Trafalgar Township Historical Society

“Recognizing, documenting, educating and celebrating the rich agricultural heritage of North Oakville,Trafalgar Township”

Early Businesses

Mills

Triller’s Mill – 1805, as a young man of 18-20, Philip Triller walked from the American State of New Jersey to Upper Canada with his 9 brothers and sisters, mother and father (Philip & Mary Catherine) who settled from Grimsby through Nelson & Trafalgar townships along the lake. Triller drew lot 21, 1st concession south of Dundas Street. Triller’s land was in the area west of present day Neyagawa, below Dundas. (Riverbank way, Valley Heights Cres., Valley Stream Pl., Valley Forest Way, Valley Crest Circle & River Heights Gate.) The first mill in the township was built on the Sixteen by Phillip Triller. In 1808 he petitioned the Lieutenant-Governor saying that although there were very few acres fit for cultivation he has completed the settlement duties on the land and has received the Patent. Triller states that because much of the Sixteen Mile Creek is reserved for the Indians there are not many mill sites south of Dundas. Triller requested lot 32 on the Lakeshore but it already belonged to William Allan. When nothing came of his petition Triller established a grist and saw mill at Dundas Street on his original grant of land. The mill was about a mile south of the Dundas Street, and not far from the Upper Middle Road. Triller opened a road to the mill called “Hickory Grove.” In 1817 some local settlers who wrote of their living conditions said that “the rate of sawing is one half when the sawlogs are carried to the mill.” The mill lasted until the 1830’s.

Chalmer’s Mill/ Trafalgar Mill – Chalmers’ saw and grist mill was at Dundas and The Sixteen Mile Creek, just above and to the west of Trillers. The mill went into operation in 1827. George Chalmers, a Scot, had started as a general merchant at Munn’s Corners about 1820. In 1826 he began to buy up land along The Sixteen where it crosses Dundas Street. The village of Sixteen Village/Hollow grew up around it.

In 1840 Chalmers fell into financial difficulty and the mill with its surrounding buildings was sold to John Proudfoot who named the mill Trafalgar, and the village was then called Proudfoots Hollow.

Culhams Mill – Thompson Smith established a sawmill in 1838 on lot 18 2nd concession. In present day, Smith’s land in ward 5 would include the following streets- part of Old Upper Middle Rd. W., part of Richmond Rd., Royal Oak Ct., Rambler Ct., Royal Albert Ct., Princess Royal Ct., Peerless Ct. and McCraney St. W. going north. Smith was a farmer and also a cabinetmaker. He built his mill below the curve in the river. The mill was reached by a road that ran north through his land to meet up with the Upper Middle Road. By the 1840s he was one of the largest lumber dealers in the district. (Hiram McCraney had a mill south of this mill but on the west bank.)

In 1844 the Culhams (who were related to Thompson Smith through marriage into the Post family) bought the lots surrounding the mill, and the mill was taken over by Charles Culham. Smith retained an interest in the mill, and it is said that he and Culham (a strict Methodist) argued over the issue of the MIll not running on Sundays.

In 1953 the land was owned in part by the Jesuit Association.

Local Inns

The Post’s Inn was opened by the Post family on the south west corner of Dundas and Trafalgar probably about 1831 coinciding with the building of 7th Line (Trafalgar Rd.). A relay of horses was kept there for the mail coach. The Inn was first run by Ephraim Post and was enlarged by a two-story addition across the front when his son Hiram took it over in 1841. On the same property behind the inn there was a drill shed for the purpose of storing items for military drills of the local militia. The Inn had five fireplaces. Much of the local business was done at the Inn and there are records of ward elections taking place there until at least 1852. James Young was running the Inn in 1876 when George Baker took over and remained there until his death. The Inn was torn down in the late 1960’s.

The Munn’s Inn located at the south east corner of Sixth Line and Trafalgar in Munn’s Corners, was run by Daniel Munn and his wife Millicent (Post). It was on lot 16 concession 1 concession south of Dundas. This tavern and stage house was the first in Trafalgar Twp. having been opened sometime before 1814. About 1825 William Young leased the tavern from widow Millicent Munn.

Open Archives

We host our Open House at the heritage Palermo School House. Check the calendar below for the next scheduled day.

Meet our archivist, search our archives, research township family history or just come to reminisce. You’ll never know who will show up with a fascinating new piece of local history.

Admission FREE but voluntary donations are welcome.

Upcoming Events

Sep
20
Fri
1:30 pm Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Sep 20 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
We host our Open Archives at the Palermo School House. We invite you to meet our archivist, explore our archives, research your Trafalgar Township ancestors, or just reminisce.
3:30 pm Board Meeting @ Palermo School House
Board Meeting @ Palermo School House
Sep 20 @ 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm
 
Sep
28
Sat
10:00 am Family Heritage Fair @ Palermo School House
Family Heritage Fair @ Palermo School House
Sep 28 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Our Family Heritage Fair includes a desk & book sale, refreshments, heritage displays and BBQ.
Oct
18
Fri
1:30 pm Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Oct 18 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
We host our Open Archives at the Palermo School House. We invite you to meet our archivist, explore our archives, research your Trafalgar Township ancestors, or just reminisce.
Nov
15
Fri
1:30 pm Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Open Archives @ Palermo School House
Nov 15 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
We host our Open Archives at the Palermo School House. We invite you to meet our archivist, explore our archives, research your Trafalgar Township ancestors, or just reminisce.
3:30 pm Board Meeting @ Palermo School House
Board Meeting @ Palermo School House
Nov 15 @ 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm