Grafton and Bolton, Ontario in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

Grafton and Bolton, Ontario

The Township of Alnwick/Haldimand is located in central Ontario in Northumberland County, situated between Lake Ontario and Rice Lake. It was formed in 2001 by the merger of Alnwick Township in the north and Haldimand Township in the south.

Alnwick Township was originally surveyed in 1795 when twenty-four lots were laid out on the first concession. It was named for Alnwick in Northumberland, England. The township’s first residents were made up of United Empire Loyalists, attracted by large unencumbered land grants, sometimes in the thousands of acres. In 1835, 3,600 acres of land along the first and second concessions were set aside as an Indian settlement. Shortly after, the Indian Band from Grape Island was moved into this settlement and a school and church were built at Alderville. The first council meeting was held in 1845 at Alderville School. The Alnwick/Haldimand Township building located in Grafton was built in 1858. Prior to its construction, Township Council meetings were held at local taverns or the residences of council members.

Haldimand Township was formed in 1791 and was named in honor of Sir Frederick Haldimand – a British general who served as Governor-in-Chief of Canada between 1778 and 1796. By 1804, there were 356 settlers in Haldimand Township making it the second most populous township in the region after Hamilton Township to the West. The town hall was constructed in 1860.

As part of provincial initiatives in the late 1990s, the Government of Ontario pursued a policy of municipal amalgamations to reduce waste and duplication. Alnwick Township and Haldimand Township became a single Township of Alnwick/Haldimand on January 1, 2001.

Alnwick/Haldimand is part of the Oak Ridges Moraine. Thirty-one square kilometers of the Cobourg Creek watershed runs through the Township. The Creek supports a diverse ecosystem including forests, meadows and wetlands. Numerous species inhabit the Creek including brown trout, rainbow trout, scuplins and darters. Migratory Chinook Salmon spawn in the creek and Atlantic Salmon are being stocked as part of a provincial initiative to return these native fish to Lake Ontario. The Ganaraska Forest is an 11,000-acre forest located in the Township. It is one of the largest blocks of forested land in southern Ontario. The Millvalley Hills Forest is a 297-hectare forest located within the Township. The dominant trees species are red and white pine, and red and white oak. The township is rural based with agriculture being the largest contributor to the economy. Grain, cash crops, milk, livestock, vineyards and apple farming are all viable in the area. Grafton is located in this township.

The first known settlers to Grafton were just before the turn of the 19th century. These earliest settlers were all from the new United States of America. Most were looking for new land and opportunities, a few were second generation United Empire Loyalists born in loyalist settlements further east.

New settlers from the British Isles started arriving twenty years later. These early Grafton settlers, as well as clearing agricultural land from the forests, produced many fine political leaders. David Rogers was the first to propose anti-slavery legislation for Upper Canada, and Henry Ruttan was the Speaker of the Legislature. Likely the hamlet was named Grafton after John Grover’s birth town of Grafton, Massachusetts. He initially arrived in Upper Canada in 1798 and was in Grafton by 1804.

Bolton is a community in the town of Caledon, located in the Region of Peel about fifty kilometers northwest of Toronto. The downtown and area that historically defined the village is in a valley, through which the Humber River flows. The town was founded around 1822 when James Bolton helped build a flour mill for his relative George Bolton. It was established on the line of the Toronto, Grey and Bruce Railway with stages to and from Weston.

In the Humber River valley, George Bolton, newly arrived from England, and his uncle, James, an area pioneer from just after the completion of the 1819 survey, built a grist mill at a bend in the river on land George had purchased from the surveyor, William Chewett. This mill became the catalyst for several other enterprises which became the seed of a hamlet. The village was strongly Reform during the Mackenzie years and James Bolton had to seek refuge in the U.S.A. after the failed rebellion of 1837. In 1842, his son James C. Bolton purchased the mill site from his uncle and built a large flour mill at the site of the current Humberlea Road, as well as a sawmill. The flour mill, in place until 1968, prospered under several prominent mill owners following Bolton including John Guardhouse and Andrew McFall, both of whose homes still survive along King Street East. The village continued to expand driven by water-powered industries such as William Dick’s Agricultural Works.

 While most evidence of the original mills and other industries have disappeared, the nineteenth century residential fabric remain largely intact and enough survives of the late nineteenth commercial core to maintain the sense of the historic village. As it now stands, the area is characterized by the polychromatic brickwork of the second half of the 19th century in local brick with many of the finer homes incorporating a gabled ‘L’ plan with a veranda at the inside corner.

Sandhill Ontario is about 9 miles east of Caledon.

Abraham Campbell’s father and six brothers took up one thousand acres in Chingacousy about 1820, after having journeyed from the old family home in Lincoln County by an ox-team. From Cooksville to their locations, the way led over a road made through the bush with their own axes. Mr. Campbell spent his life on the farm on which he was born when Chingacousy was the farthest settlement north of the lake. A quarter of a century later Campbell’s Cross, on the highway connecting north and south, was a scene of bustling life. There was a tavern there with eighteen rooms. There were three stores in the village at that time. As many as one hundred teams from the North Country would arrive with grain in a single day. Part of the grain was bought by local merchants and teamed by them to Port Credit for shipment by water. Some of the farmers hauled their own grain all the way to the lake port.

Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
160 Old Danforth Road, Grafton – Old Foundry House – This house was originally a cabin built around the same time as the barn and was probably for the foundry manager. For a few years it was the rectory for St. Mary’s Church before the current rectory, on the hill above the church, was built.
Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
154 Old Danforth Road, Grafton – The Reuben Lawless House was built in 1870 and is mid-Victorian of the Italianate Vernacular, with “gingerbread”. It has a stone/ rubble foundation and cedar siding and is of a balloon structure. The back “extension” was a woodshed/ summer kitchen built over the original well. In 1897 Thomas Lawless became the property owner and in 1900 Reuben Lawless Senior gained title. For years it was known as the Reuben Lawless House and stayed in the Lawless family until 1970.
Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
135 Old Danforth Road, Grafton – Old Presbyterian Sunday School was built in 1884. For many years it served as the Grafton Library. Architecturally it is notable for its patterned dichromatic brick work. There is a strong transom band, quoins and a foundation band topping a squared stone foundation, typically the work of Scottish masons.
Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
10830 County Road 2, Grafton – Grafton Village Inn was built in 1833 to replace a log building. The Neo-Classical building was restored in the early 1990s bringing it back to the early appearance that greeted travelers approaching from Kingston, York or Grafton Harbor. Its distinctive features include the front door surround with carved oak leaves and acorns, the second-floor Venetian window and the demi-lune windows at each gable end. The western wing was a later addition and at one time housed the telephone exchange.
Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
10715 Highway #2, Grafton – John and Mary Steele (nee Spalding) House is a handsome Georgian structure built by Thomas Spalding for his daughter Mary and her husband John Steele of Colborne. They moved here in 1843. The front door surround has several Neo-Classical features. Sections of the original brick are laid in Flemish bond. Over the years, deteriorating brick has been plastered over, painted and then stenciled to resemble brick.
Architectural Photos, Grafton, Ontario
10568 County Road 2, Grafton – Barnum House (National Heritage Site of Canada) – The Barnum House was built between 1817 and 1819 by Eliakim Barnum, a United Empire Loyalist originally from Vermont. The house which stands just outside Grafton is the earliest example of Neo-Classical architecture in Canada. Barnum House was the first house museum to open in Ontario, restored and operated by the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario in 1940. In designing his house, Eliakim Barnum was influenced by American Architecture, popular in New England states at the beginning of the nineteenth century. This Neo-Classical style was intended to reproduce elements of classical Greek architecture. These include a central temple front with flanking wings, articulation of the facade with pilaster linked by elliptical arches, and extensive use of delicately scaled details. The Neo-Classical elements of the house’s exterior are echoed in the ornate woodwork of several interior rooms.
Architectural Photos, Bolton, Ontario
25 Nancy Street, Bolton – Alice Goodfellow House – circa 1884 – This 1½ story Victorian Gothic home was built by George Watson for Alice Goodfellow using local red and yellow brick. The end gable patterning and the enclosed front porch are excellent examples of late nineteenth century urban architecture. Alice’s sister Margaret Smith lived next door. On Alice’s death in 1901, her brother-in-law Albion farmer James Goodfellow and his wife Marion retired here. It was in their family until the owner of 31 Nancy Street purchased it in 1999.
Architectural Photos, Bolton, Ontario
31 Nancy Street – George Smith House – circa 1877 – This Italianate style home was built by George Watson for Margaret and George Smith. The red and yellow bricks were locally made and its exterior architectural features and beautiful enclosed porches are original. Smith, a sign painter and letterer, sat on the first village Council and was noted for his very realistic interior faux-wood graining. Erie Smith Schaefer inherited the house in 1933, living here with her husband Alex of ‘Smith & Schaefer’ Hardware. This dichromatic brick house is in the Italianate style. The orientation of the ‘L’ plan with the enclosed verandah along the south is distinctive. The bracketed eaves, segmentally arched windows and low medium pitch hipped roof are all typical of the Italianate.
Architectural Photos, Bolton, Ontario
34 Temperance Street – Shore-Nease House – circa 1872 – This Victorian Gothic house was built by Henry Shore using red and yellow brick in a style typical of an urban village setting. The trillium patterned fretwork on the decorated wooden porch has been repeated on adjacent buildings. From 1892-1969, it served as office and surgery to Bolton doctors, including Dr. Lepper, Dr. A. Jackson, Dr. Graham and Dr. Taylor. The building is a fine example of a polychromatic brick ‘L’ plan residence featuring a diamond pattern at the gable of each section with accents of quoins and arches, and an ‘L’ form verandah formed at the inside corner between the two sections.
Architectural Photos, Bolton, Ontario
12 King Street West – ‘The Castle’ – mid-1870s – A rare example of the Second Empire style with its mansard roof and square projecting bay, this house was built for Ann Roberts. Ownership passed to her son William L. Roberts in 1893 and from him to Margaret Jane Osburn in 1907. Olga and Wesley Strong and their son Charlie lived here until 1923 when Wes’s health failed. Charlie lived to 100 and was a great Bolton story teller. Mrs. Dickson owned the house in the 1930s and left it to her daughter Pearl who raised eight children here with her husband Lee Morrison.
Architectural Photos, Bolton, Ontario
74 King Street East – Cabinet Maker’s House – circa 1846 – William Hughes, age 22, built this two-story, Neo-Classical style house. The saw mill down the street supplied the materials. It remains the earliest frame house standing in Bolton. Hughes, who specialized in cabinetry and chair making, lived in it with wife Jane and family until 1884. It then housed mill workers until Sarah Lundy and Harry Sheardown bought it in 1891, living in it for 43 years. Harry first worked in Dick’s Foundry, later owned a barber shop on Queen Street North and was considered one of Canada’s best all-round athletes.

Colborne, Ontario and Area in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

Colborne, Ontario and Area

Cramahe Township was established in 1792. Joseph Abbott Keeler, son of the first settler of Cramahe Township, founded the village of Colborne in 1815 when he opened the first store and post office. He had the village surveyed, laid out the public square and donated the land.

Joseph Keeler (1770-1839) was the first settler who landed on the shores of Cramahe Township with forty United Empire Loyalist families from Rutland, Vermont. Keeler, his son Joseph Abbott Keeler (1788-1855) and his grandson Joseph Keeler (1824-1881) were instrumental in establishing the settlements at Lakeport, Colborne and Castleton.

A store established in Colborne in about 1819 by Joseph Keeler provided the nucleus around which a small community began to develop. Within ten years, a distillery and a blacksmith’s shop had been erected. Colborne was named after Lieutenant Governor Sir John Colborne. With the establishment of a harbor nearby for the shipment of lumber and grain, Colborne prospered. By 1846, it contained a foundry, a pottery, six stores, three churches, tradesmen and artisans, and about four hundred residents. The arrival of the Grand Trunk Railway in 1856, spurred further growth.

In 2001, Colborne and Cramahe Township were amalgamated as part of municipal restructuring to form an expanded Township of Cramahe.

Colborne is the home of the Big Apple, a tourist attraction located along Highway 401. The Big Apple is 10.7 meters (35 feet) tall and has a diameter of 11.6 meters (38 feet) – the largest apple in the world. There is an observation deck on top of the apple, and adjacent to it is a restaurant and a store to buy all your apple treats.

King City is the largest community in King Township in York Region north of Toronto. In 1836, a settlement styled Springhill was established in King. With the arrival of the Ontario, Simcoe and Huron Railway in 1853, the settlement began to expand. In 1890, the reeve of King Township James Whiting Crossley incorporated King City by merging the hamlets of Springhill, Kinghorn, Laskay, and Eversley. King City is characterized by rolling hills and clustered temperate forests. Many lakes and ponds dot the area. Creeks and streams from King City, the surrounding area, and as far west as Bolton and as far east as Stouffville are the origin for the East Humber River.

The King Township Museum in King City is a local history museum for the township of King at 2920 King Road. The museum consists of a building which houses the majority of collections held. This building was originally built in 1861 as the site of the Kinghorn School SS #23. It was updated and expanded in 1958 and again in 1963, and purchased by the township in 1978. The King Township Historical Society established the museum in 1979 and opened it in 1982.

The village of Nobleton is located in southwestern King Township and is surrounded by hills and forests. It was named after Joseph Noble and began as a settlement in about 1812. Most of the early settlers came from England, Scotland and Ireland. There are many horse farms here. The Humber River flows through the town. Nobleton was first settled in 1812, primarily based on its location midway between King City and Bolton on the east–west route, and Kleinburg and Schomberg on the north–south route. Taverns and hotels were built to serve travelers, and general stores and a post office were built to serve the fledgling businesses.

Colborne, Ontario
The Big Apple
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
5 Toronto Street – three-story tower, cornice brackets
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
65 King Street East – dormers, two-story open verandah
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
King Street East – paired cornice brackets, second floor balcony, sidelights and transom on front entrance
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
9 Church Street East – In 1820, Joseph Abbott Keeler built this beautiful Neo-Classical house.
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
5 Church Street East – two-story tower-like bay, second floor balcony
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
3 Church Street East – hipped roof, cornice brackets
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
8 Victory Street – During the reign of Queen Anne (1702-1714) an architectural style was born and it enjoyed a revival, particularly in the New World, in the latter part of the 19th century. 8 Victory Lane (as it was then known) is a fine example of this style of architecture. It is characterized by fine brickwork in warm, soft finished tones, terracotta panels and crisply painted white woodwork.
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
3 King Street West – c. 1820 – Reputed to be among the oldest dwellings in Colborne, this was the home of Scottish immigrant John Steele and his wife Mary Spalding from 1831-1843. There is reason to believe the house predates 1820. Steele, a founder of Queen’s University held many other posts such as magistrate, newspaper editor, Board of Education trustee, member of literacy and agricultural societies etc. In 1843, the Steeles moved to Grafton and sold 3 King Street West to Cuthbert Cumming, a Hudson’s Bay trader. He sold it in 1858 to the Scougale family, local dry goods merchants, whose business was in the building next door. The Thorntons, part of the Scougale family, lived here for nine years of the Scougale clan’s 101-year occupancy.
Architectural Photos, Colborne, Ontario
7 King Street West – c. 1830 – In 1846, Cuthbert Cumming and his wife Jane McMurray, acquired a portion of this two-acre property, and the balance in 1852. Cumming was born in Scotland and after working in the Canadian west and Quebec, he retired as a Chief Trader for the Hudson Bay Company. He remained in Colborne for many years, listed in the census records as “a gentleman” until his demise in 1870. The front elevation of this classic Regency Cottage with its low profile and deep roof overhang hides a secret. There are actually five levels, including a stone basement that housed the kitchen and servants in the mid-19th century.
Architectural Photos, Nobleton, Ontario
6012 King Road, Nobleton – Hambly House – c. 1884 – It was originally built of logs but was rebuilt after a fire at the corner of Highway 27 and King Road.

Stouffville, Ontario Book 2 in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

Stouffville, Ontario Book 2

On January 1, 1971, the Village of Stouffville amalgamated with Whitchurch Township and was designated a community within the larger town of Whitchurch–Stouffville, a municipality in the Greater Toronto Area, about fifty kilometers north of downtown Toronto. It is more than two hundred and six square kilometers in size, and located in the mid-eastern area of the Regional Municipality of York on the ecologically-sensitive Oak Ridges Moraine and the Rouge River watershed. Its motto since 1993 is “country close to the city”.

Stouffville is the primary urban area within the town of Whitchurch–Stouffville. It is centered at the intersection of Main Street, Mill Street and Market Street. Stouffville was founded in 1804 by Abraham Stouffer who built a sawmill and grist-mill on the banks of Duffin’s Creek in the 1820s.

Urban Stouffville stretches from the York-Durham Line to Highway 48 and is about 2.7 kilometers wide with development north and south of Main Street. Stouffville is bounded by farmland and a golf course. Uxbridge lies to the east.

Stouffville Station was built in 1871 by Toronto and Nipissing Railway connecting Stouffville and Uxbridge with Toronto. The line’s north-eastern terminus at Coboconk, Ontario on Balsam Lake in the Kawarthas was completed in 1872. In 1877, a second track was built from Stouffville north to Jackson’s Point on Lake Simcoe. These connections were to provide a reliable and efficient means of transporting timber harvested and milled in these regions. Stouffville Junction serviced thirty trains per day. The railway became the Grand Trunk Railway in 1884, and Canadian National Railways took over the line in 1914. Stouffville Station was demolished in 1980s and replaced by current GO station.

Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
28 Mill Street – Neo-Colonial – gambrel roof
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
52 Mill Street – Late Victorian Hybrid – verge board trim on gables
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
O’Brien Avenue – rounded verandah
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
36 O’Brien Avenue – twin 2½-storey tower-like bays
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
22 Church Street – c. 1880-1885 – Late Victorian Hybrid – built for Lucinda and R.J. Daley, a shoe merchant – corner quoins, bay window
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
47 Church Street – c. 1890 – Late Victorian Hybrid with Italianate features, verge board trim and finial on gables, bay window, rounded verandah added in late 1920s – built by farmer William Mason for himself and wife Margaret Rae
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
60 Church Street – c. 1891 – Romanesque Revival – long known as the David Stouffer house – he was a village historian and grandson of the founder of Stouffville, Abraham Stouffer – corbelled brick string courses around voussoirs, stained glass window transoms, second floor balcony
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
72 Church Street – c. 1893 – Late Victorian Hybrid with Romanesque Revival and Italianate details – corbelled brick string courses around voussoirs, stained glass window transoms and sidelights, double story porch, dormer, decorative woodwork on brackets, gingerbread and porches
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
80 Church Street – c. 1889 – 1½ story Gothic Revival – built for Isaac Broadway (a drugstore owner) and his wife
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
96 Church Street – c. 1890 – Romanesque/Queen Anne – built by Nathan Forsyth as his residence, local master builder – corbelled brick string course, balcony over verandah
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
25 Duchess Street – c. 1885 – Late Victorian Hybrid with Queen Anne details – built for John and Thomas Casely -decorative brick, carved wooden fascia and porch, corner quoins, voussoirs, wooden post with capitals on ornately decorated porch for main entrance

Stouffville, Ontario Book 1 in Colour Photos – My Top 16 Picks

Stouffville, Ontario Book 1

Stouffville is the primary urban area within the town of Whitchurch–Stouffville. It is centered at the intersection of Main Street, Mill Street and Market Street.

