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Erin Mills Pre-1969

I (we) wish to acknowledge this land on which the place we call Erin Mills is located .For thousands of years it has been the traditional land of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and the Mississaugas of the Credit. Today, this meeting place is still the home to many Indigenous people from across Turtle Island and I (we) are grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on this land.

All of us need to be aware of the Treaties by which the Crown gradually acquired the land that is now Erin Mills. We need to recognize that the land on which our homes is built has been occupied by people for many thousands of years. We need to take good care of this land and this community always remembering its history. I keep a large chunk of shale with fossils and pink lichens or coral, dug up from a utilities excavation, in my back garden, to remind myself and my grandchildren that we are only a few of the generations that have lived here.

I trace the title of my home in Arbour Green, west of Erin Mills Parkway, through a settler, William N. Dunn, Lot 32, Concession 2, North of Dundas Street.  William N. Dunn, through his executor, conveyed to Mullett Creek Developments Limited in 1959. Mullett Creek Developments Limited conveyed to Erin Mills Developments Limited in 1965. I believe William N. Dunn acquired his title through a grant (patent) from the Crown. The Crown (George III) acquired the land west of Erin Mills Parkway and south of Eglinton Avenue through the Head of the Lake Purchase - Treaty 14 in 1806.

 

QUEENSCORP traces its title to 4099 Erin Mills Parkway through Dr. Joseph Adamson who acquired land through a grant (patent) from the Crown. The Crown acquired the land east of Erin Mills Parkway and south of Eglinton Avenue through Treaty 22 in 1820. Take note of area "F" in the "Plan of the Tract of Land" Treaty 14 ("Head of the Lake Purchase") below. Area "F", including 4099 Erin Mills Parkway, was specifically excluded from Treaty 14. Area "F" was part of the "Credit Indian Reserve" or "C.I.R." on survey documents.

Here's an example of a relatively recent, i.e. April 26, 1974, Registry Office Compiled Plan 1003, at the Peel Registry Office, describing the lands east of Erin Mills Parkway (5th Line road allowance) as part of the "Credit Indian Reserve".

Title to Registrar's Compiled Plan 1003.jpg

The property at 4099 Erin Mills Parkway can be located on the very large Compiled Plan 1003 referred to above. Look for the area of Lot 1, Range 4, NDS, C.I.R. parcel 32 on the excerpt from Plan 1003 below. Notice that it is part of the CIR.

Lots 1, 2, 3, Range 4, C.I.R. Compiled Plan 1003.jpg
Treaty History

Treaty History

You can learn a great deal about the Treaties by which the Crown acquired the lands of Erin Mills South by visiting the web sites for Heritage Mississauga, Oakville Historical Society, and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

Provisional Agreement 13-A

 

Reference: Provisional Agreement 13-A (“First Purchase” or “Mississauga Purchase”)

 

Heritage Mississauga states at their site:

 

"The following day, on August 2, 1805, Provisional Agreement 13-A was signed. Referred to as the “First Purchase” or the “Mississauga Purchase”, this agreement involved 70,784 acres of land, involving all lands from the Etobicoke Creek to Burlington Bay to an approximate depth of 6 miles from the shoreline. The southern part of the City of Mississauga, from Lake Ontario to Eglinton Avenue, is located within this area."

 

and

 

"In this agreement, the Mississaugas reserved rights to the fisheries in the Twelve Mile Creek, Sixteen Mile Creek and the Etobicoke Creek, and sole right to the fishery in the River Credit along with one mile each side of the river."

"This area became known as the Credit Indian Reserve".

The property at 4099 Erin Mills Parkway is according to Provisional Agreement 13A, part of the "Credit Indian Reserve" one mile on either side of the Credit River.

"Credit Indian Reserve" Map
Treaty-14-Head-of-the-Lake-Purchase-FB.png

The Plan above is from Treaty 14 showing reserves one mile on each side of the Credit. This image can be found at https://heritagemississauga.com/treaties-recognition-week-treaty-14-head-of-the-lake-purchase/. Area F in the Plan includes what is now 4099 Erin Mills Parkway.

Treaty 14

Treaty 14 - Head of the Lake Treaty 1806

Images of the Head of the Lake Purchase

Transcript of the Head of the Lake Purchase

Map Showing Municipal Boundaries related to Treaty 14

Legal Description in Head of the Lake Purchase 1806

"except and always reserved out of this presents grant unto the said Chechalk, Quenepenon, Wabukanyne, Okemapenesse, Wabenose, Kenonecence, Osenego, Acheton, Patequan and Wabakagego and the people of the Missisagua Nation of Indians, and their posterity for ever – the sole right of the fisheries in the Twelve Mile Creek, the Sixteen Mile Creek, the River Credit and the River Etobicoke, together with the lands on each side of the said creeks and the River Credit as delineated and laid down on the annexed plan, the said right of fishery and reserves extending from the Lake Ontario up the said creeks and River Credit the distance hereinafter mentioned and described and no further."

