About Hatley Township
For the official list of road names please consult the Commission de toponymie du Québec web site.
For the history of Hatley township please consult the Commission de toponymie du Québec web site.
The Township of Hatley
By Phyllis Emery Skeats, Lake Massawippi Historical Society
“The tract of land lying within the district of Montreal, bounded by Ascot, east by Compton, south by Barnston and Stanstead, and west by Magog, Little Magog lake and the river by that name. Containing 348 lots, it was erected into a township named Hatley, and in part granted March 25th, 1803, to HENRY CULL, and EBENEZER HOVEY and their associates, viz, Job Chadsey, Joseph Fish, Samuel Fish, William Taylor, Joseph Ives, Emos Mix, Samuel Rexford, Benjamin Rexford, Isaac Rexford, Joel Hall Ives, Chester Hovey, Abiel Abbott the younger, Reuben Simmons, Paul Hitchcock, Jesse Wadleigh, Asa Daggett, Amasa Merriman, David Chamberlain, John Abbott, Providence Williams, Martin Adams, Harvey Clarke, Joseph Davies, Edmund Boyden, Japhet Le Baron, and Eli Ives.” C.M. Day, History of the Eastern Townships (1869)
Following the opening of the townships by the 1792 Proclamation of Alured Clarke, Lieutenant-Governor of Quebec: “to such as are desirous to settle on the lands of the Crown in the Province of Lower Canada”, Col. Henry Cull and Ebenezer Hovey petitioned for a grant of land in Quebec City at the Chateau St. Louis the residence of the Governor of Quebec, on the 18th. day of April in 1792. The grant was officially awarded to them in 1803 in the new Township of Hatley, named after a village in England. The Township was naturally divided from the north to south by Lake Massawippi. The subdivision of the lots was made in 1795 by James Rankin.
Prior to 1803, the good quality of the land was discovered by early settlers who spread the word to families in the neighbouring states such as New Hampshire and Vermont. Settlers began to arrive and settle. They were not the first inhabitants in the Township as it is well known that the first inhabitants were Indians, supposedly Algonquin (Abenaki), in the Lake Massawippi region. In her book, “The Story of Hatley”, Maude Pellerin speaks of the Indians being friendly with their white neighbours, as there were no records of raids against the white people, as in other localities.
At the beginning of their time as settlers, the colonists of Hatley Townhip faced many difficulties. The first year was particularly difficult, but thanks to an abundance of fish in the lake, and game in the forests, they were able to survive. As crops became more plentiful, a mill was needed, and Stephen Burroughs (Boroughs) constructed the first mill near the present site of Burroughs’ Falls. Around 1800, a road was built from Burroughs’ Falls to Hatley on the east side of the lake, which facilitated development of the settlement.
From the beginning, Hatley Township was a rural area, and thanks to its beautiful countryside and exceptional lake, became a well-known tourist region. The region has attracted many artists, writers and poets over the years. The villages in the Township include North Hatley, incorporated in 1897, Ayer’s Cliff incorporated in 1909, Massawippi, now part of Hatley, Hatley Village incorporated in 1912 and Katevale (Ste-Catherine-de-Hatley) incorporated in 1901. Other hamlets were Minton and Reedsville.
- Population: 2278
- Constitution Date: 1855-07-01
- Area: 71,51 Kilomètres carrés
- MRC: Memphrémagog
- Method of electing the council: en bloc, without division