Aylmer (Ont)

Aylmer, Ont, incorporated as a town in 1887, population 7151 (2011c), 7069 (2006c). The Town of Aylmer is located 50 km south of London and 15 km north of Lake Erie, on Catfish Creek.

Aylmer, Ont, incorporated as a town in 1887, population 7151 (2011c), 7069 (2006c). The Town of Aylmer is located 50 km south of London and 15 km north of Lake Erie, on Catfish Creek.

Settlement began in 1817 with the arrival of John Van Patter from New York state, and by 1836 the population of the community was sufficient to warrant a post office. The town was originally called Hodgkinson's Corners but was renamed Aylmer in honour of Lord Aylmer, the Governor General of Upper and Lower Canada from 1831 to 1835. It was also referred to as Aylmer West to distinguish it from another community called Aylmer located to the east in Lower Canada (Québec). By 1851 Aylmer was a thriving community with several sawmills and flour mills. The arrival of several railroads in the area encouraged growth and led to its incorporation as a village in 1872. Another period of growth occurred during World War II, when the town was a site of a RCAF Technical Training School.

Today, Aylmer remains a service centre for the surrounding area and a processing centre for tobacco and dairy products. Each year the Aylmer area plays host to 60 000 tundra swans on their migration to the Arctic.