Wellington County Atlas of 1906, and a Credit Valley Report, indicate that the first sawmill was built by the Trout family in 1826, at the lower dam at Erin. They opened a small store, and made potash, used in soap-making. The sawmill was later taken over by Wm. Chisholm, from whom Daniel McMillan rented the mill.
Daniel McMillan found that the mill cut very slowly, and decided to buy it, and rebuild it to suit himself. His father, Donald McMillan, tried to persuade him otherwise, for he was only 18 years of age, without funds. But Daniel McMillan was interested in machinery, and he purchased the sawmill in 1829, for $700. He borrowed money to make the first payment, and through hard work and good planning, he was able to meet his obligations.
Daniel cleared three acres of land, and renovated the sawmill which had been gutted by fire, framing the building himself. This was a much faster cutting mill, and from it, he sold lumber a four and five dollars per thousand feet.
The question of who was the first settler in Erin, and the exact date, is uncertain. However the man responsible for the growth of the village was Daniel McMillan, assisted by his brothers, Hugh and Charles. The name appears on an early map, spelled "Mac", and with a small "m", as the name of the Post Office, "Macmillan's Mills".
Daniel McMillan, 1811-1849, was the oldest son of Donald McMillan and his wife, Catharine Miller, who came with their family from Scotland in 1822. They settled on lot 19, con. 9, Erin Twp. but he also took up lots 14 to 17, on both sides of the 9th line, getting these properties almost at his own price, because they were the lots refused by Surveyor Charles Kennedy, as part-payment for his work in surveying the Township of Erin. The land that ultimately became the site of Erin Village, consisted of lots 14, 15, 16.
Erin is on the west branch of the Credit River, a river long-celebrated for its splendid salmon fishing. It joined the east branch of the Credit River at "Forks of the Credit", with the east branch finding its source above Orangeville. Mill Dams ruined the fishing, but now, without mill dams, fishing in the rivers and creeks is making a comeback.
Soon after the sawmill was in operation, Daniel McMillan hired a man to run it, and proceeded with plans for a grist mill which he erected in 1834 at the south-west end of the sawmill, the same power being used for both. He obtained stones for the mill from lot 12, later known as Shingler's Lime Stone Quarry, and he dressed them himself. They were said to have been 34 inches in diameter.
In 1834, Daniel McMillan built the first house in the village, a few rods east of the sawmill. Here, in 1835, he brought his bride, Mary McLaughlin, daughter of Daniel McLaughlin of Caledon.
After clearing the river flats on lots 14 and 15, the present Upper Dam was built, and here the second sawmill was built in 1838. It had new machinery, and was a faster cutting mill.
Daniel McMillan built the oatmeal mill on the other side of the street, opposite the first sawmill, using water power supplied by the hand-dug race from the Lower Dam. This oatmeal Mill did a good business, and was still in good shape in 1922, when it was being used as a planing mill by Mundells.
In 1838, McMillan built a grist mill at the Upper Dam. It had a large trade for about ten years. It had three run of stones, and they also made oatmeal. It did good work with dry wheat, but not if the grain was damp. This building became a woollen mill.
In 1845, Daniel McMillan had a large stone house built. It was the family residence for 20 years. Then it was sold to Wm. Chisholm, and it became the Globe Hotel, until it was destroyed by fire in January 1945.
In 1847, Daniel McMillan decided to build a more up-to-date grist mill, or flouring mill, that would meet the needs of the fast-growing community. Through the years, when he needed money the whole neighbourhood was ready to assist, for it was an improvement to the village.
Erin Village expanded rapidly through the 1840's. Lumbermen and millers enjoyed favourable tariff with the U.S.A., when wheat was brought from the States to Canada where it was processed, then shipped to Britain. This increased demand for flour was the reason Daniel McMillan built his new grist mill, which he planned to have in operation by Christmas, 1849.
A surveyor was engaged to choose the best location, the site where Bell's Mill stood in 1922. Stone masons were brought from the Old Country; the race known as the "Big Ditch", brought water from the Upper Dam. The building was to be six storeys high. There were 200 men at the raising, and it took three days to erect. Everything went according to schedule. The intricate machinery was put into place.
|Daniel McMillan's Grist Mill, built in 1834, one of five mills completed in his short lifetiime.|
When Daniel McMillan went to Toronto for the mill stones, he was accompanied by his brother, Hugh, and his best friend, John Rott (Root), in whose Conestogo wagon the mill stones were brought to Erin.
