An ongoing research project of the Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

The York Report: Settling in

It was April 1796, and Simcoe was concerned. The town did not seem to be developing as quickly as it should and a few of his government officials were making every excuse to delay their move to York. Some of the grants made in September of 1793 (perhaps in haste) now needed clarification, and the allocation of any remaining land needed careful consideration. In 1796, he commissioned a report to determine whether the properties were being occupied and improved, with a view to encouraging true settlement and discouraging speculation.

These deliberations, recorded in the Upper Canada Land and State Minute Book, became known as the “York Report” and resulted in a number of changes to the allocation of the Park Lots, as well as commentary regarding who had not yet settled on their property. Grantees were required to appear or send a representative to describe the condition of their property. The Toronto Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society undertook to transcribe these minutes and they make up part of the introductory section of the Simcoe’s Gentry. View the transcription of this interesting part of Toronto history here.

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