"The reserve on the River Credit commencing on Lake Ontario at a white oak squared post, piled with stones, and standing at the distance of one mile north-easterly from the centre of the said river at the first bend thereof; then north sixty-nine degrees west one hundred and ninety-six chains; then south sixty-four degrees west one hundred and fifty-five chains; then north forty-five degrees west one hundred and seventy-seven chains, more or less, to the rear boundary of the purchase line; then along said purchase line, and crossing the said river south thirty-eight degrees west two miles, or one hundred and sixty-chains, to the western boundary line of said Reserve; then south forty-five degrees east two hundred and seventy chains; then north sixty-four degrees east one hundred and ninety-one chains; then south sixty-nine degrees east sixty-three chains, more or les, to Lake Ontario at another white oak squared post standing on the bank of said lake at the distance of two miles south-westerly from the place of beginning; then along the water's edge of Lake Ontario north easterly to the place of beginning."

The Head of the Lake Purchase - Treaty 14 - 1806 does not include the area east of Erin Mills Parkway. The area east of Erin Mills Parkway and south of Eglinton Avenue was excluded from that purchase to create the "Credit Indian Reserve". That means the QUEENSCORP predecessor on title, Dr. Joseph Adamson did not acquire title to 4099 Erin Mills Parkway through the Head of the Lake Purchase.

Treaty 19

Heritage Mississauga states:

"On October 28, 1818 the Crown and the Mississaugas, signed Treaty 19, also known as the 'Ajetance Treaty', which ceded 648,000 acres of land (all lands north of modern Eglinton Avenue)."

 

QUEENSCORP's land at 4099 Erin Mills Parkway is not part of the Ajetance Purchase.

Treaty 19 (“Ajetance Treaty”)         

Transcript

Images of the Ajetance Purchase

Treaty 22

 

Treaty 22 includes the lands where 4099 Erin Mills Parkway is located. We need to diligently learn about Treaty 22. There are a number of very good videos. Please take the time to watch them and learn the different perspectives on Treaty 22. There are a number of problems with Treaty 22, some of which were identified by the Chief Clerk of Crown Lands in 1855 and by Sir John A. MacDonald, in 1857, pre-confederation, when he was Attorney General of  Upper Canada. There were appeals by the Mississaugas to Queen Victoria respecting misunderstandings about Treaty 22. There are outstanding land and water claims by the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation related to Treaty 22. We need to learn about Treaty 22 and 23. Please visit the excellent resources at the web sites for Heritage Mississauga, Oakville Historical Society, and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

Treaties 22 & 23 (“Credit Treaties”)

Heritage Mississauga video below

Treaty 22

In the video below from Oakville Historical Society please pay close attention to the slide at 32:13.

Video below from Oakville Historical Society.

City Perspective

What is the Perspective of the City of Mississauga?

Did the Crown hold the Treaty 22 land in trust for the protection of the Mississaugas of the Credit?

Did the Mississaugas of the Credit get what was owed them?

Did Treaty 22 place the water and the beds of water into the hands of the Crown or was water not a part of the "surrender"?

Should the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation get compensation for the Crown breaching its fiduciary duty to protect and pay to benefit them?

Do the Mississaugas of the Credit still have an ownership interest, a beneficial interest, in the creek bed of Sawmill Creek, east of Erin Mills Parkway?

Should the Mississaugas of the Credit get financial benefit from any exploitation of that creek bed by QUEENSCORP?

Shouldn't the City of Mississauga formally ask the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation for their perspective?

Here is an excerpt from a response that I received from the City of Mississauga on May 31, 2023, per Michael Franzolini, MCIP, RPP, Planner, Development South:

"Following up on your email below, the City’s Manager of Indigenous Relations and Heritage Planning (John Dunlop, copied here) has provided the response below.

 

The City has confirmed that there are no First Nations reserves within one kilometre of the subject property. The properties located within the Treaty 22 are all legally described as “Credit Indian Reserve” as that was the name provided to the Treaty lands when they were opened for settlement by the Crown. The Reserve itself was ‘closed’ by the Government of Upper Canada in 1847 with the forced closure and removal of the inhabitants of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation from their reserve on the Credit River. Regardless, the naming convention was carried forward through history, culminating in the current name for the City.

 

The City of Mississauga meets on a monthly basis with the Mississaugas of the Credit Department of Consultation and Accommodation to discuss land planning and development items within the City. The Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation are aware of and regularly review all development applications through the City’s website. To date, no comment has been received from the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation with regard to this development application. 

 

Duty to Consult and Accommodate and the Honour of the Crown are the responsibility of the Provincial and Federal governments. As a municipality, the City is not ‘the Crown’ and our ability to act under Duty to Consult is limited to cases where we are served a notice of delegated authority to consult from the Crown. The City has not received any such notice regarding this development application.