On December 14th, he got a sliver in one of his fingers, but no attention was paid to it at the time. However, blood-poisoning developed, and he died in great agony three days later, on Dec. 17, 1849, at the early age of 38 years, 6 months, and 23 days.
The Mill was finished on December 22nd, but the hero did not live to see his dream come true. This mill became the Co-Op Building, more recently.
Daniel McMillan was a man of tremendous energy and planning ability; and in the short period of some eighteen years in Erin Twp., he had achieved more than most men in a whole life-time. He was a leader, and had established his village on a firm footing. But without its leader, the village had lost its sense of direction.
Alexander McLaughlin, sometimes spelled, McLauchlin, the great Canadian Poet, and life-long friend and admirer of Daniel McMillan, wrote a long poem about him, expressing very effectively, his great loss to the Erin community. Title of the poem: "A Backwood Hero", is an In Memoriam. This is the first of ten verses.
Where yonder ancient willow weeps,
The father of the village sleeps;
Tho' but of humble birth,
As rare a specimen as he,
Of Nature's true nobility,
Reference is made to his planning and assistance in building roads, schools, churches, mills, a store, forge, vat, and kiln. He seemed to be doctor, lawyer, judge, surveyor, and was never too busy to lend a helping hand.
In 1838, he had encouraged Wm. Cornock, a man of means, to locate in the village. Cornock built a distillery that continued in operation until 1860. Mr. Cornock also operated the first dry goods store, and secured a Post Office for the village. A lime quarry was opened by James Shingler. S.L. Shotter opened the first general store on the corner that was occupied by the Post Office in 1922.
North of Shotter's store, Daniel McMillan erected a building known as the cooperage, where he and his brothers worked on wet or stormy days. They made barrels for flour, tubs, churns, wooden pails, wooden pumps, etc., much in demand by the early settlers. They also made coffins, pine for $4.00, and cherry for $6.00, and considered themselves well paid.
In 1839, Erin Post Office was opened under the name of "Macmillan's Mills". In 1851, the name was changed to "Erinsville". The village had 300 people, two grist mills, two oatmeal mills, a distillery, a carding and fulling mill, a tannery, and a church with free use to all denominations. Erin was incorporated as a village in 1880, and it may have taken its present name then.
Alexander McLachlin, 1820-1896, was born in Glasgow, Scotland, and came to Canada at age of 20 years. He lived for a time in Peel County and in Perth County, but finally bought property in Erin Village where he conducted a tailoring shop for 20 years. He was a noted Gaelic Poet, and spent much time writing poetry, lecturing and entertaining. During his life time he published several volumes of poetry: The Spirit of Love, 1846; Poems, 1856; Lyrics, 1858; The Emigrant, 1861; and Selected Poems, in two volumes, the second being in preparation when he died.
He was a man of striking appearance, and was well built. He was good company, full of anecdotes and repartee, and was well educated.
In 1862, he became a government lecturer and immigration officer for Scotland. He made a tour of Scotland, describing the wealth and resources of Canada; and as a result thousands of settlers came from Britain in the following years.
With a wife and ten children to support he was often in financial difficulty. In 1873, his Erin friends raised $2,000. for the family. Again in about 20 years, his friends made another canvas for funds, raising about $2,000. At the latter presentation at the Walker House in Toronto, many addresses were given in English or Gaelic by celebrities.
McLachlin lived for 17 years in Amaranth Township, on the Amaranth-Garafraxa Townline, about opposite the 16th line of East Gara., a part of Wellington County at that time. He and his daughters moved to Orangeville, where he died in 1896, and was buried in the family plot at Forest Lawn Cemetery, where a modest stone marks the poet's grave.
A large oil painting of Alexander McLachlin was located in the County Court House at Orangeville, some years ago.
