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From Hospital hallways to Campus classrooms: the 50th anniversary of amalgamation, part 1

In 1973 the face of nursing education would change in Ontario with the move of hospital schools of nursing into collegiate settings. The Ryerson School of Nursing (now the Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing DCSN) would merge with the schools from the Hospital for Sick Children, Women’s College Hospital, and the The Wellesley Hospital. This was the start of a close relationship between the DCSN and the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing Alumnae Association (WHSNAA) that continues today.

In 2011, 13 years after the hospital’s closure, the WHSNAA gifted their expansive archival collection to TMU Archives. Along with the physical collection, the Alumnae association established an endowment to help offset the cost for the preservation and care of the materials.

On the left is Linda Cooper, Wellesley ’68 and Professor Emerita, Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing and on the right is Shirley Heard, Wellesley ’62 – Alumnae Association President. Also in the picture is a small part of the collection now housed in the Toronto Metropolitan University Archives. Photo courtesy of University Advancement.

In recognition of the 50th anniversary of the amalgamation and in celebration of the continuing relationship, the three groups, the WHSNAA, the DSCN and the University Archives, have partnered to create an anniversary exhibition. The physical display, housed in the DCSN administrative offices, features artifacts and photographs that give you a window into the history of the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing, the WHSNAA, and the DSCN. The online component of the exhibit, consisting of two blogs, will take an in-depth look at the topics introduced in the physical exhibit.

This first blog looks at the opening of the Wellesley Hospital, the birth of a nursing school, early nurse training, the evolution of the uniform, and convocation at the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing.

The opening of the Wellesley Hospital, 1911

Side view portrait of Dr. Herbert Bruce

Founded by Dr. Herbert Bruce (pictured above), the Wellesley Hospital was located in a private home purchased by Bruce from Frederick Nicholls for $65,000. The hospital, located on 4.5 acres of land on the north corner of Homewood and Wellesley Avenues in Toronto, officially opened in June 1911. Bruce began renovations, utilizing architects Stevens and Lee, on the building that included major additions to the structure. Renovations were still being completed when the first patients were admitted in the Fall of 1912 and by December of that year the hospital was operating at 90% capacity. The renovations were completed in early 1913.

Photograph of a large group of people seated and standing in front of a building
Front entrance of hospital at opening ceremony June 1911. In the photograph are (from l-r) Dr. Herbert Bruce; Senator James K. Kerr; Sir Edmund Osler; Dr. J. E. Elliott; Lady Zoe Laurier; Mrs. R. J. MacMillan; Sir Wilfrid Laurier; Dr. R. J. MacMillan; Miss Powell; Dr. F. W. Marlow; Mrs. Anne M. Kerr; Miss Elisabeth Flaws; Sir William Mulock; and Mr. A. E. Dyment (RG 946.01.03.03.03)
  • Wood printing block with hospital floor plan
  • Wood printing block with hospital floor plan
  • wood printing blocks with hospital floor plans

Designed to attract wealthy patients and their surgeons, The Wellesley had 60 private beds (for $3.00 and up per day) and 12 semi-private rooms ($2.00-$2.50 per day). They were open for patients of doctors and surgeons in good standing in Toronto and beyond. There were also 2 house surgeons on staff. Patients were served their meals on Limoges china and ate with silver cutlery and tea service imported from England. $69,000 dollars was spent in the first year alone on furnishings and equipment. 

Limoges china used to serve patients in the early days of the hospital (RG 946.02.12.01.01)

Over the next several decades the Hospital grew and evolved. It moved out of its “hospital for the wealthy” persona and would became best known for its role as a community hospital. It became a refuge and support for the St. Jamestown area where it was located. In 1968 the hospital opened its Social Service department and in 1973 the department of Family and Community Medicine moved out into the community with the opening of the St. Jamestown Community Health Clinic. A second location was opened in 1975.

