Historical Plaques of
Wellington County

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Special thanks to Dick and Evie McLean of West Seneca, New York, for advising me of the location of this plaque. Dick just happens to be John McLean's great-grandson and is very proud of his famous Scottish ancestor! Dick and Evie have written a condensed story of the life of John McLean and have given me permission to post it here at the site. They also provided all the images from their private family collection.
Click here to read THE STORY OF JOHN McLEAN

PLAQUE #1

Location: Guelph, Ontario, 21 Nottingham St.

JOHN McLEAN 1799-1890
In this house from 1847 to 1857 lived the noted explorer and author John McLean,who was born in Scotland and joined the Hudson's Bay Company in 1821. In 1838 he became the first white man to cross the Labrador peninsula from Ungava Bay to Hamilton Inlet and in 1839, discovered the Grand Falls of the Hamilton River, one of the world's greatest cataracts. His book, " Notes of a Twenty-Five Years' service in the Hudson's Bay Territory", is an important source of information on the Canadian Fur Trade.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #2

Location: Guelph, Ontario

GUELPH CITY HALL
Many Canadian cities ereceted well-designed municipal buildings during the mid 19th century railway boom.Guelp City Hall is one of the best of this group, symbolized the city's confidence in its future. Designed by Toronto architect William Thomas, it was constructecd in 1856-57. Although the interior has been altered, the smoothly dressed stonework and delicate carving of the exterior design provide an elegant and refined example of civic architecture in a classical stlye.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #3

Location: Guelph, Ontario

GUELPH CITY HALL 1856
This fine example of classical architecture was begun in 1856 following the incorporation of Guelph as a town. It was designed by William Thomas, architect of St. Lawrence Hall, Toronto, and other important buildings throughout the Province, and was completed in 1857. Constructed of Guelph stone, it contained a market house, offices and an assembly hall in which many notable persons were entertained, including the Hon. John A. MacDonald, later Canada's first Prime Minister. Alterations to the building were made in 1870 and a new hall was added in 1875. Except for the clock tower which was removed in 1961, the front portion of the structure retains its original appearance.

Erected by the Archaeological and Historic Sites Board
Department of Public Records and Archives of Ontario

PLAQUE #4

Location: Guelph, Ontario

JOHN GALT 1779 - 1839
History maker, novelist, poet and superintendant of the Canada Company, he founded Guelph on April 23, 1827. The opening of the Huron Tract in Upper Canada has been described as the most important single attempt at settlement in Canadian history, This progressive community stands as a monument to his efforts and ingenuity. Born in Irvine,Scotland May 2, 1779 and died at Greenock, Scotland April 11, 1839.

Erected by a grateful citizenry in 1979, marking the bi-centennial of his birth and the 100th anniversary of Guelph as a city.

PLAQUE #5

Location: GUELPH, Ontario

EDWARD JOHNSON

1878 - 1959

Edward Johnson, musician, impresario and educator, was born and died and Guelph. After initial successes on Broadway, he went to Italy to study and emerged as one of the distinguished Tenors of a generation that also produced Caruso, Gigli and Martinelli. He sang for 23 years in the leading opera houses of the world before becoming general manager of the Metropolitan Opera Company (1935-50). During his tenure in New York and after his retirement and return to Canada, Edward Johnson worked to make opera a popular art on this continent and to develop North American singers.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #6

Location: Westcott United Church, Co. Rd. 14, Conn, Ontario

LIEUTENANT S. LEWIS HONEY, V.C., D.C.M., M.M.

1894 - 1918

Born at Conn, Honey enlisted in January, 1915 with the 34th Battalion C.E.F. and served in France with the 78th Battalion. During a Canadian attack in September, 1918, in the Bourlon Wood area, he reorganized his unit under severe fire, and rushed a machine-gun post single-handed, capturing the guns and ten prisoners. Later he repelled four enemy counter-attacks and led a party which took another post and three guns. On September 29 he led his company against a strong enemy position and was mortally wounded on the last day of the attack. For his conspicuous bravery, Lieutenant Honey was posthumously awarded the British Empire's highest decoration for military valour, the Victoria Cross.

Archaeological and Historic Sites Board of Ontario

PLAQUE #7

Location: 140 King St. W., Royal Canadian Legion Hall, Mount Forest

CAPTAIN FREDERICK W. CAMPBELL, V.C.