Erin village was incorporated at beginning of 1880, because of the coming of the Railroad. More than 500 railway builders inflated the population to the required number. It is said that fire destroyed the earliest set of Minute Books, and again in the 1930's. Possible list follows:
1880 - Richard Hamilton
1881 - Thomas Carberry
- Dr. Gear
- J.J. Carroll
1912 - Charles Overland
1916 - John Wilson
1924 - James Justice
1925 - John Wilson
1926 - J.P. Bush
1927 - James Justice
- D.L. Mundell
- D. Stanley Leitch
1944 - Roy Ferguson
1949 - Clayton Justice
1951 - D. Stanley Leitch
1952 - Frank H. Johnston
1954 - D. Stanley Leitch
1957 - Frank H. Johnston
1963 - James Miller
1966 - Roy C. Brown
1971 - James G. Mundell
1973 - L.G. (Larry) MacKenzie
1983 - W.A. Weber
1989 - Terry Mundell
1981 - W.A. Weber
1983 - Terry Mundell
1989 - Carolann Osborne
1995 - Deborah Sutherland
1933 - Major James Justice
1940 - D. Stanley Leitch
1979 - Larry McKenzie
- Wm. Conboy
1928 - W.Y. Gray
- Ken McDougall
1947 - Jean McKenzie
1952 - Richard Ferrie
1953 - W. Gray Rivers
1955 - Greta Dickinson
1958 - Margaret Y. Abbott
1965 - B.E. Smith
1981 - Patricia E. McDermott
1993 - Kathryn Ironmonger, - Clerk Administrator
1995 - Assistant, Denise Bramhan
Erin school was the second school opened in the Township, and became S.S. #2. First school for Erin Village was built on lot 18, con. 9, on the lot that later became McMillan's Burying Ground. This school was also used as a church, for some years. Since the settlement developed to the south, a small frame school was erected in a more central location, on lot 15, con. 9, on the Conboy property. Another school was built on the site of the Baptist Church, later the property of Mrs. Fred Bingham.
|The Erin Primer and Continuation School in 1903. May have been built in 1854.|
In 1854, the stone school was built on the David Mundell property. At first it was one room, later two rooms. First teacher was Wm. Firstbrook. By 1856, he had become secretary-treasurer, and John Shingler was Chairman of the School Board. As a result of an advertisement in the Toronto Globe, George Leitch was hired at a salary of 100 Pounds. In 1857, Alfred Hood was Chairman, and George Leitch was secretary-treasurer of the School Board. Three-quarters of an acre was purchased from the estate of D. McMillan, at the rear of the Union Church, (now Presbyterian), for a house and garden to be used by the teacher.
In 1924, The new Continuation School was opened and in 1926, it was up-graded, offering all grades from 9 - 12. Until 1951, Erin had a Continuation School, housed upstairs in the Erin Union Public School on Main Street. In 1944, it was considered a small school, and the Dept. of Education urged such small schools to close. Erin Village fought against this, circulated petitions and sent delegations to the Department. The community was successful, and established Erin District Board.
In 1951, the name was changed from Erin Continuation School, to Erin District High School, and immediately they began to look for a separate location for a new school. In Feb. 1954, seven acres were purchased on Daniel Street, and a four-room building was opened for the 1955-56 term. Four rooms were added in 1958. Another four classrooms were added in 1963, along with offices, foyer, and gymnasium/auditorium.
In 1974, Erin High School was again in danger of being closed, but finally the new addition made space for Industrial Arts, Family Studies, Music, Art, a Resource Centre, more offices, a gym and cafeteria, biology lab, and an "Open Concept" on Second floor.
In 1975, the Second Floor was changed to six classrooms; and since 1975, several Portables have been added. The County Board system was introduced in 1969.
For the 1955-56 term there were 115 students, with three teachers and a Principal. In 1974, there were 729 students with 40 teachers. In the 1995-96 term there are 653 students, the Principal, Vice, and 48 teachers.
The 40th Anniversary of Erin District High School was celebrated on May 10-11, 1966, with a School Reunion.
The new Erin Public School was built in 1954, across Main Street from Erin Fair Grounds, so celebrated their 40th Anniversary in 1994.
Erin's first Separate school was opened in September 1979. It included Kindergarten to Grade 6, with 62 students. It was a completely "portable" school.
It was rebuilt in 1992, and is modern and complete.
Earliest Church Services were held in the homes, schools, hotels or barns. The first church building was known as the "Union Church", built about 1849, and free for use by all denominations. In 1860, there was a debt to be paid off, and the building needed some repair. So a subscription was opened for the purpose of raising money. The debt was paid, and 18 feet added to the length of the church. When the new Presbyterian Church was built in 1881, the old church was sold to Charles Overland, who moved it to the Station for storage space. It was torn down in the 1960's.
