Saturday, February 16, 2008

Walkerton, Ontario

Walkerton, OntarioWalkerton, Ontario was proclaimed the county town of Bruce County in 1866, and was incorporated as a Town in 1871. On January 1, 1999, Walkerton became part of the Municipality of Brockton (2006 pop 9,641).

In 1850 Joseph Walker came here to the Durham Road where it crosses the Saugeen River. He built an inn and contracted to build two bridges and a part of the road. He and his son William were in 1851 granted free lots and later allowed to buy adjoining property. Joseph Walker built a sawmill in 1852 and added a grist-mill the following year. Two stores were opened and the Brant Post Office was established. Subdivisions were registered by Joseph Walker and others in 1857 when the name of the post-office was changed to Walkerton.

Location of Walkerton, OntarioIn 2000, 7 people died and 2,300 became ill after Walkerton's water supply became contaminated with manure spread on a farm near the town. The 2002 judicial inquiry found the owner of the farm followed proper practices and could not be faulted. The inquiry found the scope of the outbreak would very likely have been substantially reduced if the Walkerton Public Utilities Commission operators had measured chlorine residuals daily, as they should have. The PUC operators for years, had engaged in a host of improper operating practices they knew were unacceptable.