The village of Lombardy has boasted a number of names including "Landon's Corners", "Landons Mills", "Lombard's Corners" and "South Elmsley". The name Lombardy apparently came from Francis Lombard, a French soldier who arrived in the early 1820's and settled in the area.
Golf Course at Lombardy photo by: Ken Watson
Lombardy benefited from its situation at the junction of the Brockville-Perth and Portland-Kingston Road. A series of mills were located there, drawing power from Otter Creek, and with its shops, tradesmen and hotels/taverns, this active community served the passing trade and surrounding countryside. Lombardy also served as the seat of government for South Elmsley. Township offices were located at various times in several buildings in the village. One such building, now serves as an antique store. Another early hall was moved from its site and now serves as a granary on a local farm. Although Lombardy declined as a commercial centre in the 20th century, with its three churches it continues to serve as a social centre for the ward: United Church, the Roman Catholic Church and the Anglican Church.
Another significant social focus is the "Lombardy Fair". Begun in the 1860s, the fair was associated with the Agricultural Society of South Elmsley as an annual event to showcase the produce of its members. Over the years it grew and evolved taking on more of a Lombardy urban focus, an evolution marked by the change in name to the Lombardy Agricultural Society. In 1981 the society purchased a permanent site for the fair at the comer of Highway 15 and Kelly's side road and there, in an ever expanding complex of buildings, carries on the tradition of the fair (South Elmsley Ward, Lot 15, Con 2).