Burns' Presbyterian Church was built in 1881, but the congregation dated back to 1848. Before that date, many attended a log church in West Caledon. When Rev. Duncan McMillan dispensed Communion for the first time in Erin Village, in October 1848, there were 22 communicants. In 1925, members voted in favour of remaining Presbyterian. In 1952, a new organ was installed, and in 1965, beautiful stained glass windows were given by members In Memory of their loved ones.
It is said there were 14 different branches of the Methodist Church in Ontario in the early days. An amalgamation of Methodist Church was completed in 1884, under the name of Methodist Church of Canada
Was established in Erin in 1839, and was on a charge with Caledon, whose minister was Rev. John Shilton. In 1859, they built their church on Main St., at Water St. Their church was burned, and they worshipped in the Wesleyan Church, then joined with them in Union.
Was first mentioned in a report of the Guelph Circuit in 1844. "The first Field of Labour" was parts of the Townships of Guelph, Eramosa, Erin, Nichol, Garafraxa, Woolwich, Wellesley, and Peel.
Erin became a Circuit in 1850, with Rev. Wm. Steer as Senior minister, and John I. Kerr as Junior minister. They reported their "Field of Labour", as Townships of Erin and Garafraxa, and the rear of Chinguacousy. An Associate Church of Scotland was organized in 1849. About 1849, or earlier, a Union Church was built on Main street, Erin, and it was used by all three denominations until 1858.
The Wesleyan Methodists then built an eight-sided church on the present site of the United Church, but it was destroyed by fire in July 1870. It was rebuilt, and was officially opened in January 1871. It continued as the Methodist Church in Erin, until 1925.
The Methodist Church became the United Church in Erin, in 1925. A new entrance and vestibule were built, giving more space in the Church Auditorium. The shed for horses and rigs was torn down at the back, leaving space for a new kitchen, washrooms and Christian Education Wing, the latter added in 1958.
As early as 1853, Rev. Francis Tremayne of Milton, visited Erin as one of 15 Stations on his Mission field. The stone church was built in 1867, on 14 perches of land bought from Mr. Cornock. (A perch is 5-1/2 yards, or one rod.) The Cornock family was a major promoter, under the guidance of Rev. J. Vicars. For many years, the Anglican church bell served as a fire warning.
In 1962, the large white frame house owned by the Milloy family, next to the church, was demolished to make way for the new Post Office building. But the Anglican Church continues. In the 1960's it was restored, under Rev. Coombs, and was ready to mark its 130th Anniversary in 1996. A new Sunday School hall was erected in 1980.
Was built in 1873, on property purchased from John & Mary White, for $150. Trustees were Duncan McMillan, Henry Smith, and Wm. Mathews. The builder was Duncan McMillan. The building has been kept in good condition, and is still being used by the congregation.
Is the Roman Catholic Church established by the Jesuit Fathers of Ignatius College, Guelph, to care for the Catholic families in the Erin area. First Mass was held in August 1959, in the Erin Branch of the Canadian Legion, by Rev. J.J. Leahy, S.J. Land was purchased on Mill Street, and Opening Ceremonies took place on April 25, 1965; the Clergy and congregation adjourned to the auditorium of Erin District High School, for a buffet reception catered to by the St. Brebeuf Catholic Women's League. The committee of Erin residents requesting the erection of this church were: Robert Dickson, Robert Meehan, and Glen Taylor.
Is the only privately-owned dairy in Wellington County, and is one of only a handful of privately-owned dairies in Ontario. Fred Steen purchased the business in 1945, from a Grand Valley man who established it. It continues to serve communities within a 75-mile radius. Fred Steen was a brother of Mrs. Mel Barden of Hillsburgh.
Erin village had a private society known as the Erin Social Library, as early 1854. There were 660 volumes, and 144 subscribers, each holding one share, cost of which was one pound, five shillings. First Public Library was established in 1891, in the T.J. Hamilton store with Mr. Hamilton as librarian. Since then it has moved many times. In 1967, it was located in the Municipal Building with 3900 books.
When Erin Women's Institute discontinue, their Tweedsmuir History Book of local history was placed in Erin Public Library, for easy access to anyone wishing to do Research.
|The Busholme Inn at the corner of Main Street and Church Street, was the home of J.P. Bush and family. Built c. 1886.|
Wellington Masonic Lodge at Erin, #271, received its Charter on July 14, 1872, with fifteen Charter Members. First Worshipful Master was David Kirkwood. First meetings were held in Lodge Rooms above Bush Hardware Store. The new Masonic Temple was built in 1957, on the present Agricultural Grounds. Wellington Lodge has been honoured in having four District Deputies: Right Worshipful Brothers William Conboy, Dr. J.M. Abbott, J.D. Leitch, and Ross MacKay.
This branch received its Charter on February 19, 1947. It was sponsored by Col. G.M. Fitzgerald of Orangeville, with the local assistance of D.L. Mundell. First President was Oscar Steky, with about 15 Charter Members. It has doubled many times.
In 1958, they built a new Legion Hall on Dundas Street, E., and in 1967, they doubled its floor space. Best known for their fund-raising projects for Veterans' Hospitals, but they take special interest in community sports, public speaking, Cadets, Scouts and Cub Clubs. Their Shamrock Apartments for Senior Citizens, erected in 1965, contained eleven apartments on a low-rental housing plan.
Erin had five hotels in the early days.
Queen's Hotel - was owned and operated by J.C. McDonald, Pat Sullivan and Sam Ridler over the years. It and adjoining buildings on Main Street were destroyed by fire in 1912.
Clark House - was built by the Clark family on Main Street, S., and later operated by Wm. Willis, and I.M. Teeter. Now demolished.
Globe Hotel - was built as the Daniel McMillan home in 1846, as a show place, and was occupied by Mrs. McMillan and family for 20 years. Sold to Wm. Chisholm about 1866, and was converted into a hotel. Later owners and renters were: William McDowell, a lawyer; Mr. Johnston; George Ramsden; Willis and Bush; then to J.P. Bush. John Horton bought the building in 1912, from Mrs. McDowell. He operated it under the Ontario Temperance Act, and later it became a Beverage Room. In January 1945, it was destroyed by fire.
Station House - was a long two-storey building on Lorne Street, and catered to the railway passengers, after 1879. Miss Kate Mooney operated it until it was destroyed by fire in the early 1900's.
Busholme Inn - is said to have been built in 1886, by Dr. McNaughton, as a hospital, but never was used for this purpose. In 1893, Dr. Martin owned the large house, then Dr. J. Hamilton, and several other doctors. In 1926, Dr. Reynolds sold to J.P. Bush and it became a hotel. Mrs. McKenzie purchased it in 1930, and in 1967, it was owned by Matt Fullerton of Brampton and T.B. Cooper of Toronto. Now it is the Jolly Rogers' Restaurant.
Credit Valley Railroad was built in 1879, extending from Forks of the Credit to Elora, passing through Erin, Hillsburgh and Orton. In 1884, it was taken over by the C.P.R. The railway company leased the land for 99 years. The turn-table pit that once changed the direction of the Elora Branch engines could still be seen near the Forks station, in 1973.
The meeting of the two branches of the Credit River took place at Forks of the Credit where a most impressive trestle for the railway was built. It was 1,146 feet long and 85 feet high, the largest in Ontario at that time. In 1888, the base was reinforced by dumping car loads of gravel through the trestle forming a large embankment. The present steel section was installed in the 1900's. In 1907, the Elora train went off the tracks at Forks of the Credit. It was known as the Great Horseshoe Wreck, and was a special train going to Toronto Exhibition. Several people were killed and 105 were injured.
There were four passenger trains, two going each way, every day except Sundays. A freight train made one complete round trip each week day. Gradually railway service dwindled due to the useof automobiles, and truck service.
In 1958, the Passenger Coach was taken off, and the freight train was reduced to an irregular schedule passing along the route near midnight. The tracks were torn up in 1988.
Agents at Erin Station were: Stephen Springer; W. Munro; Mr. Elliott; Charles Elder; Jim Mansborough; D. Robinson; Mr. Russell; J.D. Leitch for 25 years, 1892-1917; Fred Anthony for 23 years, 1917-1940; R.E. Beattie, 1940-1946; Harry Short, 1946-1957; F.R. Mitchell, 1957-1959; and Bill Wever, 1959-1969, when the station was closed. It was demolished in 1971.