Front entrance of the original hospital circa 1947 (RG 946.01.03.03.06)

The hospital went through various money and operational crises through its 86 year history – with a variety of proposed and actualized amalgamations with other hospitals: Toronto General Hospital 1948-1969; Toronto Central Hospital (1996-1998). The Wellesley Hospital was closed by the Ontario Government at the recommendation of the Ontario Health Services Restructuring Commission in 1998. Its remaining services were taken over by Sunnybrook and St. Michael’s Hospitals. 

Significant events in the hospital’s history:

1911 – Hospital opened by then Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier

1912 – Founding of School of Nursing; First new hospital wing opens in August with first hospital patients admitted in September

1917 – Received designation a public hospital under Ontario Hospital and Charitable Institutions Act

1942 – Officially becomes a public general hospital

1948 – Amalgamation with Toronto General Hospital – becomes Wellesley Division

1959 – Hospital attains independent status once more

1973 – School of Nursing moved from hospital to Ryerson Polytechnical Institute (now Toronto Metropolitan University)

1996 – Merger with Toronto Central Hospital – becoming Wellesley Central Hospital (#7 on map https://www.heritagetoronto.org/explore/st-james-town-history/)

1997 – Proposed merger with Women’s College Hospital

1998 – Wellesley Central Hospital’s operation taken over by St. Michael’s Hospital. The Wellesley Central Hospital closes.

2000 – Former Board members of Wellesley Central Hospital and community activists form Wellesley Central Health Corporation (WCHC). (https://www.wellesleyinstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Our-History-Flip-Sheet.pdf)

2006 – WCHC renamed Wellesley Institute – a non-profit, non-partisan research and policy Institute focused on problems related to population health

The Birth of a Nursing School, 1912

Elisabeth Flaws, first Hospital superintendent and director of the Nursing School (RG 946.03.01.01.07.01)

The Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing was founded in 1912 with Elisabeth Flaws in a dual role – Director of the Nursing School and Hospital Superintendent. The three year program was designed to have Nurse trainees available for service in The Wellesley Hospital after 6 months, this was later changed to 4 months. Dr. Bruce’s goal was to have the 26 paid nursing staff members reduced to 8 by the end of the second year of the school’s existence. The first class of 10 nurses graduated in 1915.

The student nurses were required to live in residence. The first four residences were in converted homes. The first was located at 496 Sherbourne St, and the second at 176 Wellesley Street.

Second nurses residence at 176 Wellesley Street. Hospital Building Bruce Wing is visible in the background (RG946.02.03.08.07)
Second nurses residence located at 176 Wellesley Street. Hospital Bruce wing visible in the background (RG 946.02.03.08.07)

The first purpose built residence was constructed and opened in 1953. The new space had classrooms, a library, a snack bar, and recreation facilities. In 1971 the building was named the “Elsie K. Jones Building” after the long time Nursing Director. 

Over the next  58 years The Wellesley would graduate 2235 nurses, with the last class graduating  in 1975.

Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing crest

Early Nurse Training

When The Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing opened in 1912, The nursing program was a 3 year diploma.

Nurse in surgical scrubs, circa 1920 (RG 946.03.01.08.29)

In the beginning the hospital was not equipped to handle all the training necessary for its nursing students. Starting in 1915 obstetrical training was completed at the Manhattan Maternity Hospital in New York with student nurses being sent in 3 month training rotations. By 1919 this training was completed in-house. The Wellesley contacted Sick Children’s Hospital regarding training in paediatric nursing in 1916 but were denied because of The Wellesley’s status as a private hospital. By 1919 there was an agreement between Sick Children’s and The Wellesley for this training.  Starting in 1925 Public Health training was completed in 3 month rotations at the Ottawa Civic Hospital. This training switched to Toronto General Hospital in 1928. Tuberculosis nursing training was completed at the Toronto Hospital for Consumptives, and Psychiatric nursing training was completed at the now defunct Toronto Psychiatric Hospital and the Ontario Hospital (now CAMH) until 1949 when The Wellesley opened its own psychiatric care unit. Nursing students continued to do rotations at CAMH as part of their training.

