William A. Fox (l) and Lorie Harris (r) presenting Ella and Charles Garrad with the Killarney Award for Outstanding Service during the October 2010 meeting of the Toronto Chapter of the OAS.
Charles and Ella Garrad hardly need introduction to members of the O.A.S. Charles Garrad has held many roles within the OAS and he has been a contributing and active member of the Toronto chapter from its inception to the present. Since the 1970’s Charles and Ella have worked together as a team, and it is with Ella’s constant support, encouragement, and participation that Charles led excavations and undertook publication of his findings on the Petun-Wyandot. A particularly important role that Charlie and Ella undertook was as leaders of excavations at a number of Passport to the Past digs in the Collingwood area. These provided local people and others with the opportunity to excavate and this work moved the study of the history of the Petun-Wyandot people forward.
Charles has been an active avocational archaeologist since 1961, and indeed he is the longest serving licensed archaeologist in Ontario. He has an impressive list of publications and countless presentations to his name, and these have made him known, not only to members of the archaeological community, but to a wide, appreciative public as well. Charles served as executive director of the OAS for many years, so at times it is difficult to separate his paid work from his volunteer work. However, it is evident that the time he invested and the passion that he brought to the study of Ontario archaeology far exceeded what the organization expected of a paid employee. His speciality in the Petun-Wyandot enabled him to advise and consult with various ministries of the Ontario government, the Royal Ontario Museum, the Niagara Escarpment Commission, Grey County Planning, Parks Canada and numerous private property owners on archaeological and historic matters.
Ella has played an active role at many OAS symposia, particularly in the book room, the silent auction and in sales of OAS pins. She is an active promoter of the very successful OAS tours, both within Ontario and abroad. Ella assisted with the production of ArchNotes and was a leader in OAS fundraising initiatives. Ella also recruited and worked with numerous volunteer excavators in the arduous fieldwork on Petun sites directed by Charles; such as, the Haney-Cook villages, where summer heat and heavy soils took their toll on the crews. While she was always there to support the OAS in countless logistical tasks during annual symposia, she was not deterred by the heavy work in the field. Ella’s “behind the scene” contributions to the OAS have been substantial.