And today, I remain in Toronto though changing residency in a short while. A few final tweaks to the OGS presentations and they’ll be ready to deliver in less than 48 hours time! It seems so long in the planning, I cannot quite believe that it’s nearly here – or should that be that I am nearly there, here…. who knows?!
Yesterday, I found out a few historical facts I never knew on my merry boat tour around Toronto Harbour. Did you know that Toronto hasn’t always been called Toronto? Well, if you are Canadian, I am guessing you probably did. But fellow non-Canadians, was I the only one not to know this before yesterday?
The name Toronto started with the Mohawk word Tkaronto, meaning “where there are trees standing in the water” and was used to describe The Narrows near today’s Orillia. By the 1720s, a French fort called Fort Toronto stood where the present city is located. According to Wikipedia, “John Graves Simcoe identified the area as a strategic location to base a new capital for Upper Canada, believing Newark to be susceptible to American invasion. A garrison was established at Garrison Creek, on the western entrance to the docks of Toronto Harbour, in 1793; this later became Fort York. The settlement it defended was renamed York on 26 August 1793, as Simcoe favoured English names over those of First Nations languages, in honour of Prince Frederick, Duke of York. Residents petitioned to change the name back to Toronto, and in 1834 the city was incorporated with its original name.”
The history of this city is simply fascinating – a place you must add to your bucket list! I have been lucky enough to be staying right down on the Harbourfront where the industrial area once was. It has now been completely revitalised with a posh Harbourfront Centre which has developed connections with over 450 community organisations, and hosts more than 4,000 events a year from theatre to dance, literature to music, and much more.
Onward to OGS Conference in Barrie tomorrow…. see you soon at Georgian College!