Arran Township

Arran Township was named after the Island of Arran, Scotland.

Arran Township Places

  • Arran – the 1st post office, opened in 1853. Later renamed Invermay.
  • Arkwright – a post office and hamlet on the 7th Concession. The post office opened in 1857.
  • Burgoyne – a post office and hamlet on the townline of Arran and Saugeen. It is the crossroads of the Elora and Saugeen  Road (County Road 3) and the Saugeen and Owen Sound Road (County Road 17).
  • Eblana – a post office established in 1862 at Tara. The post office’s name was changed to Tara a year later.
  • Grimston – a post office that was originally established in 1884 in Sullivan Township of Grey County, but was moved to the 1st Concession of Arran in 1900.
  • Invermay – A post office and village on the 7th Concession, a mile south of the village of Tara. Was previously the Arran post office; renamed in 1859. The village lots were surveyed in 1855.
  • Mount Hope – a hamlet on the 2nd Concession. 
  • Tara – the township’s principal town, located on the 8th Concession. It was named for the seat of royalty in County Meath, Ireland. Although the town was settled in the 1850s, its post office was not established until 1862, and was initially named ‘Eblana’.
  • West Arran – A post office north of Burgoyne, opened in 1853. Originally, it was on the east side of the Elora and Saugeen Road, in Arran Township, but later it was moved to the west side of the Elora and Saugeen Road, in Saugeen Township.

Arran Township Notable People

William Augustus Gerolamy operated a fanning mill at Tara. He patented improvements in fanning mill technology, and won prizes at the World’s Fairs at Philadelphia, Paris and Chicago. The Department of Agriculture, Ottawa, granted him patent of invention No. 2406 for a “Fanning-Mill-Maker, an improved fanning mill” on January 7th, 1868.

Robert Leith ‘Dinny’ Hanbidge, barrister and politician, had roots in both Southampton and Arran Township. His father was a blacksmith and carriage maker in Southampton, and also owned a farm in Arran Township. ‘Dinny’ Hanbidge was mayor of Kerrobert, Saskatchwewan – see an early biographical sketch in The Story of Saskatchewan and Its People.  He was member of parliament for the riding of Kindersley, Saskatchewan from 1958 to 1963. He was Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan from March 1, 1963  to February 2, 1970. He died on July 25, 1974. A biography, Dinny: R. L. Hanbidge, 12th lieutenant governor of Saskatchewan was published.

Hon. Sir William Howard Hearst, Premier of Ontario, was born in Arran Township in 1864. He was Premier from 1914 to 1919.  

Isabella Hendry Macmillan, raised in Arran Township, was a prominent Christian Scientist pastor and teacher. She married John Stewart, who was also active in the church. She died in 1912. Her biography appears in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online.

Mary MacNeill, born about 1859, was raised in Arran Township. Her family was from the Isle of Colonsay, Scotland.  She was one of Canada’s early female physicians. Her biography appears in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online.

Frederick W. ‘Cyclone’ Taylor, born in Tara in 1885, was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1947. He died in 1979.

“Cyclone” Taylor Plaque in Tara


A History of the Village of Tara: on the Hundredth Anniversary of the Settlement  by Bruce Miller, 1951.

A History of Tara 1851 – 1951 by Bruce Miller

History of the County of Bruce by Norman Robertson, 1906. 

Light through the years : 125 years with Knox Presbyterian Church, Burgoyne, 1862-1987 and Dunblane Presbyterian Church by the Burgoyne Historical Society, 1987.

Reflections of Arran, 1852-1982 by the Arran Township Historical Society, 1982. 

Tara Before 1981 by Bruce A. Miller, 1980. See Publications page.

Tara United Church by the History Committee, 1975.