Timeline of Ontario history

Last updated

Ontario came into being as a province of Canada in 1867 but historians use the term to cover its entire history. This article also covers the history of the territory Ontario now occupies.


For a complete list of the premiers of Ontario, see List of Ontario premiers.


1762 and earlier

Part of Province of Quebec, 1763 to 1790

At the same time large numbers of Iroquois loyal to Britain arrive from the United States and are settled on reserves west of Lake Ontario.
Kingston and Hamilton became important settlements as a result of the influx of Loyalists.

Upper Canada, 1791 to 1840

Tecumseh's death at the hands of Richard M. Johnson Death tecumseh 1813.jpg
Tecumseh's death at the hands of Richard M. Johnson
The population of Upper Canada grows from 6,000 in 1785 to 14,000 in 1790 to 46,000 in 1806. (Lower Canada's is about 165,000). The population is rural, and based on subsistence agriculture, with few exports; government spending is a major source of revenue. [21]

The United Province of Canada (Canada West), 1841 to 1867

1867 to 1985

Canada 1867 and after. The Province of Ontario 1867 and after

Since 1985




Ontario to 1869

  • Careless, J. M. S. Brown of the Globe (2 vols, Toronto, 1959–63), vol 1: The Voice of Upper Canada 1818-1859; vol 2: The Statesman of Confederation 1860–1880.
  • Clarke, John. Land Power and Economics on the Frontier of Upper Canada (2001) 747pp.
  • Clarke, John. The Ordinary People of Essex: Environment, Culture, and Economy on the Frontier of Upper Canada (2010)
  • Cohen, Marjorie Griffin. Women's Work, Markets, and Economic Development in Nineteenth-Century Ontario. (1988). 258 pp.
  • Craig, Gerald M Upper Canada: the formative years 1784–1841 McClelland and Stewart, 1963, the standard history online edition
  • Dunham, Eileen Political unrest in Upper Canada 1815–1836 (1963).
  • Errington, Jane The Lion, the Eagle, and Upper Canada: A Developing Colonial Ideology (1987).
  • Gidney, R. D. and Millar, W. P. J. Professional Gentlemen: The Professions in Nineteenth-Century Ontario. (1994).
  • Grabb, Edward, James Curtis, Douglas Baer; "Defining Moments and Recurring Myths: Comparing Canadians and Americans after the American Revolution" The Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology, Vol. 37, 2000
  • Johnson, J. K. and Wilson, Bruce G., eds. Historical Essays on Upper Canada: New Perspectives. (1975). . 604 pp.
  • Keane, David and Read, Colin, ed. Old Ontario: Essays in Honour of J. M. S. Careless. (1990).
  • Kilbourn, William.; The Firebrand: William Lyon Mackenzie and the Rebellion in Upper Canada (1956) online edition
  • Knowles, Norman. Inventing the Loyalists: The Ontario Loyalist Tradition and the Creation of Usable Pasts. (1997). 244 pp.
  • Landon, Fred, and J.E. Middleton. Province of Ontario: A History (1927) 4 vol. with 2 vol of biographies
  • Lewis, Frank and Urquhart, M.C. Growth and standard of living in a pioneer economy: Upper Canada 1826–1851 Institute for Economic Research, Queen's University, 1997.
  • McCalla, Douglas Planting the province: the economic history of Upper Canada 1784–1870 (1993).
  • McGowan, Mark G. Michael Power: The Struggle to Build the Catholic Church on the Canadian Frontier. (2005). 382 pp. online review from H-CANADA
  • McNairn, Jeffrey L The capacity to judge: public opinion and deliberative democracy in Upper Canada 1791–1854 (2000). online review from H-CANADA
  • Oliver, Peter. "Terror to Evil-Doers": Prisons and Punishments in Nineteenth-Century Ontario. (1998). 575 pp. post 1835
  • Rea, J. Edgar. "Rebellion in Upper Canada, 1837" Manitoba Historical Society Transactions Series 3, Number 22, 1965–66, historiography online edition
  • Reid, Richard M. The Upper Ottawa Valley to 1855. (1990). 354 pp.
  • Rogers, Edward S. and Smith, Donald B., eds. Aboriginal Ontario: Historical Perspectives on the First Nations. (1994). 448 pp.
  • Styran, Roberta M. and Taylor, Robert R., ed. The "Great Swivel Link": Canada's Welland Canal. Champlain Soc., 2001. 494 pp.
  • Westfall, William. Two Worlds: The Protestant Culture of Nineteenth-Century Ontario. (1989). 265 pp.
  • Wilton, Carol. Popular Politics and Political Culture in Upper Canada, 1800–1850. (2000). 311pp

