Windsor is located at the extreme southwestern end of Ontario, and at a latitude south of the top of California, with mild weather to match. Windsor is the oldest continuous European settlement in Ontario, beginning with a 1728 Jesuit mission. It is across the Detroit River from (and is actually south of) the American city of Detroit. The automobile industry is big in Windsor, ever since Ford created Ford of Canada in 1908. The city today has a population of over 195,000
The mild climate and close access to the United States makes Windsor unique in Canada. The city is near the site of Fort Malden, an important fort during the War of 1812, which defended the Detroit River from attacks from Lake Erie. Before the US Civil War, the city was the endpoint of the Underground Railway for escaped slaves seeking freedom. The city is close to Pelee Island and Point Pelee, the most southerly Canadian points of land in Lake Erie, both popular for recreation and nature-minded locals. The city has over 2,000 acres of parkland, including a riverside recreational trail that begins at the Ambassador Bridge.