokr Cordwainery as part of the tax evasion scheme. The registered owners of The Ragnarokr Cordwainery are Mary and Randy Rauton, George Mullins, Madelyn Averitte and Steve Spring. Philip Mullins is the owner of the separate wholesaler, Fourth World. Ragnarokr’s total sales from July to December 1970, is $6,110.52. Mr. and Mrs. Joe Murphy of Guam and their eight children travel to Hawaii and Colleen Anderson and her son Seth flies to meet them there. The family spends ten days at Makaha.
Frank Tettemer, Philip Mullins, Randy Rauton and others camp at the Frostpocket in sub-freezing weather.
The US Selective Service System begins the draft lottery.
Janice Spellerberg is fired from her job as a waitress in England and lacking a visa and money, takes a job as a smuggler and is home in Kansas City for Christmas.
The Hall provides Christmas dinner for the community. The Hall screens films on Monday and Thursday nights and offers Kundalini Yoga classes. Several religious groups based on a fusion of Hindu and Sikh ideas form in the community. A group of craftsmen from the exile community including Ragnarokr rent a stall in the Market on Yonge Street.
Christmas Dinner at Ragnarokr includes Philip and Mary Mullins, George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte, Steve and Mary Burdick, Michael and Paula Letki, Steve Spring and his younger brother Gary, and Randy Rauton and his younger brother Tim. Gary Spring tells his jive version of the Christmas story. Tim Rauton and Gary Spring are both visiting from the US.
At 218 McCaul Street Peggy Florin arrives from the States and moves in. Steven Bush’s parents, Ruth and Vestes Bush, visit for the holidays. Pat Wilson and Neil and Anne Walsh prepare Christmas dinner for them.
The Harbinger newspaper publishes the Toronto Community Directory listing services and institutions important to the exile community. The following groups are listed. Ragnarokr 33 Baldwin Street; Yellow Ford Truck 25 Baldwin Street; Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography 23 Baldwin Street; Young Communist Party 24 Baldwin Street; Whole Earth Foods 160 McCaul Street; AMEX Magazine; Red, White and Black; Rising Up Angry; Toronto Anti-Draft Program; Union of American Exiles; Guerilla Newspaper; Harbinger Newspaper; Whole Earth Almanac; Black Refugee Organization. Communes not mentioned include May 4th Movement, New Feminists, Krishna Consciousness, Jesus Freaks, Rochdales’s 14th Floor Commune and THOG.
Ragnarokr continues to participate in running a retail stall at the Market on Yonge Street in cooperation with independent craftspeople. Ragnarokr is assigned to man the booth one evening a week. George Mullins carves a sign pole for Ragnarokr, mounts it on a concrete base and puts it on the sidewalk in front of the leather shop where it remains for 15 years. The household at 33 Baldwin Street consists of George and Madelyn in the upstairs front room, Randy in the upstairs rear room, the workshop in the middle room upstairs and Philip and Mary in the downstairs rear room. Other Ragnarokr workers include Steve Spring, Sheila Street, Simone Bulger, Morley Yan, Mary Burdick and Sonya Cunningham.
Janice Spellerberg lives in Rochdale College and works for the Canadian Whole Earth Almanac. This local version of the Whole Earth Almanac publishes several issues in 1970 and 1971.
In January Jessica Zimmerman and Shantih Lawrence are born followed by Ben Wilson in March. In January, 1971 Joshua Starbuck and Alice Burdick are both less than a year old and the communities first baby, Seth Anderson, is not quite two years old. The following year in February Emily Spring is born. Her birth marks the end of the Baldwin Street hippie community’s baby boom and during the remaining years of the 1970s only four other children are born to the communities families.
U.S. airplanes bomb Vietcong supply routes in Cambodia. The war spreads to Laos and Cambodia.
Steven Bush holes up in a house on a hill in Uxbridge, Ontario, writing a radio docudrama about colonialism and preparing his version of “Hamlet”.
George and Philip Mullins begin to collect building materials for the planned buildings at the Frostpocket. Most of it comes from demolition sites between McCaul and University Avenue. Mary begins attending classes in Kundalini Yoga held at the Hall. Ted Steiner of 3HO is the instructor.
Rehearsals for THOG’s “Hamlet” begin. George Taros, Jim Bearden, Linda Certais, Gary and Anne Stephens, Dan Hennessey, Bill Penden and Steven Bush all volunteer their time. The THOG Music and Theatre Festival continues on frequent Sundays at the Bathurst United Church.
The developers of St. Jamestown, already the largest concentration of high-rise residences in Canada, decide to expand to Bleeker Street. Community groups hold a “City is for the People” demonstration at St. Jamestown. THOG performs a skit satirizing Toronto City Hall, sings some songs from “Hamlet” and chants in front of the Greenspoon construction office.
David Slobotsky interviews Philip and Mary for his CBC radio program on Decision-Making.
Cow Products, a business registered by George Mullins and Madelyn Averitte, obtains a Provincial Sales Tax license and begins selling leather goods to Fourth World (our wholesale operation) and Ragnarokr (our retailer). Cow Products (the manufacturer) sells cheaply to minimize Federal Sales Tax. Steve Spring and Mary and Randy Rauton sell their shares of Ragnarokr to George and Madelyn. Each is supposed to receive $300 over a period of months. This is their share of Ragnarokr’s assets. No money changes hands and no actual change in ownership takes place. Despite all of our efforts, the first audit of our business operations by Revenue Canada results in an assessment of $276.69. Revenue Canada demands immediate payment and this nearly bankrupts the shop.
U.S. Lt. William Calley is found guilty of premeditated murder in the massacre of civilians at Mylai.
Larry and Sarah Langner arrive in Toronto from Israel via the West Indies. He is a skilled leather worker and teaches Ragnarokr how to make Israeli style sandals. He sets up a workshop in the basement of 33 Baldwin Street and begins to sell his products from a pushcart on Yonge Street. The next year he and Sarah visit Guatemala and return in native Maya dress. His pushcart becomes a tourist attraction and he continues his successful career as a leather worker until he returns to the US in 1974.
Ragnarokr briefly sells Frye Boots which Philip imports from the US.
THOG performs “Hamlet” in a former Sunday school room, now called the New Theatre, at Bathurst United Church. A total of 21 free performances are given between May and August. The Hall Switchboard handles seat reservations and performance information. Crawley Films, Ltd., makes a film of the play.
The landlord of 33 Baldwin Street, Al Weisbrot, raises the rent from $300 to $350 to cover the increased cost of insurance. The storefront’s share of the rent increases to $150. The people at Ragnarokr begin to pour the foundation of the first house on their property at the Frostpocket. Developers are demolishing whole city blocks to the south of Baldwin Street and the Ragnarokr crew helps themselves to building materials from the demolished houses. A huge amount of dimensional lumber including 2x4s and 2x6s is taken from demolition sites east of McCaul Street opposite the Ontario College of Art. Philip disassembles the entire staircase including rails and balusters from one house. A demolition site at Queen and Soho Streets yields the leaded windows used in the basement of the Mary's house at Frostpocket. Antiques such as a dental chair, fireplace liners, printing templates, lithography stones and furniture were saved from the wrecking crews and reused or sold. The shop vise and a fire extinguisher were found in an abandoned car wash on Gerrard Street and furniture and filing cabinets in the old Wagman rag plant on Phoebe Street.
Revenue Canada informs Ragnarokr that the tax assessment in March was too high and that a refund of $97.21 is due. The refund check doesn’t arrive until September.
Ragnarokr sales leather goods at the Sheridan Annual Craft Fair in Oakville, Ontario.
George Mullins buys an old Ford farm tractor from a gardener in Mississauga for $450. Philip Mullins rents a 6-ton truck to haul the recently purchased 9N Ford tractor and a load of salvaged building material to Frostpocket. The truck carries enough material to frame a two-story 800 square foot house. It takes all night to load the truck and drive to South River and all day to unload it. Mary Rauton and Madelyn Averette drive it back to Toronto in the middle of the night. It has ten forward gears. George and Philip Mullins and Randy Rauton begin to dig the basement for the house at Frostpocket with shovels. Tom Bonanno spends a week laying block for the basement, studying Shakespeare and fighting mosquitoes and black flies. Jeff Mullins also comes from Pensacola to help.
Mary Rauton is elected by the members of the Craftsman’s Advisory Committee to be its representative to the Board of Directors of the Ontario Craft Foundation.
Revenue Canada sends P.N. Chakravorty to audit Ragnarokr and Cow Products. He finds our arrangement unorthodox but legal and helps us set up a book keeping system.
The first annual tax bill arrives for the Frostpocket. The 100 acres at Lot 19, Concession 2, Machar Township is assessed at $175.00 with taxes of $24.05 a year.
Margaret Thurlow moves to Toronto Island.
Ragnarokr has a booth at the Huronia Festival of Crafts in Barrie, Ontario.
The Pentagon Papers are published in the New York Times.
While Jeff and Philip Mullins are hauling a load of windows from Toronto, the 1964 VW van suffers terminal transmission failure near Huntsville and is left at a service station there. Jeff and Philip hitchhike back to Toronto. Ragnarokr is invited to sell leather goods at the first Mariposa Folk Festival held on Toronto Island and uses the $800 in sales revenue to purchase a used Dodge van to replace the old VW van. The VW is towed to the Frostpocket where it remains. George Mullins was still driving the Dodge in 1982.
Carol Huebner and Colleen Anderson come to Toronto from California for a month’s visit. Colleen stays at Ragnarokr and she and George Mullins fall in love. This causes quite a stir when Madelyn finds out.
Jeff and Philip Mullins and Madelyn Averitte work on the building at Frostpocket. George Mullins and Colleen Anderson leave Ragnarokr and stay a month with the Whole Earth Store commune in north Toronto. They go back to California where Colleen had taken a leave of absence from her job. Tensions run high between Philip on one side and Mary and Madelyn on the other.
Steven Bush and Peggy Florin leave 218 McCaul Street to move to 198 Beverly Street. They go west for a brief vacation.
Barbara Miller and Mike Siegel, the owners of a store at 37 Baldwin Street called the Sunshine Co-op, buy 7 and 7/8 acres across the road from Doyle’s Mountain near Killaloe. Ruth Lyons and Peter Judd build a yurt on the property. The yurt measures 26 feet in diameter.
There is a demonstration at the US Consulate on University Avenue to protest the interment of US black power activist Angela Davis. Angela Davis is a university professor who was arrested for aiding a prisoner’s escape in California.
Allan Grossman of the Ontario government meets with residents of the area around the Hydro Block to discuss the government’s plan to build the transformer station on the city block bounded by Baldwin, Henry, Beverly and Cecil Streets.
At the Frostpocket construction continues on the first house with the help of Jeff Mullins and his father George Mullins Jr., Dave Humphries, Tom Bonanno, Frank Tettemer, Madelyn Averitte, Randy and Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins. Numerous others lend a hand, including two friends of Tim Rauton who are visiting from Georgia. Everyone sleeps in the old horse stable at night or in tents nearby.
Colleen Anderson and George Mullins arrive in Auburn, California and rent a small cabin. Both get jobs at the newspaper office and George begins to draw plans for the house that he intends to build at the Frostpocket.
Camille Bush in Langley, British Columbia, gives birth to a baby named Willow Gabriella.
Ragnarokr is represented in the Fall Gift Show in Toronto by the Ontario Craft Foundation.
John Anderson is voted out of the Whole Earth commune and is paid several thousand dollars for his share of the Whole Earth natural food store on McCaul Street. He purchases clothing in Mexico and opens the Osshke Noodin clothing store at 31 Baldwin Street.
The Baldwin Village consists of the Yellow Ford Truck, Ragnarokr leather shop, Whole Earth Natural Food Store, Cosmic Egg Surplus Store, Letki Designs silver shop, Osshke Noodin Clothing Store and the Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography. The remaining Jewish businesses are a bakery, a creamery, two used clothing stores and a business dealing in used burlap bags. Chinese run businesses include a bakery, a tofu factory and a grocery.
The building at Frostpocket is wired for electricity although the nearest connection point is a quarter of a mile up the hill. The building has 860 square feet of living space and a full basement. Thus far the building has cost $1287.45 of which $237.17 is for house wiring.
THOG becomes increasingly divided by its three primary tendencies: psychotherapy, political activism and professional performing art. It is a microcosm of what is happening in the counterculture movement at that time.
Jeff Mullins attempts for the last time to revive the old Ragnarokr VW van but buys the wrong transaxle. He leaves without it and hitchhikes back to his parent’s house near Denham Springs, Louisiana. Tom Bonanno and Gin Turcotte from Hamilton move into 33 Baldwin Street and begin producing leather goods with the Ragnarokr co-op. Simone Bulger and Sonya Cunningham make and sell a small leather necklace called a choker through the leather shop and at a craft sale in Trinity Square. Greg Sperry and Madelyn Averitte become friends. She decides to become an artist and chooses Greg as her model. Over the next few years she produces dozens of drawings of Greg.
Ragnarokr consists of Madelyn Averitte and Randy Rauton in Toronto and Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins at the Frostpocket. The group considers buying another 100 acres, Lot 15, Concession 3 in Machar Township but does not. Lot 15 is a bush lot without road access and is priced at $500.00. Philip is negotiating without success with Ontario Hydro to get electricity to the new building at the Frostpocket. Mary declares that she not longer vetoes George’s return to the cooperative and Philip writes to invite him and Colleen back.
Ragnarokr has the most sales of all the twenty or so craftsmen represented by the Ontario Craft Foundation at the Fall Gift Show at the CNE in Toronto. Philip and Mary drive to Ottawa to participate in the Christmas Craftsman’s Market sponsored by the Canadian Craftsman’s Association.
Store fronts in the Baldwin Village include: Letki Designs (Michael and Paula Letki), Whole Earth Natural Foods (the Whole Earth commune), Red Morning communist organization, Cosmic Egg Surplus Store (Kent and Karen Lawrence), the Yellow Ford Truck (Jim and Pat Wilson), Ragnarokr, Ooshke Noodin imported clothing (John Anderson), Any Day Now and the Baldwin Street Gallery of Photography (John and Laura Phillips).
