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The yorklans Are A Significant Part of Guelph and Of Its Residents

by Terry Crowley,

The Yorklands

The Yorklands are an integral part of the fabric of Guelph central to the past, present, and future of its residents. It is imperative that the Yorklands be preserved for the benefit of all. Although placed on the city’s periphery, the Yorklands were always a central feature of Guelph from the time that the prison farm/correctional facility was constructed early in the twentieth century. The people of Guelph worked there and the people of Guelph regularly came to enjoy its grounds. The Yorklands serve as prime recreational area affording healthy leisure at little expense to the environment that travelling elsewhere would require. Some of the buildings are perhaps among the only medical facilities in the province dating from World War One when a military convalescent hospital was established for veterans (and known locally as Speedwell Hospital). Instructors at the Ontario Agricultural College (University of Guelph) instructed people in the hospital and at the correctional facility through the years. One can only hope that this invaluable resource so central and essential to Guelph is maintained for future generations.

Terry Crowley

University Professor Emeritus

Department of History

University of Guelph

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