From History of Perth County 1825-1902
by William Johnston, published in 1903
Settlement in Elma began in 1848 by the arrival of Mr. George Code, although even he was, it is said, piloted through the woods by a "squatter," named Tennant.
Be that as it may, Mr. Code applied for and received a grant of 500 acres of land from Government, building a saw mill at what was supposed at that time would be a commercial centre.
A town plot was laid out and named Trowbridge, but, like many other speculations of this kind, it maintained its future existence only on paper.
As making a way for commercial greatness, Mr. Code opened a road through the woods on the west side of the stream, passing Jackson's and Twanley's, through what is now Listowel and north to Wallaceville.
All this was likely to occur, but it must have been several years subsequent to Mr. Code's arrival.
Mr. Twamley did not reach Elma till 1850, and Wallaceville did not exist on paper even till some years later.
Apart from those who entered this township through Mornington, which was a small number comparatively, the largest portion of Elma pioneers came from the south.
What is known as the Logan road was opened previous to a survey being made in Elma, and was a pathway by which this new country could be reached more easily than by any other route.
Amongst the old settlers were Bingham Brothers, Robert and William, the Gibson family, settling in northwest.
John and Samuel Ritchie were also early settlers.
In the east we have Hamilton, Boyd, Coghlin. Graham, and Lowry.
In the centre, east near Donegal, the Buchanans settled at a very early day.
Elma Township has a mixed population, Scotch in some sections predominating.
Communities in Elma Township included: