Joseph Bloor circa 1850
Joseph Bloor (or Bloore) (1789–1862) was an innkeeper, brewer, and land speculator in the 19th century who founded the Village of Yorkville and is the namesake for Toronto's Bloor Street. Originally from Staffordshire, England, he emigrated to Canada in 1819 and eventually moved to the village of York, Upper Canada (later Toronto) with his wife Sarah (nee Lees) and three children, where he became a prominent early figure.
Bloor kept a hotel, Farmer’s Arms Inn, at 157 King Street East (now home to St. Lawrence Hall) from 1824 to 1831 and built a brewery in 1830 in the Rosedale Valley, near Sherbourne Street (sold in 1843 to John Rose and operated as Castle Frank Brewery until 1864 with brewery demolished by 1875).
He sold the brewery in 1843, and purchased a stretch of land in nearby Yorkville, where he and William Botsford Jarvis laid out streets for residential development.
The boundary of Yorkville and Toronto was named Bloor Street in his honour circa 1854. Bloor died at his home at 121 Bloor Street East, now demolished near Bloor and Church Street.
He is buried at Necropolis Cemetery on Bayview Avenue and Rosedale Valley Road.
While his tombstone, and those of his descendants, spell the family name "Bloore", this was a posthumous development. Period references such as city directories, tax assessment rolls and biographical publications all spell his name without an "e".
- "Why Did We Name a Street After This Guy?". Globe and Mail August 31, 2012.
- Lovell, John. "The Canada Directory for 1857-58"
- Filey, Mike. "Toronto Sketches: The Way We Were". Dundurn, 1992. p 68-69.
- Charles Pelham Mulvany and Graeme Mercer Adam (1885). History of Toronto and County of York, Ontario. C. Blackett Robinson.
- Robertson, J.R. "Robertson's Landmarks of Toronto: A Collection of Historical Sketches of the Old Town of York from 1792 Until 1837, and of Toronto from 1834 to 1904, Volume 1". 1894. p 476-477.
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