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Historical Places


There are many places of historical importance in Canada and the United States. The ones mentioned here are places OBHS has toured over the years.

The Sheffield Park Black History & Cultural Museum on the shores of the Georgian Bay is a museum you will learn about generations of pioneer families who had lived in the Collingwood area.

The North Buxton Raleigh Township Centennial Museum is located on the original site of the Elgin Settlement. This is one of the communities in Canada where Black fugitives fled to after escaping slavery in the United States.

For many, the Elgin Settlement was the last stop on the Underground Railroad. The settlement developed under the supervision of William King and became a self-contained settlement for over 2000 persons.

Other settlements of interest includes the Oro Settlement. The Oro Settlement is one of the earliest Black settlements in Ontario. Construction began in 1819 under the guidance of the then Lt. Governor of Upper Canada.

Uncle Tom's Cabin is another place of historical significance in Ontario. It is located in the Dawn Settlement, Dresden. Josiah Henson is one of the founders of the settlement. He has been designated a person of national historic significance.

The North American Black Historical Museum & Cultural Centre is in Amherstburg, Ontario. The museum has a good Blacks in the Military section. Also, there is a large room exhibiting the profiles of Black inventors on the wall.

Negro Creek Road is said to have been first settled by Negro pioneers and their descendants. It is in Holland Township, 25 km south of Owen Sound. In 1995-96, controversy surrounded the naming of the road, as the Township wanted to change its name.

The Necropolis Cemetery is located in Cabbagetown, downtown Toronto. It is the final resting place of Lucie and Thornton Blackburn. They were former slaves from Kentucky who escaped to Canada via the Underground Railroad. They are credited for setting up the first taxi service in Toronto named The City. Also buried at Necropolis is Anderson Ruffin Abbot, the first Canadian-born black surgeon. So is Corporal Ainsworth Dyer, whose life was cut short by American pilots during a so called "friendly fire" incident in Afghanistan on April 18, 2002

Oakville Community Museum

Freedom, Opportunity and Family: Oakville’s Black History Permanent Exhibit at Erchless Estate

Artifacts, pictures, text and a documentary video tell the stories of many of the African-American families who settled in Oakville and were important to the development of our community. Visitors will discover the story of Branson Johnson, a freeborn African-American, who arrived in Oakville with his family in 1855. His Certificate of Freedom from a Maryland court and the pocket watch in which it was hidden for many years are featured. Passed down from one generation to the next, the certificate shows how subsequent generations defined and preserved evidence of freedom.

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