Gore Park (Hamilton, Ontario)
|Location||1 Hughson Street South,|
|Owned by||City of Hamilton|
|Public transit access||HSR 1 King, 2 Barton, 3 Cannon, 5 Delaware, 10 B Line Express, 51 University Special|
The park is located in the angle formed by James Street to the west, two separate sections of King Street to the north and south, and John Street to the east. Thin wedges of land that did not fit into square survey grids, like the land which Gore Park occupies, used to be called gores. The name of the park is thus a reference to its triangular shape that stands out among the predominantly square grid of the city.
The ground where the park is now located was once part of a Crown land grant to the prominent merchant John Askin Sr. It was later sold to Nathaniel Hughson Sr., then to James Durand, before coming into the possession of George Hamilton in 1816.
Before becoming a public space, the gore of land between King, James and John streets had served as a dump, lumber yard, and planned city market square in 1830s. In the 1840s there were numerous plans to develop the land, but these proved contentious. In 1853 it was proposed to locate a new post office on the underused land, but this was also rejected. Instead, an ornamental fountain was erected in 1860, and in 1873 the land was laid out as a park and planted with flowers and shrubs.
The most prominent feature in the park is the large central fountain. This fountain was installed in 1970, and is a replica of an earlier fountain that was erected on the site in 1860 in order to commemorate the Royal tour of Queen Victoria's son and heir, Edward Albert. The park also contains a memorial to Queen Victoria by Philipe Hebert, c. 1908.
Until the summer of 2021, the park contained a memorial to Sir John A. Macdonald by George Edward Wade, c. 1893. The statue of MacDonald was toppled by protesters following multiple discoveries of unmarked graves at former Canadian residential school sites.