Oakville Images
OPL Oakville Heritage Moments: The Plants of Oakville


Description
Media Type:
Video
Item Type:
Video recordings
Description:
This video is part of a series titled 'Oakville Heritage Moments.' Produced by the Oakville Public Library, these videos aim to focus on snapshots of Oakville's history. This video focuses on the plants of Oakville and their historical uses.
Notes:
Video written and produced by the Oakville Public Library’s Digital Heritage Assistant, 2018. Narrated by Elizabeth Strong.
Photos from Oakville Images, Oakville Historical Society, Oakville Museum, Library and Archives Canada, FLickr, Wikimedia Commons, Toronto Archives, McCord Museum, Library of Congress, Bronte Historical Society, David Rumsey Historical Map Collection, Trafalgar Township Historical Society, Town of Oakville, The Oakville Beaver.
Music: Weeping Willow - Scott Joplin, performed by Gerluz via musopen.org.
Special thanks to the Young Canada Works in Heritage Organizations Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Language of Item:
English
Copyright Statement:
Protected by copyright: Uses other than research or private study require the permission of the rightsholder(s). Responsibility for obtaining permissions and for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Contact
Oakville Public Library
Email
WWW address
Agency street/mail address

Oakville Public Library

Central Branch

120 Navy Street

Oakville ON L6J 2Z4

Tel: (905) 815-2042

For information about photographs, news articles, or other information included in this database, please contact the Local Collections Librarian by email.


Transcription:

When it comes to wildlife, Oakville is stunningly diverse, with over 900 different native species of plants.

One of the oldest trees in Oakville, if not the oldest, is a white oak tree that stands in the middle of Bronte road across from the Halton Regional Centre. The tree was planted in 1760, making it more than 70 years older than Oakville itself. An oak tree of this age in Oakville is extremely rare, as most of the abundant population of Oak trees were cut down by the 1900s and used for home and shipbuilding.

Recently, the great white oak was threatened by roadwork. The region was considering expanding Bronte road to four lanes, which would put the white oak directly in its path, so the tree was going to be removed. Unhappy with this plan, the town banded together to raise the $343,000 needed to reroute the road and save the tree. Today this great White Oak is protected as Oakville’s first standalone Heritage Tree.

As white oaks were cut down during the founding of Oakville, land was freed up for the town’s next plant-based industry: farming. Fruit became Oakville’s biggest export. There were several orchards growing apples, plums, cherries, and pears, but fruit fields growing strawberries ended up having the most impact on the community. Strawberry pickers of all ages were brought in from different parts of Ontario, and were paid 2 cents per box of fruit picked. For a time, Oakville was known as the strawberry capital of Canada.

The logging industry was given new life as a result of fruit farming, as logs would now be sent to the Oakville Basket factory, and would come out as a finished basket within two hours. The factory produced baskets in the hundred-thousands every day, but were very vulnerable to fire.

In addition, two jam factories were opened to make use of the abundance of fruit.

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OPL Oakville Heritage Moments: The Plants of Oakville


This video is part of a series titled 'Oakville Heritage Moments.' Produced by the Oakville Public Library, these videos aim to focus on snapshots of Oakville's history. This video focuses on the plants of Oakville and their historical uses.