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|City of Thorold|
The Keefer Mansion Inn, previously Maplehurst
Location of Thorold in the Niagara Region
|• Mayor||Terry Ugulini|
|• Governing body||Thorold City Council|
|• MP||Vance Badawey|
|• MPP||Jeff Burch|
|• Land||82.99 km2 (32.04 sq mi)|
|Elevation||162 m (531 ft)|
|• Density||226.5/km2 (587/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (EDT)|
L2V, L2T, L0S
|Area code(s)||905, 289, 365|
Thorold is a city in Ontario, Canada, located on the Niagara Escarpment. It is also the seat of the Regional Municipality of Niagara.
The Welland Canal passes through the centre of the city, and the Twin Flight Locks, located downtown, attract thousands of tourists annually.
The first survey of Thorold, or Township 9 as it was known then, occurred in 1788. The earliest communities in what is now Thorold emerged at Beaverdams, DeCew Falls and St. Johnsbut, after the opening of the First Welland Canal in 1829, they were superseded by the new canal villages of Thorold, Allanburg and Port Robinson.
In 1846, the community had a population of about 1,000 and there were three churches or chapels and a post office. Various types of tradesmen worked here. Industry included two grist mills, a cement mill, a brewery and three wagon makers. There were seven taverns.
Thorold, located on the brow of the Niagara Escarpment, soon became dominant and was incorporated as a village in 1850 and as a town in 1870. When the Regional Municipality of Niagara was formed in 1970, the Town of Thorold expanded to include the former Thorold Township. In 1975 the town became incorporated as the City of Thorold.
Thorold is also the location of the War of 1812 battle site, Beaverdams, where, on June 25, 1813, Colonel Charles Boerstler and his American troops were defeated by a force of 80 British regulars and 300 Caughnawaga Mohawks.
The city includes the neighbourhoods of Allanburg, Beaverdams, Confederation Heights, Port Robinson, St. Johns, Rolling Meadows, Thorold South and Turner's Corners.
St. Johns was one of the first areas in the interior of Niagara Peninsula to be settled by Europeans. The first Europeans settled in the area about 1792, when a sawmill was built on St. Johns Creek, a tributary of the Twelve Mile Creek. It was one of only two mills in Niagara at the time. In 1804, St. Johns became home to the first free school in Upper Canada, housed in a single-room, wooden schoolhouse. By the time a post office was established in 1831, the community included a woollen factory, a tannery, a foundry, stores, and a number of mills. Eventually, the hydro power offered by the site became less of a commodity. As industry in surrounding towns grew, St. Johns' affluence declined.
Thorold is home to several festivals and annual events. Included are:
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The Welland Canal Parkway Trail is a paved recreational path beginning in St. Catharines at Lake Ontario and ending at Lake Erie in Port Colborne. Three sections of the trail are located within Thorold, which are:
The trail follows the Welland Canal, and passes next to the Thorold Lock 7 Viewing Complex.
Mel Swart Conservation Park is a waterfront park located on Lake Gibson. The park offers a large track along the perimeter, and has a boardwalk suspended out over the lake.
Short Hills Provincial Park is partially located in the City of Thorold.
Some other of the numerous recreational parks in the city include:
On DeCew Road, was constructed in the late 18th century as a home for British Captain John B. DeCou. It served as the area's British headquarters during the War of 1812. On June 22, 1813, Laura Secord journeyed from Queenston to DeCew House to warn Lieutenant James FitzGibbon of an impending American attack. FitzGibbon and his men were able to capture the American force and help turn the tide of the war. The house was destroyed by fire in 1950 but the site is commemorated by the rebuilt foundation and a plaque.
At 12 Albert Street West, was constructed next to the Second Welland Canal in 1878. This building once housed Thorold's police force and, to this day, contains a jail in the basement. For many years, the fire bell tolled for the town's strictly enforced nine o'clock curfew. The Old Firehall was designed by the architect John Latshaw and built for $2,483. It has a combination bell tower and hose tower, yellow and red brickwork, semi-circular wood windows, and a circular wood window in the gable end at the tower. Decorative yellow brick arches frame each window. The bell which hung in its tower remained in use until 1964, when the fire department moved into its new hall on nearby Towpath Street. In 1967 the old bell was installed outside the new firehall. The "Old Hall" was used as the Thorold YMCA for several years thereafter.
At 14 Ormond Street North, is a carefully restored 1862 building that was once home to John McDonagh, a lumber merchant and mayor of the Town of Thorold from 1881–1884. Chestnut Hall currently houses the Thorold & Beaverdams Historical Society, in addition to the Thorold Museum and part of the Thorold Public Library.
On Hollow Road, is a single-room wooden school house located in the west portion of Thorold. Opening in 1804, it was the first free school in Upper Canada. The first teacher at the school was Samuel Birdsall. The enrolment in 1826 was recorded as 29 students. The building was fully restored in 1974.
