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History of Brampton
Prior to 1834, the only building of consequence at the corner of Main and Queen streets, the recognized center of Brampton, was William Bluffly's tavern. In fact, at the time, the area was referred to as "Bluffly's Corners". All real business in Chinguacousy Township took place one mile distant at Martin Salisbury's tavern. By 1934, John Elliott laid out the area in lots for sale, and applied the name "Brampton" to the area, which was soon adopted by others.
In 1853, a small agricultural fair was set up by the then-new County Agricultural Society of the County of Peel, and was held at the corner of Main and Queen streets. Grains, produce, roots, and dairy products were up for sale, a precursor of today's Brampton Farmers' Market. Horses and cattle, along with other lesser livestock was sold at market. This agricultural fair eventually became the modern Brampton Fall Fair. In that same year Brampton was incorporated as a village.
A federal grant allowed the village to create its first public library in 1887, which included 360 volumes from the pre-existing Mechanic's Institute (est 1858). In 1907, the library successfully received a grant from steel magnate Andrew Carnegie to build a new multi-person building, featuring a library. See Brampton Library.
In 1884 a group of mechanics of the Haggert Foundry of Brampton formed what is now known as the Brampton Concert Band, one of Canada's oldest community concert bands.
A group of regional farmers in Brampton had trouble getting insurance from city-based companies. After several meetings in Clairville Hall, it was decided that they should found the County of Peel Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company. In 1955, the company moved to its third and current location, 103 Queen Street West, and renamed itself Peel Mutual Insurance Company. It reigns as the longest running company in modern Brampton. Harmsworth Decorating Centre was established in 1890, as Harmsworth and Son, operated out of the family's house on Queen Street West. The store purchased its current location on September 1, 1904, after a fire destroyed their original store. Purchased for $1400, the 24 Main Street South location is the longest operating retail business in what is now Brampton.
In 1922, when the town's population had reached 8,000, the Capitol Theatre was built in downtown Brampton. Its schedule consisted of primarily of vaudeville and silent movies.
The Brampton Mall was built in 1960 on Main Street, near Peel Village, marking the community's first mall.
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