September, 2019:

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