Hamilton, Ont. 19th century maps & surveys

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A Plan of 20 Town Lots
A Plan of 20 Town Lots
This 1842 map is a layout of 20 lots in the Corktown neighbourhood, at the base of the escarpment. Since Hamilton did not achieve official city status until 1846, the lots are shown as "town lots." Writing on the map is very faint but some details can be discerned. To the right of the title is the directional arrow indicating that the map is oriented in an upside down format. To the left of the title is a signature by the surveyor, "Samuel Ryckman, Dept. Provl. Surveyor," and a date "February 1842." In the bottom left hand corner is found the scale: "2 chains to one inch." The map is also numbered in the bottom left hand corner: "No. 24 Drawer 4." The streets listed on the map include: John Street, James Street, Hannah Street [now Charlton Avenue], and a "Road" on the escarpment [now Concession Street]. The "mountain" figures prominently on this map, being clearly labelled and shaded. All lots (13-15) and concessions (3-4) are also labelled. The surveyor, Samuel Ryckman (1777-1846) was a Deputy Provincial Surveyor who completed surveys across Upper Canada. Ryckman (alternatively spelled "Rykman") was given a total of 11,042 acres in recompense for his surveying work (Randy William Widdis, "Speculation and the Surveyor," in Social History (15)30:1982, 443-458). In Hamilton, Ryckman was reimbursed with 700 acres of land, centring on Upper James Street and Rymal Road. The hamlet of "Ryckman's Corners" was named after Samuel (Donna Reid and Robin McKee, "Samuel Ryckman" in The Hamiltonians, Margaret Houghton, ed. Toronto: James Lorimer and Co. Publishers, 2003). Many of the names of property owners drawn onto the map have faded, but the few that remain legible include: William Orr, R.P. Street, J.B. Freeman, and J.C. Richardson. There are numerous other names included on the map.
A plan of survey of lots in the city of Hamilton, corner of Bay and Concession Streets
A plan of survey of lots in the city of Hamilton, corner of Bay and Concession Streets
“Scale 50 Ft = 1 Inch.” The outline of the lots and roads has been done in ink but street names, property owners, the title, and the scale have all been written in pencil. On the left edge, written in pen, it reads “No 5 Drawer 5.” The map possesses no directional arrow. The orientation of the map is upside down, with Markland Street (the northernmost street) appearing at the base of the map. All streets listed (Bay Street, Hilton Street, and Markland Street) are in existence today, with the exception of Concession Street [which is now Aberdeen Ave]. In the 1875 Historical Atlas of Wentworth County, the property owner is listed as “RP Streets”. The location and names of neighbouring property owners correspond exactly with those shown on the map, including: John Brown, Alexander McInnes and Thomas Swinyard. To the left of the title it reads “Office Copy” and has a signature below. There is no surveyor or author listed.
A sketch of lot 16 in the 5th Con of Barton
A sketch of lot 16 in the 5th Con of Barton
"Scale of 4 chains to an Inch." The top of the map features handwriting numbering the document: "No 63, Drawer No 1, Barton (16 in 5th con)". The surveyor has signed and dated the map in the bottom right hand corner, "Surveyed by Robert W Kerr, P.L.S., Hamilton July 1852." The directional arrow atop the map points towards the upper right edge as north. The roads listed are all allowances yet to be given proper names. Eventually, the "Road between the 4th and 5th Conns" [becomes Fennel Avenue], the "Road between the 5th and 6th Conns" [becomes Mohawk Road], and the "Road to Hamilton" [becomes West 5th Street]. The westerly "Road allowance between lots 16 & 17" was never built. Subsequent maps indicate this part of lot 16 was never realized as planned on this sketch and remained undeveloped until the mid-20th century. It is interesting to note that the northern half of this lot is where Mohawk College now stands. A portion of the southern half (on land partially owned by Ann Terryberry) is now home to the Terryberry Library
A true copy of survey of lots in the Township of Barton and adjacent to the City of Hamil[ton], the property of Michael Aikman
A true copy of survey of lots in the Township of Barton and adjacent to the City of Hamil[ton], the property of Michael Aikman
Manuscript map. "Thos. A. Blyth, Janry 12th 1854". Covers area east of the city limits at this time [currently Wentworth Street] and extends east to Burlington Street [currently Sanford Avenue South] and is bounded north to south by King and Main Streets with an "Avenue" in the middle which is currently named, Aikman Avenue. Map shows 49 numbered lots within these boundaries. According to the Dictionary of Hamilton Biography (v. 1, p. 9), Michael Aikman is the son of settler John Aikman (1764-1841) and, following his father's death, he inherited the family property which now bears the family name. "No 46 Drawer No 2" is handwritten in upper right corner. Handwritten on verso, "Michael Aikman [illegible word]".
