Visit to the Mouth of Highland Creek: November, 2022

The early settlers of Scarborough used the waters of Highland Creek to provide power for their many saw and grist mills in this valley. The first mill in the township was built in 1804 by William Cornell, who hauled his mill stones from Kingston on his sled. In 1847, William Helliwell built the first of his four mills on this site. Downstream, three sawmills were operated by Jordon Post, Stephen Closson and other in the 1830’s and 1840’s. Upstream for many miles, a succession of mills once flourished; George Stephenson’s grist mill, John Wilson’s saw mill, Martin Badgerow’s woollen mill, Peter Secor’s grist mill, John P. Wheler’s flour mill, the saw mills of Archibald and David Thomson, and many others. – Scarborough Historical Society Plaque – 1977

Here is how the area where the creek meets Lake Ontario looks now:

Ring-billed Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls

Some botany:

Red Ash (Fraxinus pensylvanica)
White Birch (Betula papyrifera)
Red-osier Dogwood (Cornus sericea)
Manitoba Maple (Acer negundo)
Daisy Fleabane (Erigeron annuus)
Phragmites (Phragmites australis)
Canada Goldenrod (Solidago canadense)
Red-osier Dogwood (Cornus sericea)
Multiflora Rose Hips (Rosa multiflora)
Highbush-cranberry (Viburnum opulus)
Pinkweed (Persicaria pensylvanicum)
Canada Thistle (Cirsium pratense)
Dog-strangling Vine (Vincetoxicum rossicum)


 “In November, the trees are standing all sticks and bones. Without their leaves, how lovely they are, spreading their arms like dancers. They know it is time to be still.” –  Cynthia Rylant

Miles Hearn

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