Discover Arthur, Ontario: A Rich History and Vibrant Community

Arthur, Ontario, a community with a population of 2,450, is nestled just north of Highway 6 and Wellington Road 109 in the township of Wellington North, Ontario, Canada. Once an independent village, Arthur was incorporated into Wellington North on January 1, 1999.

The Historical Roots of Arthur, Ontario

Arthur was named in honor of Arthur Wellesley, the 1st Duke of Wellington. The first settlers arrived in 1840, and the area was initially surveyed in 1841 by John McDonald, followed by an official survey in 1846 by D.B. Papineau.

In 1841, Arthur was home to just 22 people. Over the next 15 years, this number grew to 400, and by 1900, the population had risen to just over 1500. The establishment of saw and grist mills on the Conestogo River attracted settlers to the area. By 1851, a post office, church, and school were organized. The arrival of the Toronto, Grey and Bruce Railway in 1872 spurred further development, and the village was incorporated that same year.

The Arthur Enterprise News, established in 1863, was one of the few non-syndicated weekly newspapers in Canada. By 1890, a high school had been opened. In 1897, Arthur was one of the first villages in Ontario to be connected to an electricity line, although power was only available in the evenings.

Arthur, Ontario: Canada's Most Patriotic Village

In November 1942, the Toronto Star ran a front-page headline that read "Arthur Village Gives Sons and Money to Aid the War", recognizing Arthur as the Most Patriotic Village in Canada. At that time, 126 residents had enlisted from the population of 890 to fight in the Second World War. This was the highest ratio compared to villages of similar sizes in Canada. By the end of the war, 338 Arthur residents had enlisted, and 25 were killed in action.

Arthur was the first community in Ontario to reach its quota during the first war bond campaign of World War II, achieving this feat within a few minutes. Arthur also led the communities in Wellington for every other war and victory bond campaign, surpassing all set objectives. By the end of the fourth campaign, Arthur had raised a total of $250,000, an amount equal to 64% of the assessed value of the village's taxable property.

In 2002, David Tilson, MPP for Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey, stated in the Ontario legislature that due to Arthur's extraordinary World War II record, the community was now recognized as "Canada's Most Patriotic Village".

The Cenotaph of Arthur, Ontario: A Tribute to Heroes

The sacrifice of these soldiers is honored by the Cenotaph of Arthur, located in the heart of the village. The monument was unveiled on August 6, 1923, by Mrs. David Brocklebank, whose son was killed at the end of World War I, before the largest crowd ever assembled in Arthur village. The Toronto Star described the cenotaph as "a war memorial whose design and beauty cannot be equaled as yet in the Province."

Demographics of Arthur, Ontario

As of the 2021 census, the population of Arthur was 2,628.

Attractions in Arthur, Ontario

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The Murals of Arthur, Ontario

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Transportation in Arthur, Ontario

Arthur is served by Kasper Transportation's Owen Sound to Guelph intercity bus route, which began operating in January 2020 with a fourteen-seat passenger van. There are two buses in each direction from Monday to Saturday, one in the morning and one in the afternoon.