Ancaster
Ancaster
This map is an enlarged concession plan of the Township of Ancaster. The map only shows the concessions and early lot lines, with no subsequent detail. The map's title, found in the bottom right corner, reads "Ancaster". Just below the title is the scale: "Scale forty chains to one inch" and the publisher: "Crown Lands Department". In the top left hand corner is the word "Copy".
Barton
Barton
“Scale Forty Chains to One Inch” is written below the title. In the bottom right of the map it reads “Crown Lands Department, Montreal, November 1846, True Copy, C.R.” The map is signed "D.B. Papineau C.C.L. [Commissioner of Crown Lands]". Denis-Benjamin Papineau was the joint premier of the Province of Canada for Canada East from 1846 to 1848 and the Commissioner of Crown Lands from 1844 to 1847. There is a number “2” featured just above this information. At the top of the map there is handwriting “Barton Township” and “Book 1” which has been crossed out. There are 8 concessions featured along with the “B.Front” [Broken Front]. No details are shown on the map except for waterways, concessions, and lot lines. A directional arrow is found faded just above the title. The verso of the map reads “43rd Page Barton”.
Beverly
Beverly
The map features only lot & concession lines, along with basic waterways. The title, "Beverly", is found in the bottom right hand corner. Under the title is listed the scale: "Scale forty Chains to one Inch". On both the top and left side of the map are found the words "Beverly 1" and the number "3" in the top right. The map's publication information is found in the bottom left corner, "Crown Land Department, Montreal, November 1846. True Copy. C.R. [copyright]". The map is signed "D.B. Papineau C.C.L. [Commissioner of Crown Lands]". Denis-Benjamin Papineau was the joint premier of the Province of Canada for Canada East from 1846 to 1848 and the Commissioner of Crown Lands from 1844 to 1847. The historical boundaries of Beverly Township translate into the following area roads: Governers Road to the south, Middletown Road to the east, Sager Road to the west, and Gore Road to the north.
Binbrook Township
Binbrook Township
Map shows Binbrook Township (Concessions 1-4 and 7-9) and includes lots and property “blocks”. The map title is written on the right margin “Binbrook Township”. The map has a directional arrow stretching across the top of the map and pointing to the bottom as north. The town of Binbrook [known as Hall’s Corners prior to 1875] is located between Concessions 3 and 4, block #11. In 1791, the concessions were numbered and divided into five blocks each, numbered east to west. Each 1000 acre block was subdivided into 200-acre single front lots. The exception was Block 5 (along the western edge), which contained only 600 acres of land and it was divided into three 200 acre lots. Additional lands located south of Concession 4 (Concesssions 7-10) were incorporated into the township in 1800. The approximate outlines of the map are Trinity Church Road to the west, Rymal Road to the north, Westbrook Road to the east, and Hallbrook Road to the south. In the vicinity of Binbrook is an area labeled “Glebe”, meaning an area of land used to financially support the ministerial services of a parish priest.
Bird's eye view of the City of Hamilton : Province Ontario, Canada, 1876
Bird's eye view of the City of Hamilton : Province Ontario, Canada, 1876
"Drawn by Herm. Brosius." "Chas Shober & Co. Prop. Chicago Lith. Co." Includes index to City of Hamilton buildings, churches, banks, schools, hotels and manufactories. Facsimile (Hamilton, Ont. : Lloyd Reeds Map Collection, McMaster University Library, 2013. Digital copy (scan) of original lithograph from the City of Hamilton, Hamilton Museum of Steam & Technology).
Copy of part of Flamborough East (no 10)
Copy of part of Flamborough East (no 10)
Map certification statement reads, "Depart of Crown Lands, Quebec April 14th, 1863, [illegible first name] Russell, Assist Commr." "Scale 40 chains to an inch". Map shows concessions 6 through 8, and lots 1 through 13 in their entirety. Also shows marshy areas within some lots. "No 30 Drawer 3" is handwritten along the left edge of the sheet.
Copy of plan of ordinance property Burlington Heights in the City of Hamilton
Copy of plan of ordinance property Burlington Heights in the City of Hamilton
Manuscript map. "As surveyed under instructions from the Commissioner of Crown Lands". Map is bounded in the west by Cootes Paradise and extends east to Burlington Bay, showing the Desjardins Canal, the property of Sir A.N. MacNab alongside Hamilton Cemetery, Great Western Railway, and includes close to 100 numbered lots. Shows Main Road [now York Boulevard] as it branches out to possibly Old Guelph Road and currently Highway 403. Handwritten in upper corners, "Book 2, Plan 41".
Copy of plan of survey of lots nos. 5 and 6 in 2nd. Conn. of Flamboro West being part of the late Honble. Jas. Crooks Estate
Copy of plan of survey of lots nos. 5 and 6 in 2nd. Conn. of Flamboro West being part of the late Honble. Jas. Crooks Estate
Manuscript map. Cartographer unknown. North arrow oriented to the right. "Scale 5 ch[ain]s to an Inch". Map shows part of the Crooks Estate, bounded by Brock Road in the east and Second Concession [currently Highway 8] in the south. The map shows the locations of dwellings, a grist mill, oil mill, distillery, tannery, paper mill, and woolen factory along [Spencer] Creek in addition to a homestead and stable closer to Second Concession along a crescent road connecting Second Concession and Brock Road. The map identifies two additional areas as "64 acres" and "37 acres". Handwritten near the centre right of the map, "No.IV, No.V, No.VI". In the top left corner, "No 7, Drawer No 1". Today this area is known as Crooks Hollow, named for the Honourable James Crooks who died in 1860 (Dictionary of Canadian Biography (Online) www.biographi.ca/en).
Copy of survey of property on John Street in Robert Jarvis Hamilton Survey
Copy of survey of property on John Street in Robert Jarvis Hamilton Survey
Manuscript map. Title from handwritten statement on verso. Signed, "Thos. Allen Blyth P.L.S. Hamilton March 10th/53". "Scale 100 ft.=one inch". Map covers John Street at Hannah Street [now Charlton Avenue].
Entrance to Crystal Place Grounds
Entrance to Crystal Place Grounds
Manuscript map. "T.A. Blyth P.L.S. July [1860 or 1869]" --date is difficult to transcribe with certainty. Scale "20 ft = one Inch". Shows entrance to Crystal Palace at intersection between Railway Street [now Locke Street] and Main Street [likely King Street], as well as 20 numbered lots north of "Main Street". According to an article entitled, "Vanished Hamilton: A litany of loss", in the Hamilton Spectator (Feb. 17, 2013), "the cornerstone of the Crystal Palace was laid in 1860, in preparation for Hamilton to play host to the Provincial Exhibition (which evolved into the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE)). The building was key to the development of the city’s west end.... In 1891, the Crystal Palace and its building were auctioned off to the public." "32" is handwritten in pencil near the top of the sheet.
Flamborough
Flamborough
"Scale Forty chains to One Inch". "Crown Lands Department, Montreal January 1847, true copy, C.R., [signed] "D.B. Papineau C.C.L." [Commissioner of Crown Lands]. The north arrow points down. The map features lots and concessions west of Dundas Street and Burlington Bay within East and West Flamborough with basic waterways. Some handwritten notes along edges.
Glanford
Glanford
"Scale 40 chains to one inch". Concessions one through eight are shown. This township was created in 1798 in Lincoln County, was transferred to Wentworth County in 1854 and later amalgamated with Binbrook Township to form Glanbrook (Rayburn, Place Names of Ontario, p.134).
