Sarnia’s original name "The Rapids" was the English translation of "Les Chutes", the name given to the area by the French squatters.
Front Street was originally named "Trongate Street", the name of a very famous street in Glasgow, Scotland, since many of the early settlers were of Scottish origin. In Sarnia, this street began at the LaForge farm (now the corner of Davis and Front Street), proceeded north to George Street and then angled through what is now the site of City Hall.
Malcolm Cameron, politician and ship builder, and claimed to be the founder of Sarnia, named many streets after his family:
- Cameron Street was named after himself
- Christina Street was named after his wife
- Euphemia Street was named after his mother
- Colina (now College Avenue) was named after his daughter. It was originally called Cole Avenue.
- Lochiel Street was named in memory of his homeland of Scotland
- Wellington, Cromwell, Cobden and Bright Streets were named after men he admired
Commander Richard Emeric Vidal also named many streets after his family and family name:
- Vidal Street after himself
- Essex Street after his uncle
- Mitton Street in honor of his mother
- Charlotte Street after his wife
- Penrose Street after a relative
Talfourd Street was named in honour of Froome Talfourd, the Indian Agent.
Cromwell Street is named for Oliver Cromwell.
Elgin Street was named in memory of Lord Elgin.
Victoria Street was named in honour of Queen Victoria.
Colborne Road was named for Sir John Colborne, Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, (who also gave Sarnia its name). The road was originally named Cemetery Road.