Private companies installed generators in the mills, and produced power to light the homes in the village. John M. Deagle was operating his first power plant at Cataract before 1890. In 1896, he formed the Cataract Light & Power Company, and by 1900, he was supplying power to Erin Village, Hillsburgh, Alton, Caledon, Caledon East, Inglewood, and the brickyard at Cheltenham. They also contracted to supply street lighting for Orangeville.
In 1925, Caledon Electric Power Company was formed by C.K. Overland, and Reuben and Bert Harris. Ernie Teeter was the linesman for many years.
Finally the Power Plant at Cataract was sold to Ontario Hydro, in 1944, and they continued to operate the plant until 1947. They meant to leave the lake as a tourist attraction, but C.P.R, feared their railway tracks could be washed away by a flash flood. As a result Cataract Dam was dynamited in 1953. The hydro plant had been a success over the years, with very few power-cuts.
On May 1st, 1950, Erin Village set up its own Hydro Electric Power Commission, buying power from Ontario Hydro.
The Weekly Newspaper was established in 1880, by Silvester Dilts. The business changed hands several times until December 1894, when Wellington Hull became the editor. His son, Roy Hull, began his printing career in 1907, and took over the business in 1920. In 1942, Charles Hull joined his father, Roy, becoming owner in 1957. In 1966, Erin Advocate received the Award for Ontario Newspaper with the greatest improvement in its Class.
Erin Advocate was sold in 1972 to Bill and Nora Doole, who sold in 1979, to Jamie Burnett of Fergus-Elora News-Express, but Doole continued as Publisher of the Erin Advocate. Recently the building has been sold to EWAG, and the Erin Advocate Office was moved to 8 Thompson Crescent, Unit 5. Publisher is Norman Philippsen.
Opened in the late 1880's as a Park, on west side of Main Street, North, there are large stone gate posts with an archway at the street. Along the driveway you may have passed a Merry-Go-Round operated by a team of heavy horses, which were used in winter to haul blocks of ice cut from the lake, to be used by summer cottagers for refrigeration. On east side of the lake there were a dance pavilion and a boat house from the early days. By driving over the bridge there was access to the Race Track, and the cottages which completely lined the lake on west side.
The lake was created by the Upper Dam at a mill down town, and it was possible to row with a boat, to do shopping near the dam. Five church ministers of the village developed the race track for Bicycle Racing, in 1889. Later it was used for Horse Racing and a Ball Diamond on special days, attracting large crowds. The Credit Valley C.P.R. planned excursions by train, Sunday School Picnics, and Reunions from surrounding towns, at special reduced rates.
The second owner of the Park was Mr. Long, whose son, Stanley, was drowned at the Park at an early age. Stanley Park was named in his memory.
Pavilion - First dances were held in a two-storey building east of the wharf. It later became a restaurant, with the rooms above being offered for rent to holidayers from the city. The boat-house at the wharf also had rooms above for rent.
Other owners of Stanley Park were: J.J. Carroll, Isaac M. Teeter, Harry Austin, Jeff Hamilton, J. Henderson, who sold in 1967, to Upwell's Ltd., with Charles Overland as Manager. The park was sold to Isaac Teeter in 1908. Harry Austin bought from his father-in-law, Teeter, in 1916. Austin built a new dance pavilion in 1922, and was soon billing the famous "Cornhuskers" Orchestra, and others, as well as local musicians, Bill Bush and Harry Gear. Soon it was extended in size.
Through the 1920's and early 1930's the dances on 24th of May were very popular, as well as the Fall Fair Dances on Thanksgiving week-end. Young people came for miles from every direction. Yes, I was there. JFH.
In the 1940's, Upwells replaced all the original cottages, and built a new diningroom, the original having been destroyed by fire. Charles Overland's obituary stated that he owned and operated Stanley Park from 1945, until his death in 1982, and that he built Hilltop Lodge and developed the Golf Course. Present owner of the golf course is James Holmes.
|Boat House at Stanley Park.|
The Agricultural Coliseum was originally known as the Ice Palace. By 1954, it had a fine dance floor upstairs above the Main entrance, and all Fall Fair Dances were held there. Yes, I was there too. JFH.
It was condemned and closed in March 1976, by the Provincial Government. The new arena and Community Centre was opened in March 1978, at a cost of $725,000. This building was destroyed by fire in winter of 1994. It was rebuilt and in use for the 1995 Erin Fall Fair.
