Neighbourhood History

Our neighbourhood is located at the at the historic confluence of Garrison Creek, one of several streams that used to run through Toronto. It was formed by the receding glacial Lake Iroquois about 12,000 years ago. The geological formation still remains as the defined the steep slope of Davenport Road. This <a href="http://liliannattel.wordpress.com/2008/12/20/lake-iroquois/“>blog post has some interesting information about the historic shoreline.

In prehistoric times, aboriginals used Davenport Road as an east-west passage through the region.   During the 1880s, investors and speculators subdivided the local farms and market gardens into development lots of the hillside communities along Davenport Road.

Garrison Creek was valued by aboriginals and settlers for its fresh water, fish, and wildlife, and its recreational and transportation opportunities. Due to the fertility of the Davenport Road hillside from the prehistoric glacial soil deposits, the land was highly agriculturally productive and during the 19th century, small farms and market gardens were established to feed surrounding communities such as the Villages of Carlton, Davenport, Dovercourt North, Brockton and Yorkville, as well as the City of Toronto.

In 1886, the Dovercourt Land Building and Savings Company divided the land south of Davenport Road into 23 building lots, each about 40 by 170 feet. The area was first known as North Dovercourt.

With increased settlement, Garrison Creek became an open sewer, and was so polluted with sewage and refuse that it was declared a public health hazard. The creek began to be buried in the 1880s, with water diverted into underground sewers, and the Garrison Ravine filled with refuse and excavation soils from the City’s development. The last visible creek remnants in Christie Pits disappeared around 1912 and by the mid-1920s, the creek had been fully buried. Starting in 1990s, the City of Toronto passed a Council Resolution calling for the revitalization of the Garrison Creek Ravine System. The Garrison Creek Headwaters Committee, the local arm of the Garrison Creek Community Group, undertook a number of projects to increase public awareness and understanding of the creek’s place in its bioregion.

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