February 23, 2021 is Canada’s Agriculture Day.
In recognition of #CDNAGDAY we would like to explore the farmers who broke ground and had a historical impact on the heritage and landscape of Mississauga.
On our last episode of “Ask A Historian”, Carter inquired about the first Non-Indigenous farmer in Mississauga and the answer was a complex one.
Although there were many land grants issued dating back to November and December of 1807 to historic figures such as Joseph Silverthorn, Daniel House, John Jones, Peter Wright, John Gage, William Jennings, Allen Robinett, Paul Marian, Thomas Williams, William Barber, John Steel, Conrad Shain, Othenial Smith and John Utter, we based the first Non-Indigenous farmer as someone who completed their settlement duties. erected a shelter and had a crop under cultivation.
This would therefore be, Henry Gable, who received his land grant on December 19, 1807, and was likely on the ground here in the early spring of 1807.
Henry received Lot 35, Conc. 3 and 4, in the very southwest corner of our city, near what is now Lakeshore Road and Winston Churchill Blvd. in the area we now call Clarkson. Henry and his family moved to their new property from the Niagara area, several years before Warren Clarkson, and a year before the noted Merigold, Jarvis and Thompson families.
When the Gables first arrived they would have seen a very different environment from what we see today. There were no roads, and their land was likely covered by a dense forest.
The family had settlement duties they had to perform in order to keep their land grant. They had to build a cabin, clear and fence five acres of land, and clear the roadway in front of their property.
The Gables were luckier than many settlers, as they had sons who were old enough to help clear and farm the land.
Many settlers ended up losing their land because they were not able to fulfill their settlement duties. The Gables received the patent to their land on December 19, 1807, making them the first official settlers in the area known today as Clarkson.
We invite you to watch our “Ask A Historian” program and to send in your inquiries and you may be featured on one of our upcoming episodes.
“Ask A Historian” airs every Thursday at 4:00 p.m. on our YouTube channel.
#ApartTogether we invite you to explore the fascinating history of Mississauga.