At 14 Saint David's Road West, is a Thorold landmark and the former home of Jacob Keefer. The mansion sits on the highest rise in the city offering a commanding view of the community below. Built by Hugh Keefer in 1885, this red stone structure with elaborate gables and dormers has been variously used in the past as a residence, a hospital, and a private nursing home. Maplehurst was recently restored to its original condition and is currently known as the Keefer Mansion, a 10-room inn.
At 20 Pine Street North, was constructed in 1846 on the bank of the second Welland Canal by Jacob Keefer and, at that time, it contained the largest watermill in Canada. The Keefers were entrepreneurs and are considered one of Thorold's founding families. At its height, the mill was capable of manufacturing 300 barrels (89 tonnes) of flour per day and storing 70,000 bushels (1,900 tonnes) of wheat and 5,000 barrels (440 tonnes) of flour. Today, the Welland Mills building has been restored offering commercial space on the ground floor and residential apartments above.
On Marlatt's Road, was constructed in 1832. Beaverdams Church is the oldest Methodist Church still standing in Ontario. The first minister to preach in the chapel was Reverend Egerton Ryerson, who is largely responsible for founding the province of Ontario's education system.
A war memorial monument that commemorates World War I, World War II and the Korean War. Located in Memorial Park, at the corner of Albert and Chapel streets, it was unveiled on Sunday, October 30, 1921 and was erected by the citizens of Thorold to: "Honour the Memory of the Men of Thorold, who gave their lives for the cause of freedom in the great war, and in grateful remembrance of those who shared its dangers."
At 1 Ormond Street South, is one of 156 Carnegie libraries to have been funded in Canada. The building, designed by architect A.E. Nicholson, was opened in 1912. The library moved from here to its present home in Chestnut Hall in 1983. The building now serves as office space.
The Thorold Blackhawks, founded in 1963, are a Junior 'B' hockey team in the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League. The Blackhawks were Golden Horseshoe Junior Hockey League Champions in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005 and Golden Horseshoe Conference Champions in 2008. In 2005, the team went on to capture the Sutherland Cup as the best Junior 'B' team in Ontario. Notable former players include Nathan Horton, Dwayne Roloson, Conor Timmins and Owen Nolan. The Blackhawks home rink is the Thorold Community Arena in downtown Thorold. The team colours are black, white and red.
The Thorold Tunnel is an underwater vehicular tunnel, built between 1965 and 1967, which allows Highway 58 to cross the Welland Canal without interrupting shipping. It is the longest tunnel in Ontario.
Portions of the Welland Canal pass through Thorold.
Thorold is home to the Niagara Detention Centre, a 260-person capacity maximum-security prison. It generally serves people on remand, offenders sentenced to short terms (60 days or less), and offenders awaiting transfer to larger federal or provincial facilities.It is located between the neighbourhoods of Thorold South and Allanburg.
St. Catharines is the largest city in Canada's Niagara Region and the sixth largest urban area in Ontario, with 96.13 square kilometres of land and 133,113 residents in 2016. It lies in Southern Ontario, 51 kilometres (32 mi) south of Toronto across Lake Ontario, and is 19 kilometres (12 mi) inland from the international boundary with the United States along the Niagara River. It is the northern entrance of the Welland Canal. Residents of St. Catharines are known as St. Cathariners. St. Catharines carries the official nickname "The Garden City" due to its 1,000 acres (4 km2) of parks, gardens, and trails.
Welland is a city in the Regional Municipality of Niagara in Southern Ontario, Canada. In 2016, it had a population of 52,293.
The Welland Canal is a ship canal in Ontario, Canada, connecting Lake Ontario and Lake Erie. It forms a key section of the St. Lawrence Seaway and Great Lakes Waterway. Traversing the Niagara Peninsula from Port Weller in St. Catharines to Port Colborne, it enables ships to ascend and descend the Niagara Escarpment and bypass Niagara Falls. The name currently refers to the fourth such canal, three earlier and much smaller canals servicing the same route are also known as the Welland.
The Regional Municipality of Niagara, also colloquially known as the Niagara Region, is a regional municipality comprising twelve municipalities of Southern Ontario, Canada. The regional seat is in Thorold. It is the southern end of the Golden Horseshoe, the largest megalopolis in Canada.
King's Highway 58, commonly referred to as Highway 58, is a provincially maintained highway in the Canadian province of Ontario. The route is divided into two segments with a combined length of 15.5 km (9.6 mi). The southern segment travels from Niagara Regional Road 3, formerly Highway 3, in Port Colborne, to the Highway 58A junction in the southern end of Welland, a distance of 7.2 km (4.5 mi). The northern segment begins at Highway 20 near Allanburg and travels north and west to a large junction with Highway 406 at the St. Catharines – Thorold boundary, a distance of 8.3 km (5.2 mi). An 18.1 km (11.2 mi) gap separates the two segments within Welland and Pelham. The entire route is located within the Regional Municipality of Niagara.
