Ontario's Historical Plaques 

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Founding of Port Robinson

Founding of Port Robinson

Photos by contributor Wayne Adam - Posted June, 2012

Founding of Port Robinson

Plaque Location

The Region of Niagara
The City of Thorold
In Port Robinson, on River Street (Road 63)
in front of Port Robinson Park
a short distance from South Street North

Coordinates: N 43 02.423 W 79 12.552


Plaque Text

Port Robinson, the southern terminus of the original Welland Canal, opened in 1829, was named for John Beverley Robinson, chief justice of Upper Canada. The village grew rapidly when hundreds of Irish immigrants laboured on the "Deep Cut" between Allanburg and this site. A company of Negro soldiers stationed here about 1843-51 enforced order along the canal. Port Robinson benefited from frequent canal improvements, and trade and industry, including a shipyard and dry docks, flourished. In 1856 Merrittsville (Welland) became the administrative centre for Welland County. Later, Port Robinson's development was slowed when the shipyards were closed. After about 1880, when its inhabitants totalled some 800, there was a decline in population and business activity.

Related Ontario plaque
The First Welland Canal 1824-1833



Thorold Plaques

Here are the visitors' comments for this page.

> Posted June 10, 2015
I am searching for any family information on David Bloomfield born 1795. He was married to a Sarah, but I am searching for maiden name. She may have been possibly native. David had a stepfather Isaac Leech who was a shoemaker in Chippewa. There also were several step brothers. David's sisters married into families with the surnames Waite, Galbraith and Defield. Any help or leads would be greatly appreciated.
C. Connelly jlconnel@rogers.com

> Posted February 24, 2014
My name is Tom Russell. I live in Port Robinson and I am researching the early history of the families and the industries (shipbuilding) of the village. Please contact me and I will share my information. My e-mail address is trussell10@cogeco.ca Phone 905 384 1678

> Posted February 5, 2012
I am trying to find out information regarding my great grandparents who lived in Port Robinson in the 1800's. They were Sarah McCoppen who married Alfred H. White. He worked for a ship building company and worked to build one of the Maids of the Mist. They emigrated to the USA in around 1890 and I have been trying unsuccessfully for years to find more information about them. Are there any historical records of the ship building companies that might have my great grandfather's name listed somewhere? Is there someone I can contact? sunfunsail@yahoo.com is how I can be located.

> Posted April 6, 2011
I used to live there, all my aunts and uncles live there and my family is very well known in town. I am trying to find some historical records because I want to learn more about the town's history.

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