John Welch said it’s nice to have the seven generation history of the Welch family recognized as an important part of Minden’s history.

Minden’s Hills Cultural Centre chose the Welch family name for one of its most used spaces June 29.
The story John submitted about Francis Welch, the son who took over John Welch and Sons funeral home, one of the family businesses, won a renaming competition.

But it wasn’t the only story about the Welch family submitted.

John’s sister Mary Hamilton also handed in a story for the competition about the family as a whole and the many other businesses they owned that helped grow Minden as a community.

“I used to get my little list from my grandmother and walk to Minden, to my uncle Sam’s store, and I’d give the list in and go home with the groceries,” said Hamilton.

She said she feels like she is connected to all of her family through the town and the stories about them and is very happy the new room is named after them.

“Our grandfather was one of the brothers, he died when I was six years old,” said Hamilton. “It’s like we knew him because our family was quite close and there was always a story.”

The new John Welch and Sons room at the centre is used to hold openings, meetings and other events and is an important community space according to Emily Stonehouse, supervisor of the centre.

Stonehouse said the community was asked to submit stories of important community figures or families.

A judging panel of three people then chose which story would be the base for the new name of the space.

She thought it would be important for the room to have a name, so she launched the competition at the beginning of January.

Shortly after the competition started, pipes burst at the cultural centre and the room flooded. Stonehouse said she was worried there would be no room to name when she came into work and saw the damage.

But, the room was fixed and the judges went on to pick the Welch family as the new name of a space that helps bring a community together.


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