Organized in 1850, the first Fall Fair was set for October 29, 1852. First held in Erin, it was moved around to Hillsburgh, Ospringe and Brisbane, with each placing a tender. The bids varied from $30. to $90. In 1865, a permanent site was chosen in Erin Village. In 1862, the Society sponsored a Plowing Match. Admission was 10 cents in the early days, but was raised to 25 cents in 1896.
Faithful Presidents and long-term Secretary-Treasurers have been the secret behind this successful venture. Considered the preview of the Royal Winter Fair in Toronto in November, the Tri-County Jersey Show, and the 4-H Club Exhibits, cut down on number of entries at the Royal, and create great interest at Erin Fall Fair. It is the Big Event of the area for Thanksgiving Week-end.
Located at the northern edge of the village, on the 9th line of Erin Twp., it was the burial place of the early settlers. Miss Annie Cook has been the custodian for many years. It is still in use, and kept in fine condition.
Organized in 1905, the members met in the homes, and later in the school. This group disbanded, but was re-organized in 1926, and was disbanded again in 1962 . Their Tweedsmuir Book contains the History of Erin Village, and was placed in Erin Village Library, for future reference for the local people. Erin had a Junior W.I. in operation from 1927-1956.
In memory of the boys killed in two Great Wars:
1914 - 1918 1939 - 1945 N.G. Broughton J.D. Barbour J.D. Gear E. Bessey W. Gibson R. Brady C.E. Hume D. Covert W. Jackson W. Maxwell E. Jefferies A.G. McFee F. King H. Young W. Murray J.A. McKinnon R. McLachlan D. McLean B. Player E. Scott J. Spiers G. Sutton H. Sanders F. Willis
|House at corner of Main and Spring Streets, built in 1896 by Ben Mundell. Later it was the Overland home.|
Erin Horticultural Society was organized in 1922, and they always looked after flowers at the Cenotaph. They have always planted trees and flower beds to beautify the town.
In Erin Village, known as "Kennedy's Specialties" was founded in 1947, by Robert Dickson. In a 1981 report, more than 10,000 flags were being produced each week. The company makes some of the largest flags made anywhere, some measuring 30 x 60 feet.
Came to Erin in 1979, and by 1981, was employing over 100 people. They located adjacent to the C.P.R. Line, depending on the Railway for transportation, but when it closed they were obliged to turn to trucks.
On April 26, 1982, Mundell's water-powered Mill was shut down for repairs, because a beaver had chewed some wires that held a series of closely-spaced iron rods across a bar in the flume. This was near the dam on west side of Main Street, while the mill is on east side of Main Street. First time it had ever happened, but it had allowed him to shove the rods aside, letting twigs to proceed toward the mill.
Terry Mundell, a fourth generation member of the family, said they needed a welder to weld the bars into place, so it won't happen again.
Mundell's Mill produces lumber, mouldings, window frames and sashes, door frames, and cupboard materials, for contractors and do-it-yourself carpenters.
The mill was built by Daniel McMillan, founder of Erin Village, in 1840,. The Credit Valley Conservation Authority said there were 65 water-powered mills on its banks between 1860-1880, but Mundell's is the only one still in operation. The mill has an auxilliary Diesel motor sitting near the water wheel that could be used if they ran out of water, but Terry Mundell cannot remember it ever having been used.
Benjamin Mundell bought the mill in 1896. He moved to Brampton in 1917, selling the mill to a stranger. Son, David L. Mundell returned from W.W.I, in 1918, and purchased the mill. He also purchased the old Public School on Main Street and made it into a 1-1/2 storey home at corner of Main and Spring Streets. They had two sons, Jim and Bill.
At the end of W.W.II, Bill Mundell entered the family business, and brother, Jim Mundell joined the firm in 1952. Jim's wife and their two sons, Gary and Terry are also on the staff. Terry is Reeve of Erin Village since 1989.
In August 1995, Terry Mundell was elected President of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, (AMO), at their Annual Convention. This organization represents the interests of over 800 Municipalities in Ontario. Terry Mundell served on the Board for six years, and for one year as 1st Vice President. Previously known as ROMA, Rural Ontario Municipalities Association.
In August 1996, Terry Mundell was re-elected as President of AMO. It is the first time in its 91-year history, that a president has exceeded a one-year term. Terry said the Mundell Company will mark its 100th birthday in Erin on September 7, 1996.