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Key 2 Oak Ridges
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Key 2 Oak Ridges History
First People Walked Oak Ridges Land Thousands of Years Ago. Hunting bands of Palaeo-Indians most likely walked through what is now Oak Ridges as early as 9000 BC. After the last ice age, it is believed that nomadic people followed caribou herds into the area. Oak Ridges is high ground and a good place to camp. Archeologists have found Palaeo-Indian artifacts at the Esox site near the east end of Lake Wilcox. The Palaeo-Indian culture evolved to become Archaic culture.
From about 7000 to 1000 B.C., bands of hunter-gatherer people known as Archaics moved through the forests and waterways of Southern Ontario, including Richmond Hill.The Early Iroquoian people came after the Archaics, and around 1280-1320 A.D., the Middle Iroquoian people began settling in our area for longer periods of time. They hunted and fished and planted crops such as corn.
Archeologists have documented a village near Lake Wilcox, covering about 1.2 hectares. The village appears to have had five longhouses. The Early Iroquoian people would hunt deer and fish in Lake Wilcox. The site is the oldest discovered in York Region.
Oak Ridges was established along Yonge Street in 1799 by Joseph Geneviève and a group of French Royalists, who were granted land to settle by the British government. Currently, Oak Ridges is an unincorporated community of Richmond Hill, Ontario and has been part of that city since 1971. Located about 20 km north of Toronto, it has a population of 38,140 (2016).
Wholly situated on the Oak Ridges Moraine, much of its terrain is hilly, with pine forests and small creeks still prospering in the southwest. A number of small kettle lakes are located in Oak Ridges; the largest of these is Lake Wilcox, and the smaller Bond Lake is nearby. The lakes drain into origin tributaries for the East Humber River.
Photo Courtesy Richmond Hill Public Library
Bond Lake Hotel and stables.