1912-1961 Nursing Students Day

Day Duty (7:00am – 7:00pm)

Roll call was at 6:25am with 12 hour shift starting at 7 am. Day duty nurses were allocated 2 hours off per day, usually spent attending lectures and ½ hour each for lunch and supper.

Night Duty (7:00pm – 7:00am)

Night duty nurses received ½ hour off for dinner. They were expected to attend day lectures. When switching from day to night duty, nurses worked until noon and then reported for duty at 7pm.

 Each student nurse got a ½ week day off and 5 hours on Sunday. In 1944 the 12 hour shift changed to 8 hour shifts, 6 days per week. In 1958 the work week was changed to 44 hours per week and to 40 hours per week in 1961

Nurse conduct reporting form (RG 946.03.03.04)

In 1923 the Ontario Government registered The Wellesley School of Nursing, making its graduates eligible for Registered Nursing qualification. There were 3 major changes the school’s curriculum. In 1942 theory and practice were correlated; in 1956 the 3 year course was split into a 2 year academic program with a 1 year internship; and in the 1970s the course was cut back to 2 years total schooling and internship – aligning it with the Colleges who offered Nursing programs. 

Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing open house poster, 1972 (RG 946.03.13.02)

The Evolution of the Uniform (1912-1973)

The first uniforms worn by student nurses at The Wellesley consisted of a long sleeved and long skirted blue and white striped cotton dress with a detachable clerical style collar (starched upright collar), detachable long cuffs, a bib and an apron. The cap had a drawstring back (this eventually changed to a button closure). The uniform was accompanied by black stockings and black boots or shoes. The collar switched to the Eton style (fold-over collar with front closure) in the early 1920’s and the length of the dresses would slowly shorten over time. 

Student nurse Frances Clarke, class of 1919 (RG 946.03.01.08.01)

The first major change to The Wellesley’s student uniform occurred in 1941 when a short-sleeved option was introduced. The uniform changed again with the amalgamation of The Wellesley with Toronto General Hospital (TGH) in 1948, switching from the traditional blue and white striped cotton to a plain white dress. They also switched to the TGH cap and wore the detachable collar, cuffs, and bib. The uniform was accompanied by white stockings and shoes. Capes at this time also changed – switching from a blue lining to a red lining. 

Student uniform worn during training at Wellesley Division – Toronto General Hospital (1948-1959). Cape (1953-1956) from same period (RG 946.03.05.01.06); RG 946.03.05.01.10)

In 1960 after The Wellesley was an independent hospital again the student nurses voted to return to wearing the blue and white striped dresses. A new Wellesley style cap was designed to accompany the uniform. They were still wearing the detachable Eton style collar, cuffs, and bib. The uniform was accompanied by white stockings and shoes. In second year, a Wellesley badge was added to the left sleeve of the uniforms and in third year students would wear year pins on their collars. The students requested permission to wear short sleeved white dresses for their third or intern year. They were granted permission to do so in 1964.

Year pin, Class of 1935 (RG 946.03.04.02.03)
Members of the Wellesley Alumnae Association wearing uniforms From 1912, 1938, and 1962 (RG 946.03.01.08.08)

The final student uniform Wellesley students wore was very different from its predecessors. Introduced in 1970 – the uniform was one piece with no detachable collar, cuffs, or bib. It had a mandarin collar and zipper closure. The skirt was also much shorter than previous uniforms. First and Second year students continued to wear the blue and white striped version, with intern year students wearing an all white version. The uniform was accompanied by the Wellesley cap, white stockings and shoes. A male version of the student uniform, white jacket and pants, was introduced the same year along with the introduction of a pants and jacket option for all nurses on staff at the Hospital. 

Convocation at the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing (1915-1974)

Class of 1933 graduation ceremony on the hospital grounds (RG 946.03.04.01.17.01)

The first graduation ceremony for the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing was held in the Fall of 1915. The ceremonies would move back and forth between fall and spring, with one class graduating per year with the exception of 1940, 1941, 1943, 1944, and 1972 when there were 2 graduating classes – one in spring and one in fall. The first ceremony and the following reception were held on the grounds of the hospital. Ceremonies would continue to be held on the grounds until 1947.

