Step back in time at 1784 celebration

April 22, 2024

Lamoureux Park in Downtown Cornwall stretches along the St. Lawrence River and attracts thousands of people for walking, playing, cycling and entertainment.

Visitors marvel at so much green open waterfront space so close to the city’s Downtown. Few of those people realize that this park is also the site where the first settlers who began Cornwall landed on the banks of the river in 1784.

This year on June 6th, it will be 240 years since John Johnson’s Loyalist refugees from the American Revolution brought their boats ashore in a bay near what is now the Cornwall Community Museum.

The settlers named their new settlement New Johnstown and they spread from here to other sites along the river that were called the Royal Townships. Today these names are more familiar to us as Cornwall and SDG Counties.

On June 7th to 9th, step back into the past and rediscover the beginning of Cornwall and the SDG Counties when for three days Lamoureux Park will show what life was like when these new settlers arrived. A large tent running along Water Street will showcase the area’s rich history presented by historical and heritage groups from throughout the area. Down in the park, closer to the river, a tented village will pop up showing how life was for these first settlers. Visit the encampment to learn how these early settlers survived their arrival and flourished to build today’s vibrant city and counties and eventually lead to the establishment of the Province of Ontario.

For music lovers, intimate concerts will be held on Friday and Saturday evenings presenting French, Celtic and Akwesasne entertainers from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm.

The Cornwall Community Museum will be open for tours and will introduce its new exhibit on 1784.

This celebration of our past is presented by the SDG Historical Society and is a free event open to all.

It’s not often that you can revisit history or see how our ancestors lived and coped, but this upcoming event will provide that unique experience and also be a time to celebrate the 240th anniversary of our city and our counties.

Additional information

For more information on the 1784 event, including a list of planned activities, check out the 1784 event website.


Looking for other fun things to do in Cornwall? Check out the Explore section of our website for other fun-filled activities to keep you busy. Better yet, consider extending your stay with a night at one of our great accommodations!

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