1867 - 1915

Born in Oxford County and raised near Mount Forest, Campbell saw active service in the South African War. He went overseas in 1914 with the first Canadian contingent and was posted to the 1st Battalion, C.E.F. In June, 1915, his unit was engaged in the Givenchy area of France. During an attack on the German trenches, Campbell held an exposed position under heavy fire, despite the loss of most of his detachment. He then advanced and succeeded in holding back a strong counter-attack. Shot by a sniper, Campbell died of his wounds. For his gallant conduct he was posthumously awarded the British Empire's highest decoration for valour, the Victoria Cross.

Archaeological and Historic Sites Board of Ontario

PLAQUE #8

Location: In Lion's Club Park, Main St. & Parkside Dr., Mount Forest

THE FOUNDING OF MOUNT FOREST
During the survey of the Garafraxa Colonization Road, constructed from Arthur to Georgian Bay in 1840-48, land was reserved for a settlement here at the South Saugeen River. By 1851 a post-office had been established and two years later a village-plot, named Mount Forest, was laid out. Surrounded by excellent agricultural country and stimulated by the improvement of the Garafraxa Road, the hamlet grew quickly and was incorporated as a Village in 1864. Three years later, with a population of about 1400 inhabitants, the community contained several farm implement manufactories and an extensive milling complex owned by Cynthia Yeomans. Following the completion of the Toronto, Grey and Bruce Railway to Mount Forest in 1871, the community expanded rapidly and became a Town in 1879.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #9

Location: In MacPherson Park, Francis St., Arthur

THE FOUNDING OF ARTHUR
Arthur, named for Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington, was the southern terminus of the Garafraxa "colonization road" to Owen Sound. Settlers arrived in 1840 but the townsite was not officially surveyed until 1846. The establishment of saw and grist mills hastened growth in the community which was also the natural market centre for the area's agricultural production. In 1851 a post office was opened and the first church and school were organized. A weekly newspaper the Enterprise, was established and a Divisional Court met at Arthur. Economic development was further encouraged when, in 1872, a station of the Toronto, Grey and Bruce Railway was opened in the community. That year, Arthur was incorporated as a village.

Erected by the Archaeological and Historic Sites Board,
Department of Public Records and Archives of Ontario

PLAQUE #10

Location: Opposite MacPherson Park, Francis St., Arthur

JAMES MORRISON 1861 - 1936
J.J. Morrison, an influential activist in farmer's causes, lived on a farm 2 km south of Arthur. He entered politics in the early 1900s, a time when many farmers felt ignored in an increasingly urban and industrial society. Morrison became deeply involved in farm organizations and helped found the United Farmers of Ontario (UFO) and the United Farmers' Cooperative in 1914. The UFO surprised the province by winning the election of 1919. Morrison declined the premier's office in favour of E.C. Drury, but help set and implement the government's reform agenda during its four years in office. As secretary-treasurer of the UFO until 1933, he continued to advocate cooperative effort among farmers.

Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Recreation

PLAQUE #11

Location: 290 Main St., Palmerston

THE ONTARIO VACCINE FARM
Established in 1885 by Dr. Alexander Stewart a local physician, the Ontario Vaccine Farm was the first institution to produce smallpox vaccine in Ontario. The Farm originally consisted of a converted barn where Stewart employed government-approved methods for obtaining and processing vaccine from inoculated calves. During an era of recurrent smallpox outbreaks in Ontario, large quantities were sold to local health boards for preventive vaccination. By 1907, although American farms were supplying most of the vaccine used in Ontario, Stewart had constructed new buildings, including a combined operating-room and laboratory. After Stewart's death in 1911 the operation was continued by Dr. H.B. Coleman until 1916, when it was taken over and transferred to the Antitoxin Laboratory of the University of Toronto.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #12

Location: In park next to Town Hall, 68 Elora St., Harriston

THE FOUNDING OF HARRISTON
In 1854 Archibald Harrison (1818-1877), a Toronto-area farmer, acquired land here in Minto Township where the Elora and Saugeen Road crossed the Maitland River. Mills built by Harrison's brothers, Joshua and George, formed a nucleus of a small settlement and in 1856 a small post-office, Harriston was established. The hamlet grew slowly, but from 1862 agricultural development stimulated local trade. By about 1867, with a population of about 150, the village contained many businesses, including blacksmith shops and wagonworks. The construction of the Wellington, Grey and Bruce Railway, completed to Harriston in 1871, spurred the community's growth as a prosperous commercial and farm-implement manufacturing centre. Harriston was incorporated as a Village with about 500 inhabitants in 1872 and as a Town in 1878.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #13

