Thursday February 7th, 2013
Located at 400 Chilver Road in old Walkerville, the Victoria Tavern resonates with many windsorites. With a deep rooted history that most of us new age kidlets are void of, windsoriteDOTca investigates!
At the request of Hiram Walker (yes our delicious Whiskey maker) Charles Chilver built the Victoria Tavern. This beautiful building established in 1902 started out with only two stories. Victoria Tavern, originally located in the old white Victorian house next door, was signed in 1904 by Henry Ford. “What happened in 1904 was Henry Ford required a manufacturing facility in Canada in order to sell his cars in the British Empire. He purchased the Walkerville Wagon Works which became the Ford Motor Company of Canada (the first contract with Ford Canada). The signing of documents for the purchase took place in the current Victoria Hotel & Tavern in 1904 which was being operated by Frank Laforet”. Eventual Ida (Laforet’s daughter) took over the establishment. Now Ida would run the business for many years to come, but the most interesting impact she had is one that is still present today.
Another interesting tidbit of information that many don’t know about the Victoria Tavern is the long standing hotel that is still in service in the top floors. This makes it one of the oldest hotels in Ontario that has been continuously available to the public over many decades. Now if running a bar downstairs and a hotel upstairs wasn’t interesting enough, the paranormal activity will strike a chord. Dear Ida is still among us, ask any of the workers or lifelong customers. Not everyone has the opportunity to meet and greet with the spirit, but if you’re interested in a real old fashioned good time, maybe she’ll say hello.
A landmark many miss or are unaware of, which holds true to numerous things in Windsor, the Victoria Tavern is one of its kind. With events that are worth a mark down in your agenda.
Monday: Trivia Night
Wednesday: Celtic Band
Thursday: Jam Session, Soul Minors
Saturday: In the Pocket local band from Detroit performs
So if the old school sign marking Ladies & Escorts doesn’t spark your interest or make you rewind your mind to a different time, the large patio in the back is the perfect way to ring in the upcoming spring season.