Portraits of the Thirties - Original Airdate : 1962-01-03
CBC Television's first major documentary series was a mixed bag. A variety of producers and hosts presented dramas, National Film Board documentaries and miniseries on themes ranging from mental health to fisheries. Debuting in 1956, it aired biweekly, going weekly in 1957 until its end in 1965.
First in a four-part series concerning provincial leaders of the 1930s. This program traces the career of Premier Mitchell Hepburn of Ontario, including: his election to office in 1934; introduction of goverment reforms; involvement with the Dionne quintuplets; alignment with management during the 1937 General Motors strike in Oshawa; introduction of compulsory pasteurization of milk in 1938; retirement as Liberal Party leader in 1942; and an abortive attempt at a political come-back in 1945. Includes interviews with: Hepburn's widow; friends Colin Campbell and Archie Coulter, an Elgin County farmer; Senator David Croll, who was Hepburn's Minister of Labour at the time of the 1937 GM strike; Malcolm Smith, an employee at GM at that time; and Tom Keith, a former editor of the St. Thomas Times-Journal. Narrator: Professor John Saywell of the history department, University of Toronto