Grand Trunk Railway
Grand Trunk Railway
Cross-sectional profile of the Grand Trunk Railway in the Township of Saltfleet. It shows a lateral view of the topography of the area drawn for the engineering purposes of the railway. Below the title is listed the word "Profile" and the two scales: "Horizl 200ft to 1 inch" and "Vertl 20 ft to 1 inch". Also below the title is found the signature of the author: "Joseph Hobson, Chief Engineer, Hamilton, Ont., 21st Novr. 1888" and the signature of the registrar: "Received from R. A[illegible surname] & fyled this 26 day of December A.D. 1888 at 1:10 P.M, M. Martin, Dep. Reg." On left and right edges, it reads "Book 5, Plan 18" and the number "18" has been written above the title and in the top left edge. In the diagram's title, "G.W." stands for "Great Western" and " N & NW" stands for "Northern and Northwestern Railway" both companies at the time. The profile shows all roads and creeks along the length of the landscape as well as detail on the level of Lake Ontario, with caption "Datum = water level Lake Ontario". The curvature of the land is detailed across the profile (in degrees from parallel) and notes on the gradation from level are also made. The entire profile spans approximately 3.35 kilometres or 2 miles. It appears as if it covers approximately lots 26 to 32 in the Broken Front Concession (from Burgess Avenue to Centennial Parkway, along the waterfront). Sources indicate that the diagram's author, Joseph Hobson, was a well known surveyor and engineer. Born in England, Hobson contributed to the profession by designing bridges and railway spans in Montreal, Sarnia, Niagara, Bruce County, Ohio, Michigan, and Nova Scotia. His son, Robert Hobson, surpassed Joseph in fame and capital, becoming a wealthy industrialist and an early leader in the Hamilton steel industry.
Ground Plan of Buildings in the Town of Hamilton
Ground Plan of Buildings in the Town of Hamilton
This map shows a basic building plan for lots along Catherine Street, between King and King William Streets. There are a number of buildings which are shaded in yellow and brown, presumably they are the properties in question, belonging to the company Buchanan, Harris & Co. The map is numbered in the bottom left-hand corner "No. 85 Drawer 3". At the base of the map is the scale, drawn as a ruler up to 150 feet. The equivalent ratio for the slide is 150 feet is equal to 8 inches (18.75 feet = 1 inch). The map is similar, in many ways, to a fire insurance plan, listing the height and material constitution of each building. There are numbers written in bold on each lot which, presumably, correspond to a missing index indicating relevant property information. The company Buchanan, Harris and Co. was a large dry goods and mercantile importer based in Hamilton. The firm was a partnership of Isaac Buchanan (1810-1883), Peter Buchanan (1805-1860), Robert William Harris (1805-1861), and John Young (1808-1873). Founded in 1840, the company became extremely profitable and and was described as "the largest mercantile house in the province." (Douglas McCalla, "Buchanan, Peter," in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/buchanan_peter_8E.html). As is evidenced by the 1857-58 Hamilton City Directory, the company owned land on King Street East, presumably pointing to the same property located on this map. The company's central figure, Isaac Buchanan, originally moved to Canada in 1830 to set up an outpost of the Glasgow-based dry goods firm William Guild Jr. and Co. Isaac and his brother Peter bought out the company in 1834 and established Isaac Buchanan and Co., in Toronto and Peter Buchanan and Co., in Glasgow (H.J. Bridgman, "Buchanan, Isaac,"in Dictionary of Hamilton Biography, 31-36). After establishing Buchanan, Harris and Company in Hamilton, the partners decided to close the company branch in Toronto (ca. 1843) also opened a Montreal branch that would be run by assistant James Law. It was well known that Isaac provided the company's entrepreneurial energy while other partners Peter Buchanan and Robert Harris provided sound, long-term prudence. Isaac also often ran into contention with his partners and in 1853 both Young and Law left the firm (Douglas McCalla, "Young, John" in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/buchanan_peter_8E.html). In 1856 Isaac recklessly used the firm's capital and all of his reserves to secretly secure rights to build a portion of the Great Western Railway to Amherstburg. The railway declined to build the southern leg and both partners were outraged. The company was pushed to near bankruptcy and both Harris and Peter Buchanan struggled to save the firm. Buchanan, Harris and Co., never fully recovered and the 1850's and 1860's proved difficult for the company. Harris was permanently injured in a riding accident and Peter Buchanan died in 1860. Isaac Buchanan was unable to adequately manage the firm on his own and died financially insolvent.
Hamilton
Hamilton
"Scale five chains to an inch." Map boundaries are King William Street to the north, James Street to the west, Catherine Street to the east and Hannah Street (now Charlton Avenue) to the south. In bottom right corner, "No 2". On lower left corner, "Drawer 4 No 1" (number 1 appears to be added over a number 2).

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