Although this community has been predominately Italian
since the turn of the 20th century, we have shared it with
different immigrant groups in the past and continue to welcome
new people into our community and as our neighbours.
Roughly between the years 1910 -1950, Preston Street was also
home to Irish, Polish and Ukrainian immigrants. In more recent
years, Asian immigrants (predominately from China and Vietnam)
have moved into the surrounding area and formed their own
thriving, dynamic community.
The changing demographics of the community are reflected
in the diversity of St. Anthony’s School. Prior to 1950,
Italian children made up as high as 90 percent of the school’s
student population. Now, a stroll down the school’s
main hallway in December reveals a wall bearing the words
“Merry Christmas” in seven different languages.
Classes are taught in English and French, and on Saturdays
special classes are offered in other languages of the community,
such as Vietnamese and Mandarin.
Preston Street, while honouring its Italian heritage, has
become something of a global village.