Fruitland - The Centre of It All
Fruitland is the geographical centre of the old Saltfleet Township, but its very name evokes the industry that drove Saltfleet's economic progress from its founding in the 1780s to the latter half of the 20th century.
Even today, with urban sprawl decimating the few remaining fruit farms of Stoney Creek, a whisp of the past is sustained in the name of the bedroom community called "Fruitland".
Map of Fruitland
Although a few isolated families entered the Stoney Creek area prior to the 1790s, Fruitland's history proper began with the 1791 survey of the area by Augustus Jones.
Today, his name lives on with Jones Road, named for one of the family land grants in Fruitland.
Augustus Jones land survey
Wesley United Church is situated at the crossroads that defines Fruitland (Fruitland Rd. and Highway 8).
The church is made of local red brick. There was a 19th century commercial brick kiln to the east of the church.
At one time the church had its own tennis court (now the rear parking lot).
The main entrance has now been greatly modified.
Wesley United Church (Fruitland)
Also at this important corner were the train stop for the Hamilton, Grimsby, and Beamsville Electric Railway, a general store, and Fruitland's 2nd post office.
Fruitland general store and Wesley Methodist church
Fruitland, Highway #8
Fruitland, Highway #8
Beside the old post office/general store stood the old 19th century Fruitland Brick Kiln.
Another building was erected in the mid 20th century on the site. This building was known as Saltfleet Wood Products in the 1970s, before becoming the modern Fruitland post office, a hair salon, and craft store.
Saltfleet Wood Products
Highway #8, Fruitland
Fruitland's first post office was the brainchild of local resident, Robert H. Dewar. In 1894 Dewar applied for a postal outlet between the hamlet of Winona and the village of Stoney Creek.
He was granted the license and operated Fruitland's first postal station in a newly expanded east wing of his home.
The cubby hole shelving for the letters on the east wall remained even after the postal station moved from the location. William J. Hewitson, who bought the house in the 1930s recalls seeing the letter sorting shelving on the wall in his youth.
Robert H. Dewar
Application for a Fruitland Post Office
30 July 1894