Grace, Miriam and Walter Jarski open a Catholic Worker house at 90 Bleeker Street in Toronto.
Steve Spring and Simone Bulger are married in a Unitarian church on St. Claire Avenue by the same minister who married Greg Sperry and Janice Spellerberg in 1969. Simone is in the third trimester of her pregnancy. The wedding party is at Ragnarokr.
The Toronto Anti-Draft Program and AMEX Magazine hold a press conference to call for unconditional amnesty for draft-dodgers and deserters. The exile community expresses little interest in the issue of amnesty.
The Artisans and Craftsman’s Co-Operative is organized at Rochdale with a grant from the Government of Canada under the Local Incentive Program. Tom Bonanno, Mary and Randy Rauton and Philip Mullins all teach leatherwork under the sponsorship of the LIP project. Students come to the workshop after hours and receive individual instruction.
Ragnarokr eliminates its remaining communal features and becomes a producer’s cooperative. Philip invites Greg Sperry, Don and Judy Holman, Tom Bonanno, Chris Risk and Myra Kaplan to build at the Frostpocket. Only Chris Risk takes up the offer. Skip and Judy O’Dell join Ragnarokr from the Ooshke Noodin clothing store at 31 Baldwin Street. (Later John Anderson changed the name of the store to Morningstar). Skip and Judy O’Dell had also been involved in the Whole Earth commune. George Mullins and Colleen Anderson write that they will return in the spring.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrest Karl Armstrong in Toronto. He is accused of the bombing of a US Army research facility at the University of Wisconsin.
Steven Bush and Peggy Florins move into the new Rochdale College after flames gut the house they were living in. THOG applies for and is awarded a Local Incentive Program (LIP) grant. The money heightens the existing contradictions and “proceeds to kill us off.” George, Colleen and Seth return from California by way of Texas. George works at Ragnarokr and Colleen finds a job at a publisher’s house doing layout and paste-up. They share an apartment with Janice Spellerberg on College and Henry Streets.
Emily is born to Steve and Simone Spring at Wellesley Hospital.
Mary Rauton flies to Fort Francis, Ontario, for a craft demonstration sponsored by the Northwest Ontario Craft Association. Ragnarokr is represented at the Spring Gift Show in Toronto by the Ontario Craft Foundation.
Carl Braden of the Southern Conference Education Fund, an early Civil Rights group, speaks in Toronto on amnesty for the draft dodgers.
The Canadian Coalition of War Resisters, consisting of various groups actively aiding American expatriates, meets to discuss the issue of amnesty.
The community’s struggle against the expansion of the apartment complex at St. Jamestown continues. Activists occupy houses on Bleeker Street to prevent their demotion and to block the construction of the St. Jamestown South Apartment Complex.
Rudolfo Morales and others from Tapachula, Chiapas, Mexico arrive to work in the tobacco fields of southern Ontario. They stay until July and then return home.
Demonstrations at the US Consulate on University Avenue and in Ottawa protest the visit of US President Richard Nixon and his reception by the Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. THOG and the Inner City Puppet Theatre bring large “Uncle Fatso” and “Death” puppets to the demonstration.
By late April it is clear that THOG had failed to complete the project it had proposed to do to get the LIP grant. It had proposed to write a cartoon history of Canada from a radical working class perspective, including music and puppets. Steven Bush wrote, “We did a few performances but they were a very pale shade of what had been imagined and promised. We had failed to solve a number of key political questions, among them being the correct relationship between leadership and collective effort. I think that this is a rock on which a lot of the movement foundered.”
Mary Rauton flies to Thunder Bay, Ontario, for a conference of the Ontario Craft Foundation.
Chris Risk, Skip O’Dell and George Mullins are all cutting and peeling logs for their respective houses at the Frostpocket. George begins spending about ten days at a time at Frostpocket and then ten days working at Ragnarokr in Toronto. He and Colleen rent a flat on St. Patrick Street.
Dave Humphries leaves the Whole Earth commune after three years. The value of the business is divided by the number of people in the house and Dave learns that his share is only $80. The remaining members are Michael and Linda Ormsby, Bob and Pat Ormsby and Jonathan Borah. In 1978 the lease on the house in Scarborough expires and Michael Ormsby eventually gives the store to Bill Groves, Audry and Penny Regal.
US President Richard Nixon steps up the bombing of North Vietnam.
Ragnarokr enters at the Sheridan School of Design in Oakville, near Toronto.the Craft Fair
Steve Bush, Peggy Florin, Bill Peder, Linda Certais and Jim Bearden move to the country near southern Georgian Bay to pursue Primal Therapy.
Janice Spellerberg goes to Europe for the second time and meets Pat Ruoff. They travel together through Spain and Germany.
Work continues on the houses at the Frostpocket. Chris Risk breaks his rib in a fall while roofing the community house.
Construction continues at Frostpocket on four houses. Jeff Mullins hitchhikes from Florida to help again. Madelyn Averitte visits friends in Yonkers, New York. Ragnarokr participates in a craft sale at Northwestern General Hospital in Toronto.
Frank and Marita Tettemer are living near Thunder Bay, Ontario, and teaching native people how to make and market contemporary leatherwork. They work under a contract with the Government.
District of Columbia police arrest five men inside the Democratic National Headquarters in the Watergate Hotel
AMEX Magazine organizes a conference in Toronto on the subject of amnesty for US draft dodgers and deserters.
For many in the American exile community, the summer, fall and winter of 1972 is a period of introspection, nature worship, simple living and domesticity.
Steve Bush is writing radio plays and film scripts from his own political perspective.
Janice Spellerberg works in a snack bar on a US Army base in Germany. Security is very tight because the Baader-Meinhof Gang is active.
The July issue of Harbinger newspaper lists the following storefronts on Baldwin Street: Whole Earth Foods at 160 McCaul; The Kid’s Store at 168 McCaul: the Cosmic Egg at 25 Baldwin; Morning Star at 31 Baldwin; Ragnarokr at 33 Baldwin and the Yellow Ford Truck at 39 Baldwin.
Skip and Judy O’Dell run the Ragnarokr leather shop in Toronto while everyone else in the cooperative is at the Frostpocket.
Janice Spellerberg returns to Canada with Pat Ruoff. They both learn how to do leatherwork at Ragnarokr and begin selling their products on Yonge Street at Christmas. Pat Ruoff has good success as a salesman and they continue selling crafts on the street for several years. Pat eventually moves into the business of selling jewelry and opens the Ruoff Jewelry store.
Madelyn Averitte returns to Toronto from the US and moves to Montreal with Tom Bonanno and Ginny Turcotte to start a leather shop there.
Ruth Lyons and Peter Judd move into the yurt near Doyles Mountain and live there all winter. In October Frank and Marita Tettemer move into the farmhouse at Doyle’s Mountain just across the road from the yurt. Marita is dissatisfied with her marriage to Frank and is looking for a way out.
George and Hazel Mullins come from Louisiana for their annual visit. They camp out at the Frostpocket and help with the building.
Madelyn Averitte, Tom Bonanno and Ginny Turcotte rent a storefront on Crescent Street in Montreal and open the Pickle Lake Leatherworks. Ginny speaks high-school French with the kids from the suburbs.
Philip and Jeff Mullins begin to lay blocks for the addition to the first house at the Frostpocket and have the floor joists in place by December. Jeff stays after his parent’s departure to help with the construction. Morley Yan and Mary Rauton’s twin teenagers, Bill and Mary, also come for a visit. Bill and Morley both act like spoiled kids. Philip hits Morley in the head with a shovel and Morley runs away and hitchhikes to South River. Mary locates him later drying his shoes in the public laundry. Following an argument over Bill’s behavior both Philip and Jeff walk to South River and Jeff takes the bus back to Toronto. Philip reluctantly goes back to the Frostpocket and continues building.
George, Colleen and the baby Seth move into their unfinished home at the Frostpocket. Only three walls are sealed in and there is no plumbing, electricity or insulation. Chris Risk and Skip O’Dell buy Madelyn Averette’s share of the Frostpocket. George and Philip have the title in their name in trust for Skip, Chris, Mary, Randy, Steve Spring and themselves.
Ragnarokr consists of Mary, Colleen, Philip, George, Randy, Chris Risk and Norman (Skip) O’Dell. Ragnarokr has a booth at the Oakville United Church Outreach Craft Sale.
Frank Tettemer writes Philip and Mary about a request from an Indian band for help in setting up a leather craft producer’s cooperative. Philip begins to work with the owner of Pax Design and several Government agencies to write a proposal to fund the request. Frank and Marita finish their contract work in northern Ontario. They visit the Killaloe area and move into the farmhouse at Doyle’s Mountain.
The Liberal Party of Canada wins a plurality of the popular vote in a Federal election but fails to win a majority in the House of Commons. Pierre Trudeau forms a coalition with the New Democratic Party and continues as Prime Minister.
Steve Bush files an absentee ballot in the US Presidential election in support of Senator George McGovern. He writes an appeal supporting McGovern that is published in the “Guerilla” newspaper.
Philip Mullins and Mary and Randy Rauton run the Ragnarokr leather shop.
Janice Spellerberg is doing volunteer work at the Women’s Place in Toronto.
Richard Nixon easily wins re-election to the U.S. Presidency.
The Planning Council of the City of Toronto recognizes the Baldwin Street Village as a distinct neighborhood in its South East Spadina, Part II study.
Philip Mullins and Randy Rauton drive to Montreal to visit Tom and Ginny. While there they purchase an old outsole lockstitch machine from a shoe repair shoe that has gone out of business. Madelyn returns to Toronto with them. Ragnarokr rents a booth at the Toronto Women’s ORT Christmas Sale.
The Christmas Party at Ragnarokr involves Mary and Randy Rauton, Philip Mullins, Madelyn Averitte, Steve and Simone Spring, Morley Yan and Chris Risk and his son Davin. Morley Yan is a friend of the cooperative who lives at 31 Baldwin Street with his mother and an uncle.
On December 18 US President Nixon orders intensified bombing of North Vietnam. Fewer than 24,000 American troops remain in Vietnam.
A Cease-fire Agreement between North Vietnam and the US is signed in Paris, France, on January 27 and US troops continue to withdraw from South Vietnam. Between 1965 and 1973 the U.S. lost 359,886 killed and wounded; the South Vietnamese military 680,477; the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese military 937,562. Civilian killed and wounded numbered 1,350,000.
Barry Bergthorsen moves out of the front room at 33 Baldwin Street and Brenda Matthias moves in. Philip Mullins slips on the ice at Frostpocket and fractures his collarbone.
Crow Goods, a wholesale leather goods business runs by Chris Risk, uses a South River address and becomes a cover for our business dealings.
Philip and Mary work to finalize funding from three government agencies for the project at the Pic 50 Heron Bay Indian Band. One agency agrees to purchase the tools and materials, one agrees to pay for the student’s wages and a third provides a stipend for the instructors. The Government feels that the hippies and the indigenous people may work well together.
Chris Risk and George and Colleen with baby Seth leave for a month long trip to Florida and Louisiana.
At this point Ragnarokr consists of Mary and Randy Rauton, Philip and George Mullins, Colleen Anderson, Chris Risk, Skip O’Dell, Madelyn Averitte and Steve Burdick. Steve Burdick works a few hours each week to keep the three sets of books and pay the bills. A new system of paying craftspeople is introduced. The craftsperson’s pay is based on 40% of the retail price of each item sold. The wholesale business has declined although Ragnarokr continues to be represented at the Spring Gift Show by the Ontario Craft Foundation.
Jeff Mullins is working on a Merchant Marine tanker carrying corn to Indonesia.
Marita Tettemer leaves Frank in Killaloe and drives off to San Francisco with Peter Judd. Ruth Lyons and Frank Tettemer become good friends, both having been jilted at the same time. Peter Judd is back in Toronto by March and Marita comes back for a brief reconciliation with Frank in the fall of 1973.
Dr. Saul Levine releases his study of some thirty Ontario communes, including Ragnarokr.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton leave in the van for the Heron Bay Indian Reserve near Marathon, Ontario. The remaining members of the Ragnarokr cooperative take turns running the leather shop in Toronto and living at the Frostpocket. Each of the craftspeople takes their turn at each task required to run the business with quarterly or semiannual meetings of the whole group to set goals and decide policy. This rotation continues until about 1978. Ragnarokr has a sale table at the Ontario ORT Festival of Crafts in March 1973. Madelyn Averitte meets Fletcher Starbuck at the gallery where she works as a secretary. Fletcher, an American expatriate, is a photographer with a growing reputation in Canadian arts circles. They eventually marry.
The last U.S. ground troops leave Vietnam. The U.S. armed forces become an all-volunteer force and military conscription ceases.
Tom Bonanno and Ginny Turcotte are in Montreal running their leather shop.
The Ragnarokr book keeping system involves three sets of books and three independent businesses named Fourth World, Ragnarokr and Crow Goods. One company for a manufacturing operation, one is a wholesale operation and one is a retail operation. The only benefit is to lower the tax bill.
Judy O’Dell gives birth to her and Skip’s first child at the Red Cross Hospital in Burk’s Falls. They live in their one room log cabin at the Frostpocket. Skip makes musical instruments as well as leatherwork to sell in Ragnarokr. Chris Risk travels to Pensacola, Florida, by bus to visit Steve Spring’s sister, Caroline. George Mullins has learned how to manage a sugar bush from Wilfred McLaren. He makes his first maple syrup in a washtub set in an oil drum.
The National Council for Universal and Unconditional Amnesty is organized in Toronto.
The Ontario Craft Foundation Wholesale Marketing Program ends. Liz Cera continues to work their wholesale accounts and makes some sales for Ragnarokr.
Chuck Wall oversees another wild May Day Pig Roast, the Pig Gig, in a barn near Toronto. The party features a pig cooked over bed springs using Chuck’s Kansas City barbecue sauce. The Downchild Blues Band performs as well. Most of the Baldwin village crowd attends along with people from the Open Studio, Mary Ellen, Kevin and Judy. The Open Studio is a warehouse run cooperatively by the artists who use the space.