Location: In the park at the corner of William & Bell St., Palmerston

THE FOUNDING OF PALMERSTON
The opening in 1871, of a station on the main line of the Wellington, Grey and Bruce Railway, soon to be completed from Guelph to Southampton, provided the nucleus around which a community developed. The station was built on land purchased from Thomas McDowell who in 1854 had become the first settler on the site of Palmerston. In 1872 McDowell, and William Thompson who owned adjoining land, began selling town lots and by 1873 the community had 150 inhabitants. In 1874, a branch line to Listowel was completed and a post office called Palmerston, reportedly after Lord Palmerston, the celebrated English statesman, was opened. The population rapidly increased to some 1400 and by a Provincial Act of December 21, 1874, Palmerston was incorporated as a Town.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #14

Location: Opposite the park at the corner of William & Bell St., Palmerston.
This plaque is on a cairn, with the stone from the original church imbedded in it
with the words (The M.E. Church, Palmerston, A.D. 1875)

To commemorate the red brick building,
built on this site in 1875, as a Methodist
Episcopal Church.
From 1890 to 1931 it was used as a Baptist
Church.
From 1932 to 1981 the Loyal Orange
Lodge No.655 and Vimy Lodge No. 248 met
here.
Purchased by the Public Utilities
Commission and demolished in 1981.

The next plaque was sent in by Bob McArthur

PLAQUE #15

Location: At the Graham A. Giddy Funeral Home, Geddes & Church St., Elora

CHARLES CLARKE 1826-1909
A leader in the radical reform movement in 19th century Ontario. Clarke was born in Lincoln, England. In his youth he developed a keen interest in politics and, after emigrating to Upper Canada and settling in Elora in 1848, he joined the ranks of the provinces's radical reformers. In 1851, Clarke played a prominent role in drafting the "Clear Grit" platform which included such policies as representation by population, universal male suffrage and the secret ballot. Although he devoted his energies primarily to local affairs for the next two decades, he represented this area in the provincial legislature from 1871-91 and then served as Clerk of the Assembly. Before finally retiring to his home here in 1907. Clarke saw most of the policies he had advocated enacted into law.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Communication and Culture

The next 2 plaques were sent in by Jan Johnston

PLAQUE #16

Location: In front of the Fergus Historical Library

THE FOUNDERS OF FERGUS
Adam Fergusson (1782-1862) first visited Canada in 1831 to investigate emigration for the Highland Society of Scotland. In 1833 in partnership with a fellow Scot. James Webster (1808 - 69) he purchased over 7,000 acres of uncleared land in Nichol Township. Attracted by the abundant water power they laid out the town site of Fergus. Webster took up residence here and supervised the settlement's early development. The first house of this predominantly Scottish community was erected in 1833, a hotel the following year and a sawmill, grist-mill, church and school in 1835. Though Fergusson lived near Waterdown, and Webster moved to Guelph in 1852, the founders continued to foster the growth of their settlement.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #17

Location: In front of the Wellington Historic Museum and Archives

WELLINGTON COUNTY HOUSE OF INDUSTRY AND REFUGE
This is the earliest surviving example of an important 19th century institution, the government-supported poorhouse. Erected in 1877, it was the shelter of last resort for the homeless and destitute, who traded spartan accommodations for domestic or agricultural labour. With changing attitudes and the introduction of alternative forms of social assistance, its function shifted to the care of the elderly and infirm, and additions were built to respond to their special needs. Closed in 1971, this building and its history illustrate the Victorian roots of the 20th-century social security system in Canada.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #18

Location: The Church of Our Lady, 28 Norfolk St.,Guelph

JOSEPH CONNOLLY 1840 -1904
This prominent Ontario architect was born in Ireland and received his professional training there under J. J. McCarthy, a leading nineteenth century Catholic church architect. By the early 1860s Connolly had settled at Toronto where he soon established a special practice designing buildings for the burgeoning Roman Catholic community across Ontario. This church, Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception (1876), in the style of the thirteenth century French Gothic, is one of his earliest known structures and is widely considered to be his finest. Among the other religious buildings Connolly designed are the James Street Baptist Church (1879), in Hamilton, one of his few Protestant structures, and St. Peter's Cathedral-Basilica in London (1880). Connolly also designed industrial and residential buildings as part of his extensive practice.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #19

