"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Thursday 26 April 2012

You Were Saying

Actually, our little country crossroads has been here over two hundred years.


Thank you.

  Obviously,  Aurora   started  as little more than "a country crossroad"

Various names we see on streets derive from the original holders of land grants. Mosely who divided that area into lots and deeded the town park.

Charles Doane, who named Catherine Street for his wife.

Kennedy who farmed the land .

Centre Street was the intersection with Yonge  before the Sideroad opened.. Aurora Sideroad would have a number before it had a name.

Two hundred years ago it wasn't  a village. It  was  Machell's Corners with various hostelries to accommodate coach travellers from distant places on the journey  to Toronto..

 At other  intersections, people had  similar hopes and aspirations of becoming villages and towns but didn't .

They are to be found with nothing  to show but  a single store  with fine tall arched windows.

General Stores  where small village settlements  grew around them...or not.  

Or a small church with  a cemetery, showing  birthplaces, dates and in some cases,causes of death  and the clear outline of the pine box that once held the remains of those  who lived  and died on farms  in  four directions from the crossroads.

 Or a pioneer cemetery without  a church, little more than the corner of  field  by the roadside.

New and not so new residents of Aurora  with an interest might  enjoy  discovering small  hamlets and villages, little changed in two hundred years, hidden away throughout the Region with similar  names to Aurora  commemorating  original settlers

Black Creek Pioneer Village should be something more than a class trip.

I'm not trying to project myself as a local historian. I've barely skimmed the surface of all there is to know.

People who left all that was familiar and took a chance on something better for their children were not ordinary.They were not big and strong.  They may not have understood the enormity of the decision at the time they made it but once made there was no turning back .

They were  heroes. We owe them  a huge debt. The very least we can do is acknowledge they were here.

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