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Todmorden Mills

Todmorden Mills were a series of Mills built in the Don Valley. Built on land granted by the government to the Skinner family in the 1790s, the first of the later named Todmordern Mills was a Saw Mills. Later joined by a grist mill (grinds wheat into flour), paper mill, brewery, and several others, the mills passed through several hands over the 19th century.

In the mid-19th century the Mills were acquired by the Helliwell family, who had arrived from the English of Todmorden and gave the area its current name. The mills increased in importance over the subsequent century as the population around them grew. In the 1920 the Mills were shut down and the buildings converted to a riding stable. In the 1940s the site was repurposed once again as a prisoner of war camp for German prisoners. Finally, in 1964 the Township of East York established the Todmorden Mills Park, and in 1967 it became a historic site and today it is a museum.

Eleanor Darke, “A Mill Should be Built Thereon:” An Early History of the Todmorden Mills (Winnipeg, Hignell Printing Limited, 1995).

Louise Herzber and Helen Juhola. Todmorden Mills: A Human and Natural History. (Toronto Field Naturalists, 1987).

Jennifer Bonnell, a href="http://www.sources.com/Bookshelf/SBS45202.htm">Reclaiming the Don: An Environmental History of Toronto’s Don River Valley (Toronto: U of T Press, 2014).