Yonge and Finch (named for John Finch who operated a hotel on the corner) has evolved over the years from a farm, to a hotel (where the wood from the building would be reused to build the Bedford Park Hotel south of Fairlawn*), to a brewery, and a neighbourhood, to become another “little” in our series.
Yonge and Finch has been called “the other Koreatown” , TehranTo, or just plain ol’ Newtonbrook.
The population of the area is split between Chinese, Korean, Russian and Jewish and Iranian.
First settled in the early 19th century, Newtonbrook’s early industries were dominated by mills (saw and grist mills) on the east and west branches of the Don River. Later, the “Bird in the Hand” hotel and restaurant would serve the workers of the area. Newtonbrook, named for Reverend Robert Newton.
Streets we’re hoping to pay attention to:
- Drewry Avenue also known as “Pope’s Lane” (to see the only original house of the times left)
- 43 Drewry – the site of the Village of Newtonbrook’s fourth schoolhouse built in 1878 and demolished in 1997.
- The Second Newtonbrook General Store, circa 1907, located on the north-west corner of Yonge Street and Drewry Avenue.
- The manse in the intersection of Yonge Street and Hendon Avenue: birthplace and hometown of Nobel Prize winner and Liberal Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson.
For more information, check out the Toronto Neighbourhood Site
* research drawn from Toronto Neighbourhoods 7-Book Bundle:A City in the Making / Unbuilt Toronto By Mark Osbaldeston, F.R. (Hamish) Berchem, Frederick H. Armstrong, Scott Kennedy, Jane Pitfield