During the late 1800’s, Liberty Village became the epicentre of Toronto’s manufacturing industry. In 1881, John Inglis and Sons opened their Strachan Ave/Hanna Ave facilities to expand their successful business of building machinery for grist and flour mills. In 1902, they discontinued this product line and switched to the manufacturing of marine steam engines and waterworks pumping engines. The Inglis company was a significant contributor towards Toronto’s industrial and cultural progress. Two years later, an American named Major J.E. Hahn, purchased the John Inglis Company and began manufacturing the Bren Light Machine Gun used by British and Canadian infantries during World War II. At its peak, more than 17,800 people were employed at this plant.
When the war ended in 1946, the company began to manufacture consumer products. Fishing tackle, house trailers, oil burner pumps and domestic heaters andstoves were among the diverse products offered. In the same year, John Inglis Co. Limited negotiated with Nineteen Hundred Corporation (later Whirlpool Corporation) to manufacture home laundry products. The wringer washer was introduced in 1946, and in 1950, production of the automatic washer was added. The line of appliances expanded quickly to include electric and gas dryers, and dishwashers. In 1981, the company moved from this site to Mississauga.
By the early 1980’s, industry moved out or closed and the lands become a barren and desolate wasteland. The process began in 1999 to transform the former industrial site into the neighbourhood we all love today.