Janice Spellerberg and Pat Ruoff rent a space at the Yonge Street Mall where they sell leather goods. Janice studies Canadian history at the University of Toronto.
John Anderson of the Morningstar Trading Company marries his business partner Joan Levy in a ceremony officiated by Ted Steiner. John Anderson, formerly of the Whole Earth Food Store, has a clothing store at 31 Baldwin Street. Ted Steiner, formerly of the Red, White and Black, is a teacher of Kundalini Yoga.
Chris Risk and Caroline Spring move from the Frostpocket to Ganonoque, Ontario, to open a craft shop with the help of a grant from the Government of Ontario. The road at the Frostpocket to the houses belonging to George and Skip is finally passable by car. Previously only the Ford tractor could navigate the rutted muddy trail. Philip and Mary in Heron Bay send $500 for the purchase of welding equipment for the Frostpocket.
Rick McKenna and Steven Bush are commissioned by Toronto Workshop Productions to revise the play “Richard 3rd Rate (3rd Time)” for a fall production in Toronto. They spend a very busy few weeks rewriting the play and taking a crash course in Nixonology and the Watergate break-in.
Steve and Simone Spring with baby Emily move to Glen Lake Avenue in Toronto. After 17 weeks in Heron Bay, Philip Mullins has earned $3,373.48. This is triple his usual per annum earnings.
Philip and Mary return from Heron Bay. Mary lives and works at Ragnarokr in Toronto while Philip works on the buildings at the Frostpocket until November. Randy Rauton and Philip Mullins begin work on a small house for Randy at the Frostpocket.
Tom Bonanno and Ginny Turcotte close their leather shop in Montreal and move to St. Thomas, Ontario, where Tom finds a temporary job with the Parks Department cleaning the city park. He goes on UIC for the winter.
Canada Immigration begins an “Adjustment of Status” or amnesty program for undocumented immigrants, including any American deserters and draft dodgers who are without immigrant papers.
After four years with the Whole Earth Natural Food Store, Jonathan Borah leaves the commune. He and Allen Gold open a clothing store at 24 Baldwin Street named Magus. Its specialty is court garments from Afghanistan. It stays open for about two years. Later he and Allen Gold open the Forbidden Fruit stores selling Laura Ashley products.
The US CIA and Chilean General Pinochet overthrow the elected government of Chile and kill the President, Salvador Allende. Steven Bush writes letters to government officials in Canada and the US asking them to block recognition of the military junta in Chile.
Stan Pietlock and Jack Calhoun of AMEX Magazine have a falling out. Stan Pietlock publishes “The Real Majority Up Here.” Jack Calhoun later leaves Toronto to work for an amnesty for deserters and draft dodgers.
Myra Kaplan moves to the USA with Mary Rauton’s recently recovered seat cushions and thereby creates another international incident.
Chris Risk and Caroline Spring arrive back at the Frostpocket from Ganonoque, Ontario. George installs Wilfred McLaren's old woodburning furnace in the basement of his house and Philip installs George's old furnace in the gate house. A Labor Day picnic at the Frostpocket is attended by George, Colleen and Seth; Philip and Mary; Chris and Caroline: Skip and Judy: Madelyn Averitte and Ish Thalheimer and his dog. During the last year 76% of Ragnarokr’s sales were goods made by the cooperative, 13% were goods placed there on consignment and 8% were jobbed or purchased goods. It averages monthly sales of $1,544. Once again, Ragnarokr is represented at the Fall Gift Show in Toronto by the Ontario Craft Foundation.
Steven Bush and Peggy Florin go to Newfoundland to research the film script about the genocided Beothuck Indians.
Amy Spring, Steve and Simone's second child, is born.
Steven Bush’s play “Richard 3rd Time” plays at Toronto Workshop Productions with a fair degree of popular and critical approval. Steven Bush is moderately gratified but would have been happier if he would have been able to stage it two years earlier.
At Ragnarokr there are 18 crashers during the month of October. The buildings behind 33 Baldwin, including the old Slum Goddess site, are demolished and the Mon Song Old Folk’s Home is built facing D’Arcy Street. At the Frostpocket the roof sheathing is put on the addition to Mary's house and George Mullins is employed to do construction work at Wilfred McLaren’s hunt camp.
The FBI makes its annual visit to Philip Mullins’ parents in Burkeville, Texas.
Philip and Mary take their house pet, a white rabbit, with them from the Frostpocket to Toronto. It lives in the front upstairs room in some bales of straw but is free to wander around the house.
Ragnarokr has a sales stall at the Oakville United Church Outreach Craft Sale.
Israel and its Arab neighbors fight the Yom Kippur War. Arab oil producing states embargo shipments of oil to the U.S., Europe and Japan in retaliation for their support of Israel.
The two pet pigs from the Frostpocket are sent to a slaughterhouse in Powassan to be butchered.
Janice Spellerberg drops out of UT to join Pat Ruoff in Spain. From there she and Pat travel overland to Abidjan, Ivory Coast in West Africa to buy antique Metafiore beads in the town market.
Philip Mullins finishes paying off an $800 student loan from the Coast Guard Welfare Association but takes until 1983 to pay off a Federal student loan of $900.
Ragnarokr imports 678 square feet of latigo leather from Chicago. The store has a booth at the Oakville Art Society Crafts for Christmas sale.
All of the Canadian immigrant aid groups meet in Vancouver, B.C., and agree to support the movement for amnesty for American draft dodgers and deserters. AMEX holds a rally at UT demanding a Universal, Unconditional Amnesty and that the US government respects the Cease-fire Agreement of January 1973.
Ragnarokr has a Christmas meeting at the Frostpocket. On Christmas Day a potluck feast is enjoyed at George and Colleen’s house. Those attending are Philip and Mary; Chris and Caroline; George and Colleen; Skip and Judy and Madelyn Averitte. At a business meeting the following day it is agreed to try to revive the wholesale business and to make a new wholesale catalog. Everyone agrees to build a workshop at Frostpocket the following spring and to construct a pole line to bring electricity to the property. The schedule for manning the retail shop in Toronto is agreed on. Chris Risk sells most of his leather supplies to Ragnarokr and merges his company, Crow Goods, with Fourth World. Fourth World handles the wholesale sales.
Tom Bonanno arrives from London, Ontario, with a quantity of leather bags, which he places in Ragnarokr on consignment. Ragnarokr has retail sales of $1,318 in November and $3,714 in December.
George Mullins and Skip O’Dell purchase a sawmill for $100 and move it to the Frostpocket. George has it installed by the end of January. The next spring Chris Risk’s old pick-up truck is towed from Toronto and in December 1974 is installed as the sawmill’s drive motor. The O’Dells announce that they have decided to move to British Columbia in the spring.
U.S. President Richard Nixon is under investigation for covering up the Watergate break in of 1972. He is forced to release his White House tapes but they are found to have been altered.
Philip Mullins, traveling under the name of George Mullins, and Mary Rauton drive to Texas, Mexico and Guatemala on a shopping trip for Ragnarokr. They purchase huaraches and Panama style hats and visit friends in Tapachula, Chiapas (including Pancho Ruiz, Gustavo Parlange and Rudolfo Morales) and in Tampico on the Gulf Coast. They also visit the coffee plantation of Guillermo Jaeger, El Gadow, in the mountains above Tapachula.
During 1974 Ragnarokr consists of Chris Risk and Caroline Spring, George Mullins and Colleen Anderson, Mary Rauton and Philip Mullins, Steve and Simone Spring, Frank Tettemer and Linda Sorensen, Tom Bonanno and Bie Engelen. Jeff and Debbie Mullins arrive in July from Florida and join the co-operative. Chris Risk and Caroline live and work at the Frostpocket. In March or April the name of the wholesale company is changed from Fourth World to Uplands Manufacturing Company. Uplands has addresses in South River and Toronto.
Bob Dylan’s Rolling Thunder Review plays at the Maple Leaf Gardens.
Ragnarokr’s white rabbit is mated to a rabbit belonging to a neighbor of the Springs.
Liz Cera continues to represent Ragnarokr’s line of leather goods at the Spring Gift Show in Toronto. The new Ragnarokr wholesale catalogue is mailed to our 33 steady wholesale accounts. Ragnarokr has 58 active wholesale accounts, mostly in Ontario but several on the East Coast of the US.
Fletcher Starbuck, Madelyn Averitte, Ruth Lyons and two Tibetan Buddhists named Linda Gillespie and David Burgart are living at 158 McCaul. The Buddhists sat on little black pillows and said, “Trugnpa Rhimapushe”, which meant “Leave the dishes for Madelyn.” Ruth lives on the second floor where Michael and Patricia Ormsby and then Janice Spellerberg had lived previously. Madelyn and Fletcher occupy the third floor where Greg Sperry lived in the 1980s. Some time later Danny Starbuck and Patty Wilson moved into the second and ground floors.
Colleen Anderson and Madelyn Averitte begin writing a semi-autobiographical novel about the Frostpocket.
Philip and Mary return from Mexico and Guatemala with 97 pair of sandals valued at $209 Canadian ($p2284) which will be sold in Ragnarokr on consignment. US Customs searches the truck at Brownsville, Texas, but finds only the sandals and Mary’s stash of calcium for making tortillas.
A large pen is constructed in the basement of 33 Baldwin for the rabbit Mrs. Mullins. She is due at any time.
Once again, Ragnarokr sells leather goods at the Ontario ORT Festival of Crafts in Toronto.
Philip Berrigan and several Vietnamese speak at a rally to denounce the treatment of political prisoners and dissidents in South Vietnam. Cedric Smith and Terry Jones play music and Steve Bush reads poems. The rally is held at a technical high school near Dovercourt and College Streets in Toronto.
Rick McKenna and Steven Bush collaborate on a play for television and on another for the stage. Peggy Florin goes to Vancouver to work with the Anna Wyman Dance Company.
The Ragnarokr cooperative is offered land near the highway just south of South River by the Machar Township Council upon which to build a craft shop. After careful consideration it is decided that the idea is not financially viable. George Mullins and Colleen Anderson and Skip and Judy O’Dell are living at the Frostpocket and Chris Risk, Caroline Spring and Randy Rauton work at the leather shop in Toronto. Frank Tettemer visits the Frostpocket and proposes to rejoin the group. He had been doing work on consignment for several years and occasionally spending two or three weeks working at the leather shop in Toronto. Madelyn Averitte, Fletcher Starbuck and his son Joshua visit as well. Joshua cries the whole time and Madelyn and Colleen work on the novel. George Mullins continues to develop the small sugar bush at the Frostpocket and makes five gallons of maple syrup in an old fashioned flat steel pan that had been donated by Wilfred McLaren. George’s chickens are laying a dozen eggs a day and looking forward to spring.
Skip O’Dell offers to sell his cabin to Steve Spring but Steve declines. Greg Sperry and Bie Engelen buy the cabin and Skip’s old panel truck.
In Toronto, the pet white rabbit gives birth to a litter of bunnies in the basement of 33 Baldwin Street.
Tom Bonanno moves to the Village of Sparta from Ontario, Ontario.
Dave Bush of the Harbinger newspaper organizes a street festival on Baldwin Street. The street is shut to traffic for a street dance and a stage erected at the intersection of Baldwin and Henry Streets. The dance is a success. However, the band refuses to turn down the volume of their rock and roll music and this generates a lot of protests from the neighbors.
Ragnarokr’s landlord, Mr. Weisbrot, increases the rent to $400 for the entire building. The group briefly considers and rejects the idea of sharing storefronts with either the Yellow Ford Truck or The Answer. The white rabbit and her litter are moved into a spacious outdoor pen in the backyard of 33 Baldwin Street and begin digging tunnels.
Tom Bonanno finds work in a sawmill for six months and teaches a course in leatherwork at Fanshaw College in London, Ontario.
The Township of Machar starts paying George one dollar a day to take Seth to meet the school bus in the morning. Seth has to walk the three-quarters of a mile home by himself in the afternoon.
Philip Mullins applies for Canadian citizenship.
Ragnarokr orders a dozen leather bags from the Leather Gypsy in California for resale. This was a trial purchase and an attempt to widen the retail appeal of the leather shop. The bags are well made but some of the craftspeople feel that the jobbed goods are competing with sales of goods of our own manufacture. The purchase is not repeated.
Madelyn goes to visit her parents at their cabin in the mountains of North Carolina.
The Liberal Party of Canada wins another election and Pierre Trudeau remains Prime Minister.
Steve Schatz of Florida State University visits Madelyn and they go to Montreal together.
U.S. President Nixon resigns to avoid impeachment.
AMEX Magazine sponsors an Impeachment Victory Ball following US President Richard Nixon’s resignation. Bands featured are Bill King and the Knights of the Mystic Sea and Tom McKay. Skip and Judy O’Dell leave for British Columbia. Greg Sperry and Bie Engelen move into Skip's log cabin at the Frostpocket.
Performing Arts in Canada publishes a play by Steve Bush entitled “Once A Giant”. It is an allegory of Canadian-American relations and the possibility of deliverance from the militaristic mentality.
Janice Spellerberg sells leathergoods in the Yonge Street Mall under the name of “White Bird Handicrafts.”
The parents of Colleen Anderson and their three youngest children arrive by train for their first visit to Canada.
US President Gerald Ford pardons former President Nixon and announces his “clemency program” for US draft dodgers and deserters. The International Conference of Exiled American War Resisters calls for a boycott of the program. Despite widespread publicity and appeals by the US Government the exile community generally ignores the program.
The Ragnarokr construction crew finishes roofing the workshop at the Frostpocket. The new building contains a two-bay garage and workshop for vehicles, a large leather workshop on the ground floor and an upstairs apartment. Ragnarokr is preparing a new wholesale catalogue for Uplands Manufacturing. In the meantime the Fourth World catalogue is still in use. In an attempt to take advantage of Canada’s liberal unemployment compensation system Colleen and Philip become employees of Ragnarokr. Colleen begins work as the employee in September, works for 20 weeks and is laid off in January 1975. Philip begins work in January and is laid off in April 1975 after having worked 20 weeks. The minimum qualifying period for unemployment compensation (UIC) is 20 weeks.