Location: Near the Main St. bridge opposite the Cenotaph, Erin

THE FOUNDING OF ERIN
A small community developed here following erection of mills on the Credit River about 1828-29. These were later rebuilt by Daniel McMillan. In 1839 a post-office, Erin, was established at "McMillan's Mills", and within a year village lots had been laid out. In 1851, with a population of 300 the thriving settlement contained several prosperous industries, including a distillery, a tannery, and carding, oatmeal and grist-mills. Agricultural prosperity and abundant waterpower stimulated the community's growth as an important regional centre for milling and the manufacture of wood products, and in 1879 a branch of the Credit Valley Railway was completed through Erin to Toronto. That year, by a Wellington County by-law, Erin was incorporated as a Village, with over 750 inhabitants.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #20

Location: Main St. S., Rockwood

ROCKWOOD ACADEMY 1850
A pioneer boarding school for boys was opened on this property in 1850 by William Wetherald (1820-98), an English Quaker who had emigrated to Upper Canada in 1835. The original log building was replaced by the present stone structure in 1853. The academy became noted for its high academic standards, and among its former pupils were such prominent persons as: Honourable A.S. Hardy, Ontario's fourth prime minister; Sir Adam Beck, founder of the province's Hydro-Electric system; and James J. Hill, pioneer railway magnate. In 1864 Donald McCaig and Alexander McMillan became principals of the school. They introduced commercial courses and added the south wing to the building. This school remained in operation until 1882.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #21

Location: 74 Woolwich St., Guelph

WELLINGTON COUNTY COURT HOUSE
In 1837 the provincial legislature established the provisional District of Wellington and authorized the erection of a court house and jail at Guelph. Construction of the two structures, designed by the noted Toronto architect Thomas Young, commenced under the supervision of a committee of local magistrates. Built by William Allan of Guelph, the limestone court house is one of the few structures in Ontario executed in the castellated style reminiscent of medieval fortifications. It was erected in 1842-44 and has been expanded many times - each addition complementing the design of the original structure. An important judicial and administrative complex, the court house continues to serve this County and in 1980-81 was enlarged and extensively renovated for use as the Wellington County Administration Centre.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #22

Location: Near the Cenotaph in Town Square, Geddes St., Elora

THE FOUNDER OF ELORA
Captain William Gilkison (1777-1833) was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, and emigrated to North America in 1796. He served with the British forces in the War of 1812 as an assistant quartermaster-general, and in 1832 purchased some 14,000 acres of land in Nichol Township. He selected this area at the falls of the Grand River as a town site for his proposed settlement and named it Elora. It was laid out by Lewis Burwell, deputy provincial land surveyor, late in 1832, and the following year Gilkison established a sawmill and a general store. The founder of Elora died in April, 1833, before the full results of his foresight and enterprise were achieved.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #23

Location: 100 Norfolk St., Guelph

GUELPH PUBLIC LIBRARY
One of the first municipally supported libraries formed in Ontario following passage of the Free Libraries Act of 1882, the Guelph Public Library was established on February 10, 1883. It replaced the limited library service which for several decades had been available to the community through the Farmers' and Mechanics' Institute. Dedicated to the idea of educating the workingman, the Institute had sponsored lectures and classes and provided a reference and circulating library for members. In March 1833 its assets were formally transferred to the newly-created public library. The library occupied various sites until 1905 when a permanent building was erected here. Housed in the present structure since 1965, the Guelph Public Library remains a major source of information and recreational reading for this community.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Citizenship and Culture

PLAQUE #24

Location: 325 St. George St. W., Fergus

ST. ANDREW'S PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
Prominently sited on a hill-top overlooking Fergus, St. Andrew's was the dominant visual landmark as well as the religious focus of this Scottish community during the second half of the 19th century. It was erected in 1862 to serve a congregation established almost 30 years before and replaced an earlier church which stood on the site. Designed by David Murray of Guelph and built of locally-quarried stone, this attractive Gothic Revival structure is distinguished by its high-pitched roof, massive buttresses and elegant spire. Since its completion St. Andrew's has undergone several interior and exterior alterations, notably the erection in 1968 of a large addition incorporating Sunday school and meeting rooms and Fellowship Hall. The church, nevertheless, retains much of its original character.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Citizenship and Culture

