In 1867 James L. Dunn established the J. L. Dunn
Paint and Varnish Co which eventually became the Standard Paint
& Varnish Co. He was a very prominent figure in the business community
the economic development of the region made James Dunn a successful
politician. In 1903 James L. Dunn became the first African Canadian
Alderman in the City of Windsor.
Robert L. Dunn
Following in older brother James’ footsteps
Robert L. Dunn was also a successful businessman. He was a partner
in the Standard Paint and Varnish Company as well as the owner
of a theatre in Detroit. Also like his brother before him Robert
was elected as an Alderman for the City of Windsor. Robert L. Dunn
also served as a trustee on the village Board of Education for
Windsor. He was an early activist striving to promote the rights
of African Canadians in the region. In the 1930’s he served
as the president of the Central Citizens’ Association. (For
more information on the Central Citizen’s Association please
visit the Politics – Activism section of this website.)
Dr. Roy Perry was born in Chatham and moved to Windsor
with his family at the age of 2 years. He graduated from Patterson
Collegiate where he was a talented athlete who excelled in football,
baseball, basketball and track. He attended the University of Toronto
and became a doctor of dentistry. Dr. Perry practiced in Windsor
for over 30 years.
In 1949 he was elected alderman for Ward 3 and became a member
of the board of control in 1956. In
1958 Perry made an unsuccessful
bid to become the Mayor of Windsor. On October 28th, 1964 Dr. Perry
announced he was seeking
re-election as alderman having at that time 13 years of council experience.
His campaign was successful.
Dr. Perry is credited as the originator of the
Redevelopment Plan for downtown Windsor. This plan designated
certain areas of
the city as ‘blighted’. Dr. Perry is quoted by the
the Windsor Star as having said, “Urban renewal and the
removal of blight is synonomous with the name of Dr. Perry”.
Much of the historic ‘McDougall Street Corridor’ area
was designated as part of the redevelopment zone.
Roy Perry poses in front of The Dr. Roy Perry Apartments at
Avenue East – Windsor
These so called ‘blighted’areas were
then expropriated by the city, demolished and redeveloped. The
plan allowed for the receipt of monies to build low-income housing
developments. Mrs. Charlotte Perry is pictured below in front
of the new 80 unit apartment building named for her husband as
part of the Urban Renewal and Public Housing Project.
Dr. Perry was well known for his work in the community.
For more information on Dr. Perry please see the Celebrations-Skating
Parties or the People in Medicine sections
of this website. Dr. Perry passed away in October, 1972 at the
age of 62. (Left Image - Dr. Perry meets with officials of the
Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation – Clipping of
the Windsor Star courtesy of the McCurdy Collection in the Archives
Dr. H. D. Taylor
Dr. H.D. Taylor was the first African Canadian
physician in Windsor. Dr. Taylor served on the Windsor Board
from 1935 to 1963. He served 6 terms as the chairman of the board.
He was the recipient of the Civitans Citizen of the Year Award
in 1956. Campbell Avenue school was renamed in his honour in
as Dr. H. D. Taylor School. (Dr. H. D. Taylor receives Civitan
International Award ‘Citizen of the Year 1956’– Photo
Courtesy of the Windsor Star (30/05/1957))
George D McCurdy
George D. McCurdy held several jobs as a young
man including being the youngest Chief Steward in the Pittsburgh
Steamship Company. He and his wife opened a bakery in Amherstburg
and he increased his involvement in community life. In 1953 he
was elected to town council and became Deputy-Reeve of the town
of Amherstburg in 1959. In July 1961 he received the International
Emancipation Freedom Award. His son Ralph also served on town
council in Amherstburg.