Ontario's Historical Plaques 

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The Queen's Bush Settlement, 1820-1867

The Queen's Bush Settlement

Photo by Alan L Brown - Posted October, 2008

The Queen's Bush Settlement

Photo from Google Street View ©2014 Google - Posted February, 2014

Plaque Location

The County of Wellington
The Township of Mapleton
In a park, just west of Road 45 crossing the Conestogo River
5.4 km from Road 86 via
north on Road 12 and west on Road 45

Coordinates: N 43 39.278 W 80 42.169


Click here for a larger map

Plaque Text

In the early 19th century the vast unsettled area between Waterloo County and Lake Huron was know as the "Queen's Bush". More than 1,500 free and formerly enslaved Blacks pioneered scattered farms along the Peel and Wellesley Township border, with Glen Allan, Hawkesville and Wallenstein as important centres. Working together, these industrious and self-reliant settlers built churches, schools, and a strong and vibrant community life. American missionaries taught local Black children at the Mount Hope and Mount Pleasant schools. In the 1840s the government ordered the district surveyed and many of the settlers could not afford to purchase the land they had laboured so hard to clear. By 1850 migration out of the Queen's Bush had begun. Today African Canadians whose ancestors pioneered the Queen's Bush are represented in communities across Ontario.



Black History

Here are the visitors' comments for this page.

> Posted February 1, 2015
I am a resident of Wellesley and am currently researching the settlement, and to answer one of the questions, the name technically meant the whole area up to the lake, but the actual farmers settled in Wellesley and Woolwich townships. Anything above that was bush until after they all had left.

> Posted August 12, 2014
Those wishing to learn more about the Queen's Bush may wish to consult a book by Linda Brown-Kubisch: "The Queen's Bush Settlement: Black Pioneers 1839 - 1865", published in 2004 by Natural Heritage Books, Toronto, now part of Dundurn Press; go to www.dundurn.com. The book is also available via Chapters/Indigo. It may also be available at your local public library.

> Posted February 12, 2014
Did the Queen's Bush incorporate all the British unsettled lands west of the boundary of today's Simcoe County, over to Lake Huron, north of Waterloo and Wellington Counties and north to Georgian Bay, or does the term Queen's Bush only refer to those areas into which our African Canadian's first migrated?

> Posted July 14, 2012
I am interested in the parameters of the Queen's Bush? Where can I find this information?
Thank you.

> Posted February 11, 2011
It's refreshing to see "African Canadian" used properly, here as a description of a modern race of African descent which holds Canadian citizenship. The term is often misused in opposition to 'African American', in an attempt to differentiate between Blacks in what became Canada from Blacks in what became the U.S. The word 'American' refers to a continent, not U.S. citizenship, and is an inclusive term that can be applied to historic or modern groups in both countries (and other American nations). 'African Canadian' is a subset of the 'African American' umbrella. -Wayne

> Posted February 9, 2011
Thank you for this site. I have enjoyed browsing today and will return - T.S. Chatsworth Twp

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