Souris Scene by Morley Acorn

Morley Sabine Acorn was born in Lower Montague in 1870 to Charles and Caroline (Sabine) Acorn. His maternal grandmother was Martha Jago, noted minister and preacher ofthe 1830s. Morley's family moved to Souris where he worked at the Klondyke Lumber Mill managed by his brother Herbert, (and known locally as "Acorn's Mill"). Both brothers later served terms as mayor of Souris. Here Morley spent the rest of his life, marrying Gussie Muttart, daughter of Dr. E.B. Muttart. Like A.W. Mitchell, a Charlottetown photographer previously profiled, Acorn was fond of music. He was a member of the Souris Citizens' Band, and his fine bass voice could be heard in community concerts and at the Souris Methodist Church. It is not known when his interest in photography began, but he opened a photography shop on Main Street in 1914, in the New Mabon Building. When it burned to the ground two years later, all of the glass negatives he had made were destroyed. However, he soon reopened in a new building on the same site, selling prints and postcards of his photographs of Souris and district. In 1926 he moved down Main Street to the W.B. Leard building, where he shared the ground floor. Here he operated a tobacco and sundries shop, had a photography studio in the back room, and sold gasoline from pumps out front, in later years offering his motorists a choice of Imperial Oil or Irving Oil brands. Morley Acorn. We are fortunate that Morley Acorn was in close contact with the Leards, for on his death in 1936, his photographic work was preserved by the late Ray Leard, who displayed photos ofSouris at the family clothing store, Est. W.B. Leard Reg'd. The Heritage Foundation's collection of glass negatives by Acorn - from which almost all of these pictures were contact-printed by Barb Morgan - was donated by Ray Leard in 1974. His late brother George contributed information to this project through his 1959 article in Men's Wear of Canada ("The Leards of Souris, P.E.I."), and through various entries in the George Leard Papers at the PAPEI. The prints of Morley Acorn and W.B. Leard's staff were supplied courtesy of Mrs. Ray Leard, Souris. Special thanks for h

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