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Acton, Ontario

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Acton (population 8,481) is a community located in the Town of Halton Hills, in Halton Region, Ontario, Canada.

Acton is located on Highway 7, running between Brampton and Guelph. and is served by GO Transit bus service on the Georgetown line corridor.


Acton was first named Danville when Settler Wheeler Green opened a dry-goods store in 1828. It was later called Adamsville, after three settlers from a family of that name. In 1846, the postmaster named the community after the area of Acton in West London, England. Originally part of Esquesing Township, Acton was incorporated as a town in 1874. On January 1, 1974, it became part of Halton Hills as part of the municipal restructuring that created the Regional Municipality of Halton.


The town's location was chosen because of the good source of waterpower from the Black Creek, and the flour mill established at the beginning is still in operation today, although its source of power has changed. It is also near the watershed between the Credit River and the Grand River which is just west of the urban area, where the Blue Springs Creek begins.


The population began to increase significantly in the 1990s. Previously, growth was limited for almost thirty years due to limitations in the water and sewer systems. Current construction in the north and east ends of town will allow the population to rise to almost 10,000.


The town is nicknamed Leathertown because of the extensive tanning industry that was located in the area during the 19th Century and early 20th Century. During this time, Acton was the main urban community of Esquesing Township, much larger than nearby Georgetown, Ontario which now has four times the population. The area was attractive to the leather industry because of the large numbers of trees in the area. The nickname is still reflected today by the Olde Hide House, a large leather goods store in an old warehouse, and Beardmore Leather downtown. The town also features Fairy Lake, a manmade lake accessible from many locations within the town, but most often from Prospect Park.

Downtown Acton Downtown Acton

Actonite or Actonian

It is interesting to note in older books and papers of the area that not one, but two designations have existed for residents of the area at the same time. "Actonite" was used to identify people who moved to the area, and "Actonian" referred to people who grew up there. The first designation now predominates, due to the last influx of new residents in the 1960s, but older residents still remember it.

Notable Actonians


Acton's Early Days (1939); privately published by The Acton Free Press, last reprint 1978

The Halton Herald (2006); published by the non-profit community group The Halton Herald.

External links

Coordinates: 43°38′N, 80°02′W

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