“Muddy York : A History of Toronto Until 1834” presents over 12,000 years of local history in a concise and easy to follow style. Most books on Toronto’s history begin in 1834, when the old Town of York was incorporated into the brand new City of Toronto. But little attention is ever paid to the settlers and colonial forefathers who arrived on Toronto’s shores in 1793 and set up the fledgling town that would eventually become Canada’s largest city.
Even less attention is paid to what took place before European settlement in the Toronto region. “Muddy York” chronicles the history of the area’s first people. Thousands of years ago, the last ice age started to draw back, allowing early hunters to follow huge prey through the local territory. Eventually, these early people developed into the aboriginal cultures that met European settlers and traders, four hundred years ago.
“Muddy York” starts out by telling the fascinating history that took place before the Town of York was even established. It then follows through with a history of colonial development in the second half of the 1700s. Of course, you’ll meet John Graves and Elizabeth Simcoe, who spent two months travelling across the Atlantic from England to set up the early Province of Upper Canada, and learn of the hardships they faced as they settled into the wilderness.
“Muddy York” also examines two great events that shaped the Town of York and the early history of Toronto – the American invasion of 1813, and the Upper Canadian Rebellion of 1837. You’ll meet the characters who took centre stage in these events, and discover their motivations and reactions to these two major occurrences.
But, “Muddy York” also gives you a chance to wander the streets of Toronto’s old town. You’ll meet the people who made up the town that went on to be Toronto. You’ll discover where and how they lived. To quote from “Muddy York” itself, “they were a motley crew of heroes and rogues, of merchants and bankers, of gamblers, churchmen and sinners, and they were without a doubt some of the most colourful characters to ever saunter across a national landscape”.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richard Fiennes-Clinton was born in Toronto, and has been involved with local Toronto history for 25 years. He is regularly involved with annual cultural and heritage events, and has spoken to a number of historical societies over the years. He frequently contributes to local television, radio and print media related to the history of the city. He is also a multifaceted speaker, giving talks on a variety of Toronto’s past. Notably, he also operates Muddy York Walking Tours.
You can find Richard or Muddy York Walking Tours on the following sites:
5 x 9 inches (15 x 22½ centimeters)
TRADE PAPERBACK / SOFT COVER
341 PAGES, INCLUDING FULL INDEX
128 BLACK AND WHITE ILLUSTRATIONS
COVER PRICE : $28 (CANADA)
SHIPPING WITHIN THE GREATER TORONTO AREA IS APPROXIMATELY $9.00
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Or, simply book a tour and indicate that you would like to buy a copy of the book when you make your reservation!