Ontario since 1869

  • Azoulay, Dan. Keeping the Dream Alive: The Survival of the Ontario CCF/NDP, 1950–1963. (1997). 307 pp.
  • Baskerville, Peter A. Ontario: Image, Identity, and Power. (2002). 256pp
  • Cameron, David R. and White, Graham. Cycling into Saigon: The Conservative Transition in Ontario. (2000). 224 pp. Analysis of the 1995 transition from New Democratic Party (NDP) to Progressive Conservative (PC) rule in Ontario
  • Comacchio, Cynthia R. Nations Are Built of Babies: Saving Ontario's Mothers and Children, 1900–1940. (1993). 390 pp.
  • Cook, Sharon Anne. "Through Sunshine and Shadow": The Woman's Christian Temperance Union, Evangelicalism, and Reform in Ontario, 1874–1930. (1995). 281 pp.
  • Darroch, Gordon and Soltow, Lee. Property and Inequality in Victorian Ontario: Structural Patterns and Cultural Communities in the 1871 Census. U. of Toronto Press, 1994. 280 pp.
  • Devlin, John F. "A Catalytic State? Agricultural Policy in Ontario, 1791–2001." PhD dissertation U. of Guelph 2004. 270 pp. DAI 2005 65(10): 3972-A. DANQ94970 Fulltext: in ProQuest Dissertations & Theses
  • Evans, A. Margaret. Sir Oliver Mowat. U. of Toronto Press, 1992. 438 pp. Premier 1872–1896
  • Fleming, Keith R. Power at Cost: Ontario Hydro and Rural Electrification, 1911–1958. McGill-Queen's U. Press, 1992. 326 pp.
  • Gidney, R. D. From Hope to Harris: The Reshaping of Ontario's Schools. U. of Toronto Press, 1999. 362 pp. deals with debates and changes in education from 1950 to 2000
  • Gidney, R. D. and Millar, W. P. J. Inventing Secondary Education: The Rise of the High School in Nineteenth-Century Ontario. McGill-Queen's U. Press, 1990. 440 pp.
  • Halpern, Monda. And on that Farm He Had a Wife: Ontario Farm Women and Feminism, 1900–1970. (2001). 234 pp. online review from H-CANADA
  • Hines, Henry G. East of Adelaide: Photographs of Commercial, Industrial and Working-Class Urban Ontario, 1905–1930. London Regional Art and History Museum, 1989.
  • Hodgetts, J. E. From Arm's Length to Hands-On: The Formative Years of Ontario's Public Service, 1867–1940. U. of Toronto Press, 1995. 296 pp.
  • Houston, Susan E. and Prentice, Alison. Schooling and Scholars in Nineteenth-Century Ontario. U. of Toronto Press, 1988. 418 pp.
  • Ibbitson, John. Promised Land: Inside the Mike Harris Revolution. Prentice-Hall, 1997. 294 pp. praise for Conservatives
  • Kechnie, Margaret C. Organizing Rural Women: the Federated Women's Institutes of Ontario, 1897–1910. McGill-Queen's U. Press, 2003. 194 pp.
  • Landon, Fred, and J.E. Middleton. Province of Ontario: A History (1937) 4 vol. with 2 vol of biographies
  • Marks, Lynne. Revivals and Roller Rinks: Religion, Leisure and Identity in Late Nineteenth-Century Small-Town Ontario. U. of Toronto Press, 1996. 330 pp.
  • Montigny, Edgar-Andre, and Lori Chambers, eds. Ontario since Confederation: A Reader (2000).
  • Moss, Mark. Manliness and Militarism: Educating Young Boys in Ontario for War. (2001). 216 pp.
  • Neatby, H. Blair and McEown, Don. Creating Carleton: The Shaping of a University. McGill-Queen's U. Press, 2002. 240 pp.
  • Ontario Bureau of Statistics and Research. A Conspectus of the Province of Ontario (1947) online edition
  • Parr, Joy, ed. A Diversity of Women: Ontario, 1945–1980. U. of Toronto Press, 1996. 335 pp.
  • Ralph, Diana; Régimbald, André; and St-Amand, Nérée, eds. Open for Business, Closed for People: Mike Harris's Ontario. Fernwood, 1997. 207 pp. leftwing attack on Conservative party of 1990s
  • Roberts, David. In the Shadow of Detroit: Gordon M. McGregor, Ford of Canada, and Motoropolis. Wayne State U. Press, 2006. 320 pp.
  • Santink, Joy L. Timothy Eaton and the Rise of His Department Store. U. of Toronto Press, 1990. 319 pp.
  • Saywell, John T. "Just Call Me Mitch": The Life of Mitchell F. Hepburn. U. of Toronto Press, 1991. 637 pp. Biography of Liberal premier 1934–1942
  • Schryer, Frans J. The Netherlandic Presence in Ontario: Pillars, Class and Dutch Ethnicity. Wilfrid Laurier U. Press, 1998. 458 pp. focus is post WW2
  • Schull, Joseph. Ontario since 1867 (1978), narrative history
  • Stagni, Pellegrino. The View from Rome: Archbishop Stagni's 1915 Reports on the Ontario Bilingual Schools Question. McGill-Queen's U. Press, 2002. 134 pp.
  • Warecki, George M. Protecting Ontario's Wilderness: A History of Changing Ideas and Preservation Politics, 1927–1973. Lang, 2000. 334 pp.
  • White, Graham, ed. The Government and Politics of Ontario. 5th ed. U. of Toronto Press, 1997. 458 pp.
  • White, Randall. Ontario since 1985. Eastendbooks, 1998. 320 pp.
  • Wilson, Barbara M. ed. Ontario and the First World War, 1914–1918: A Collection of Documents (Champlain Society, 1977)

