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Newmarket's location on the Holland River long ago made the area a natural route of travel between Lake Ontario and Lake Simcoe. A major portage route, the Toronto Carrying-Place Trail ran one of its two routes down the Holland, through the Newmarket area, and over the Oak Ridges Moraine to the Rouge River and into Lake Ontario. A more used route ran down the western branch of the Holland, over the moraine, and down the Humber River. In 1793, John Graves Simcoe travelled the trail, northward along the main route to the west, and south to York (now Toronto) along the lesser used eastern route though Newmarket. Selecting the eastern route as the better of the two, Simcoe started construction of Yonge Street along the former trail in late 1795, starting in York in Toronto Bay, and ending at the newly named St. Albans (Holland Landing) just to the North of Newmarket.

In June, 1800, Timothy Rogers, a Quaker from Vermont, explored the area around the Holland River and down to Lake Simcoe to find a suitable location for a new Quaker settlement. Some of the US Quakers were interested in moving northward, disturbed by the violence they were expected to take part in during the American Revolution. In 1801 Rogers returned along with several Quaker families who had left their homes in Vermont and Pennsylvania.

By the Christmas of 1801, Joseph Hill had constructed a mill on the Holland River, damming it to produce a mill pond that is now known as Fairy Lake. The town of "Upper Yonge Street" sprouted up around the mill, which explains why its primary downtown area was centred on the Holland River, and not on the nearby Yonge Street. Hill also built a tannery just to the north of the mill, and the first store and house, as well as additional mills. By 1802, Elisha Beman had begun to establish businesses and buy land in Newmarket. A mill was first and other businesses (including a distillery) soon followed. The town continued to grow through the early 19th century, along with the formation of Aurora and Holland Landing, and a market held in the current downtown location gave rise to the name "Newmarket".

Newmarket was incorporated as a village in 1857 with a population of 700. In 1880, with a population of 2,000, Newmarket became a town and William Cane was elected as its first mayor. In later years Cane's sash and door factory became the first in Canada to manufacture lead pencils. In 1858, Robert Simpson co-opened "Simpson & Trent Groceries, Boots, Shoes and Dry Goods" in the downtown area, the first store in what would become the Simpsons department store chain .

In June 1853 the first train pulled into Newmarket on the Toronto, Simcoe & Lake Huron Union Railroad, the first railway in Upper Canada. It eventually linked Toronto to Collingwood on Georgian Bay, a major shipbuilding centre.Today, this line is the "Newmarket Subdivision" of the Canadian National Railway system, running north out of town towards Bradford, and south towards Toronto.

In 1899 the Toronto and York Radial Railway arrived in Newmarket. This operated along Yonge Street south of Newmarket, but turned east to run through the downtown area; it would later be extended north. At the time, it brought significant numbers of day trippers to Newmarket to shop at the market. Automobile traffic on Yonge, and the already existing mainline railway, had a significant effect on ridership, and the Radial stopped running north of Richmond Hill in the early 1930s. In 1947 the remaining tracks between North Toronto and Richmond Hill were torn up.

North of Davis Drive, the East Holland River was straightened to prepare it for use as a commercial waterway to bypass the railway, whose prices were skyrocketing around the turn of the 20th century. Sir William Mulock, the local Member of Parliament, proposed a canal system running down the Holland River through Holland Landing and into Lake Simcoe. This would allow boats to connect from there to the Trent-Severn Waterway for eventual shipment south. The canal was almost complete by the summer of 1912, when it was cancelled by the incoming government of Robert Borden.Today, the locks are still visible, mostly silted up, although the turning basin in downtown Newmarket was filled in and now forms the parking lot of The Tannery Mall, on the site of the former Hill tannery.

For much of the 20th century, Newmarket developed along the east-west Davis Drive axis, limited to the area between Yonge Street on the west and between Bayview and Leslie Street in the east, and running from just north of Davis on the north to the Fairy Lake area on the south. By the 1950s, Newmarket was experiencing a suburban building boom due to its proximity to Toronto. The population increased from 5,000 to 11,000 between 1950 and 1970. The construction of Upper Canada Mall at the corner of Yonge Street and Davis Drive in 1974 started pulling the focal point of the town westward.

By the 1980s the original downtown area was run down. Most businesses had built up in the area around Upper Canada Mall, with additional strip malls developing directly across the intersections to the south and southeast. A concerted effort to save the historic downtown area during the late 1980s was successful, and it is once again a major focal point of the town.

The arrival of Highway 404 reversed the westward movement, pulling development eastward again, and surrounding the formerly separate hamlet of Bogarttown at the intersection of Mulock Drive and Leslie Street. Since then, Newmarket has grown considerably, filling out in all directions. The town limits now run from Bathurst Street in the west to Highway 404 in the east, and from just south of Green Lane to just north of St. John's Sideroad, taking over the former hamlet of Armitage at Yonge Street south of Mulock Drive. The outer limits of the town are less than a kilometer from Sharon to the north, and continuous with Aurora to the south.




Elman W Campbell Museum, Fairy Lake, Historical Main Street, Upper Canada Mall, Newmarket Theatre, Brooks Farms, Silver Lakes Golf Course, Superstore, Silver City Newmarket, InPlay indoor kids playground plus many more!



Type Name Website Rank
elementary Alexander Muir P.S. Site Rank


Armitage Village P.S.

Site Rank
Elementary Bogart P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Canadian Martyrs C.E.S. Site Rank
Elementary Clearmeadow P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Crossland P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Denne P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Glen Cedar P.S. Site Rank
Elementary J.L.R. Bell P.S. Site Unranked
Elementary Maple Leaf P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Mazo De La Roche FI Site Unranked
Elementary Meadowbrook P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Notre Dame C.E.S. Site Rank
Elementary Poplar Bank P.S. F.I Site Rank
Elementary Prince Charles P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Rogers P.S. Site Rank
Elementary St. Elizabeth Seton C.E.S. Site Rank
Elementary St. John Chrysostom Site Unranked
Elementary St. Paul Site Unranked
Elementary Stonehaven E.S. Site Rank
Elementary Stuart Scott P.S. Site Rank
Elementary Terry Fox P.S. Site Rank
Secondary Dr.J.M. Denison S.S. Site Rank
Secondary Huron Heights S.S. Site Rank
Secondary Newmarket H.S. Site Rank
Secondary Sacred Heart C.H.S.


Secondary Sir William Mulock S.S. Site Rank
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