Lindsay, Ont, urban area, population 20 354 (2011c), 19 361 (2006c). Lindsay is located on the Scugog River, which connects it to Sturgeon Lake and the Trent-Severn Waterway, about 95 km northeast of Toronto. Originally it was named Purdy's Mills, after William Purdy, an American settler who built gristmills and sawmills on the site in 1828. The dam Purdy built backed up the Scugog River until it formed Lake Scugog out of what had formerly been bog and swamp, but it also flooded surrounding farmland and the farmers marched to town and destroyed the dam. The name Lindsay commemorates a surveyor's assistant who died after being accidentally shot on the site.
In 1844 the government built a lock which opened the Scugog River to navigation. A new one constructed in 1870 is now one of 44 on the Trent-Severn system. Lindsay developed as a farming and lumbering centre. In 1857 it was incorporated as a town and was linked by rail. The town developed a more diversified economy with agriculture and manufacturing and was the location of the administrative building for Victoria County. In 2001, Victoria County and all its municipalities, including Lindsay, merged to form the city of Kawartha Lakes. The natural lake environment makes Lindsay a popular year-round tourism destination. A campus of Sir Sandford Fleming College of Applied Arts and Technology is located here.