Frank Tettemer watches the shop in September and October in return for a consignment rate of 15% (compared to the usual rate of 25%). He is making a custom molded sandal modeled after the Birkenstock sandal.
Amy Spring is born.
The US Justice Department issues a list of 6,000 draft resisters who are still wanted for draft related crimes. Philip Mullins and Steve Spring are both on the list. Steve Burdick and Randy Rauton are not.
The Toronto American Exiles Association is formed and, with AMEX Magazine, holds an anti-clemency protest at the US Consulate. The group calls for unconditional amnesty. Vigils continue at the Consulate until April of 1975.
Philip Mullins receives a letter from the US Federal Attorney in Pensacola urging him to consider the Ford Clemency Program. The program requires alternative service. Philip’s father in Louisiana looks for an acceptable job but is unable to find anything that meets the program’s requirements. Larry Langer, a friend of Ragnarokr and a leatherworker of some renown, becomes one of the few men to take advantage of the clemency program.
At Frostpocket work continues on the workshop with the installation of walls and windows. The sawmill is cutting 250 board feet of lumber per day. In 14 days Philip and Randy cut 3,000 board feet of rough cut lumber, mostly planking and 2x4 dimensional lumber. Ragnarokr stops accepting wholesale orders until the spring of 1975. Colleen and Mary are doing much of the wholesale work at the Frostpocket. All attention is focused on producing merchandize for Christmas and finishing work on the buildings at Frostpocket.
Sam Sperry is born to Greg Sperry and Bie Engelen at the Burks Falls Red Cross Hospital.
Steven Bush considers the Ford Clemency Program but decides to apply for Canadian citizenship instead. He authors some poems. Philip Mullins receives a letter from the US Attorney in Pensacola urging him to participate in the President’s Leniency program.
Tom Bonanno gets laid off from the sawmill in Sparta, Ontario, and goes on unemployment (UIC) for the winter.
Revenue Canada audits the now defunct Crow Goods and assesses Chris Risk $75.87 for unpaid Federal Sale Tax for the period January through December 1973.
Philip and Mary, George and Colleen are at the leather shop in Toronto for the Christmas season. The stores sells exceed expectations and new products are introduced. Ragnarokr’s sales for 1974 are $21,070. Payments to the members of the producer’s cooperative are $7,092 and payments for consigned goods are $1,118 including the sandals from Mexico. Rent on the building was $3,015, which includes the subsidy for whoever is in charge of the storefront month by month. That is, the members of the cooperative receive free rent while they are in Toronto and working in the shop.
Madelyn Averitte and Colleen Anderson continue to work on the novel in their spare time. It is based upon a true story about events in a hippie commune near Killaloe but the characters are drawn from the Ragnarokr group. As of the year 2000 the novel remains unfinished. Madelyn is living at 158 McCaul Street and working at the Faculty of Law Library at UT. She gets a short-term grant from the Canada Council to paint watercolors. Fletcher Starbuck’s photos occupy one whole wall at the opening of the Art Gallery of Ontario’s new building. He receives a grant from the Canada Council to travel to Mexico with his camera.
Randy Rauton and Philip Mullins receive Canadian citizenship.
The US Justice Department reviews all outstanding arrest warrants for draft offenses and issues a revised list of 4,400 draft resisters who are still wanted. For a variety of reasons, the charges against thousands of men have been dropped. Philip Mullins and Steve Spring are still on the list. The Toronto Anti-Draft Program and the US American Civil Liberties Union Amnesty Program encourages draft dodgers to seek judicial review of the charge against them. Philip obtains a copy of his file from his draft board and submits it to the ACLU for review. The ACLU or the TADP loses the file and nothing comes of the review. The US Attorney is Pensacola writes that he will not drop the charges against Philip but details the requirements for President Ford's clemency program.
Ragnarokr is given a Federal Sales Tax license and sets up another complex record keeping system for sales tax purposes. Steve Burdick is hired as the part-time bookkeeper and continues in this job until April 1978. Ragnarokr reports an inventory of $2,733 of finished goods belonging to the cooperative, $1,191 finished goods placed in the shop on consignment and $1,865 in materials on hand. Other residents of the house at 33 Baldwin Street are Cindy, Ken Davidson, Isidro Del Bosque and Brenda Matthias.
Madelyn and Fletcher leave for Mexico for three months. Randy Rauton leaves to visit his father in Atlanta, Georgia. He then travels to New Orleans by train and joins Philip and Mary in Burkeville, Texas. The three of them drive the Dodge van to the Yucatan, stopping in Saltillo to visit with Isidro Del Bosque. Philip (now traveling as Steve Burdick), Mary and Randy met Madelyn and Fletcher in a small town called Becal in Campeche. Fletcher is there to photograph the weavers in their subterranean workshops and Philip is there to purchase Panama hats. The five of them and another American couple travel together back towards central Mexico for a few days. In March, Philip, Mary and Randy return to Canada via Palenque, Vera Cruz, Tampico, Laredo and Burkeville, Texas. They bring back 72 pair of sandals worth $149 ($p1868) and 77 Panama hats worth $284 ($p3560).
George Mullins continues to improve the Frostpocket maple sugar bush. He and Greg Sperry make 25 gallons of maple syrup on the old flat pan in the sugarhouse near the log cabin. Colleen is pregnant and pulls a muscle while carrying buckets of sap through the deep snow. She is placed under doctor’s orders to avoid heavy lifting. She is curing and smoking hams and starting tomato plants for the garden.
Paula DeCuir, Rosa Morales and Francisca Ramos, Rudolfo Morals and his father Daniel Morals arrive from Mexico via Montreal in Paula’s Renault car. Rudolf and Daniel leave for Mexico by bus after a week but the girls stay at 33 Baldwin Street in the rear room upstairs. They share the upstairs with Morley Yan in the middle room and Numb (Ruth Ruston) in the front room.
The North Vietnamese seize the city of Saigon. The Khmer Rouge captures Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia.
The AMEX Magazine and the Toronto American Exile Association sponsors a dance to celebrate the Liberation of South Vietnam.
The May Day Pig Roast is held in Greg Sperry’s backyard in Toronto.
Philip and Mary begin using semi-precious stones in their leatherwork. Residents of the house at 33 Baldwin are Chris Risk, Mary Rauton, Numa (Ruth Ruston), Ken Davidson and Cindy.
Tom Bonanno is still living outside Sparta, Ontario. His legibility for unemployment insurance (UIC) runs out.
The Pathet Lao take control of Laos from the U.S. backed government.
Steve Bush is in Newfoundland acting and directing for the Mummers Troupe. He meets an American expatriate from Indianapolis names Roger Bill who is heading up a community attempt to halt some large-scale development in St. Johns, Newfoundland.
Katie Mullins is born to Colleen Anderson and George Mullins in Toronto.
Madelyn Averitte and Mary Burdick organize a Soul Food Pot Luck dinner involving all of the Ragnarokr community. Madelyn works at the Open Studio, visits Frostpocket with Fletcher, plays lots of badminton in the backyard of 33 Baldwin Street and picnics with the Mexican girls on Toronto Island.
Ruth Lyons sells the yurt near Doyle’s Mountain in Renfrew County to Tony Wilson for $50 on the condition that he tear it down. Tony Wilson is Jimmy Wilson’s younger brother. Ruth, Dave Zimmerman, Helen Gilbert and baby Jessica drive up there with a trailer to get Ruth’s piano.
The publication “Survive” lists the following storefronts in the Baldwin Street Village. Imperial Pig, 41 Baldwin St.; Yellow Ford Truck head shop, 39 Baldwin St.; Survive House, 37 Baldwin St.; Ragnarokr leather shop, 33 Baldwin St.; Morningstar Trading imported clothing store, 31 Baldwin St.; Cosmic Egg surplus, 27 Baldwin St.; Letki Designs silver shop, 26 Baldwin St,; Baldwin Natural Food grocery, 20 Baldwin St.; Around Again used records, 18 Baldwin St. George and Colleen, Jeff and Debbie and Rosa Morales are at Ragnarokr. Mary, Philip and Randy are at the Frostpocket. Francisca Ramos leaves to return to her job in Mexico, taking Randy’s love with her. Morley Yan finds a job at the Spaghetti Factory restaurant.
Tom Bonanno is hired by the Public Library in St. Thomas, Ontario, as a part-time reference librarian.
Steven Bush receives Canadian citizenship.
A Greek Pot Luck dinner held at the Burdick’s house on D’Arcy Street involves Jeff and Debbie Mullins, Paula and Michael Letki, Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton, George Mullins and Colleen Anderson, Randy Rauton, Steve and Simone Spring, Madelyn Averitte and Fletcher Starbuck, Steve and Mary Burdick, Bie Engelen and several children. When Steve got out the Bong, Mary left after a while. She didn’t get uptight at first like she usually did. However when she got up to go Philip got up too and Simone said “But you can’t go, Phil. We haven’t even started to talk about antibiotics.”
The unemployment rate in the U.S. is the highest it has been since 1941.
Ragnarokr’s first audit by Revenue Canada results in a refund of $40.74. This is a tribute to Steve Burdick’s work with the cooperative’s bookkeeping system. The rent for 33 Baldwin increases from $375 to $425 per month.
Patricia Hearst and the remnants of the Symbionese Liberation Army are captured in San Francisco.
The Thanksgiving Dinner at Ragnarokr includes Fletcher Starbuck and Madelyn Averette.
Madelyn Averitte and Randy Rauton are running the leather shop. Everyone else is at the Frostpocket.
Paula DeCuir and Rose Morales leave for Mexico in Paula’s car. Randy is planning a trip to Mexico to visit Francisca Ramos in Tapachula, Chiapas.
Madelyn Averitte and Fletcher Starbuck continue to make art and work full time. Fletcher is going carpentry and photography and Madelyn is painting and doing leatherwork.
The Toronto Anti-Draft Program closes after operating for eight years. The American Civil Liberties Union Amnesty Program closes. The National Council of Churches ends its Emergency Ministries program.
Participants at the Christmas dinner at Ragnarokr include Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton, Jeff and Debbie Mullins, George Mullins and Colleen Anderson and their two children Seth and Katie, Madelyn Averitte and Fletcher Starbuck, Brenda Matthias, Randy Rauton and Bie Englen. Ragnarokr’s total sales for 1975 are $21,527. Payments to members of the cooperative are $9,109 and payments for goods on consignment are $584.
The King Lear Expedition, a theater project, involves American expatriates Steven Bush, Anne Bannister, Bill Peden, Gary Stephens and George Taros. Later Chris Hallgren, formerly of the Hall, joins the group. Guertej Singh of 3HO is the group’s yoga teacher and spiritual advisor. Guertej Singh was formerly Ted Steiner of the Red, White and Black American exile organization. The King Lear project continues through April.
Randy Rauton, Debbie Mullins and Numa (Ruth Ruston) are running the leather shop in Toronto.
The U.S. Selective Service System ceases operation.
National Amnesty Week in the USA.
Most of the cast of the King Lear Expedition participates in a demonstration outside of the Art Gallery of Ontario. They are protesting the use of artists’ work to legitimize the Reid Paper Company. The Reid Paper Company is responsible for the mercury pollution of the English and Wabigon Rivers in northern Ontario.
Randy visits in Burkeville, Texas, on his way to Mexico. Traveling by bus, he buys sandals in several cities in central Mexico and ships them by air to Toronto. Bie Engelen arrives by bus from Canada and she and Randy travel through Mexico for three weeks. Bie returns to Canada by air when she learns that she son Sam is sick with pneumonia. Randy continues to travel south to Guillermo Jaeger’s farm in Chiapas.
Mary Rauton, Numa (Ruth) and Pancho Ruiz are living at 33 Baldwin Street. Mary and Madelyn buy four live lobsters at a Chinese market on Spadina Avenue, boil and eat them.
Randy ships 26 hemp bags valued at $42 ($p538) from Mexico City. He carouses with Guillermo in Tuxtla Guiterrez and throughout Chiapas for several weeks.
Randy Rauton returns to Toronto by air. He is suffering from a serious case of Moctuzoma’s revenge.
Philip Mullins submits a quote to supply the Government of Ontario with 5,000 medallions. They don’t get the order.
Ragnarokr purchases 40 pair of Mexican sandals from Morningstar Trading Company. The residents of 33 Baldwin Street are Randy and Bill Rauton, Numa (Ruth Ruston), George and Colleen and Pancho Ruiz.
Tom Bonanno drives a bookmobile called “The Knower’s Ark” for the St. Thomas Public Library.
The Frostpocket is an assessed value of $13,600 with taxes of $123.57.
An American exile and draft dodger named Fritz Efaw is nominated for the Democratic Party vice-presidential candidacy at the US Democratic National Convention. He then surrenders to waiting US Marshals.
Philip Mullins receives a Uniform Loss of Nationality Letter from the US Department of State. The letter states that by becoming a Canadian citizen he had voluntarily relinquished his US citizenship.
Mao Tse-tung, the founder and long-time Chairman of the Communist Party of China, dies.
Bie Engelen and Randy Rauton exchange rings and wedding vows at an unofficial wedding at Ragnarokr.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton man the leather shop in Toronto.
In an interview with the US Consul in Toronto, Philip denies having renounced US citizenship. He appeals the decision. Four years later the Consulate receives authorization to issue a US Passport to him.
George Mullins and Colleen Anderson run the leather shop in Toronto.
Madelyn Averitte’s mother visits Madelyn in Toronto. She hosts parties for the Burdicks, Brenda Matthias, Barb Wilson and Janice Spellerberg and becomes acquainted with almost everyone in the Baldwin Street village community.
Jimmy Carter is elected U.S. President.
An episode of the American television serial “All in the Family” features the sympathetic treatment of a draft dodger returning from Canada. The event is well publicized in Canada and groups of exiles gather to watch the program.
Madelyn Averitte and Fletcher Starbuck host the community’s annual Christmas Party at their apartment at 158 McCaul Street.