In 1805-06 Abraham Stouffer (1780-1851), a Pennsylvania Mennonite, bought four hundred acres of land in the area and built a saw and grist mill on Duffin’s Creek and a settlement grew up around it. In 1832 a post office named Stouffville was established. By 1864, with a population of about seven hundred, there were several prosperous industries including carriage works, harness works, and the mills of Edward Wheler, a prominent merchant. The construction of the Toronto and Nipissing Railway was completed in 1871 and growing agricultural prosperity stimulated the community’s growth.

A large number of the early settlers of present-day Whitchurch-Stouffville were members of the Historic Peace Churches: Brethren in Christ (Tunkers), Mennonites, and Quakers. They were attracted to settle in Upper Canada by Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe with the offer of military exemption (1793). The peace teachings of the Christian tradition greatly shaped their faith and caused them to wrestle with what it means to be people of God’s peace, especially during times of conflict and war. As pioneers of conscientious objection in Canada, their commitment to the work of peace and reconciliation continues to stand witness in this community and around the world.

Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6731 Main Street – Late Victorian Hybrid – corner quoins, finials and trim on gables, voussoirs and keystones over windows
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6490 Main Street – Neo-Colonial – gambrel roof, dormer
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6465 Main Street – bay window
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6204 Main Street – The Earl of Whitchurch Pub – corner quoins
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
Main Street – Second Empire style – mansard roof, dormers with window hoods
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6128-6130 Main Street – two-story towers flanking the entrance, fretwork, dichromatic brickwork, contrasting voussoirs with keystones and drip molds over windows
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6139 Main Street – verge board trim on dormer, cobblestone veranda and pillars
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
242 Rupert Avenue – c. 1892 – fretwork, bay window
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
169 Rupert Avenue – Late Victorian Hybrid – bay window, contrasting window voussoirs, trim on peak of gable
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
185 Rupert Avenue – Late Victorian Hybrid – quoins, bay window
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
Rupert Avenue – Romanesque – window with sidelights and transom
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
52 William Street – c. 1892 – verge board trim on gable, second floor balcony
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
196 Second Street – steeply-pitched gables, transoms on lower level windows
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
30 Albert Street – Italianate Villa – 1884 – It has a rare original semi-circular wood door.
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
19 Albert Street – c. 1896 – Romanesque/Queen Anne – built for Joseph A. Todd, owner of the Todd block; he was a dealer in grain, flour, feed, coal, wood, seeds, potatoes, pork, corn, beans, felt roofing, salt in barrels, bulk lime, cement, plaster, fire brick, tile, wood, etc. He operated grain elevators at the train station and had his office in the corner store of the block on Main Street between Edward and Albert Streets.
Architectural Photos, Stouffville, Ontario
6 Albert Street – Built in 1878 for Jacob Raymer, a miller – Late Victorian hybrid with Italianate features

Parry Sound, Ontario in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

Parry Sound, Ontario

Parry Sound is a located in northern Ontario on the eastern shore of Parry Sound. It is 160 kilometers (99 miles) south of Sudbury and 225 kilometers (140 miles) north of Toronto. It is a popular cottage country region. It has the world’s deepest natural freshwater port.

Muskoka District was named after an Indian Chief, probably Misquuckkey of the Chippawas, who until the treaty of 1815 was lord of this Venetian district of Ontario. While the heavy pine and hardwood forests were still in their primeval beauty, many people including Government agents considered the country was fit for settlement. In 1859 the first land grants were made.

About 1857 James and William Gibson erected a sawmill at the mouth of the Seguin River. William Beatty, with his sons James and William, acquired the mill in 1863, and the following year were granted a license of occupation for two thousand acres. In addition to lumbering, they laid out a town plot, promoted settlement, opened a store, built a church, constructed roads, and operated boats on Lake Huron and a stage service to Bracebridge. William “Governor” Beatty (1835-1898) lived here and managed the family’s enterprises which stimulated the growth of Parry Sound. Incorporated as a town in 1887, it was named in honor of Sir William Edward Parry, noted Arctic explorer.

During the early part of the 20th century, the area was a popular subject for the many scenic art works of Tom Thomson and members of the Group of Seven.

The eastern coast of Georgian Bay where Parry Sound is located is known as the “30,000 Islands” and is considered the world’s largest freshwater archipelago. It covers 347,000 hectares of shoreline ecosystem, and over 100 species of animals and plants that are at risk in Canada and Ontario, including unique reptiles and amphibians.

Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
89 James Street – Court House – 1871
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
18 Belvedere Avenue – Palladian window in gable, second-floor balcony
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
1 Belvedere Avenue – 1907 – two-storey tower, dormer in attic
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
10 Gibson Street – Bayside Inn
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
72 Gibson Street – verge board trim – Gerda’s Bed and Breakfast
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
Church Street – bay window with pediment, fish scale patterning
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
5 McMurray Street – bay window on side, semi-circular pediments
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
25 Mary Street – Parry Sound Bikes – Heritage Property – 1893
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
22 Bay Street – Bay Street Café
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
2 Bay Street – Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts overlooks Georgian Bay and has a 415 seat acoustically perfect performance hall. The Bobby Orr Hall of Fame is an interactive sports heritage museum paying tribute to home-town hockey legend, Bobby Orr, and other exceptional athletes with connections to Parry Sound.
Architectural Photos, Parry Sound, Ontario
Parry Sound Scenic Lookout Tower offers spectacular views of the harbor and Georgian Bay. Climb 30 meters up a historic fire observation tower to enjoy a spectacular 360 view of Parry Sound.

North Bay, Ontario in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

North Bay, Ontario

North Bay is a city in Northeastern Ontario about 330 kilometers (210 miles) north of Toronto. It differs in geography from Southern Ontario because North Bay is situated on the Canadian Shield which results in a more rugged landscape. North Bay straddles both the Ottawa River watershed to the east and the Great Lakes Basin to the west. The city’s urban core is located between Lake Nipissing and the smaller Trout Lake.

In 1882, John Ferguson decided that the north bay of Lake Nipissing was a promising spot for settlement. Apart from Indigenous people, voyageurs and surveyors, there was little activity in the Lake Nipissing area until the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) in 1882. North Bay was selected as the southern terminus of the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway (T&NO) in 1902 when the Ross government took the bold move to establish a development road to serve the Haileybury settlement. During construction of the T&NO, silver was discovered at Cobalt and started a mining frenzy in the northern part of the province that continued for many years. The Canadian Northern Railway was built to North Bay in 1913.

North Bay grew through a strong lumbering sector, mining and the three railways in the early days.

