St. Mary of the Visitation Roman Catholic Church / Hespeler / Cambridge, Ontario
From my set entitled “Hespeler”
In my collection entitled “Places”
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From the website of St. Mary of the Visitation Parish, Hespeler
St. Mary Parish was established in 1857 as a community of faith dedicated to the glory of God. Over the years God has blessed our Family of Faith. Today, our community numbers over 1800 families and is an active, welcoming, and energized parish. With many active organizations, along with the elementary school communities of Our Lady of Fatima and St Elizabeth, and our secondary school community of St Benedict
Reproduced from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cambridge (2006 population 124,371) is a city located on the Grand River and Speed River in the Region of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.
Cambridge was formed in 1973 when the city of Galt merged with the towns of Preston and Hespeler and parts of the townships of Waterloo and North Dumfries. When amalgamation plans were first announced, the combined city was to be named Galt, but Preston and Hespeler successfully petitioned the province to instead give the city a new name, to be selected by a referendum on choices submitted by the three members. A ruffled Galt submitted 'Blair', while Preston and Hespeler combined to back 'Cambridge', after 'Cambridge Mills', an early name for the settlement that became Preston.
The first mayor of Cambridge was Claudette Miller, who at the time was one of the few female mayors, and at 35 the youngest mayor, in Canada.
On May 17, 1974 flooding on the Grand River was so intense it filled city streets with water to a depth of about four feet. Hundreds of businesses and homes were severely damaged.
In 1988, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada opened a plant in Cambridge, which employed 4,300 people as of July 2005 and is by far the city's largest employer. Although highly beneficial to the town, traffic issues caused by slow-moving and long trains passing through main traffic routes to deliver material to the plant have caused some frustration in residents. Several other industrial companies also call Cambridge home, including Gerdau Ameristeel, ATS Automation Tooling Systems, Frito-Lay Canada (formerly Hostess), Babcock and Wilcox, Northstar Aerospace, Rockwell Automation and Com Dev.
Because Cambridge has three distinct historical business districts surviving from each of its constituent municipalities (from before amalgamation in 1973), it seems more neutral and more convenient to orient people by "the Delta". The Delta is the nickname given to the intersection of Highways 8 and 24 in the industrial zone located where the growing Preston and Galt first came together. These highways cross at a very acute angle, which presents challenges to motorists.
Cambridge straddles Highway 401, with interchanges at Exit 286 for Townline Road, Exit 284 at Franklin Boulevard which only allows entrance to the freeway from northbound Franklin Boulevard and exiting the freeway to head south on Franklin Boulevard, Exit 282 at Hespeler Road, Exit 278 at Shantz Hill Road/King Street Kitchener, Exit 275 Fountain Street and Homer Watson Blvd., Kitchener, and Exit 268 for Cedar Creek Road. The driving time to downtown Toronto varies between one and one half hours drive for a total distance of about 98 km (60 mi). Lester B. Pearson International Airport is 79 km (49 mi) and will take forty five minutes to drive.
There are two main arterial roads that form an 'X' through the city. The intersecting point is colloquially referred to as the Delta. Unfortunately, the Delta is adjacent to a Canadian Pacific Rail spur and at peak rush hour times, traffic will back up for miles radiating outwards from the Delta. Highway 8 (Ontario) travels through the city as Shantz Hill Road, King Street in Preston, Coronation Boulevard, and Dundas Street, linking Cambridge to Kitchener and Waterloo in the west, and Hamilton in the east. Highway 24 runs through Cambridge as Hespeler Road, Water Street, and Ainslie Street, connecting to Guelph in the northeast and Brantford in the south.
Information on Hespeler from
The area that eventually came to be occupied by the town of Hespeler was originally part of the land granted to the Six Nations Indians by the British Crown in 1784. The Indians led by Joseph Brant decided to sell a part of their grant and had the land surveyed. In 1798 a block of land, known as Block 2 and measuring over 90,000 acres was sold to Richard Beasley and his partners who looked to resell the land in small parcels. This land came to the attention of a group of Mennonites in Pennsylvania who were looking for land on which to settle.
The first of the Pennsylvanian Mennonites to own land in the Hespeler area was Abraham Clemens who arrived in 1809 having purchased 515 acres from Mr. Beasley. The following year Cornelius Pannabecker, said to be Hespeler's first blacksmith, arrived and sometime thereafter built a forge on his farm in the Beaverdale area.
In 1830 Joseph Oberholtzer purchased a large tract of land from Abram Clemens. This tract included much of the future site of the settlement of Hespeler. At about the same time Mr. Oberholtzer deeded some of this land to his sister Susanna who had recently arrived with her husband Michael Bergey. The Bergeys settled on the land and are considered to be Hespeler's first residents. The settlement's first name, Bergeytown, commemorates their arrival. This name did not last long, however, and by the mid-1830's the settlement was known as New Hope.
It was to the settlement of New Hope that Jacob Hespeler, for whom the town was later renamed, brought many of his hopes and ambitions in 1845. That year Mr. Hespeler purchased a total of 145 acres fronting on the Speed River. He then proceeded to build an industrial complex that would provide the footings for the settlement's later industrial strength.
The incorporation of the settlement of New Hope as the village of Hespeler in 1859 was due, in no small part, to the efforts of Mr. Hespeler and was, in part, made possible by the arrival of the Great Western Railway to New Hope on its route from Galt to Guelph. The presence of the railway construction crews in the vicinity of New Hope encouraged Mr. Hespeler to call for a census of the settlement in 1857 hoping to find enough "residents" to qualify for incorporation under the terms of the Ontario Municipal Act of 1849. Incorporation was essential to Mr. Hespeler's plans for the settlement that could then separate from the county and elect its own Council. This Council would then have jurisdiction over all aspects of roads and bridges and a variety of other issues the most important of which were the location of industries and the ability to make provisions for fire protection and public health. The census was duly taken and on July 31, 1858 the government of her majesty Queen Victoria proclaimed that the settlement of New Hope would become an incorporated Village of Hespeler effective January 1, 1859. Over the following years the community continued its slow but steady growth and in January 1901, Hespeler attained a new status when it was incorporated as a town.
The town's industrial strength continued throughout the 20th century even though the population remained small reaching the 6,000 level only in the late 1960's. Despite its small size, the town was the home of Dominion Woollens and Worsteds Ltd., one of the largest textile producers in the country. The general decline of the Canadian textile trade in the years following World War II had a major effect on the town, as its largest employer could no longer compete on the world stage. The town was successful in attracting new businesses but remained in the shadow of its larger neighbours. When, in the late 1960's, the provincial government proposed the amalgamation of Hespeler with its larger neighbours Galt and Preston to form a single city, the idea was not well accepted. However in the end the idea of amalgamation could not be resisted and on January 1, 1973 the Town of Hespeler disappeared as a separate political entity with its amalgamation with Galt and Preston to form the new City of Cambridge.
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