firstschoolhouseFirst School in Waterloo County

The Waterloo County was originally settled in 1799 and was named Sand Hills after sand dunes found there.

In 1784, the land that Kitchener was built upon was an area given to the Six Nations by the British as a gift for their allegiance during the American Revolution; 240,000 hectares of land to be exact. From 1796 and 1798, the Six Nations sold 38,000 hectares of this land to  Colonel richard Beasley . Eventually, the Mennonites purchased all of Beasley’s unsold land creating 160 farm tracts.  The first recorded settler was Joseph Schneider. He came from Lancaster County, PA, in 1807; married Barbara, sister ofthe Rev. Benjamin Eby, a Mennonite bishop; built a log cabin and barn, and cut a roadway to the east. The settlement was first known as SandHills, then Ebytown in 1816 (after bishop Eby), but was changed to Berlin in 1833 in deference to the immigrants coming directly from Germany. Joseph Schneider and Bishop Eby (his brother in-law) are considered the founders of what is now Kitchener.


The village of Berlin becomes the town of Berlin. And in 1912 becomes a city


Looking east from Queen Street. Double streetcar tracking in downtown Berlin, 1910.


The first houses are built on the east side of Weber, below Krug st.

201 weber st E George Kropf



Bethany Church Photo issued in commemoration of its Kitchener Celebration of Cityhood, July 17th 1912


The Metacalfe Candy Factory at Cameron and Weber st . is founded. After the Second World War it became Smiles & Chucles.


Berlin is renamed Kitchener after Lord Kitchener of Khartoum, a British field marshal who drowned at sea in the early days of the First World War.

1920’s and 30’s

Schnarr & Sons Ltd, a family building company,   builds homes throughout much of the area.

Emil Schnarr and his son Edward lived in 197 Lydia st.

From the K-W Record from 1967 here is an article about the Schnarr family





Shepard Public School is opened

Despite much of the Depression, many new homes were built in the neighbourhood in the early 30’s



Holy Cross Church is built on the corner of East Av. and Stirling st.

construction Holy Cross 4construction Holy Cross 12


Kitchener Memorial Auditorium is built to replace the arena that had burned down and to commemorate those who fought in the World Wars. In the picture below we can see East Av. and Borden Av. At the time East Av. didn’t continue till Frederick st. Also in the background behind the Auditorium, the Highway doesn’t exist yet.




Kitchener celebrates its centennial

10959794_770540253031586_7388424665332118607_nvintage KitchenerPainting of the Old City Hall circa 1960’s


The expressway is built and the neighbourhood’s eastern boundary is created


Centennial Stadium is built on the Auditorium grounds. The grandstand was demolished in 2013 due to safety concerns.



Smiles ‘n Chuckles Factory in the corner of Weber and Cameron st is shut down and later demolished.


The Auditorium Neighbourhood Association begins in 1991 as part of an initiative by Bryan Stortz, who was then City Councilor.


New housing is built on the old factory grounds site.

Wallenberg Park is created as a community play area on the old factory grounds.


First Waddlefest.  A walk or bike through the neighbourhood (2.5km or 5km) followed by games, entertainment and picnic. An occasion to bring together neighbours in a healthy family event, purely for the fun of it. This tradition has been going on for almost every year




Revitalization of Knollwood Park

.  Groundbreaking-1Groundbreaking-2pano

The City of Kitchener  allocates close to $100,000 to the revitalization. New trail system is built with benches and new trees Upgrades  to the playground and modernization of the sports fields are done.



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