Class of 1954 graduation ceremony at Sherbourne Street Methodist Church (Later St. Luke’s United Church). Graduates are wearing red rose corsages that were a tradition of Toronto General Hospital Nursing School (RG 946.03.04.01.36.02)

Starting in 1948, the ceremonies were held at Sherbourne, later St. Luke’s United Church located at 353 Sherbourne Street and in 1962 the ceremonies moved to St. Paul’s Anglican Church at 227 Bloor Street East. The graduates would walk from Wellesley Hospital to the ceremony and in the event of rain the graduates were ferried to the church by TTC bus. The after ceremony receptions remained on the grounds of the hospital. In 1964 the demolition of the old hospital and construction of a new 9 story hospital addition necessitated the move of the reception to Branksome Hall, the all girls school located at 10 Elm Avenue. The reception returned to the hospital grounds in 1968 and would remain there until 1974. 

Class of 1972A entering St. Paul’s Anglican Church Photographer: Roy Nicholls (RG 946.03.04.01.54.09)

Graduation involved many different traditions for the nursing students. A mother daughter tea was hosted by the Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing Alumnae Association. The morning of graduation the 2nd year students would serve the graduating nurses breakfast in the cafeteria.

Class of 1925 graduation breakfast (RG 946.03.04.01.09.01)

The nursing graduates would also walk through the halls of the hospital singing. The graduation pin was presented to each nurse at the graduation ceremony. The Wellesley pin remained the same between 1915-1974, each one personalized on the back with the name and graduating class of each person.

Plastic replica of corsage given to graduates. White gardenia surrounded by blue cornflowers and stephanotis (RG 946.03.05.06)

You can continue your journey through this nursing history by continuing on to the 2nd blog (https://library.torontomu.ca/asc/2024/06/from-hospital-hallways-to-campus-classrooms-the-50th-anniversary-of-amalgamation-part-2/) where we look at The Wellesley Hospital School of Nursing Alumnae Association, the Ryerson School of Nursing (1964-2007), Amalgamation and the end of hospital schools of nursing, the last graduation(s), and the Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing (2008-2024).

A View of Old Toronto – using archival objects as a focus for your research

The idea for this blog started in the summer of 2022 when I was brainstorming ideas for interesting ways to showcase our collections. I started looking through the Bass Stereographic Photography Collection and was intrigued by these three cards because I wasn’t familiar with them or where they might be located. Originally intending the blog to be a simple show and tell of interesting images around Toronto, it quickly evolved into a more in-depth project using the stereographs as the starting point for my search – a kind of showcase of how archival and special collections materials can be used to spark new ideas or enhance existing research projects.

Utilizing both online resources, and books from the TMU library collections – I was able to not only pinpoint the locations of the subjects in the photographs, but the history of the sites as well. There is a full bibliography available at the end of the blog.

Munro Park

Group of people wading in water on a Munro Beach
Children enjoying the waterfront in Munro Park, Toronto. 2018.09.04.01.03

In 1847 former Toronto Mayor and business man George Monro (1797-1878) purchased 60.5 acres of Lot 1 Concession 1 in Toronto. In present day terms the property, called Painted Post Farm, was bordered by the lake in the south, Scarborough Road in the west, Kingston Road in the north and Victoria Park in the East.

The properties to the east and west of Painted Post Farm were slowly being developed into summer resort and recreation areas and in 1896 Monro’s family granted a 10 year lease to the Toronto Railway Company (TRC) for a portion of their property. The section, which consisted of the bottom portion south of Queen Street East down to the lake, was leased by the TRC for the purpose building an amusement park which would be serviced by their electric trolley cars. At the time of the lease their tracks, which ran along Queen Street East, stopped at Balsam Avenue (3 streets east of the Monro property). In 1896 Munro Park (it is unclear when the spelling changed from Monro to Munro) was initially opened as a picnic area, with 50 benches and 100 seats, A large 1300 square metre dance hall, a bandstand, and some rides – carousel, swings – were added in the first season and in 1897 a mineral well was opened. By 1898 the street car tracks were run in a loop to the park and a ferris wheel was constructed. In 1899 a water carousel, Lundy’s Ostrich Farm, and two 90 metre boardwalks leading to the entrance of the dance hall were added. More sidewalks were created and the size of the performance stage was increased, with seating for 5000. The TRC began booking performers including acrobats, animal acts, comedians, magicians, musical performers, vaudeville and minstrel shows. They also added a motion picture venue in 1900.

