Willowdale: Yesterday's Farms, Today's Legacy

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Dundurn, Nov 11, 2013 - History - 192 pages

Stories of the evolution of Willowdale from its earliest acquisition of land to today’s urban environment.

In 1855, Willowdale’s post office opened in Jacob Cummer’s store on Yonge Street. Today, streets in Toronto’s community of Willowdale are peppered with the names of the early farm families of North York, such as the Shepards, Finches, and Kennedys.

Author Scott Kennedy’s intriguing stories embrace the evolution of Willowdale from the earliest acquisition of land to today’s urban environment. You will read about combat training for the ill-fated Rebellion of 1837 that took place in the community fields; about Mazo de la Roche’s estate, Windrush Hills, which stood at Bayview and Steeles, and is a Zorastrian temple today; about the Kingsdale Jersey Farm, which was located on Bayview until 1972; and about Green Meadows, the estate of "Bud" McDougald, which was the last operating farm in North York.



The Bales Family Farms
Robert I Robert II Robert III Roy and William
The Thomas Clark Farm
Lot 162E and the Bayview Village Plaza

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About the author (2013)

Scott Kennedy witnessed the farms surrounding his North York childhood home being planted with a new cash crop of buildings. He joined the Toronto Musicians' Association in 1969, but as a professional musician he never lost his passion for history. Scott lives in a Historical Conservation District he helped create in Toronto's Beach neighbourhood.

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