Born in France about 1598, Jean Nicolet, explorer, fur trader, and interpreter came to Canada in 1618. Under orders from Samuel de Champlain, he spent the following two years with the Algonquins of Allumette Island. He was then sent to the Nipissing Indians of this area and dwelt among them for at least eight years, learning their language, adopting their customs, and strengthening their alliance with the French. Nicolet is credited with the discovery of Lake Michigan which he explored as far south as the head of Green Bay in 1634. He later settled in Trois Rivieres. He drowned in the St. Lawrence in 1642.

The rivers and lakes of northern Ontario have been highways for travel and commerce for hundreds of years. First nations and European explorers used Lake Nipissing for transporting their furs. When the railroad reached the area in the 1880s, settlers and timber were transported across the lake.

Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
374 Fraser Street – Angus Block – 1914 – This building is noted for its parapet at the roof line and for its highly distinctive white stone window surrounds consisting of stepped lintels, quoined jambs and flat sills. Other notable features include the toothed heading of the in-stepped brick facing and bracketed canopy over the third-floor paired openings. The date stone indicates that H.W. Angus, an early architect in North Bay, was responsible for its design and erection.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
100 Ferguson Street – former Canadian Pacific Railway Station – 1903 – Entry of British Columbia into Confederation in 1871 led to the establishment of the CPR as the initial continental railway linking the country’s east and west coasts, completed in 1885. In 1881 the railway located their divisional services and regional headquarters on the shore of Lake Nipissing, where the City of North Bay subsequently sprang up. The stone masonry is of a variegated light beige color of split-faced finish, laid in a random-coursed pattern. The corner and intermittent piers and window surrounds are of a uniform darker brown tone of flat-faced finish, laid in a level course pattern. Most openings at ground floor level are of the Romanesque round-head arched style. A wide bracketed canopy projects on all sides at the second-floor level, offering protection from the weather to passengers, their luggage, and accompanying freight. The Canadian Pacific Railway reached North Bay in 1882 and the area became a crucial junction point between east and west rail traffic. In 1901, the CPR made North Bay the District Divisional headquarters; repair shops began to dominate the North Bay waterfront. The site eventually housed an eighteen-stall engine house, freight and flour sheds, carpenter and car repair shops, ice houses, a yard office, railway stores, and the engineer booking office. There was also a vast locomotive shop used to repair steam engines. At its peak, the yard could hold two hundred railroad cars and it contained twenty-five miles of track. During the 1940s, four transcontinental trains a day came through the yards. To the west of the main depot was a well-maintained grassy park with numerous flower gardens and trees.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
200 First Avenue West – Former Normal School/Teacher’s College opened in 1909 with an enrollment of 25 students and continued in operation until 1972. This design is exemplary of the architectural influence of the Edwardian style. The observatory-like dome, the elaborate cornices and the formal entrance are three main characteristics of the building.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
135-137 First Avenue West – 2½-storey bays with Tudor timbering in gables, diamond window panes
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
183 First Avenue West – North Bay Masonic Temple was built in 1928 and was first used as a meeting and dance hall. During the Second World War it served as a center for medical examinations of those local residents contemplating military service. The building is Neo-Classical in style with a symmetrical front façade. The outstanding architectural features of this building include the engaged piers and stepped parapet carried by the entablature. The grand stone entranceway expresses the major function of this structure as an assembly hall.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
406 McIntyre Street West – two-storey bay with octagonal capped roof, dormer
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
590 McIntyre Street West – Browning Residence – Constructed in 1902, it was originally occupied by Crown Prosecutor A.G. Browning and his family. It is set on a large corner lot at Murray Street, among mature trees. A strong symmetry of the main façade was originally developed in a three-bay roofed front porch at ground floor level leading to the main entry, above which is a second-floor bay window whose structure extends through the main roof eave to form a unique mini-balcony centered on a third-floor windowed gable. This symmetry is offset by a three-story gabled wing on one side, and the wrap-around porch terminating at a corner bay on the Murray Street side.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
658 McIntyre Street West – The Bourke Residence was built in 1907. The structural, yet decorative columns and the boxed-in triangular pediment over the porch area are strong elements of the design. The two-story bay windows and the wraparound porch are also distinctive. Symmetry is established, centered on the main entrance, in the access stair, the pediment enhanced porch, and the second-floor balcony. The windowed gable at the attic level is centered independently on the main front wing of the L-shaped structure. The home was once the residence of the first Mayor of the City of North Bay, John Bourke.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
768 McIntyre Street West – The Beamish Residence was constructed in 1907. The two-story front porch is large and has Ionic columns. It has a hipped roof with wave-form dormer windows. A strong symmetry is centered on the two-story wood porch between matched masonry bays. The fanned steps of the main entry are very generous in scale, and thus appropriately related to the proportions of the entire front façade. The front entrance is the only item that is off center. A well-preserved home of majestic stature, it was once the original residence of a local merchant, Mr. Beamish. Mr. Jack Shaw, former North Bay Mayor, also resided here. Mr. Arthur Cavanaugh, former manager of Ontario Northland Railway, lived in this house from 1940-1950.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
610 Copeland Avenue – The Milne Residence is an impressive home located on an unusually large lot. It was built for William Milne Sr. in the early 1900s. Milne was the owner of Wm. Milne & Sons Lumber Company which was located at the present site of the Ministry of Natural Resources on Trout Lake Road from the early 1900s to 1944. Milne was also a former alderman and Mayor of North Bay in 1909 and 1910. The house is set back on the property. The large side yard housed a tennis court during the first two decades of the house. The exterior is simple, but the structure is reminiscent of the local history of the lumber and crafts industry. The exterior walls are sheathed with shiplap-type wood siding. The roof is sheathed in wood shingles. The veranda, which wraps around the front and side of the home, once extended to the rear of the home as well, but it was later removed.
Architectural Photos, North Bay, Ontario
North Bay Heritage Carousel – Of course, I had to have a ride on it while I was there!

Sudbury, Ontario in Colour Photos – My Top 4 Picks

Sudbury, Ontario

Greater Sudbury is the largest city in Northern Ontario. Sudbury was founded in 1883 following the discovery of nickel ore during the construction of the transcontinental railway. The people live in an urban core and many smaller communities scattered around three hundred lakes and among hills of rock blackened by smelting activity. Mining and related industries dominated the economy for much of the twentieth century. The two major mining companies which shaped the history of Sudbury were Inco, now Vale Limited, which employed more than 25% of the population by the 1970s, and Falconbridge, now Glencore. Sudbury has since expanded from its resource-based economy to emerge as the major retail, economic, health and educational centre for North-eastern Ontario.

The city recovered from the Great Depression much more quickly than almost any other city in North America due to increased demand for nickel in the 1930s. Sudbury was the fastest-growing city and one of the wealthiest cities in Canada for most of the decade. Many of the city’s social problems in the Great Depression era were caused by the difficulty in keeping up with all of the new infrastructure demands created by rapid growth. Employed mine workers sometimes ended up living in boarding houses or makeshift shanty towns because demand for new housing was rising faster than supply.

The open coke beds used in the early to mid-twentieth century and logging for fuel resulted in almost a total loss of native vegetation in the area. Consequently, the terrain was made up of exposed rocky outcrops permanently stained charcoal black, first by the air pollution from the roasting yards. Acid rain added more staining, in a layer that penetrates up to three inches into the once pink-grey granite.

The construction of the Inco Super stack in 1972 dispersed sulfuric acid through the air over a much wider area, reducing the acidity of local precipitation. This enabled the city to begin an environmental recovery program. In the late 1970s, private and public interests combined to establish a “regreening” effort. Lime was spread over the charred soil by hand and by aircraft. Seeds of wild grasses and other vegetation were also spread. More than nine million new trees have been planted in the city.

Sudbury’s pentlandite, pyrite and pyrrhotite ores contain profitable amounts of many elements—primarily nickel and copper, but also platinum, palladium and other valuable metals.

There are many details and pictures about rocks and their formation in the book on Sudbury.

Sudbury, Ontario
122 Big Nickel Road – Dynamic Earth – Dr. Ted Szilva was the creator of the Canadian Centennial Numismatic Park which opened on July 22, 1964. Ted spearheaded the creation of the Big Nickel and the original Big Nickel mine on the Dynamic Earth site. Today, the Big Nickel is an icon synonymous with Sudbury, the nickel capital of the world. In 1949 the Bank of Canada launched a nationwide contest for the design of the 1951 five-cent coin to mark the bicentennial of the chemical isolation of nickel by the Swedish chemist Baron Axel Frederic Cronstedt. The Big Nickel is a replica of this commemorative 12-sided coin designed by Stephen Trenka. The obverse features King George VI who was the monarch at the time. The reverse features a stylized nickel refinery with one large smokestack. It weighs almost 13,000 kilograms and is nine meters in diameter. Scientists and residents of Greater Sudbury work hand in hand to innovate and implement new strategies to re-green the community. The City of Greater Sudbury is a world leader in reclamation of environmentally impacted landscapes. The main components of Sudbury’s ore are nickel, copper and sulfur. Early methods of smelting released a lot of sulfur dioxide gas (SO2) into the atmosphere. Since the early 1970s, SO2 has been greatly reduced which has fostered ecological recovery. In 2015, healthy, reproducing small mouth bass returned to Sudbury’s Clearwater Lake which is slowly recovering from acidification.
Architectural Photos, Sudbury, Ontario
20 Ste. Anne Road – St. Joseph’s Hospital – Original building 1898, Surgical Ward added 1914, 1927 modern laundry added, 1928 new heating plant with a long connecting underground tunnel. In 1975 the Hospital was closed. Partially demolished, the remaining portion is now operating as Red Oak Villa retirement home.
Flour Mill Silos, Sudbury Ontario
Notre Dame Avenue – Flour Mill Silos
Onaping High Falls, Ontario
High Falls on the Onaping River drops 46 meters (150 feet) – In 1953 A.Y. Jackson, one of the founding members of the Group of Seven, painted “Spring on the Onaping River.”

Fort Erie and Ridgeway, Ontario in Colour Photos – My Top 8 Picks

Fort Erie and Ridgeway, Ontario

Fort Erie is a town on the Niagara River in the Niagara Region of Ontario. It is across the river from Buffalo, New York and is the site of Old Fort Erie which played a prominent role in the War of 1812.

Fort Erie is also home to other commercial core areas of Bridgeburg, Ridgeway, Stevensville and Crystal Beach as a result of the 1970 amalgamation of Bertie Township and the village of Crystal Beach with Fort Erie.

The Fort Erie area contains deposits of flint, and became important in the production of spearheads, arrowheads, and other tools.

After the Treaty of Paris, which ended the French and Indian War and transferred Canada from France to Britain, King George III issued the Royal Proclamation of 1763 establishing the territory beyond which (including what is now Southern Ontario) would be an Indian Reserve. This was an attempt to avoid further conflict with the Indians, although it did not forestall Pontiac’s War the following year. The British also built a string of military forts to defend their new territory, including Fort Erie, the first version of which was established in 1764.

During the American Revolution Fort Erie was used as a supply depot for British troops. After the war the territory of what is now the Town of Fort Erie was settled by soldiers demobilized from Butler’s Rangers, and the area was named Bertie Township in 1784.

The original fort was located on the Niagara River’s edge below the present fort. It served as a supply depot and a port for ships transporting merchandise, troops and passengers via Lake Erie to the Upper Great Lakes. The fort was damaged by winter storms and in 1803 plans were made for a new fort on the higher ground behind the original. It was larger and made of flint stone but was not quite finished at the start of the War of 1812.

During the war, the Americans attacked Fort Erie twice in 1812, captured and abandoned it in 1813, and then recaptured it in 1814. The Americans held it for a time, breaking a prolonged British siege. Later they destroyed Fort Erie and returned to Buffalo in the winter of 1814.

The Fort Erie area became a major terminus for slaves using the Underground Railroad between 1840 and 1860; many had crossed into Canada from Buffalo, New York.

In 1866, during the Irish-American Fenian raids, between 1,000 and 1,500 Fenians crossed the Niagara River, invading Canada as part of an attempt to oust the British and create an independent Irish republic; they occupied the town and demanded food and horses. The only payment they were able to offer was Fenian bonds which were not acceptable to the citizens. The Fenians then cut the telegraph wires and tore up some railway tracks. Afterwards, they marched to Chippewa and the next day to Ridgeway where they fought the Battle of Ridgeway, a series of skirmishes with the Canadian militia. The Fenians then returned to Fort Erie and fought the Battle of Fort Erie in 1866, defeating the Canadian militia. Fearing British reinforcements, they then decided to retreat to the U.S.

The Battle of Ridgeway shocked the country, spurring improvements to Canada’s defenses, and helping to bolster the movement for confederation, which took place the next year.

Ridgeway takes its name from the limestone ridge which runs through it from north to south. The main street of town aptly named Ridge Road, follows this ridge, and was part of one of the first two wagon trails in Bertie Township, connecting Point Abino on Lake Erie to Miller’s Creek on the Niagara River.

Ridgeway was settled by the United Empire loyalists in the late 18th-century, and was originally a farming community. In the 1850s the Buffalo, Brantford and Goderich Railway line was put through, and service industries began to develop around the train stop on Ridge Road. The business district spread north from there towards Dominion Road. In 1873 the post office was opened.

