In 1947, Mark Johnson and his wife Dora, arrived in Toronto from London, England, where Mark joined GE Canada. In 1956, he was transferred to the Peterborough Plant. The Johnsons moved into their new home on Riverside Drive in December 1956 and in 1957 built their own 22-ft. cruiser, Doramark.
The rest is history as far as the Peterborough Power and Sail Squadron is concerned. To quote Mark from an article in the January 1989 edition of the Quarterdeck, at that time the Squadron newsletter:
“Originally, I graduated in the Toronto Squadron in 1954 and immediately thereafter was co-opted into being an instructor, and in not time at all, became chairman for AP (Advanced Piloting) for the National level.
“In 1956, I was transferred by my company to Peterborough and was astounded to find no Squadron activity here despite being in the heart of the Kawarthas and the home of Outboard Marine.
“Having been requested to be “Honourable Commodore” for Lindsay to celebrate that city’s Centennial in 1957, I got a Squadron going in Lindsay, traveling there to instruct that winter, and had the honour later of representing the then Chief Commander, the late S. Gordon Macandlish, in presenting the Squadron its charter.
“In 1958, I gathered a group from Peterborough and Lakefield to form the Peterborough Piloting Club, which was a method in those days to obtain course materials. Upon writing and successfully passing the basic Piloting exam, by not less than 10 persons, we were granted a charter taking over the club to become the Peterborough Power Squadron.
"The exam was written in the lunch room of CHEX Radio Station. The charter was presented by the late Gordon Macandlish at our First Annual Dinner, held at the old Rockhaven Motel (before it was destroyed by fire). Incidentally, we held classes in my basement and I continued teaching all of the then available courses right through “N” (Navigator), including elective courses.
"Peterborough received its charter or warrant on June 17, 1959. Its pennant was approved on April 20, 1974. Charter members included: Tom Atkinson, Harry Blewett, E. H. Boulter, K. Broadhurst, R. Finnemore, George Green, Ken Jakins, Mark Johnson, Art Knott, W. Lee, John Sherin, Orville Shewfelt and E.A. Stuart."
From the beginning, many Kawartha Lakes boaters have volunteered their time for Peteborough Power and Sail Squadron, serving in various positions before taking on the helm as Commander. View a list of their names and the years they served.