 

Any further inquiry can be directed to John Dunlop, Manager, Indigenous Relations and Heritage Planning"

Here is an excerpt from a response that I received from the City of Mississauga on June 2, 2023, per

John Dunlop, Manager, Heritage Planning and Indigenous Relations, CAHP:

"There was no Treaty in 1847- rather, the lands were captured under Treaty 22, signed in 1822. That Treaty, along with Treaty 13a (or 14) Treaty 23 and Treaty 19 are all land surrenders.  However, Treaty 22 was identified on all mapping as the “Credit Indian Reserve” as the lands were originally to be held in trust for the Mississaugas, and any proceeds derived from any sale of the land were to go to the maintenance of the Mississauga Peoples at their Mission Village on the Credit River.  That is, in essence, the source of the current land claim filed against the Crown by the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation- not the ownership of the land, which is undisputed, but rather that the proceeds from the sale of land were never given over to the Mississaugas or used for their maintenance. A common story regarding Treaties in Canada.

 

My reference to 1847 was that again, as part of the treaty-making, the Upper Canada Government promised to build a Mission Village for the Mississaugas provided they convert to Christianity and adopt a settler lifeway. This was done and the Government built the village in 1826. The Government then forced the Mississaugas to leave this village in 1847. The Treaty for these lands had been created back in 1822 but the conditions around the village were not codified as part of the treaty itself, but rather as part of the negotiation for the treaty.

 

As for the Water Claim, aside from Treaty 23, there is no mention of water. MCFN entered into a Water Claim under the land claim process in 2016.  I will note that the land claim process is a Federal Government device in that it is not recognized or upheld by any convention other than the laws of Canada. Under the process, Canada specifically notes that privately held lands are not and cannot be expropriated for the resolution of any land claim and that land claims are largely settled through financial compensation.

 

In response to your inquiry below then, the lands which are legally described as “Credit Indian Reserve” are part of Treaty 22, lands which were surrendered to the Crown in 1822. Title ownership, under Canadian Law, could then effectively begin as of 1822. The lands were effectively held ‘in trust’ for several years before being sold off in the 1830s, hence, Joseph Adamson’s acquisition of the Crown Patent for the land in 1837. Generally, the government of the day sought to privatize as much Crown land as possible to essentially remove it from any trust or holding they were obligated to uphold through the Treaties. This is why so many treaties in southern Ontario/Upper Canada are undergoing land claims. 

 

For further reference, I provide the following sources for your research and education, specifically the works of Donald Smith, references for which can be found on the Heritage Mississauga website. Dr. Smith has dedicated his career to the history of the Mississaugas of the Credit’s history.

 

https://mncfn.ca/treaty-lands-territory/title-claim-to-water-within-traditional-lands-of-mncfn/

 

https://heritagemississauga.com/part-1-treaties/

 

Land Claims process: https://www.rcaanc-cirnac.gc.ca/eng/1100100030291/1539617582343"

My perspective:

With respect, if lands were placed in trust with the Crown in 1820, for the benefit of the Mississaugas of the Credit, British Courts of Equity should have enforced that fiduciary duty. The Mississaugas complained to the imperial Crown. The Crown could not convey the land or water or creek bed that is 4099 Erin Mills Parkway by an 1837 Crown patent because nemo dat quod non habet, "you can't give what you haven't got". The forced expulsion in 1847 was unconscionable.

We have a mess. The Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation need to be formally consulted.

Erin Mills in 1969

Erin Mills in 1969

The image below is an excerpt from Erin Mills New Town published in April 1969. This image and its key were at p. 1.5. The page was titled "Existing Land Use".

Existing Land Use p. 1.5.jpg
Key to erin Mills New Town p. 1.5.jpg

Please notice that Burnhamthorpe Rd. did not cross the Credit River. Burnhamthorpe Rd. ran westerly in a relatively straight line from Mississauga Rd. all the way to Oakville. There was no Erin Mills Parkway. Fifth Line (part of which became Erin Mills Parkway) ran straight north from Dundas Street to Burnhamthorpe Rd. and ended  at a T intersection but continued from a T intersection at Base Line (later called Eglinton) northward. Notice the residential area at Fifth Line and Burnhamtorpe in the area of Olde Burnhamthorpe where the streets are now called Burbank, Walnut Grove, and Belvedere. The subject property 4099 Erin Mills Parkway is halfway between Burnhamthorpe Rd. and the Oil Pipeline. Draw an imaginary line between the two T intersections of Fifth Line (at Burnhamthorpe Rd. and at Base Line/Eglinton) to get an idea of where Erin Mills Parkway was built. Note the three distinctive branches of Sawmill Valley Creek north of Burnhamthorpe.

Below, please see an aerial photograph of Erin Mills that appeared at page 1.3 of Erin Mills New Town. I've drawn a pencil line between the two ends of Fifth Line (at Base Line and at Burnhamthorpe) to show where I believe Erin Mills Parkway lies in the photo. Notice the trees in two areas immediately east of the pencilled-in Erin Mills Parkway halfway between Burnhamthorpe and Base Line/Eglinton and just south-east of the "ERIN MILLS" text on the photo. I think one of these blocks of trees became the "Erin Mills Woods" streets of Olde Burnhamthorpe just north of 4099 Erin Mills Parkway. My 1979 photo of "Erin Mills Woods" can be seen further below.  

Aerial Photo of Erin Mills circa 1969 with Erin Mills Parkway pencilled in.jpg

A 1979 image of a much-reduced  "Erin Mills Woods" (looking east) with Erin Mills Parkway in the foreground.

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