Living in Canada we are seldom exposed to a life of war. Unless you're going to a museum or have a family member who is a veteran, understanding life in immediate threat can be difficult to grasp.
Yet back in 1812 prior to Canada its own country, Great Britain and it's colonies were at war with America. Toronto was actually a hospital depot during the conflict and has tons of burial sites across the city.
In fact, Victoria Memorial Square Park is sitting just on top of one of those burial sites. Located just between Bathurst and Front Street, the park is a popular spot to have lunch or play but it's actually a graveyard for Toronto's earliest British settlers.
Soldiers are actually not the only people who were buried here though, it was a regular burial site for 70 years between 1790 and 1860. The first person who was laid to rest in the grounds was actually the daughter of Toronto's founder, Lt. Gov. John Graves Simcoe.
The burial site is one actually many don't notice on a daily basis, though there is a statue dedicated to those laid to rest there. Yet because the graves are from a different time period, they are considered to be quite shallow.
Pet owners in the park should beware that dogs can run on the outside of the path forming a triangle, the remains are actually buried in the inside area.
When the park was an active cemetery this was still considered a rural part of the province. It's not entirely uncommon for cities to remove gravestones as the land is needed to develop into something else.
Toronto definitely has an interesting history and this park is just another example of that. I wonder what the founding Torontonians would think of us sipping our coffee on the grass today.
Source: CityNews Toronto