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Chapter 12
The Village Transformed
Table of Contents

Title Page
Author's Preface
1 The Road through Richmond Hill
2 First Peoples on the Land
3 The European Settlers Arrive
4 From Miles' Hill to Richmond Hill: The Birth of a Community
5 Tories and Reformers
6 Stagecoach Lines and Railway Tracks
7 The Neighbours at Mid-Century
8 Fire Brigades and Fence Viewers
9 Picture Post Card Village of the 1880s and 1890s
10 Rails through Richmond Hill
11 The Flowering of Richmond Hill
12 The Village Transformed
Parading, Dancing, and Skating
Richmond Hill's Fiftieth Birthday: 1923
Richmond Hill's One Hundredth Birthday: 1973
Skating in Style
Pure Water and Healthy Children
The installation of the waterworks in 1921 inspired a Richmond Hill bard to send this bit of doggerel in to the local paper:
"Mrs. Pankhurst's Lecture"
Flying Kites on Richmond's Hill
Between Old and New
"Dr. Langstaff Describes the Advent of the Horseless Carriage"
Alex Hume's Cushions and the Power of the Press
Turn-of-Century Tracks Block Yonge Street Construction
From Radial Cars to Rubber Tires
Table of Illustrations

"Dr. Langstaff Describes the Advent of the Horseless Carriage"

Dr. Rolph Langstaff, the first automobile owner in Richmond Hill, at the wheel of his 1902 Oldsmobile.
At age eighty-eight, Dr. Rolph Langstaff recalled what it was like to own Richmond Hill's first automobile back in the year 1902:

Try and imagine the thrill of driving one of these for the first time. Once up in the seat, one would notice that there were no shafts and no horse. By reaching down to the side of the seat and pulling up a few times on the crank, this horseless carriage would spring into life, noisy, fairly dancing up and down and raring to go. A touch and it was off down the road at twelve and a half miles [20 kilometres] an hour. On a down grade it would accelerate up to 17 miles [27 kilometres] an hour and gain so much momentum that it would go nearly half way up the next grade before having to change into low.

The Liberal,November 7, 1957


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Copyright Richmond Hill Public Library Board, 1991