Richmond Hill started off as the small hamlet of Miles Hill, named for the area's first major developer Abner Miles who, in 1801, established an inn, a store, and an ashery at the intersection of Yonge Street and what is now Major Mackenzie Drive. By 1830 however Miles Hill had become Richmond Hill (after a brief stint of being known as Mount Pleasant) to commemorate a visit by the Duke of Richmond – or at least that’s how most people will explain it as the true origin of the name has now been lost to time.
The present municipality of Richmond Hill is a fairly recent creation. In 1957 it annexed most of the peripheral subdivisions which had developed around the old village core during the post-war era. Then in 1971, due to the provincial restructuring which affected many communities during that decade, the town limits increased by a factor of 10 overnight. This left plenty of room for growth and the population has since quadrupled. Now known as a major centre for the information technology industry, Richmond Hill is also known as the rose capital of Canada.