The Germania schoolhouse©Copyright: Jeri Danyleyko
Germania is a small Muskoka hamlet that was first settled in the 1860s. It began as a small lumber and farming community. By the mid 1870s, it included a school and a Lutheran church. Many of the first settlers originated from Germany.
Germania's best days were during the mid 1880s when the population grew as high as 150. By then the community included two stores, a post office, blacksmith and a busy shingle mill. A Methodist church was also added.
Germania began to decline by the early 1900s due to depletion of lumber supplies and poor farming conditions. Although the soil was of reasonably good quality, Germania was hampered by an extremely short growing season.
Today Germania remains a rural backwater that continues to support a small population. Due to the growth of nearby centres, such as Orillia and Bracebridge, Germania has managed to hold on and even attract a few new residents. The schoolhouse has been restored and is now used as a community centre. The Gilbert Lutheran Church is beautifully preserved and still holds occasional services.