The GTR train yards and station, ca. 1910©Copyright: National Archives PA-020594
Scotia, first settled around 1875, began as a small postal and farming outlet in Parry Sound District. By 1879 the little community included a mill and a number of farmsteads.
Things changed quickly with the arrival of the Grand Trunk Railway (GTR) in 1885. Following construction of a small section village and station, businesses quickly began to pour in. By 1890 the settlement had a general store, inn, blacksmith shop, school, church, and nearly 100 residents.
In 1899 the Canada Atlantic Railway (CAR) crossed through Scotia establishing a junction point with the GTR and the inevitable boom quickly followed. Scotia's population swelled to nearly 400 residents. Railway facilities were expanded and three hotels were built to accommodate the anticipated rail traffic.
The railway industry was hit hard during World War I but the major blow for Scotia took place after the war with the collapse of the GTR. By 1923 the GTR was nationalized as the Canadian National Railway (CN), which lost no time in taking quick measures to cut their costs. In 1933 the old CAR line was shut down for good. By 1955 the tracks had been lifted.
Scotia's slide downward was slow, but steady. Today it is virtually gone. The community still exists as a small rural settlement. Four original homes are all that remain from the old village.