Port Weller, Ontario is a community in St. Catharines, Regional Municipality of Niagara, Ontario, Canada and is part of the Golden Horseshoe region. It is located 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) north of the centre of St. Catharines at the north end of the Welland Canal at Lake Ontario, but part of that city in much the same way as Port Dalhousie.
Chippawa is a community located within the city of Niagara Falls, Ontario.
The Battle of Beaver Dams took place on 24 June 1813, during the War of 1812. An American column marched from Fort George and attempted to surprise a British outpost at Beaver Dams, billeting themselves overnight in the village of Queenston, Ontario. Laura Secord, a resident of Queenston, had earlier learned of the American plans, and had struck out on a long and difficult trek to warn the British at Decou's stone house near present-day Brock University. When the Americans resumed their march, they were ambushed by Native warriors and eventually surrendered to a small British detachment led by Lieutenant James FitzGibbon. About 500 Americans, including their wounded commander, were taken prisoner.
King's Highway 406, commonly referred to as Highway 406, is a 400-series highway in the Canadian province of Ontario. The primary north-south route though the central portion of the Niagara Peninsula, Highway 406 connects Welland, Thorold and downtown St. Catharines to the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW).
Port Robinson is a small community in the southernmost part of Thorold, Ontario, Canada. The community is divided in half by the Welland Canal, as there is no bridge in the immediate vicinity to connect the two halves of the community. In the summer, a small free ferry for pedestrians and cyclists runs across the canal. In the winter, residents must use the bridge on Highway 20, which results in a 13.3 km (8.3 mi) trip to get to the other side.
King's Highway 20, commonly referred to as Highway 20, is a provincially maintained highway in the Canadian province of Ontario. Presently, it is a short 1.9 km (1.2 mi) stub between Highway 58 and Niagara Regional Road 70 in the City of Thorold, but until 1997 it connected Hamilton to Niagara Falls, serving several towns atop the Niagara Escarpment en route.
Lake Gibson is a lake near Thorold in the Regional Municipality of Niagara, Ontario, Canada. The lake is not natural, but rather was created as a reservoir for hydroelectric power generation at the Ontario Power Generation Decew Falls 1 and Decew Falls 2 generating stations. The lake was created by flooding the shallow valley of Beaverdams Creek. Lake Moodie is located to the northwest of Lake Gibson and is a smaller segment of the overall Lake Gibson system. Almost all of the water supply to these lakes comes from Lake Erie via the Welland Canal. The lakes suck part of the Twelve Mile Creek watershed.
St. Johns is an unincorporated rural community in Thorold, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada.
Allanburg is a community within the City of Thorold, Ontario, Canada. It is located on the Welland Canal and Highway 20, both important transportation routes through the Niagara Peninsula. The two cross at a vertical-lift bridge, numbered as Bridge 11 by the Saint Lawrence Seaway Authority, but often known simply as the Allanburg Bridge. The collision of the ship Windoc with the bridge made national news in 2001.
The Welland Canal has gone through many incarnations in its history. Today, five distinct canal-construction efforts are recognized. The retronym First Welland Canal is applied to the original canal, constructed from 1824 to 1829 and 1831 to 1833.
The Montrose Swing Bridge is located on the Welland River at the junction with the Queenston Power Canal in the southeast portion of the City of Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. It was built ca. 1910 to carry the Canada Southern Railway over the river. It is a two-track bridge, although only one track remains in use today. It crosses the river at roughly a 45-degree angle.
St. Catharines Transit (SCT) provides bus service to St. Catharines, Ontario, and the neighbouring city of Thorold. The St. Catharines Transit Commission took over operation of transit services within the city from Canadian National Transportation in 1961.
Twelve Mile Creek is a waterway located on the Niagara Peninsula in the Regional Municipality of Niagara in Southern Ontario, Canada. Its headwaters are located in the town of Pelham, encompassing some of the most unspoiled and natural areas of Niagara area. The creek's lower reaches flow through urban areas of Thorold and St. Catharines, and have been heavily altered by human activity for almost two centuries.
John DeCew (1766–1855), was a United Empire Loyalist, an early settler in the Niagara Peninsula of Upper Canada, a commissioned militia officer in the War of 1812, and a founding member of the Welland Canal Company.
Bridge 11, also known as the Allanburg Bridge, is a vertical-lift bridge over the Welland Canal within the City of Thorold and community of Allanburg, Ontario, Canada. The location was used for the groundbreaking ceremony for the canal. It was constructed and completed in 1930. The bridge carries Hwy 20 connecting Niagara Falls to Fonthill.
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