Previous Pioneers of Ontario (1923) Next

 

ON THE PENETANG TRAIL   91

ten dollars. The Warnicas took possession in 1825. Shortly afterwards, because of the growing traffic between north and south, the house on the place became an inn; and, although there were only two rooms and a loft available for travellers, some distinguished guests were entertained there. It is said that Sir John Franklin spent a night at the inn on his overland trip to the Arctic regions, and a voyageur sent back by Sir John sought shelter at the same place on the return journey. Bishop Strachan, on journeys north and south, made this a stopping place; and Sir John Colborne, when Governor of Upper Canada, was provided with food and lodging there when on his tour of inspection of the military post at Penetang'. So well pleased was Sir John with the accommodation provided that he offered each of the Warnica boys a free grant bush lot. How little such lots were valued at the time is evidenced by the fact that the boys did not think it worth while to go to Toronto to secure the deeds of the property tendered them.

When the Warnicas first settled in Innisfil, Lake Simcoe was still a connecting link on the Toronto-Penetang' highway, and Big Bay point was located right on that highway. David Soules, one of the first settlers on `The Point', told Warnica he was a fool to settle so far to the west. "You will be away off the main road," said Soules, "and the blackbirds will eat all your crops." To-day, however, it is `The Point' that is isolated while the old Warnica farm fronts on one of the principal provincial high-ways.


Previous Pioneers of Ontario (1923) Next