PLAQUE #25

Location: St. George St. W., Fergus

THE FERGUS CURLING CLUB
The oldest continuously operating curling club in Ontario, the Fergus Curling Club was formed in 1834 by Scottish immigrants. At the organization's first formal meeting two years later Adam Fergusson, a founder of Fergus, was chosen president and the rules of play were established. Curling matches between local players and against rival clubs were held out of doors until 1879 when a covered rink was opened. No longer the exclusive preserve of Scots, curling became an enormously popular activity in Fergus and the rink became a social centre for the community. Seeking competition from further afield, the Fergus Curling Club entered bonspiels throughout the province, winning the Ontario Tankard in 1899. Today, it remains a significant force in inter-community curling.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Citizenship and Culture

The next 2 plaques were sent in by Marty Bootsman

PLAQUE #26

Location: 144 Geddes St., Elora

DAVID BOYLE 1842-1911
Born in Scotland, Boyle came to Canada in 1856 and settled in this area. As a local school teacher, he began an extensive collection of native artifacts and became an archaeological authority. Boyle moved to Toronto in 1883 and three years later was appointed the first curator of the Provincial Archaeological Museum, then housed in the Canadian Institute Building. Dedicated to the study and retention of artifacts within Ontario, he initiated an active program of excavation and acquisition. Between 1887-1907, Boyle edited a noted series, the Annual Archaeological Report, published under the auspices of the Ontario Department of Education. Through his work on Ontario pre-history, Boyle gained international recognition as a leading Canadian archaeologist and anthropologist.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #27

Location: In Exhibition Park, Exhibition St. & London Rd., Guelph

THE FOUNDING OF GUELPH
John Galt, the celebrated Scottish novelist and first superintendent of the Canada Company, founded Guelph on April 23, 1827, naming it "in compliment to the Royal Family". Established and heavily promoted by Galt as the headquarters for the development of the Company's huge land purchase, the Huron Tract, the town subsequently declined on his removal from office in 1829. Increased agricultural settlement in the area and Guelph's elevation to administrative centre for the new Wellington District contributed to it's economic recovery by the mid 1840's. The town's development as a railway centre in the late 1850's encouraged the influx of light industry in the following decades which further diversified it's economic base. Under provincial statute, Guelph became a City on April 23, 1879.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Culture and Recreation

PLAQUE #28

Location: Ballinafad Cemetery, Co. Rd. 24, Ballinafad

EARLY SETTLEMENT OF ERIN TOWNSHIP
Erin Township was formed from land purchased by the Crown from the Mississauga Indians in 1818. It was surveyed in 1818 and in 1820-21. A few grantees, including three named Roszel, settled near the site of Ballinafad by 1820. Other settlers came in 1821-27. By 1828 Aaron Wheller had built a grist mill on the site of Hillsburgh, where Nazareth Hill later established a village. Another settlement formed near the site of Erin village where a sawmill was in operation by 1828 and a grist mill by 1829. These mills were acquired and rebuilt by Daniel McMillan and in 1839 "Erin" post office was opened at "McMillan's Mills". In 1841 the township contained 1,368 persons.

Erected by the Archaeological and Historic Sites Board,
Department of Public Records and Archives of Ontario

PLAQUE #29

Location: In front of the church on the east side of Woolwich Street
across from Douglas Street, Guelph

HENRY LANGLEY 1836-1907
One of the most prolific architects in 19th-century Ontario, Langley was born in Toronto. In 1862, following his apprenticeship as an architect, he formed a partnership with Thomas Gundry. Langley undertook commissions for residential, commercial and public structures, but soon began to specialize in the design of ecclesiastical buildings. Working with the firm known initially as Langley, Langley and Burke from 1872 until his retirement, he developed an extensive practice, fashioning some 70 churches throughout the province and altering or enlarging many more. St. George's Anglican Church, completed in 1873, is representative of his masterly High Victorian Gothic designs. Well regarded by his peers, Langley figured prominently in the development of the architectural profession in Ontario, training many architects who later gained renown.

