City Hall and Insignia
In 1858, the citizens of Galt (population 3,500) celebrated the opening of the new Town Hall and Market House. The Town Hall was built for $3,650.00 and was on the same site as the original Township Hall.
The building was designed by architect H. B. Sinclair and was meant to reflect Galt's rapid growth, prosperity and influence in the region. However, not everyone was pleased with the design. On December 17, 1856 what was described as an unusually stormy 'indignation meeting' was held to protest the proposed design of the new Town Hall. Those present at the meeting condemned the Italianate design was inadequate and not at all reflective of Galt's growing importance. However since the building's design had already been approved by the building committee and the contract was to be awarded the following day the recommendations of the meeting were ignored. The building went ahead as designed with construction beginning in May 1857. However because of financial difficulties and disagreements between the architect and the contractor construction was not complete until November 1858.
The materials included a base and trim in Galt limestone and split fieldstone used on the upper floors. The bell was placed in the tower in 1863 and rang at 6:00 am, 12:00 noon and 6:00 pm. The Jubilee Clock was placed in the tower in 1897 in honour of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. Galt was said to have the finest Council Chambers this side of Toronto.
In 1965, the City Hall was renovated. The plans were drawn up by Peter Stokes, well-known architect specializing in the reclamation of old Ontario buildings. The City Hall was further renovated in 1990 to become the permanent home of the City of Cambridge Archives. The building is deemed an historic site of local and provincial significance.
In the Autumn of 1981, the Corporation of the City of Cambridge moved its municipal offices to Cambridge Place, 73 Water Street North, in an effort to better serve the citizens of Cambridge.
City Council and Committee Meetings have remained at Historic City Hall.
These meetings are conducted in the Council Chambers on the third floor at 46 Dickson Street. An elevator is available.
Heraldic Crest of the City:
The Cambridge City Crest was designed by David Neale, a citizen of Cambridge, and contains elements from the corporate crests of Cambridge's founding municipalities Galt, Preston and Hespeler. Galt is represented by the mill wheel and water wheel that reflect the municipality's industrial past. The wheels are incorporated into the spinning wheel that represents the community's many textile industries. Preston is represented both by the clasped hands that exemplify the unity of Cambridge and by the seven trees. The beehive that demonstrated to the world that the town was the busy 'beehive of industry' represents Hespeler. The diagonal line through the centre represents the Speed and Grand Rivers. The triple arched bridge represents both the many bridges that can be found throughout the city, including an arched bridge in Downtown Cambridge, and an arched bridge in Cambridge, England. The design reflects the past developments and present unity of Cambridge.
The City Crest as shown to the right is the official seal and identity of the Corporation and is used on all legal documents for the City. It is also on the City Flag and on special embossed letter paper used by the Mayor and Chief Administrative Officer.
Cambridge - It's All Right Here Logo & Tag Line:
The logo is part of the corporation's visual identity. In 2010, the city introduced a new logo replacing the historic CCC design that was introduced in the mid-1970s. The refreshed logo design reflects the natural qualities of the location and serves to differentiate the community.
The Chain of Office:
The Chain of Office is made of sterling silver and was designed by Harold H. Muller, a painter and silversmith from Guelph.
The chain includes ten shields linked by stone set links which support two main medallions. Each of the ten shields has a different motif depicting an item of significance in the history or character of Cambridge.
These motifs are:
- a symbol of the importance of spinning and weaving mills in the early economy of the area.
- a symbol of the industrialization of the area.
- a symbol of the fauna found in the area as well as the symbol of Canada.
The Water Wheel
- a symbol of the early mills around which the towns in the area grew and to which the pioneers took their grain to be ground and sold.
The Sheaf Wheat
- a symbol of the prominence of agriculture in the surrounding area.
The Pioneer Hydro Mill
- a symbol of the enterprise and foresight of people in developing area.
The Maple Leaf
- a symbol of Canada.
- a symbol of the labour of the people.
- a symbol of Ontario and the flora of the area.
The Main Medallion supports the City Crest or Coat of Arms. The Chain of Office for the City of Cambridge may be viewed on request of at Cambridge City Hall, 50 Dickson Street, from 8:30am to 4:30pm. The Chains of Office for the former City of Galt and Towns of Preston and Hespeler are also available upon request.