In 1869 Fort Erie was served by the Grand Trunk and the Erie & Niagara railways. The Grand Trunk Railway built the International Railway Bridge in 1873, bringing about a new town, originally named Victoria and subsequently renamed to Bridgeburg, north of the original settlement of Fort Erie. By 1876, Ridgeway had a population of about 800, the village of Fort Erie had about 1,200, and Victoria had three railway stations. By 1887, Stevensville had a population of about 600, Victoria of about 700, Ridgeway of about 600, and Fort Erie of about 4,000.

In 1888, the amusement park at Crystal Beach opened. The park continued to operate until it closed in 1989.

On August 7, 1927 the Peace Bridge was opened between Fort Erie and Buffalo.

Architectural Photos, Fort Erie, Ontario
202 Dufferin Street – 1897 – The building is a two storey, single detached home featuring a front gable design with a steep pitched roof in Gothic style. The main entry has a pedimented portico supported by two paired pilasters. The wooden clapboard exterior is painted Henley Blue and the six-inch-wide window trim, which surrounds the single pane double hung windows, stands in marked contrast.
Architectural Photos, Fort Erie, Ontario
The B-1 Grand Trunk Station was built in 1873 by the Grand Trunk Railway to coincide with the construction of the International Railway Bridge. The B-1’s companion station, the B-2 was located in Black Rock, New York on the American side of the bridge.
Bridge, Fort Erie, Ontario
The International Railway Bridge spans the Niagara River to accommodate rail traffic. The engineers had to deal with treacherous currents, fluctuating water levels, and ice floes. Station operators at the B-1 station kept records of rail traffic and maintenance work, water depth at each pier, weather, and boats passing under the bridge. The International Railway Bridge played a significant role in the history of Fort Erie and was one of the main entry points across the country of rail freight from the United States. The bridge is still in use today without the use of the stations. The B-1 station fell into disuse; it was restored and opened in 1984 as the Fort Erie Railroad Museum at 400 Central Avenue.
Architectural Photos, Ridgeway, Ontario
348 Ridge Road North, Ridgeway – three-storey tower, dichromatic voussoirs, quoins
Architectural Photos, Ridgeway, Ontario
348 Ridge Road North, Ridgeway – three-storey tower, dichromatic voussoirs, quoins
Architectural Photos, Ridgeway, Ontario
402 Ridge Road North, Ridgeway – Fort Erie Historical Museum – The former Bertie Township Municipal Building was constructed in 1874. This Italianate structure was designed to look monumental, solid, and respectable with its round-headed windows and paired brackets at the cornice.
Architectural Photos, Ridgeway, Ontario
468 Ridge Road North, Ridgeway – The Laundry Basket Dry Cleaners – verge board trim on gable, sidelights and transom
Architectural Photos, Ridgeway, Ontario
576 Ridge Road North – Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School – Neo-Gothic style – stepped parapet, contrasting brickwork, pilasters between windows, Doric pillars, multi-faceted transom window above door

Niagara Falls, Ontario Book 3 in Colour Photos – My Top 9 Picks

Niagara Falls, Ontario Book 3

Niagara Falls Ontario is located along the Niagara Gorge on the western bank of the Niagara River, which flows from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. The Niagara River flows over Niagara Falls at this location and creates a natural spectacle that attracts millions of tourists each year. Niagara Falls is about 130 kilometers (81 miles) by road from Toronto, which is across Lake Ontario to the north.

Tourism started in the early nineteenth century. The falls became known as a natural wonder, due in part to paintings by prominent American artists such as Albert Bierstadt. Niagara Falls is the self-proclaimed “honeymoon capital of the world.”

With a plentiful and inexpensive source of hydroelectric power from the waterfalls, many electro-chemical and electro-metallurgical industries located there in the early to mid-20th century.

By 1792-94, a village grew up near Fort Chippawa on Chippawa Creek near the end of the new portage road from Queenston. In 1793, the creek was renamed the Welland River. The village was largely destroyed 1812-14 when the British and American forces fought for control of the Welland River. Portage traffic revived after the war and continued until Chippawa became an outlet for the original Welland Canal from 1829 to 1833. The first horse-powered railway in Upper Canada was built to Niagara Falls in 1837-39.

Precipitated by the opening of the Welland Canal in 1829, by the 1840s, Chippawa was a thriving town. A wide variety of business establishments were located around Cummington Square. Chippawa amalgamated with the City of Niagara Falls in 1970.

Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4892 Jepson Street – pediment above entrance
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4930 Jepson Street – turret
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4888 Hunter Street – This Queen Anne Revival style house was originally covered in clapboard and later with stucco. The square front tower is topped with a peaked roof and round pommel-like copper finial. Every other floor joist is a half log and the foundation walls appear to be earth and rubble.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
5049 Victoria Avenue – The Niagara Armoury was built in 1911 in the style of a late medieval fortress. It features simulated defense towers at the corners, a crenelated parapet and a massive front entrance formed by a Tudor Gothic arch. The red brick facade has limestone detailing such as windowsills surrounds capping and corbels now covered by paint. It was designed by T. W. Fuller, a government military architect and son of Thomas Fuller who designed the old Post Office (SEE DP.9). It was one of 11 armories built during a period of reform and expansion in the Canadian Militia (1896-1911) and was a recruitment and training center during the First World War. The building now houses the Niagara Military Museum.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4673 Victoria Avenue – St. Patrick’s Rectory – oriel window, varied roof line, semi-circular window
4223 Terrace Avenue – Glenview Mansion – 1870 – The house was built by John Drew on his 75-acre farm which he purchased in 1869. In 1881, he sold the house to Dr. John Ferguson who was twice elected Member of Parliament in 1882 and 1887. R. P. Slater, who served as mayor of Niagara Falls in 1899-1901, 1906-07, and 1909, purchased the house and lands in 1893. This large home has a square-plan main building and two rear wings. It was built in the Italianate style, and has a projecting central bay capped by a closed pediment and bay windows flanking the front entrance. Originally the roof had a belvedere surrounded by a wrought iron railing; it has been replaced by dormers. Brick was used to produce decorative elements such as quoins, window labels and the four large chimneys. Much of the brick has been covered with stucco.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
3289 St. Paul Avenue – Alexander-Robinson House – 1821 – The house was owned by Susannah Alexander, widow of Hugh Alexander (1780-1817), the first merchant to open a store in Stamford. The original 2.5-acre lot later held a fruit farm, and the house offered accommodation for tourists beginning in the 1920s. The house was owned by the Robinson Family from 1913-1995. The central part of the house was built earlier with squared timber walls lined with brick. The north and south gable ends were added later and the structure covered in clapboard and given its Italianate styling. In 1969, the interior was entirely renovated, the front porch was replaced and the exterior was covered in stucco.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
3121 St. Paul Avenue – Stamford Presbyterian Church – 1871 – The original Presbyterian meeting house, built in 1791 of logs, served the earliest settlers of the area, many of whom were of Scottish descent who chose lands on top of the escarpment. The churchyard to the south, called “God’s Half Acre” when it opened in 1784 is the resting place of many of Stamford’s founding citizens. The present church was built on the foundation of an earlier structure. Features of note are the balustrade on top and triple lancet windows on the front of the tower, and round stained-glass window above the main door. The tower was originally three-sided with a back added later and each corner was once topped by a pinnacle.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
3360 St. Patrick Avenue – Mitchell Cottage – 1805 – Also known as Stamford Cottage, the original cabin was built on Crown Land granted to the Presbyterian Church to assist early settlers. It was later owned by John Hawkins from 1837 to 1853, and it is to him that the 1840s appearance of the house is attributed. The house was constructed as a log cabin (smaller than the present structure) with heavy timber beams and a stone foundation. In the 1840s, an extension was built on the south end, and Classical Revival elements such as eave returns and a “Georgian Wilderness” type door were added. The exterior is covered with stucco.

