Toronto Neighbourhood Guide

East End

Leslieville

History of Leslieville

Leslieville began as a small village back in the 1850's. The village grew up around the Toronto Nurseries owned by George Leslie and Sons after whom this neighbourhood is named.

 

Most of Leslieville's first residents were either market gardeners or were employed at one of several brick making companies that used to operate in the area.

One of the first buildings in the village was the Leslieville Public School, which was built in 1863. Leslieville's first principal was Alexander Muir who composed "The Maple Leaf Forever". Muir's poetic verse was inspired when a brilliant autumn maple leaf fell from a Leslieville tree onto his jacket. This moment in Canadian history is memorialized by a historic plaque at the intersection of Laing Street and Memory Lane.