Milburn Tavern, built in 1829 west of Yonge Street at John (formerly Milburn Rd.), was a meeting place for the local rebels of 1837. As a result the owner, Joseph Milburn, a Quaker, was arrested and banished to Van Diemen's Land in Australia in 1837 until his pardon by
Queen Victoria in 1843.
A tavern and inn under various names such as the White Horse Tavern, Lemon's Inn and Queen's existed at this location until 1905. It was at Lemon's Inn on Friday, June 2, 1848, at 10:00am that the trustees of the bankrupt estate of Thornhill's most prominent citizen, Benjamin Thorne, held an auction of his smaller possessions - horses and colts, sleighs, wagons, hogs, and ox cart. He was a wealthy owner of a number of mills who was financially ruined by the repeal of the Corn Laws in England in 1846. One month later, Thorne, aged 54, went to a rocky knoll behind his home (near Thornhill Country Club), and shot himself. He left behind a wife and eight children.
A tributary of the Don that ran southeast of this location, currently under John Street, was known as Brewers Hollow because of the existence of at least two breweries
and a distillery in this area from 1820 to 1880.
Breweries were located close to water, near grist mills, from which the "tailings" and damaged grain were used in the brewer's mash.
Erected by the Society for the Preservation of Historic Thornhill
on the occasion of Thornhill's Bicentennial, 1994.