Niagara Falls, Ontario Book 2 in Colour Photos – My Top 11 Picks

Niagara Falls, Ontario Book 2

Niagara Falls Ontario is located along the Niagara Gorge on the western bank of the Niagara River which flows from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario.

In 1853 construction began to build an international suspension bridge over the Niagara Gorge. This brought work and prosperity to the north end of Stamford Township. A shanty-town development was erected to house workers at the base of the bridge. Over the years this became the Village of Elgin. Amalgamation of the Village of Elgin with the Town of Clifton was caused by the economic impact of the Great Western, Erie and Ontario Railways. The prosperous town boasted fifteen grocery stores and twenty saloons and hotels.

Samuel Zimmerman, one of the founding fathers of the city, came from Pennsylvania in 1842 with lots of ambition, and some knowledge of construction. He rebuilt parts of the Welland Canal. Recognizing the importance of railroads, Zimmerman began building railway lines including the Great Western (now Canadian National) from Hamilton. Zimmerman’s company played a role in building the Railway Suspension Bridge across the Niagara River Gorge.

During Zimmerman’s lifetime, there were four small communities within what is now Niagara Falls: Chippawa to the south, Clifton, Drummondville, and Stamford Village in the north.

The majority of the early downtown businesses were located on the lower part of Bridge Street, Erie Avenue and River Road, with a few businesses on Clifton Avenue (now Zimmerman) and Park Street. At the turn of the century, retail activity slowly started to shift to Queen Street where to date some of these firms are still operating. The residences of Queen Street have given way to stores and offices that form the Downtown core we see today.

Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
6590 Dunn Street – Stamford Township Lot 161 was first obtained from the Crown by Haggai Skinner who likely built the earlier cabin. It was Henry Spence’s farm from 1854 to 1885. Mr. Spence came from England in 1834 and was noted for his fine brickwork. In 1893, the house and property were purchased by David Weaver and remained in the Weaver family until 1973. The larger front section of the house was constructed by Drummondville Mason Henry Spence, while the rear wood frame wing was originally a settler’s cabin dating to around 1800. An old brick scullery is also attached to the west side of the cabin and has remnants of an original cauldron and bread oven. A board-and-batten garage was added to the rear by the current owners.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4267 Bridge Street – Via Rail Station – Positioned beside the International Railway Bridge, this was the busiest and most prestigious terminal of the Great Western and Grand Trunk Railroads. It serviced the growing tourist trade, and was a popular social center with a restaurant in the east wing. Constructed in the Gothic Revival style favored for rail depots of the Victorian age, it has a hipped gable roof, decorative brick banding and limestone door and window accents. Originally installed in the gable ends were carved barge boards.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4310 Queen Street – City Hall – 1866 – For years there was a small balcony over the front entrance and orators spoke to the crowds gathered below. It served as City Hall for Niagara Falls until the new building opened in May 1970.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4337 Simcoe Street – multi-sloped roofs, Romanesque style window arches on ground floor, enclosed sun porch above veranda, decorative cornice and brackets, fish scale patterning on chipped gables
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
Zimmerman Avenue – Bank – Mansard roof with dormers, quoining around windows and doors, two-storey oriel windows with stepped parapets
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4711 Zimmerman Avenue – 1896 – The house served as both the home and office of Dr. James McGarry, and later that of his son, pediatrician Dr. Howard McGarry. Between them, the house was the center of medical care for families in Niagara Falls over the course of nearly ninety years. The home has a corner tower, pressed brick and limestone exterior, and irregular roof line. The large Neo-Classical front porch has rounded columns, frieze and a decorated closed pediment. A surgery was added to the rear of the house in 1905.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4761 Zimmerman Avenue – Bampfield Hall – James Bampfield built this second home for his wife Margaret who apparently never liked their first house. For generations it remained the property of the Bampfields as they rose to become one of the most prominent commercial families in Niagara Falls. The house is built primarily in the Gothic Revival style with pointed windows, a jerkinhead roof, and gingerbread trim in the gable ends. Its upper structure exhibits the Second Empire style elements of a mansard roof on the central tower and iron cresting on the roof. The Classical style verandah was a later early 20th century addition.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4835 Zimmerman Avenue – Bedham Hall Bed and Breakfast – located on Niagara River two miles from Whirlpool Bridge
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4268 Morrison Street – two-storey bay window, hipped roof
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4851 River Road – Doran House – 1886 – Park Place Bed and Breakfast – W.L. Doran and his brother owned the Dominion Suspender Company and Niagara Necktie Factories in town. The house served as an unofficial social club and was the scene of both formal balls and many a wild party. It is in the Queen Anne Revival style. Built of fine cream-colored brick, it has a round corner tower with a conical roof, gable windows of various shapes and a curved verandah with a molded frieze supported by slender columns. To the rear of the house is the original detached coach house.
Architectural Photos, Niagara Falls, Ontario
4325 Bampfield Street – Built by local lumber merchant John Merrall, this was the first home of the Bampfield family on their arrival in Clifton in 1860. James Bampfield operated the Great Western Restaurant in the east wing of the railroad station. The house was also reputedly used as a brothel for many years earlier in this century. The house is a unique variant of the Regency Style with a perfectly square plan, tall limestone block walls and a high raised basement. The basement was dynamited out of the underlying bedrock and built in the earth and rubble technique without mortar. The attached rear porch shed and roof dormers are later additions.