Erected by the Ontario Heritage Foundation,
Ministry of Citizenship and Culture

PLAQUE #30

Location: In front of the park on the west side of Gordon Street
just north of the Eramosa River bridge, Guelph

THE LA GUAYRA SETTLERS
In 1827 some 135 destitute Scottish settlers arrived at Guelph. They formed part of a group sent in 1825 to La Guayra, Venezuela, by a British land company. Unsuited to the tropical climate and unable to work their poor land, they abandoned the colony and requested assistance from the British government. Transported to New York, they were directed to the Canada Company's settlement in Upper Canada. Forgoing the required charges, the superintendent, John Galt, placed them on Company land. This philanthropic action was criticized by his superiors and was one of the reasons leading to his recall to England in 1829.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #31

Location: On the campus of the University of Guelph underneath
the portico in front of Johnson Hall, Guelph

ONTARIO AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE
This portico was the entrance of the Frederick W. Stone farm house, the building in which the first classes of the Ontario School of Agriculture were held on May 1, 1874. Renamed the Ontario Agricultural College in 1880, this institution, the first college established on the University of Guelph campus, was affiliated with the University of Toronto in 1888. A Provincial Act of 1962 created the Federated Colleges of the Ontario Department of Agriculture, comprising the Ontario Agricultural College, the Ontario Veterinary College, and the Macdonald Institute, these, in 1964, formed the nucleus of the newly established University of Guelph. Through its research and innovative ideas the Ontario Agricultural College has contributed greatly to the development of the country's agricultural industry.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board,
Ministry of Colleges and Universities

PLAQUE #32

Location: On a concrete block facing east near the flagpole on the SW corner of
Gordon Street and College Avenue, Guelph

ONTARIO VETERINARY COLLEGE
1862
This college, known until 1869 as the Upper Canada Veterinary School, was the first in Canada to offer courses in veterinary medicine. It was established in Toronto in 1862 by the Board of Agriculture, and although partially sponsored by this government body it was operated as a private enterprise by Prof. Andrew Smith, a graduate of Edinburgh Veterinary College. Incorporated in 1896, the college was affiliated with the University of Toronto in 1897, although the latter did not confer degrees in veterinary science until 1908. In that year Prof. Smith retired, and the Ontario Government acquired his interest in the college. Placed under the Department of Agriculture, it was moved to Guelph in 1922.

Erected by the Ontario Archaeological and Historic Sites Board

PLAQUE #33

Location: On the South side of Ellis Road, east of County Road 32,
south of County Road 34, Township of Puslinch

THE SETTLEMENT OF PUSLINCH
Originally known as the "Church Lands", Puslinch Township was named by the lieutenant-governor of Upper Canada, Sir John Colborne, after Puslinch, his wife's birthplace in Devon, England. Extensive settlement followed the land surveys made by David Gibson between 1828 and 1832. Edward Ellis, who had settled in Puslinch in 1839, donated one acre of his land to the trustees of the Sterling Congregation of the Wesleyan Methodist Church. The Ellis Chapel was erected on this site in 1861 through devoted community effort, and for many years church services and a non-denominational Sunday School were held here. It remains today a monument to the pioneers of Puslinch Township.

Archaeological and Historic Sites Board of Ontario

PLAQUE #34

Location: Inside the rectory office of the church
on Norfolk Street across from Macdonell Street, Guelph

CHURCH OF OUR LADY OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION
Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception is an exceptional example of the High Victorian Gothic Revival style, an architectural movement that was international in scope. The design of this church was inspired by Cologne Cathedral. Characteristic of the style are the twin towers, large rose window, pointed windows and an interior plan featuring chapels that radiate from the apse. Constructed in several stages beginning in 1876, the church was designed by Irish-born Joseph Connolly, the principal architect of Catholic churches in late 19th century Ontario.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #35

Location: On the east side of Woolwich Street just south of Marilyn Drive, south of Woodlawn Road, Guelph

EDWARD JOHNSON 1878-1959
Edward Johnson, one of the world's leading operatic tenors, was born in Guelph and lived for many years in a house which stood near this site. He studied in Italy and made his European debut in 1912 at Padua. During eight seasons he performed leading roles in Rome and at La Scala Theatre, Milan, and following extensive tours of Europe and South America, he joined the Chicago Opera Company in 1920. He became a principal member of the Metropolitan Opera Company, New York, in 1922, and from 1935-50 was general manager of the Metropolitan Opera Association. For many years he was also chairman of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. On retirement he devoted his time to the encouragement of young Canadian artists.