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  1. 1 2 Museum of Ontario Archaeology 1600 Attawandaron Road, London, ON, N6G 3M6 Tel: 519-473-1360 Fax: 519-473-1363, accessed March 12, 2011 [ dead link ]
  2. Museum of Ontario Archaeology 1600 Attawandaron Road, London, ON, N6G 3M6 Tel: 519-473-1360 Fax: 519-473-1363, accessed March 12, 2011 [ dead link ]
  3. Museum of Ontario Archaeology 1600 Attawandaron Road, London, ON, N6G 3M6 Tel: 519-473-1360 Fax: 519-473-1363, accessed March 12, 2011 [ dead link ]
  4. Garrad 2014, p. 165.
  5. Garrad 2014, p. 62.
  6. 1 2 Garrad 2014, p. 189.
  7. Garrad 2014, p. 229.
  8. 1 2 Garrad 2014, p. 238.
  9. Garrad 2014, p. 242.
  10. Garrad 2014, p. 244.
  11. Garrad 2014, p. 247.
  12. Garrad 2014, p. 246.
  13. Garrad 2014, p. 251.
  14. Garrad 2014, p. 251–252.
  15. Garrad 2014, p. 252.
  16. Garrad 2014, p. 79.
  17. Garrad 2014, p. 243.
  18. Sutherland, Stuart R. J; Tousignant, Pierre; Dionne-Tousignant, Madeleine (1983). "Haldimand, Frederick". In Halpenny, Francess G (ed.). Dictionary of Canadian Biography . Vol. V (1801–1820) (online ed.). University of Toronto Press.
  19. Ross Fair, "'Theirs was a deeper purpose': The Pennsylvania Germans of Ontario and the Craft of the Homemaking Myth", Canadian Historical Review, December 2006, Vol. 87 Issue 4, pp 653–684
  20. "Origin-names-canadas-provincial-territorial-capitals". 18 September 2007.
  21. Douglas McCalla, "The 'Loyalist' Economy of Upper Canada, 1784–1806", Histoire Sociale: Social History, November 1983, Vol. 16 Issue 32, pp 279-304
  22. Cecilia Morgan, "'In search of the phantom misnamed honour': Duelling in Upper Canada", Canadian Historical Review, December 1995, Vol. 76 Issue 4, pp 529–82
  23. "Lansdowne Iron Works National Historic Site of Canada". Parks Canada. Retrieved July 15, 2022.
  24. Ashdown 1988, p. 13.
  25. Carter-Edwards 1987.
  26. John Sugden, Tecumseh's Last Stand (1985)
  27. David Gagan, "Property and 'Interest'; Some Preliminary Evidence of Land Speculation by the 'Family Compact' in Upper Canada 1820–1840", Ontario History, March 1978, Vol. 70 Issue 1, pp 63–70
  28. Peter A. Russell, "Church of Scotland Clergy in Upper Canada: Culture Shock and Conservatism on the Frontier", Ontario History, June 1981, Vol. 73#2, pp 88–111
  29. Michel Ducharme, "Closing the Last Chapter of the Atlantic Revolution: The 1837–38 Rebellions in Upper and Lower Canada" Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, October 2006, Vol. 116 Issue 2, pp 413–430
  30. "Sept. 16, 1916: Ontario Temperance Act takes effect". thestar.com. 16 September 2017. Retrieved 6 January 2021.
  31. "Remember This? The arrival of prohibition". CityNews Ottawa. Retrieved 6 January 2021.


  • Ashdown, Dana (1988). Railway Steamships of Ontario, 1850–1950. Erin, Ontario: Boston Mills Press. ISBN   0-919783-80-5.
  • Carter-Edwards, Dennis (Fall 1987). "The War of 1812 along the Detroit Frontier: A Canadian Perspective". Michigan Historical Review. Historical Society of Michigan. 13 (2): 25–50. doi:10.2307/20173102. JSTOR   20173102.
  • Garrad, Charles (2014). Pilon, Jean-Luc; Fox, William (eds.). Petun to Wyandot: The Ontario Petun from the Sixteenth Century. Mercury Series. University of Ottawa Press. ISBN   978-0-7766-2144-9.