Philip and Mary and George and Colleen run the shop at Toronto. George and Philip cut trees at the Frostpocket and sell them in front of the Ragnarokr storefront. Madelyn makes a poster advertising the tree sale and it is posted on Hydro poles all over the downtown area. In 1976 Ragnarokr’s total sales are $21,527. Payments to members of the cooperative are $9,109 and payments for consigned goods are $584. Rent was $2,850.
US President Jimmy Carter issues a Proclamation of Pardon that grants unconditional amnesty to all draft dodgers not wanted for other offenses. The National Council for Unconditional Universal Amnesty international conference held at the Lord Simcoe Hotel in Toronto includes a few participants from the exile community in Toronto. The conference welcomes President Carter’s amnesty but calls for an amnesty for deserters and “bad-paper” veterans.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton are at the leather shop in Toronto. George Mullins, Colleen Anderson and Chris Risk are at the Frostpocket. Seth is going to school in Toronto and Bill Rauton is going to school in South River. Mary becomes the employee at Ragnarokr from January until May. From May until October Bill Rauton is the employee. After a review of operating expenses from 1971 until 1976 Ragnarokr votes to decrease the craftsman’s share of the retail sale price from 40% to 35% beginning in January 1978.
George Mullins is elected to the Board of Directors of the Machar Township Agricultural Society. Mel McLaren is President. George and Colleen are appointed delegates to a convention on February 16 at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto. They are charged with contracting for the midway carnival rides for the Agricultural Fair in South River in the fall.
Madelyn Averitte and Barb Wilson leave to visit Madelyn’s mother in Florida. On the way they visit Steve Schatz in Albany, Georgia.
Ragnarokr is buying woven net bags made in the jail at San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas from a Canadian girl named Amber Past. Philip and Mary run the shop until midmonth when George and Colleen take over. Colleen is an employee of Ragnarokr from February until December 1977 when she is laid off again. The registered owners of Ragnarokr are George Mullins and Bie Engelen. Everyone else is technically an employee of Ragnarokr and hence able to participate in the government’s unemployment insurance scheme.
Andrew Mullins is born to George and Colleen Mullins in Toronto on March 12. In late March Randy and Mary Rauton, Philip and George Mullins, Colleen and the three children travel south to visit Randy’s father in Atlanta and George and Philip’s parents in Burkeville, Texas. On the trip back in the Dodge van they encounter an ice storm near Chatham, Ontario, after nightfall. The drive to Tom Bonanno’s house near Sparta, a distance of 50 miles, takes six hours. The refugees from the storm arrive in Sparta at 5:30 am and are stranded at Tom’s house for two and a half days until the road to Toronto is reopened.
Chris Risk is living in the Frostpocket and consigning leather goods at Ragnarokr. Jeff and Debbie Mullins take care of the leather shop while everyone else is away.
The US Consul in Toronto sends Philip Mullins two questionnaires in an attempt to determine whether or not he intended to relinquish US citizenship. In return, he submits a Memorandum of Law prepared for David Zimmerman by the American Civil Liberties Union arguing against the Government’s contention.
Open Circle Theatre in Toronto produces the theater play “Lovejoy’s Nuclear War” about a man named Sam Lovejoy who sabotaged nuclear equipment in Massachusetts. Steven Bush writes the play in collaboration with fellow expatriate Sylvia Tucker. Gary Stephens plays the title role. The play is performed in repertory with another play, “Westroy Hotel”, by expatriate Chris Halogen. The program is titled “Double Exposure”.
Ragnarokr is offered the storefront at 32 Baldwin Street by the City of Toronto but declines it. John Lastraca eventually signs the lease and the Bodega Restaurant is later opened there. Madelyn Averitte’s advertising poster, Ragnarokr Sandals Stand-Up, is plastered on Hydro poles all over downtown Toronto. The poster is a commercial and artistic success. George Mullins makes maple sugar candies and sells them to health food stores in downtown Toronto. Philip and Mary purchase 19 rope bags from Amber Past to sell in Ragnarokr. Ragnarokr’s bookkeeper has to keep track of sales of 14 categories of good for Federal Sales Tax purposes. Each category of sales is taxed at a different rate. Philip begins a long correspondence with Revenue Canada with the intention of avoiding Federal Sales and Excise Taxes altogether.
Madelyn Averitte, Fletcher Starbuck, his son Joshua and their dog Rumi travel across Canada and down through the American West.
Philip and Mary alternate working in Toronto with George and Colleen. Each family selects three and a half or four months of the year when they will assume responsibility for Ragnarokr. Randy Rauton is usually in Toronto and Steve Burdick continues to do the books. All hands gather in Toronto in November from the Christmas season. Christmas sales usually account for 30% of the store’s annual sales.
After applying to Machar Township for permission to divide the Frostpocket into smaller lots, Philip learns that the Ontario Government will not permit isolated properties to be subdivided. As an alternative, the deed to Lot 19, Concession 2, Machar Township is changed to add Randy Rauton and Chris Risk to George and Philip Mullins as joint tenants.
Our contact in Mexico stops sending goods from Chiapas when the payment for her last shipment gets lost at some hippie commune in Vermont.
Hot summer weather results in a good sandal season for Ragnarokr. George, Colleen and Randy run the storefront while Mary and Philip are at the Frostpocket. Ruth Ruston, known as Numa, rents a room at 33 Baldwin.
George and Philip Mullins apply for Ontario Home Renewal Program loans to finish the houses at the Frostpocket. Philip gets a loan of $4,640.54 for a septic system and materials to finish Mary’s house.
Tom Bonanno and Ginny Turcotte visit the Frostpocket for five days and stay in the apartment above the workshop.
George purchases a 1969 International Harvester station wagon. He fabricates a single axle trailer from the bed of Chris’ old pick up. The front half of the truck is already being used to power the sawmill.
George Mullins and Colleen Anderson are in charge of the Ragnarokr store this month.
Philip Mullins travels to New York State with some men from the Seventh Day Adventist settlement near South River. They spend several days repairing buildings at a rundown lake resort near New York City. At the international border he is told that he is listed as having renounced his US citizenship. Nelson Frappier, the group’s leader, has to sign a bond before Philip can enter the US.
Philip Mullins is the Ragnarokr employee from November 1977 until March 1978.
Steve Bush goes to the 3HO Winter Solstice festivities in Florida with Guertej Singh and other expatriates. Afterward he gets to ride to Cincinnati, Ohio, with a Canadian man who had joined the US Army and gone to Vietnam. He attends a Bush family reunion in Ohio where there is general agreement to avoid sticky issues and have a good time. George Mullins and Colleen Anderson get married at Toronto City Hall. Madelyn Averitte and Mary Rauton attend as witnesses. Fletcher Starbuck is the photographer. The wedding party at Ragnarokr includes Lisa Steele, Janice Spellerberg, Greg Sperry, Ann Weatherby, Judy Holman, Chuck Wall, Steve and Mary Burdick, Steve and Simone Spring, Brenda Matthias, Stewart and Pat, David Anderson and many others.
Philip Mullins goes to a trip to Yuchi Pines, Alabama, to visit a school for Physician’s Assistants. He decides against attending the school but doesn’t return until January and misses his brother’s wedding.
Once again George and Philip sell Christmas trees in front of the Ragnarokr storefront. Ragnarokr’s total sales for 1977 are $23,424. Payments to the cooperative members are $3,172, payments for consigned goods are $536 and wage payments to Colleen, Philip and Mary are $3,500. The stores sales in December total only $3,000 because only small items sold well. The store has $1,000 in the bank.
George and Philip’s uncle Robert Mullins passes through Toronto on his way to visit his family in Tennessee for the holidays.
Randy Rauton and Bie Engelen go to Belgium and stay until June of 1979. Randy works as a carpenter and hotel maintenance worker while living at Bie’s mother’s house. Bie attends a school for midwives but quits after a short while and finds work as a secretary. Mary calls Randy in Belgium and gets telephone bill for $50. She manages to get it reduced to $36.
Uplands Manufacturing Company ceases to operate. Ragnarokr offers a subsidy of $75 every two weeks to whoever has charge of the shop in Toronto instead of simply paying their rent. The craftsman’s percentage of the retail sale price drops to 35% from 40%. Both changes amount to a decrease in pay.
Numa (Ruth Ruston) and Mary Rauton drive to the US South with Doctor and Mrs. Ruston. Numa visits with Jeff and Debbie Mullins in Pensacola, Florida and Mary visits with her mother in Atlanta, Georgia.
After over a year of negotiations Ragnarokr is given the status of a “small manufacturer.” This means that the Federal Sales Tax license it was given in January 1975 will be cancelled. The shop will no longer have to keep track of 14 categories of sales. Steve Burdick resigns as the bookkeeper after three years service in April when the FST license in cancelled.
Ragnarokr hires Bill Rauton as a trainee for May and June and again in August through October. He probably worked 20 weeks. Bill returned to Toronto to avoid friction with his father in Atlanta, Georgia.
Ragnarokr is assessed $220.30 by Revenue Canada for its inventory when the FST license was cancelled in March.
Philip receives unemployment compensation (UIC) for a month while living in South River but is cut off in July for not maintaining contact with the UIC office in North Bay.
Paula DeCuir arranges to marry a friend for immigration purposes. She moves to live with her husband’s family in Kitchener, Ontario but the deal sours and she returns to Toronto. The Multicultural History Society of Ontario accepts a proposal by Philip and Mary to do twenty taped interviews of American draft dodgers. The Society will provide a tape recorder and pay $20 per tape.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton attend Mary’s family reunion in North Carolina and stay several days with Mary’s brother in South Mills, North Carolina. Mary and Philip are having marital problems.
Philip Mullins enrolls in a two-year full-time program at George Brown College in Toronto to learn about residential heating. He and George are considering starting a business manufacturing and selling wood burning heating equipment. He attends the College and works at Ragnarokr part-time until the summer break in May.
Janice Spellerberg and Steve Burdick begin a series of Friday night presentations for the Baldwin Village community. Topics include ‘The Druids” by Steve Burdick’s at Janice Spellerberg’s apartment at Robert Street; “Atomic Energy” by Janice and Philip Mullins at the leather shop; “Art in Everyday Life” by Ken Hopper at the leather shop and “Art and Music and Parapsychology”.
Philip learns that Laura Jones and John Phillips are planning to publish some of their photos of Baldwin Street. To compliment their work, he undertakes to write a history of the American exile community of Baldwin Street. He complies a six-page chronology of events that he believes were important to the community and distributes it to 23 persons and awaits their response.
Paula DeCuir flees her husband Mike in Kitchner and goes into hiding at 33 Baldwin Street. Philip acts as a mediator between the Paula and her husband and helps Paula get a divorce. A judge in Toronto grants her the divorce.
The Canadian dollar falls to a 45-year low against the U.S. dollar.
Francisco Ramos sends 50 Panama hats to Ragnarokr from Mexico.
Janice Spellerberg and Mary Mullins begin interviewing members of the American exile community for the Ontario Multi-Cultural Historical Society. Over the next four months they tape interviews with Mary Burdick, Tom Bonanno, Madelyn Averitte, Abraham Blank, Steven Bush, Brian Dragon of Sparta, Daniel Hennessey, Don Holman, Ken Hopper, Laura Jones, Kent Lawrence, Philip Mullins, Michael Ormsby, Janice Spellerberg, John Phillips, Fletcher Starbuck, Gary Stephens, Frank Tettermer, Jimmy Wilson and Dave Zimmerman.
Mary Rauton’s son, Bill, is attending school in South River. He boards with the Seven-Day Adventist community at Woodland Park until he is caught skipping school. He refuses to cooperate with the Adventists and goes to Toronto to live with his mother. Ragnarokr purchases a 1963 Ford stake truck for $275 from Woodland Park for use at the Frostpocket.
900 adherents of the People’s Temple in the settlement at Jonestown, Guyana, die in a suicide pact.
Olabanji Famewo, a native of Nigeria and a itinerant book salesman for the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, leaves Woodland Park near South River and moves into 33 Baldwin Street. He finds a job at Silverstein’s bakery on McCaul Street using the name of Philip Mullins. His objective is to move to the US. After four or five unsuccessful attempts to cross the border at Detroit, he finally manages to cross the border at Niagara Falls. He travels to Chicago where he eventually marries an American woman. Several Mexicans had already worked at Silverstein’s using Philip’s identification and the manager there recognized the name but not the man.
George and Philip sell Christmas trees in front of Ragnarokr again. For 1978 Ragnarokr’s payments to members of the cooperative are $6,185 and payments for consignment goods are $1,246. Rent for the building at 33 Baldwin Street is $500 per month. Philip’s annual earnings for 1978 of $3,392 are the highest since he worked in Heron Bay in 1973. His annual earnings from Ragnarokr for the previous eight years have averaged $1,154.
Ragnarokr and the Springs consider the purchase of a two-story house with a storefront on Queen Street East in the Beaches for $57,000. In a fateful decision the group decides against the purchase. In a few years the area has become the focus of a community of craft shops and property values jump dramatically all over Toronto.
Beginning in January 1979 and continuing until May 1980 Ragnarokr reduces its co-op payments to a 30% share of the retail price. Hard times as usual during the winter months.
Paula DeCuir flies to India where she marries Manjit in both civil and religious ceremonies. Her divorce from Mike has yet to be finalized so Manjit stays in India.
Janice Spellerberg moves to Miami, Florida, to live. She gives Greg Sperry a ride in her VW to Tampa, Florida, where Greg’s father is living.
Madelyn and Fletcher Starbuck move to San Antonio, Texas. George and Colleen Mullins make a trip to visit them and George’s parents in Burkeville, Texas. They swing by Pensacola, Florida, to visit Jeff and Debbie as well.
Two aspiring authors from Ottawa, Dave Bennett and Earl St. John, rent the back room upstairs at 33 Baldwin Street to write a screenplay. Heather Bruce, Dave’s girlfriend, is in Key West, Florida. They speak almost daily on the telephone throughout February and March resulting in a huge telephone bill. Mary calls it the Great Key West Number.
Mary Rauton and Laura Jones present a symposium at York University on the American community. They use excerpts from Mary’s interviews with American draft dodgers and Laura’s slides of Baldwin Street. The symposium is called “Camera in the City.”
