Trinity College School

Trinity College, a long- time Institution of Port Hope, Ontario was at one time world famous.  This school was originally located in the village of Weston, Ontario in 1865, two years prior to Canadian Confederation.  However, owing to the need for room for expansion, and with generous offers of assistance by the good people of Port Hope, it was moved here in 1868 where buildings were provided free of rent for three years.

The Rev. C.H. Badgley was Head Master and was assisted by a staff of nine instructors, three being in residence.  The dorms were located in the old Ward homestead located on the site of the present school buildings. It was capable of accommodating 60 boys and the classes were carried on in the Merideth Block from which the Union School had recently vacated.

For even more room for future expansion, in 1871 an additional ten acres of land was purchased were the school now stands by the Head Master.  A further 10 acres were purchased in 1875, giving the current school 100 acres of property.

By an act of the Legislature of Ontario passed in 1871, the school was constituted a corporate body and thus began days of rapid progress.  From70 boys in 1872 to 96 by 1873 to 114 in 1874.  By 1878 the school had an amazing enrollment of 140 pupils!

By the 1890’s the school entered a period of decline.  Around this time (1893) a fire was discovered on an upper flat.  Firemen, school boys and town men saved the building.  About a week later another fire threatened the whole building but without serious results.

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In an ironic twist of fate, destruction of the building came on Sunday morning, February 10th, 1895 possibly from an exploding coal oil lamp!  The building and all of it’s treasures were consumed in one of the worst fires in Port Hope history!  For a short time, the boys were boarded by the good people of Port Hope while the St. Lawrence Hall was retrofitted to accommodate classes.

In 1928, fire struck again destroying the school!   Because of the Great Depression funds for rebuilding were very hard to come by.  However TCS again arose from the ashes to a great future.

At this time a new, larger and better equipped school got underway.  A few notable graduates from TCS were Charles Bronfman (entrepreneur); Peter Jennings (news anchor); John Labatt (brewing family) and Archibald Lampman (poet).  Here is one for the record books, Conrad Black lasted less than a year at TCS before being expelled for insubordinate behavior!

TCS is now a co-educational boarding and day school, the first female student admitted to TCS in 1999.  There are now 250 boarding students from all over the world.  Junior school for grades 5-8 and senior grades 9-12 are offered.

Regards, Ranger.

Information:  Craick, William Arnot  (Port Hope- Historical Sketches) & TCS website.

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