Category Archives: Aerial Photograph

Railway Photographs taken in Brockville – Part 1

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The Grand Trunk Railway came to Brockville in 1855 when the main line from Montreal to Toronto was completed and opened as far as Brockville.

Brockville was made a divisional point on the GTR, which established this town as a major transportation site.

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about 1950

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An aerial view of the main railway facilities in Brockville. Notable in this photograph are the remains of the large Cossitt Bros. Agricultural Implement Factory on Brock St., and the 90-foot turntable north of the factory buildings. The concrete overpass on William Street remains to be built at this point.

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This view of the rail yards in Brockville is looking east from about William St. toward the engines flanking the turntable.

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A closer view of the 90-foot turntable that was visible in the distance in the photograph above.

Note the eleven numbered engines awaiting their next assignments in the Brockville yards.

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About 1910

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The new Union Railway Station and Depot was built here in 1872 to serve both of the rail lines which were crossing at Brockville. The new station was placed just east of Perth St. on the north side of the Grand Trunk tracks. It is still being used by VIARail for passenger service in Brockville.

 After 1872, the passenger trains of the Brockville & Ottawa Railway which ran north and south between Brockville and Sand Point, near Arnprior, on the Ottawa River used this station in Brockville. Previously the Grand Trunk depot was located on the south side of the tracks, at the head of Buell St. The B&O Railway depot was located in town south of Water St. near to the approach to Blockhouse Island.

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1890s

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This shows five employees trying to look busy in the yard office of the Grand Trunk Railway in the 1890s.

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30 August 1952

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CN  2-6-0 #86 engine, standing at the Brockville Station, ready to take its last regular run of the Westport Mixed train

on the Brockville to Westport line of the former Brockville & Westport Railway.

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Looking Down at Brockville – September 1933

From high on the steeple of First Presbyterian Church

William St at Church St.

This is one of a set of photographs taken by a local professional photographer (no identification), one day on September 1933, each time looking in a different direction from the highest point on the top of the Presbyterian Church. These four aerial photos were put in an album of local pictures by Rida Barker in the 1930s. The album is now in the possession of Judith Caldwell of Prescott. Thanks to Judith for her contributions to this posting.

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View 1

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Looking South-west

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Time has wrought many changes in downtown Brockville which shows in this photograph. Looking westward, Buell Street is at the bottom, with George St. in the middle and Church street on the far left side. Most of the building shown on the west side of Buell St. have been replaced by the Post Office.

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Same View as above, but with identification notes added.

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View 2

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Looking South-east

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This view is very interesting, as it shows Court House Ave. in the foreground. You can see the Gen. Isaac Brock monument on the grass of Court House Green. Further down is the John H. Fulford Memorial Fountain which was erected in 1916, at the time that the grassed boulevard and brick paving was put in place on the previously wide, dirt avenue. In the background is the newly built Hotel Manitonna (now demolished and the site of the Wedgewood Retirement Resort) and the Brockville City Hall. On the east side of Court House Ave. was located the impressive Comstock Building (now demolished) which stood here for over 70 years.

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View 3

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Looking East


This is one of the most revealing picture of the roof top of the Brockville Court House in the foreground, and then the Leeds & Grenville County Jail. Most of the law-abiding public has never seen the interior of the Jail Yard on the left. The main high roof over the old court room was topped by the old bell tower (now demolished) and the original “Sally Grant” Stature of Justice (now replaced). In the background is the roof and steeple of Wall Street United Church.

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View 4

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Looking North

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The last picture in this set was directed due north and contains an earlier view of the Canadian National Railway main line through Brockville. The road on the right side is William Street which was not the well-used road it is now because it didn’t lead much above Front Ave. One of the smaller steeples of the First Presbyterian Church is very evident in this view.

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First Presbyterian Church, photo taken about 1896

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One can only guess how the unknown photographer of these aerial photographs would have climbed the inside of the church steeple and positioned his camera for each shot.


This photograph of the Presbyterian Church, ca.1896, is valuable in its own right. Notice the earlier boundary chain fence, entrance posts, and gates which surrounded Court House Green in the 1890s.

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