In San Antonio, Madelyn Starbuck has found a model and confidant by the name of Diego Vaca. She is planning a diptych of Diego and his son in two poses. Her baby is due on April Fool’s Day and she and Fletcher take Lamaze classes.
Ruth Lyons is the employee at Ragnarokr during April and May and again in July and August 1979.
Bill Rauton, Mary’s son, returns to Atlanta, Georgia.
The Progressive Conservation Party of Canada wins the Federal election and Joe Clark replaces Pierre Trudeau as the Prime Minister of Canada.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton arrive back at the Frostpocket, having spent the last nine months in Toronto.
Randy returns from Europe. He goes to Atlanta, Georgia, to visit his family and then returns to Ragnarokr.
David Bennet and Earl St. John spend the month at George’s house at the Frostpocket, working on another screenplay. This one is about Padre Pio of Italy. They are friends of Dan Akaroyd, an actor and comedian on a TV skit called Saturday Night Live.
Philip Mullins, Randy Rauton and Chris Risk sign a contract to act in concert in matters relating to the sale of their shares in the Frostpocket.
Nicaragua’s President Anastosio Somoza is overthrown by the Sandinistas after a bloody civil war.
Philip and Mary are at the Frostpocket. They live at the Frostpocket for June, July and August with a steady flow of visitors from Toronto, mostly Mary’s women friends. Philip is building the chimney and arguing with Mary. Their relationship is finished.
Ruth Lyons begins working steadily at Ragnarokr until May of 1980. She returns to work there again for the Christmas season of 1980.
Colleen Mullins and Bie Engelen both work at Morningstar Trading Company four hours each day ironing clothes. They also work at Ragnarokr. Seth, Katie, Sam and Thomas are all in school in Toronto.
Philip Mullins and Mary Rauton split up. Mary goes to live at the Catholic Worker in New York City and Philip returns to school at George Brown College where he is on the student council. George Mullins also enrolls at George Brown College to learn welding. He is also on the student council and is in charge of the film program. They both receive honoraria of $25 a week.
Baldwin Street is closed to traffic for the Baldwin Fair, a one-day street party.
Paula DeCuir returns to Toronto from India and moves into 33 Baldwin. Manjit stays with Paula’s parents in Vera Cruz, Mexico, until his immigration papers are in order.
George and Colleen are living at Ragnarokr while George attends George Brown College full-time and works at Ragnarokr in the evenings. From October until February 1980, Ragnarokr hires Colleen in a trainee position with Randy Rauton as the instructor. Both jobs are subsidized by Canada Manpower.
Philip Mullins and Janice Spellerberg have a brief affair during which their son Martin Coleman is conceived. Janice is living at an apartment at 88 Bernard Street and Philip is boarding with the Burdick’s at 19 D’Arcy Street. They announce their intention to be married.
Randy and Bie Engelen split up. Bie moves to Toronto Island and Randy moves to the Burdick’s house on D’Arcy Street. He goes to Atlanta to visit his father and siblings. Mary Burdick and her two children are preparing for conformation in the Catholic Church.
Ragnarokr hosts a Halloween party. Debbie organizes a haunted house in the basement with Jeff in the role of Dead Fred and George and Philip providing the vocals.
Philip Mullins receives a bursary for $250 for his work at George Brown College where he is a straight A student. Janice breaks off her engagement to Philip and refuses to see him until the baby is born in April.
100 U.S. Embassy staff are taken hostage in Iran.
Randy Rauton returns from Atlanta and Mary Rauton comes from New York City for a Christmas visit and to attend the confirmation of Mary, Alice and Brendan Burdick.
Those living at 33 Baldwin Street are Paula DeCuir, Heather Bruce, Colleen and George Mullins and their three children. Randy and Philip Mullins are rooming with the Burdick’s on D’Arcy Street. Bill Rauton is in Toronto until April of 1981. The rent on the building at 33 Baldwin Street is $550 a month. Ragnarokr subsidizes rent for the members of the cooperative up to $150 per month. Ragnarokr pays $200 for the storefront and $150 for the workshop downstairs. The other rooms rent for $85 for the upstairs rear room, $103.50 for the upstairs middle room and $136.50 for the upstairs front room.
Ragnarokr’s sales for 1979 are $19,950. Payments to the member of the cooperative are $3,789, payments for consigned items $2,389 and rent $3,887. During the year the coop consisted of Philip and Mary, Bill and Randy Rauton, George and Colleen Mullins, Steve Spring and Bie Engelen. Consignment workers are Louis Emond, Ken Davidson, Ruth Lyons and Steve Spring. Consignment workers supply their own tools and materials whereas co-op workers use tools and materials supplied by the leather shop. In a sense, the co-op workers are to owners of the shop and the consignment workers are guests. Important decisions were made by consensus of the co-op workers.
Seth Anderson goes to the island of Guam to spend six months with his grandparents.
The US Consulate in Toronto refuses to accept Philip Mullins’ application for Registration until the Loss of Nationality issue is resolved. They are waiting for the Passport Office to make a decision.
Philip and George Mullins are both in school and working at Ragnarokr in their spare time. Philip is also rewriting the constitution of the George Brown College Casa Loma Campus student council and doing campaign work for the New Democratic Party.
With Mary Rauton and the Starbucks gone and George, Colleen and Philip Mullins all planning to leave for Texas within the next year, the consensus of the group is to give the leather shop to Steve Spring and Randy Rauton. However Randy is undecided whether to continue working in the shop or to learn another trade. He eventually returns to school and becomes a secondary school teacher.
Randy accepts a job offer from his father and leaves to supervise a construction site near Atlanta for six weeks.
The Liberal Party of Canada wins another Federal election and Pierre Trudeau returns as Prime Minister.
Bie Engelen and George and Colleen Mullins are running the leather shop. Randy Rauton is in Florida renovating a cottage in Tampa for his father. Philip is heavily involved with reorganization of student government at his school and in mediating a dispute between Philip Wharton of the La Bodega Restaurant and the Hydro Block Tenants Association.
Janice Spellerberg’s son, Martin, is born two months prematurely at Mount Sinai Hospital.
Manjit Dhaliwal arrives from Mexico. He and his wife, Paula DeCuir, leave for Edmonton, Alberta where Manjit is offered a job with Canada Dry.
A U.S. airborne commando raid to rescue the hostages in Iran fails diastrously.
Randy Rauton returns to the leather shop from Georgia but later leaves again to work with his father.
Philip visits the baby Martin and his mother in the hospital almost daily until the baby is discharged from the hospital. Over the next four years he sends $4,500 to Janice for the baby’s expenses. He leaves Toronto for Texas in a Toyota that he and Dave Zimmerman purchased from a scrap yard.
Ruth Lyons Zimmerman gets her hair caught in the polishing line at Ragnarokr and loses a patch of her hair.
The voters in Quebec reject the Parti Quebecois plan for partial independence from Canada.
Philip Mullins stays with Jeff and Debbie Mullins in Pensacola, Florida for almost six weeks and the three of them work as enumerators in the 1980 US Census. Debbie is pregnant with their second child, Loren. They buy the house on Rue Max in Warrington.
Philip Mullins stops for a few weeks in Osyka, Mississippi, to visit his uncles Claude and Julio, his grandfather George and other relatives.
Bie Engelen assumes the bookkeeping duties at the leather shop.
Philip Mullins finds a job designing air conditioning systems in Beaumont, Texas. He stays in Beaumont until June of 1983 working as a field engineer.
George and Colleen are in the Frostpocket by themselves. George enters some handicrafts in the South River Agricultural Fair and begins repairing the wrecked Dodge van for their trip to Texas. Dave and Ruth Zimmerman visit for a few days.
The rent for 33 Baldwin Street increases to $600 a month.
Steve Spring and Bie Engelen are running Ragnarokr. Randy Rauton is still in Georgia working for his father’s contracting company.
George and Colleen Mullins and their children arrive in Burkeville, Texas where they live until September, 1982 in a rented house about a quarter of a mile from that of George’s parents. George finds work on a construction crew building a new gymnasium at the Burkeville School. He is the replacement for a worker who had fallen to his death the day before.
Janice Spellerberg and the baby Marty leave Toronto for Kansas City, Missouri, to be near her parents.
Chris Risk and his wife June and their two children return to Woodland Park near South River after fourteen months in Alberta. He joins the staff of the bakery. The bakery supplies bread to the health food store the Adventists run in North Bay.
The US Passport Office final determines that Philip Mullins is still a US citizen despite having been nationalized in Canada. He pays $12 and is issued a passport.
Philip Mullins begins regular support payments for Martin Spellerberg of about $100 a month.
Ronald Reagan is elected U.S. President.
Randy has returned to Ragnarokr once again. He, Bie Engelen and Steve Spring continue to run the leather shop. Mary Rauton is in New York City.
Madelyn Averette and Fletcher Starbuck are still in San Antonio, Texas, where Fletcher works delivering milk. He dreams of the “whiteness.”
Janice Spellerberg is living in Blue Springs, near Kansas City, Missouri, and working part-time as a secretary.
George, Philip and Colleen Mullins build a greenhouse in Burkeville, Texas, to supply starter plants for the Newton Feed Store in Newton, Texas. Their parents, George and Hazel Mullins Jr., own the feed store in partnership with Robert Jackson. George is working at the Weirgate Sawmill as the millwright’s assistant. Colleen takes care of the tomato and pepper bedding plants in the greenhouse.
Randy Rauton in Toronto learns that he owe $2,000 in taxes from his earnings in Belgium in 1978. Randy’s younger brother, Bill, is living in Toronto again. In April his siblings in Atlanta agree to pay for his plane fare back to Atlanta. Randy goes with him to the airport and loans Bill $10 for the trip.
Philip Mullins, still living and working in Beaumont, Texas, joins the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America but soon gets bored with the “moon and spoon” lyrics.
Lucus Starbuck is born in Austin, Texas.
Mary Rauton visits Philip in Beaumont and Burkeville for several days. George and Colleen and the kids come down to Beaumont for the weekend and they all drive down to the coast and purchase shrimp from a packing house at Sabine Pass.
J uly 1981
Colleen Mullins’ parents, Joe and Moreen Murphy from The Territory of Guam, visit in Burkeville. They are on a round the world trip to study island governments. Joe Murphy is the editor and a writer for the Guam Daily News newspaper.
Philip Mullins begins making monthly payments to Chris Risk to purchase Chris’ share of the Frostpocket.
Janice Spellerberg and the baby Marty come to live with Philip Mullins in Beaumont in late July. She becomes depressed and returns to Kansas City at the end of August.
During 1981 the Ragnarokr cooperative consisted of Bie Engelen, Ruth Lyons, Randy, Bill and Mary Rauton. Consignment workers are Steve Spring, Bie Engelen and Ruth Lyons. Ragnarokr has total sales of $25,976. Payments to the coop are $7,300 and for consignment items $5,134. Rent was $6,175 for the year.
In Burkeville, George Mullins is working as a carpenter. The old hunter’s cabin on the Pinetop property is enlarged for use as a guesthouse. Colleen’s niece, Kristy, comes from Guam for a six-month visit. Christmas visitors include Jeff and Debbie Mullins and the baby Sarah, Diane Mullins, her husband Bruce and Diane’s two children, Louis and Rachel Herald.
George, Colleen and Philip are planning to move back to Ontario in the summer. Colleen, Katie, Andrew and Philip visit Madelyn and Fletcher in Austin and Philip his ordained as a minister in the Universal Life Church of Modesto, California.
By the fall of 1981 four people had submitted additions to the six-page chronology written by Philip Mullins in 1978. The responses from Steve Bush, Janice Spellerberg, Colleen Mullins and Mary Rauton are incorporated into the original chronology and mailed to 25 persons between March and June of 1982. The chronology had grown to 22 pages in length.
Randy Rauton, Bie Engelen and Steve Spring are running Ragnarokr. Mary Rauton is at the Catholic Worker House in New York City.
Wilfred McLaren’s daughter is living at Mary’s house at the Frostpocket and exchanging repairs and maintenance for rent.
George and Colleen Mullins are still living in Burkeville, Texas. He is erecting metal buildings for a contractor and she is tending the greenhouse. George and Philip are collecting and reproducing photographs of their ancestors. Tom Bonanno is living in Santa Barbara, California, and tending an herb garden in the mountains.
Janice Spellerberg and the baby are living in Kansas City. She passes an examination and is certified as a Court Reporter.
Philip Mullins joins the Beaumont chapter of Amnesty International after a search reveals that there are no progressive organizations in the region. A worldwide surplus of petroleum has slowed down most oil field related businesses and his workweek is cut to four days. He continues to work in Beaumont and commutes on weekends to his parent’s place in Burkeville about 80 miles away.
The Fin dies. He and his wife ran the Finnish Grocery at D’Arcy and McCaul in Toronto.
Madelyn Starbuck is teaching exercise classes for women in Austin. She calls them Stretch and Strength and her clients are new mothers. Her emphasis is on post-partum fitness.
Times are hard in Toronto. Over a million people in Canada are unemployed.
Janice Spellerberg learns that she can get her old job at the Ontario Hansard. She and Marty visit Philip in Beaumont, Texas, for a week and he gives her a check for $1500 Canadian to help with her moving expenses to Toronto.
Colleen has decided to study nursing. She and George move to Austin, Texas, where she enrolls in Austin Community College. Fletcher Starbuck and Madelyn Averette are already living in Austin. Fletcher and George begin working together doing finish carpentry.
In Austin, George and Fletcher are contractors specializing in kitchen renovation. Colleen has found work through temporary agencies as a receptionist and secretary.
Janice Spellerberg and Marty move back to Toronto from Kansas City.
Ragnarokr’s sales for 1982 are $36,093. Co-op payments are $9,238 and consignment payments $10,473. Co-op workers are Randy and Mary Rauton, Kathleen and Bie Engelen. Consignment workers are Steve Spring, Bie Engelen and Ruth Lyons. Steve Spring accounts for 85% of the consignment sales. Rent was $7,523.
The effects of the oil glut has resulted in a massive lay-off of oil field and oil field equipment workers in Beaumont, Texas, and elsewhere. Unemployment is the highest it has been since 1941.
