Verner Welcome Sign

Welcome to Verner

When people think Verner, they think farming.

Agriculture has been a key part of Verner’s social fabric for over a century. With the arrival of the railroad to Verner in 1883, families gradually ventured west of Sturgeon Falls and settled on parcels of land. These families, primarily from Quebec, purchased land from the government of Ontario at a rate of fifty cents per acre thus setting the stage for generations of Franco-Ontarian farmers to come.

While the industry has changed over the years and many of the dairy farms, so numerous in the 1950s and 1960s, have disappeared, agriculture is still an important economic driver for the community.  

Grain Elevators

While it was no surprise that the ideas and concepts brought forth from community members centered around agriculture, a few other notable landmarks and features were also suggested. 

Among these were the Verner Ag Center and Grain Elevators owned and operated by the Co-opérative Régionale.  Located along HWY 11 these silos came as the result of a landslide of the Veuve River banks, a mere few meters away from the Co-op’s fertilizer storage building.

The urgent need and will of the Co-op to relocate its feedmill operations including the fertilizer storage building away from the Veuve River, combined with the interest and support from the agricultural community to promote some kind of infrastructure that would receive, condition and market local crops gave birth to the Verner Elevator project.

Paroisse St-Jean Baptiste

Another key landmark highlighted in Verner’s community portrait is that of the Church steeple.

In the 19th century, the French-Canadian clergy wanted at all costs to counter the emigration of Canadians to the United States, where they would lose their language and their faith. The establishment of parishes played an important role in the social, cultural and economic organization of the French families in communities.  

Father Alphonse Lécuyer initiated the project to establish the present church in the fall of 1902. The crushing of the stone was undertaken over the winter of 1903-1904 followed by the actual construction in the spring. Bishop O'Connor of the Peterborough Diocese blessed the cornerstone on June 12, 1904 and the first mass was celebrated in the church that Christmas.

Are You Observant?

Can you spot the following elements in the Verner Community Welcome Sign?
4 cows, 1 church steeple, 1 Franco Ontarian flag 1 tractor



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