By 1650, the once plentiful Hurons had been wiped out by French missionaires, European diseases, and Iroquois. The region was now open to the Algonquian Ojibwa (also known as Mississauga) -- who moved in. By 1850 the remaining Mississauga natives were removed to the Six Nations Reserve, where the New Credit Reserve was established.
Commencing in 1781, the British Government would purchase blocks of land from the Mississauga Nation. In 1818, the purchase that was made would become the townships of Esquesing and Nassagaweya. The task of laying out the townships fell to Timothy Street and Abraham Nelles. Charles Kennedy was hired by Nelles to survey the northern part of the townships - which would become lots 18 thru 32. Charles Kennedy received land as payment for his work.
Arrival of the Brothers Kennedy:
The brothers of Charles Kennedy - John, Morris, Samuel and George -- all acquired land to close one another in the Silver Creek Valley. A sawmill was built by Charles Kennedy where Main Street meets Wildwood Road. George Kennedy also built a sawmill which became the centre of a small settlement. The mill was located off of 8th line.
Other settlements in the area:
Esquesing Village (Stewarttown) was the capital of the township. In addition, it was on the main north-south route to the steamships at Oakville. The Stewart Brothers had a prosperous mill in Esquesing Village.
James McNabb had a prosperous mill in Norval.
York to Guelph Road:
In 1828, John Galt opened the road which connected the settlement around George Kennedy's Mill with the other two settlements in the area.
Kennedy's Settlement Grows:
As Kennedy's Mill prospered, he built a grist mill, foundry and a woolen mill. Unfortunately, business was poor, which lead to the nick-name 'Hungry Hollow'. Around 1834 the Barber brothers arrived and within three years had purchased the mills from Kennedy.
About 1837 is when the area adopted the name Georgetown. It was also the year that two of the Barber Brothers (William and James) purchased the mill and land from George Kennedy.
In May of 1852 a rail route through Georgetown, Brampton and Weston to Toronto was announced.
Originally known as the Railway Exchange Hotel and owned by William Ismond, in 1862 it was sold to Thomas Clark. From then on it was known as the Clark House.
In 1895 Samuel McGibbon relocated to Georgetown. Previously, he lived in Acton. Along with his brother, they leased the Clark House and renamed it the McGibbon Hotel -- which it is still known by today. Children of Samuel McGibbon ran the Hotel until 1962.
A popular place to canoe or play hockey, it was drained around 1915 to make way for the Guelph Radial Line.
Guelph Radial Line:
Toronto-Guelph Electric Suburban Railway line ran through Georgetown. Opened in 1917 and closed in 1931. Operated by the Toronto Suburban Railway Company. Known as the Radial Line since it radiated out of the centre of Toronto.
The area had no history of a concentration of French-Canadians but over a few short years that changed. Firstly, in 1947, a boys orphan farm relocated from Saint Catherines to Georgetown. This orphanage was operated by Father Clovis Beauregard and Therese St Jean, his neice. The Acadian boys from the orphanage decided to remain here in adulthood. The boys had learned apple farming and other Acadian families moved here to assist them with their apple business. In 1957 a French-Canadian Association was formed. In 1966 the old Holy Cross Church was rededicated as L'Eglise Sacre Coeur. By this time about 150 French-speaking Catholic families created their own parish.