Philip Mullins is still working at Air Comfort, Inc. in Beaumont, meeting with the Beaumont chapter of Amnesty International and singing with the youth choir at the Burkeville Baptist Church.
Morley Yan in Toronto loses his motorcycle and his job.
Wilfred McLaren’s daughter, Carol Fogarty, leaves the house at the Frostpocket where she can no longer coup with the cold. The house remains empty until spring when a camp for delinquent children rents it for the summer. Mary Rauton suggests that the house be used to house refugees from El Salvador.
Mary Rauton visits with friends in Toronto and in Machar Township. She finds everything at the Frostpocket unchanged.
Philip Mullins makes the last regular monthly payment to Janice to help with Marty’s expenses. At a meeting of the Amnesty International Death Penalty group in Austin, Philip is assigned the task of researching and producing literature to be used in a campaign to abolish the death penalty in Texas.
Mary Rauton spends the month in Atlanta with her children and her mother.
Philip Mullins quits his job in Beaumont. He and his nephew Seth Anderson travel to Toronto together in his 1972 Chevy Nova. They visit relatives and friends in Mississippi, Florida, Georgia, Virginia, New York City and Pennsylvania. They spend a month at Janice Spellerberg’s apartment on Laxton Avenue in Toronto and arrive back in Texas in early August. While in Toronto, Philip works at the Ragnarokr leather shop. In New York City he and Seth stay at Steve Watson's apartment while Philip researches the AI Death Penalty files and Seth tours the Big Apple. They visit Carol Huebner in her loft near Greenwich Village. While in Ontario, Seth, Morley Yan and Philip visit the Frostpocket.
Mary Rauton attends a Catholic Worker national gathering in Darlington, New Jersey. Her son Randy asks her to run Ragnarokr while he returns to school. Her ex-husband’s contracting business in Atlanta is facing bankruptcy. Bill Rauton and two of his brothers work in their dad’s business.
Janice Spellerberg, Philip Mullins and Marty and Seth visit the Frostpocket for a weekend and stay at George's house. Philip’s friend from George Brown College, Steve Bone, and his girlfriend join them for the weekend. The summer camp closes for the winter and the house at the Frostpocket is empty again. Seth and Philip leave Toronto and return to Austin, Texas on August 11.
While the oil business in Texas is collapsing, the construction business in Austin is booming. George Mullins and Fletcher Starbuck are installing Corian countertops for developers and real estate speculators in homes all over town. Jeff and Debbie with their daughter Sarah move from Pensacola to Austin after a short trip to Toronto. Jeff and Philip both work with George and Fletcher installing countertops. Jeff, Debbie and Philip rent a house together.
The rent at 33 Baldwin Street in Toronto is increased to $900 per month.
Maurice Bishop, the Prime Minister of Grenada, is killed during a military coup. Six days later the US invades the island and overthrows the government. A march for peace at Queen’s Park in Toronto on October 22 draws over 50,000 participants.
Philip Mullins sends Janice Spellerberg $2,000 Canadian to invest for Marty’s education.
At a meeting in Austin of the Amnesty International Texas State Action Committee to Abolish the Death Penalty, Philip introduces a catalog of 153 items in the group’s library. The catalog is distributed statewide to anti-death penalty groups.
Mary Rauton is in Atlanta when her mother, Nadine Manning, dies.
Ragnarokr’s sales for 1983 were $34,416. Mary and Randy Rauton, Kathleen and Philip Mullins received a total of $8,117 in co-op payments. Consignment payments of $11,642 were paid to Steve Spring (80%) and Bie Engelen (10%). Rent was $6,168. A shop inventory shows $2,837 in goods belonging to the co-op and $10,188 in consigned goods, 90% of which belonged to Steve Spring. Randy and his fiancée Kathleen are living at 33 Baldwin Street.
Mary Rauton visits Toronto for Christmas. She works at Ragnarokr and helps sell the mistletoe sent up from Austin. While there she arranges for Penny Stoker to rent the house at the Frostpocket. Penny Stoker owns a health food store in South River and lives in the Frostpocket year round. Penny pays a small sum to Wilfred McLaren and he spends the money on maintaining the building and the road.
In Austin, Philip, George, Colleen, Jeff and Debbie Mullins and Fletcher and Madelyn Starbuck rent a lot and sell Christmas trees. George and Jeff drive a rented flatbed to Jeff’s property at Rye, Ontario, and cut 500 trees. They drop off a load of mistletoe at Ragnarokr on the way up. They load the trees and head south just ahead of a winter storm. The group keeps the lot in Austin open until Christmas eve and sells all but four or five of the trees. After expenses, the proceeds of the sale are divided up based upon each persons labor contribution in hours. Colleen’s parents and two sisters from Guam visit Austin during a rare period of subfreezing weather. Debbie’s parents from Pensacola also visit for Christmas, bring bags of oysters and fish.
Janice Spellerberg moves to 19 Carr Street Court in the Alexandra Park Housing Co-op.
Mary Rauton is in Toronto for a medical examination following a partial loss of hearing. The Globe and Mail Newspaper interview her and her son Randy and their photo is published in the newspaper.
Philip purchases fire insurance on the house at Frostpocket to satisfy the terms of the home improvement loan from the Township of Machar.
Philip Mullins and his mother, Hazel Mullins, travel to Tapachula in Chiapas, Mexico, where he marries Rosa Morales, a long-time friend and correspondent. He and his mother spend three weeks in Mexico, mostly on trains and buses. They visit Nuevo Laredo, Mexico City, Oaxaca, Vera Cruz and San Antonio, Texas.
In Austin, Texas, Philip Mullins makes the last payment on the Ontario Home Renewal Program loan of August 1977. The money had been used to finish Mary’s house at the Frostpocket. He also makes application to the Immigration and Naturalization Service in San Antonio for permission for Rosa and her daughter Wendy to immigrate to the US. He waits for two years without result.
In the Texas Democratic Party Presidential Primary, Jessie Jackson gets 11% of the vote in Precinct 341 in Travis County, Harts gets 40% and Mondale 39%. Philip joins the precinct caucus and is selected to be a Delegate to the Travis County Convention as a delegate pledged to Jessie Jackson. He seeks to be nominated to attend the State Convention but finds that there are no vacant slots for white males. The delegation must reflect the ethnic, gender and language makeup of the county.
Philip attends an Amnesty International Convention in Chicago.
Mary Paisley Burdick has a show of her works on fabric and paper at the Lacemaker’s Gallery in Toronto.
Rosa Mullins in Cacahuatan, Chiapas, sends Philip 120 cotton shirts and 48 Panama hats from Oaxaca.
In the summer of 1984 the building boom in Austin comes to an abrupt halt. The cabinet installation business of George and Fletcher, S & M Construction, slows down. Jeff and Debbie return to Pensacola.
Pierre Trudeau steps down as leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. Within a few months, his successor, John Turner, is forced to call an election and loses to Brian Mulroney and the Progressive Conservative Party.
Philip Mullins makes his second trip to Toronto to visit his son Marty, who is now four years old. Again he stays in Janice’s apartment. This trip lasts six weeks, most of it in Toronto. He gives Janice an additional $1,902 to invest for Marty’s education.
Mary Rauton spends some time helping to winterize Marj Humphrey’s cottage on Staten Island. She is doing some line drawings and writing for the Catholic Worker newspaper.
Jeff and Debbie’s second child, Loren, is born in Pensacola, Florida.
August 1984 Mary Rauton decides to leave the Catholic Worker in New York City and to return to Ragnarokr. She is very uncertain about the future. Her son Randy enrolls in the University of Toronto as a freshman. Mary researches the possibility of making the Frostpocket a land trust. No one is living there except for Penny Stoker and Tom Techvonic. They pay $30 a month rent to Wilfred McLaren who maintains the road and does essential repairs on the house.
Dan Heap, a longtime friend of Ragnarokr, is reelected as the Member of Parliament from the Spadina riding. Janice Spellerberg volunteers to work for the New Democratic Party campaign.
Mary’s son, Bob Rauton, accompanies his mother from New York City to Toronto and stays in Toronto several weeks. Mary moves into 33 Baldwin Street and Kathleen, Randy’s fiancée, pays for Mary’s first month’s rent. Randy and Kathleen are attending church school in preparation for their wedding. Mary picks up her work at Ragnarokr where she had left it five years before.
The rent at 33 Baldwin Street is now $1,000 a month. Steve Spring proposes the idea of a partnership between himself and Ragnarokr. Steve Spring had been one of the founders of the Ragnarokr commune in 1969 and is one of the six original owners of the Frostpocket. He left the commune in 1973 to operate his own business, Leather Arts by Spring. He returned to Ragnarokr in 1979 just before Mary and the Mullins brothers left. Since then he had sold most of his goods on consignment at Ragnarokr and had taken an active part in running the storefront.
Philip Mullins enrolls in the University of Texas in Austin in the third year of Mechanical Engineering. He is the secretary and researcher for The Texas State Action Committee to Abolish the Death Penalty. The Committee is an affiliate of Amnesty International and at its quarterly meeting in Dallas it comes under attack by the bureaucracy of Amnesty International in New York City. Its funds are confiscated and it is told to cease all activities. Philip is working part-time with George and Fletcher but their business is slowing down as building activity in Austin begins to wind down. When Jeff and Debbie returned to Pensacola, Philip buys an old camping trailer to live in. He moves it into the backyard of the house George and Colleen are renting on Sheraton Avenue and rides a bicycle to the University in downtown Austin.
Janice Spellerberg enrolls in a night course at the University of Toronto.
Philip Mullins has decided to return to Toronto in January when the school term is over. He has been unable to find a part-time job and the Austin economy is melting down. Mary writes offering him the downstairs backroom (really a hallway) for $75 a month. She is paying $225 and the leather shop $600 a month. He clears the shipment of clothing from Mexico through US Customs at the City of Austin Airport but is unable to sell it.
The Amnesty International Board of Directors approves a strategy against the death penalty very similar to that developed by the Texas State Action Committee to Abolish the Death Penalty. The Texas group is now inactive and in disarray.
Ronald Reagan defeats Walter Mondale and Geraldine Ferraro to win his second term as U.S. President.
In Cacahuatan, Chiapas, Rosa Mullins is busy with her pastry business. She has Christmas orders for three thousand cookies in addition to cakes and platters of meat and fish dishes.
Philip Mullins moves back to Toronto and stays at Janice’s apartment for several weeks until he rents the hallway downstairs at 33 Baldwin Street. He goes to Niagara Falls, Ontario, by train to spend the weekend working on Tom Bonanno’s house. He and Tom work and talk all Saturday night, sleep six hours and begin again until Philip leaves for Toronto late Sunday evening. Philip visits eight employment agencies, mails resumes to ten others and applied for 21 jobs either through the mail or in person including seven with government. He registers for Government of Ontario temporary jobs and visits four GO offices working for temporary work.
George, Colleen, Fletcher, Madelyn and the kids drive to New Mexico to see the mountains and to take a vacation.
Philip finds a temporary job as a draftsman in an Exxide factory that makes batteries for vehicles. The job, in Mississauga, lasts until the end of April. He applies for a permit to sell licuados from the storefront at 33 Baldwin Street but the health inspectors require costly renovations and the application is withdrawn in June.
Philip and his son Marty travel to Texas together to bring up the Chevy Nova car. They go by bus to Buffalo, New York then by airplane to Newark and Houston and then by bus to Austin where George picks them up at the bus station. After several days in Austin they drive to Burkeville and on to Mammoth Cave in Kentucky where they camp out for two nights and visit two caves. They drive back to Toronto and arrive around 10 PM of the eighth day. Philip works with Greg Sperry on carpentry jobs for several days.
Philip applies for permission for his wife and daughter to join him in Canada, enrolls in Ryerson Polytechnic Institute as a night student in computer programming and enters the waiting list for an apartment at Alexandra Park Housing Co-operative where Marty lives. He registers a company and spends a month and $350 designing and building prototype pot hangers but is unable to find a market for them.
Philip finds work as a commission salesman for a company in Scarborough that services industrial heating equipment. He canvasses industrial areas by car, telephones about 150 business a week and makes site visits to about ten factories a week for six months. He earns $3,218 in six months before exhausting his territory.
Colleen’s parents, her sister Maureen and five other relatives from Guam visit her and her family in Austin.
Philip rents the back part of the basement at 33 Baldwin Street as well as the back hallway for $170 a month. He installs lights, reconfigures ducting and installs insulation to make a room in the basement. He enrolls in another computer programming course at Ryerson Polytechnic Institute and works for a week with Greg Sperry renovating a house on Toronto Island.
The rent on 33 Baldwin increases to $1200 a month.
Janice Spellerberg hosts a Bring Your Own Art party in the Common Room at the Alexandra Park Housing Co-operative. Marty and Bie Engelen perform a skit and Philip sings a song about maple syrup.
Jeff and Debbie Mullins both enroll in Pensacola Junior College. Jeff is working as a maintenance man at the College and Debbie is working at the Pensacola Naval Air Station as an administrative assistant.
Paula and Manjit Dhaliwal visit Paula’s family in Tapachula. Rosa Mullins and her daughter Wendy are preparing to immigrate to Canada.
Greg Sperry and Philip Mullins visit with the Nicaraguan Trade Commissioner to Canada, Jorge Chamorro, to discuss importation of products from Nicaragua to Canada. Philip applies for several jobs in maintenance at housing co-ops in downtown Toronto but gets only one interview and no job. He continues to work as a commission salesman until February 1986.
Thanksgiving dinner at Ragnarokr is attended by Randy and Kathleen Rauton, Mary Rauton, Philip Mullins, Greg Sperry, Bie Engelen and her son Sam Sperry, Steve and Simone Spring and their two children Amy and Emily, Pat Wilson and her son Ben, Janice Spellerberg and her son Marty, Robin and Vivian.
Brit Griffin and Chuck Angus open a Catholic Worker house near Queen Street East in the south Riverdale neighborhood of Toronto. Mary Rauton helps them by endorsing their work and introducing them to Church people in Toronto. Brit and Chuck are successful punk musicians with their own band. They had been participants and organizers of Rock Against Racism.
Philip works as a volunteer for the New Democratic Party in the City of Toronto Municipal Elections.
Janice Spellerberg and Philip Mullins sign an agreement giving Janice custody and Philip visitation rights to their son Marty.
Mary Paisley Burdick has a show at Gallery 940 in Toronto. It is title Hide & Seek and concerns the artist’s experience as an unwed mother in the US South in 1965.
As a result of the Republican economic policies, the U.S. has become the world’s largest debtor nation with an annual deficit of $130 billion.
The rocket carrying the shuttle Columbia explodes, killing all seven astronauts who are aboard.
The volcano near Cacahuatan begins to smoke and the whole town prepares to evacuate.
Philip Mullins visits his parents in Burkeville, Texas, for several weeks.
Rosa Mullins and her daughter Wendy arrive in Toronto from Mexico. They move into the basement room at 33 Baldwin Street. Philip takes the hallway again.
The Catholic Worker house in Toronto opens a storefront on Queen Street East and begins to publish a newspaper, the Angelus. Mary Rauton draws the newspaper’s masthead.
Philip makes application at the US Consulate to transfer his wife’s INS file from Mexico City to Toronto. He and Morley Yan begin working together doing house renovations and repair.
Philip’s rent at 33 Baldwin Street increases from $170 to $270 to cover his families increased size. Mary feels that Rosa is pushing her out of the kitchen. Tensions increase until Mary Rauton asks Philip and his family to leave the house.
Morley Yan and Philip work together under the name Morley’s Carpentry repairing and renovating houses and businesses in the Dundas and College area of downtown Toronto. Philip is compiling information for the history of Ragnarokr that he had begun in 1978. He interviews Helen Gilbert, Mary Rauton, Dave Humphries and Ruth Lyons. The Chernobyl Power Station in Kiev, USSR, reactor blows up.
Ragnarokr receives a letter from the landlord, Mr. Weisbrot, asking the shop to vacate 33 Baldwin Street so the building can be sold. Everyone is shocked and angry.
Morley Yan and Philip renovate the Letki Designs store at 26 Baldwin Street.
In a stormy confrontation between the co-op and Steve Spring, Steve demands and is given 50% ownership of a new Ragnarokr into which he is to merge Leather Arts by Spring. Mary, Randy and Bie vote to accept his demand and Philip votes no. Mary and Steve Spring search for a new location for the leather shop. Legal Sea Food, at Elm and McCaul, offer to sublet their storefront to Ragnarokr but the owner of the building objects. Finally Steve and Mary begin negotiating with the owner of a storefront on Queen Street West.
Rosa Mullins and Wendy apply for US Immigrant visas in Toronto.
Ragnarokr rents a storefront at 758 Queen Street West. Randy and Kathleen move to a house on Montrose Avenue. Philip leases a house at 60 Henry Street from the owners of the Yung Sing pastry shop on Baldwin Street. Helen Gilbert rents the upstairs and Philip, Rosa and Wendy live on the ground floor. Bob Rauton comes for a visit and begins work on the new Ragnarokr storefront with the help of Chuck Angus and Brit Griffin.
The Frostpocket has an assessed value of $37,500 with taxes of $484.
Haydee Morales, the sister of Rosa Mullins, sends three dozen rope bags and 65 Panama hats to Philip from Tapachula via Aeromexico. They are consigned to Ragnarokr.
Greg Sperry’s Costa Rican girl friend, Ligia, arrives for a visit of two months. He is living at 158 McCaul.
Philip Mullins and Morley Yan continue the renovations at the new Ragnarokr storefront. Randy Rauton and Rosa Mullins help them. At the end of the month Ragnarokr vacates 33 Baldwin Street and moves to 758 Queen Street West.
Philip, Rosa, Wendy and Marty march in a Labor Day parade.
Baldwin Street store fronts include: Mandel’s Creamery, Silverstein’s Bakery, Nissembaum’s Shoes, Ragnarokr Leather Shop, Yung Sing Pastry Shop, 13 O’clock, Colorbox Clothing Store, Bianco International Clothing, Letki Designs Silver Jewelry, Around Again second hand records, Baldwin Natural Foods organic fruits and vegetables, Italian Caffe restaurant, Yofi’s Café, Rickshaw Chinese restaurant, the Eating Garden, Wah Sing, Baldwin Garden and The Guru restaurants, OHH Kitchen MSG-free Chinese restaurant, La Bodega and Le Petit Gaston French restaurants.
Philip rewrites his resume and makes a last attempt to get a job as an HVAC designer. He mails several dozen copies to employment agencies but receives no replies. He, Rosa and Wendy leave Toronto in the Chevy Nova for a three-week visit to Burkeville. They pass through Vicksburg, Natchez, Alexandria and Leesville on the way to Burkeville.
Ragnarokr consists of Bie Engelen, Mary and Randy Rauton, Rosa Mullins, Steve Spring and Robbie Gamble.
Philip Mullins, Chuck Angus and Brit Griffin (of the Toronto Catholic worker house) work together on carpentry jobs under the name of Mullins Carpentry and Renovations. They work on two properties owned by the Letkis and on the new Ragnarokr storefront.
In Austin construction is in a slump. Fletcher has taken a job at the University of Texas as a painter and George continues as a self-employed cabinet installer and part-time salesman for A. L. Williams insurance.
The National Security Council’s sale of missiles to Iran becomes public knowledge. This is the beginning of the Iran-Contra scandal.
George and Philip discuss the possibility of moving from Austin to Pensacola. Their parents are interested in the idea but hesitant.
Philip spends much of January renovating the kitchen and installing a fireplace at Paula Letki’s house at 124 Essex Ave in Toronto. He hires Rosa Mullins and Brit Griffin to paint various small jobs.
Janice Spellerberg and Marty go to Brazil for a month’s visit with Pat Ruoff and his family.
Philip, Rosa and Wendy travel by air to Mexico. They spend a month visiting friends and relatives in Chiapas and Guatemala. Philip returns to Toronto in early March and the girls return three weeks later.
Philip puts 44 Mexican sandals and 30 Panama hats in Ragnarokr on consignment. The sandals were purchased in Guadalajara and the hats in Becal. He, Rosa, Chuck Angus and Brit Griffin spend much of March, April and May renovating a house at 355 Clinton in Toronto.
George Junior and Hazel Mullins visit Escambia County, Florida, to see what land is available there but decide to stay in Burkeville, Texas. George III and Colleen begin looking for a house to buy in Austin.
Philip and his crew do a make over of the Letki’s house, mostly interior painting and repair. He distributes 700 fliers to houses in the Spadina and College area of Toronto soliciting carpentry work.
Mary Rauton continues to supply the Catholic Worker Angelus house with donated food from a bakery and sandwich shop on Queen Street West. Baldwin Street storefronts include, on the south side: #17 13 O’clock, #19 La Soiree, #21 Yofi’s Café, #23 Sally’s Green, #25 Color Box, #27 John’s Italian Café, #29 Mandel’s Creamery, #31 Morningstar, #33 Mayita, #35 Le Petit Gaston, Eating Garden, Wah Sing, Capital House, Guru Indian Restaurant. On the north side: Bahama Food, Basic Hair, Around Again, Baldwin Natural Foods, Yung Sing Pastries, #26 Letki Designs, La Bodega, Baldwin Smokes, Locksmith.
Philip, Rosa and Wendy leave Toronto for Burkeville, Texas in the Chevy Nova.
Philip is contacting companies all over the USA that handle machines for roasting and packaging coffee and building a mobile food service unit.
Rosa Mullins begins serving food from her mobile unit called Rosy’s Tamales. On weekdays she parks in front of a Spanish language Church of God at 100 S Navy Blvd. On weekends she, Philip and Wendy park at festivals and outdoor events all over Pensacola. They rent a house at 15 Ruberia from Jeff and Debbie.
Guillermo Yaeger visits Philip and Rosa in Pensacola. Guillermo has a coffee farm in Chiapas. Guillermo wants to sell bulk coffee by the boatload but Philip is unable to find sufficient buyers in Pensacola.
Ragnarokr sales for January through December 1987 are $70,391. The store pays out $32,601 in salaries.
Philip goes on food stamps in Pensacola and has to borrow money from Hazel Mullins to pay the rent. He has a night job cleaning a restaurant and works at odd jobs during the day.
Philip begins to work as a refrigeration mechanic with a small service company in Pensacola.
Colleen’s sister, Megan, and her husband John are still in Houston. He is a dancer with the Houston Ballet.
George Mullins makes a quick visit to Toronto and the Frostpocket. He stays with Steve and Simone Spring while in Toronto.
Mary asks the tenants at Frostpocket, Penny Stoker and Tom, to vacate the house within two years. Penny has not been paying any rent for the last year and has allowed to road to washout. Wilfred McClaren writes to report that the road needs at least two loads of gravel.
Philip and Rosa are preparing to be married in the Catholic Church. He requests to transfer his church membership at Burkeville Baptist Church to the Saint Thomas More Roman Catholic Church in Warrington, Florida. George Bush is elected President of the U.S.
Philip joins the Refrigeration Service Engineers Society Five-Flags Chapter in Pensacola.
George and Hazel Mullins, three of their sons and daughter-in-law and six grandchildren travel to Disneyworld in Orlando, Florida.
Thousands of pro-democracy students occupy Tiananmen Square in Peking.
The Berlin Wall is demolished.
For 1989 Ragnarokr has sales of $83,529 with expense of $33,187 in salaries.
Just before Christmas, Philip, Rosa, Wendy and Rosa’s father Daniel Morales drive from Pensacola, Florida, to Miami where they board a flight to Guatemala. They spend two weeks visiting in Chiapas and Guatemala.
U.S. troops invade Panama.
Daniel Morales stays in Miami with his cousin Amalia until March.
General Noriego of Panama surrenders to U.S. troops in Panama City.
During 1990 Ragnarokr has sales of $76,441 with expense of $30,098 in salaries.
Philip is selected to be a member of the Parish Council for St. Thomas More Church in Warrington, Florida.
Some Franciscan Friars propose to rent Mary’s house at the Frostpocket for one year.
Philip begins to construct an additional bedroom on the house in Pensacola.
Bie Engelen, Mary Rauton and Steve Spring are working at Ragnarokr.
Colleen Mullins and Madelyn Averette visit in Toronto.
Steve and Simone Spring and their two girls visit Steve’s mother in Gulf Breeze, Florida.
Philip, Rosa and Wendy visit Diane Mullins and her husband Jim in New Orleans on their way to Burkeville, Texas. After a visit with the parents and the grandchildren in Burkeville, Philip drives Rosa and Wendy to the Greyhound Bus Station in Houston. In Houston Rosa and Wendy take a bus to Guadalajara on their way to Tapachula. The trip from Houston to Tapachula takes four days.
August 1992 On August 8 Rosa and Wendy arrive back in Houston from Tapachula.
Philip is installed as the President of the Five-Flags Chapter of the Refrigeration Service Engineers Society in Pensacola at the annual Christmas party.
Philip resigns his job at Expert Air Conditioning in Pensacola and spends the next three months working full time on the house at 15 Ruberia.
Philip takes a job as an Air Conditioning Mechanic in Austin, Texas. He and his nephew Seth Anderson share a house near the University of Texas.
Philip and Rosa sell the house in Pensacola and Rosa moves to join Wendy and Philip in Austin.
Canada’s first female Prime Minister, Kim Campbell of the Progessive Conservative Party, loses her position when he party is defeated in a Federal election.
Philip takes a job as a Refrigeration Mechanic at the University of Texas at Austin.
Philip, Rosa and Wendy spend Christmas in Tapachula and New Years in Guatemala. They return to Austin with Rosa’s nephew Marco Vinicio Morales.
Philip, Rosa and Daniel spend two weeks visiting Rosa’s brother, Rudolfo Morales, and his family in Queretaro. Philip and Rosa tour Guanajuato, Dolores Hidalgo and San Miguel de Allende. Daniel Morales stays in Queretaro briefly and then goes to Chiapas by bus.
The Ragnarokr Leather Shop is closed for good after Christmas.
Philip, Rosa, Wendy and Marty Spellerberg visit Rudulfo Morales and his family in Queretaro for New Years. The Honda car breaks down on the return trip and they all return by bus.
Philip and Rosa drive the 1974 Dodge van to San Rafael on Highway 57 to bring back the Honda.
Maya and Sam Sperry host a memorial service for Greg Sperry at a cottage at Niagara on the Lake. Over forty persons, including Bie Engelen, Janice and Marty Spellerberg, Ruth Rustin and Mary Rauton attend it.
George, Colleen, Katie and Andrew leave Austin for the Murphy’s 50th Wedding Anniversary on the island of Guam.
Philip, Rosa and Hazel Mullins drive to central Mexico in Hazel’s car. They spend two weeks in Queretaro, San Miguel de Allende and Patzcuaro.
The Machar Township Tax Assessor assesses the 100-acre Frostpocket at $70,000.
Marty Spellerberg graduates from Central Technical School in Toronto.
Bie Engelen visits her sister in Germany and teaches workshops in the Japanese art of origami.
Bie Engelen continues her European tour with visits to relatives in Belgium and France.
Bie accompanies her mother to South Africa to visits Bie’s brother and his family in Johannesburg. Bie visits her son, Thomas, in Cape Town where Thomas is a student in the University.
Bie spends March in Frankfurt Germany with friends.
Bie returns to Toronto and her business of caring for gardens. She works continuously until the middle of November at this business and has no shortage of clients.
Philip, Rosa and Daniel Morales travel to Queretaro in their Plymouth van. They return with Rosa niece Karla Morales who stays in Austin until August.
Sam Sperry has his 25th birthday and moves out of his mother’s house on Toronto Island. Sam works as a carpenter in Toronto. Bie takes a role in the Tennessee William’s play Camino Real and prepares for her next season caring for gardens.
The Y2K computer problem keeps Philip on the job at the University of Texas through the Christmas holidays.
Philip resumes work on the history of Ragnarokr that he had started in 1976.