Erected by the Archaeological and Historic Sites Board,
Department of Public Records and Archives of Ontario

PLAQUE #36

Location: In Elora, on Metcalfe Street immediately south of the Grand River bridge

ELORA DRILL SHED
This handsome stone structure, built in 1865, is a rare surviving example of early drill hall architecture in Canada. During the 1860s, the American Civil War and the Fenian Raids raised fears for the defence of British North America. In response, the Canadian militia was strengthened, and many rural communities erected drill halls to train their volunteers. Notable for its classical proportions, its semicircular fan light over the door and oculus in the gable, this is an unusually well-constructed building of its type

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #37

Location: On the grounds of a high school on the west side of Yorkshire Street
just north of the intersection of Yorkshire and Paisley streets, Guelph

THE HONOURABLE GEORGE ALEXANDER DREW, C.C.
1894-1973
George Alexander Drew, Premier of Ontario from 1943-1948, was born in Guelph, Ontario in 1894. Educated at Upper Canada College, the University of Toronto and Osgoode Hall, Drew served in the First World War as an artillery lieutenant. He practised law in Guelph, entered municipal politics there in 1922 and became mayor in 1925. Drew was the first chair of the Ontario Securities Commission (1931-1934). Chosen as leader of the Ontario Conservative Party in 1938, he became premier in 1943 with a sweeping and progressive social and economic platform that laid the foundation for a 42-year-long political dynasty. Drew resigned in 1948 to lead the federal Progressive Conservatives, but was defeated in the next two general elections and left politics in 1956. He was appointed Canadian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom (1957-1964), Chancellor of the new University of Guelph (1965-1971) and was made a Companion of the Order of Canada in 1967. George Drew died in Toronto in 1973.

Ontario Heritage Trust, an agency of the Government of Ontario

PLAQUE #38

Location: In Rockwood, on the northeast corner of Guelph and Inkerman Streets

JAMES JEROME HILL
1838-1916
Born near Rockwood, Upper Canada, Hill moved to Minnesota in 1856 settling at St. Paul. Having organized the Red River Transportation Company which provided effective transportation between St. Paul and Winnipeg, he had begun, by 1878, to build his vast railway empire. A member of the Board of the CPR (1880-3) he subsequently became its greatest competitor and by 1889 had organized the Great Northern System. As President of that System (1893-9) and Chairman of the Board (1907-12) he built numerous feeder lines reaching to the Canadian border.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #39

Location: Attached to the outside wall of the McCrae House on the southeast corner
of McCrae Blvd and Water Street 3 blocks west of Gordon Street, Guelph

LT-COL JOHN McCRAE
Canadian poet, physician and soldier, McCrae was born in this house November 30, 1872. He died at Wimereux, France, January 28, 1918. While Medical Officer to the 1st Artillery Brigade, he wrote his famous poem "In Flanders Fields" in a dugout near Ypres in April, 1915.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #40

Location: Outside the house on the southeast corner of McCrae Blvd
and Water Street 3 blocks west of Gordon Street, Guelph

McCRAE HOUSE
This limestone cottage was the birthplace of John McCrae, author of In Flanders Fields, the famous poem written in May 1915 during the Second Battle of Ypres. Built in 1858, the house is a typical mid-nineteenth-century Ontario cottage with its trellised verandah and cedar shingle roof. The exterior has been carefully restored to its appearance in the 1870s, when it was the McCrae family home.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Commission des lieux et monuments historiques du Canada

PLAQUE #41

Location: On Road 45 near where the Conestogo River crosses the road 5.1 km from Road 86 via Roads 12 and 45

THE QUEEN'S BUSH SETTLEMENT, 1820-1867
In the early 19th century the vast unsettled area between Waterloo County and Lake Huron was known as the "Queen's Bush". More than 1,500 free and formerly enslaved Blacks pioneered scattered farms along the Peel and Wellesley Township border, with Glen Allan, Hawkesville and Wallenstein as important centres. Working together, these industrious and self-reliant settlers built churches, schools, and a strong and vibrant community life. American missionaries taught local Black children at the Mount Hope and Mount Pleasant schools. In the 1840s the government ordered the district surveyed and many of the settlers could not afford to purchase the land they had laboured so hard to clear. By 1850 migration out of the Queen's Bush had begun. Today African Canadians whose ancestors pioneered the Queen's Bush are represented in communities across Ontario.

Ontario Heritage Trust, an agency of the Government of Ontario

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