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What we’re hearing from Kohler Street

Is Alex Muir worthy of continued historic recognition? A local committee wants to be sure
188 Kohler St.

Sault Ste. Marie’s municipal heritage committee is quietly conducting what amounts to a truth and reconciliation background check on Alex Muir, composer of The Maple Leaf Forever, which served as an unofficial national anthem to generations of Canadians.

The committee has been asked to assist in placing a historic plaque at the former Alex Muir Public School site at 188 Kohler Street.

The site is now used for apartment housing, but the plaque was requested by a citizen concerned that such school conversions are causing historic names to lose their significance.

The Sault's Alex Muir Public School was so named because Muir had been principal at a Toronto school attended by Harold Megginson, who later became a member of the Sault's school board.

No specific allegations have been made against Muir.

But members of the municipal heritage committee want to check into his military and pedagogical background at a time when educators involved in Canada's residential school system are being re-considered.

If Muir is determined to be worthy of continued historic recognition, the committee is hoping the property owner will assist in the cost of a historic plaque.