Photograph of people standing around a grassy park with a ferris wheel in the background.
Munro Park, 1900
Courtesy of the Baldwin Collection of Canadiana, Toronto Public Library

In 1906 the lease with the TRC was not renewed and all the buildings were removed from the property. The following year Scarboro Beach Park, just a few blocks from Munro Park, opened and it was purchased by the TRC in 1912. In the 1920’s the TRC became one of the two companies, along with Toronto Civic Railway, that became the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). The Monro property and Munro park were later subdivided for residential development and nothing of the old park exists. A street, Munro Park Avenue, runs through the centre of the old park property and the shoreline is now part of Silver Birch Beach.

Rosehill Reservoir

Flower bed at Rosehill Reservoir park
Sundial garden, north east entrance to Rose Hill Reservoir park, circa 1900. 2018.09.04.07.37

Reservoir Park, located in Toronto’s Deer Park neighbourhood, opened in 1874. The land it sits on is one of the city’s oldest public recreational spaces. But the area has a much older pre-colonial history. The area, called “Mishkodae” or prairie/meadow in Anishinaabemowin, was used for hunting by the Indigenous peoples. The lands open savannah like environment attracted the deer to feed. The area was also rich in plants that were harvested for use in medicines.

Two story home surrounded by trees
Rose Hill, built by Walter Rose in 1836. Photograph courtesy of the Toronto Public Library – Baldwin Collection of Canadiana

The reservoir and surrounding lands were part of two 200 acre lots that fronted on to Yonge Street between Summerhill and St. Clair Avenues. Lot 16 was purchased by Walter Rose who constructed a house, called Rose Hill, in 1836. The neighbouring property, lot 17, was purchased by Charles Thompson and a house “Summerhill” was constructed on the property in 1842. In 1853 Thompson developed some of his property into an amusement park with swings, landscaped gardens, and paths leading down into the Ravine. The park was referred to as Thompson’s Park, but he changed the name to Summer Hill Spring Park and Pleasure Grounds.

Section of larger map showing water reservoir.
Atlas of the City of Toronto and Vicinity, March 1890, revised September 1903. Library and Archives Canada.

In 1865 Walter Rose died and his property was subdivided and sold. Some of the property was purchased by Joseph Jackes and Richard Dunbar. Thompsons property was sold to Larratt Smith in 1866. In the early 1870’s the city hired consultants E. S. Chesborough and T. C. Keefer to design a waterworks system. They recommended a site north of the city for the construction of a reservoir. In 1872 the city purchased sections of property from Jackes, Dunbar, and Smith for the reservoir. Smith’s sale was contingent upon the city’s maintaining his section of property as the parkland it already was. The reservoir itself would be constructed on the Rose Hill property. In October of 1873 the construction contract was awarded to R. Mitchell and Co. and construction was completed in December of 1874 – named the Rose Hill Reservoir for the property it sat upon. The reservoir could hold 126 million litres of water and was connected to the John Street pumping station 8 kilometres away.

Chain link fence with barbed wire along top. Trees and a roadway on the other side.
Rosehill Reservoir cleaning and war protection 4 November 1942. Item 2014, Subseries 72, Series 372. Fonds 200 Former City of Toronto fonds. City of Toronto Archives.

After its construction Reservoir park was a popular attraction with its access to the Vale of Avoca/Yellow Creek Ravine. The reservoir, considered the community’s lake, was closed to the public during World War I to protect the water supply. This was done again for World War II – with a fence being erected in 1940. After the war was over the fence was left in place to help protect against water contamination. In 1949 the city began considering covering the site because of the pollution from birds, dogs, and people. Fish were found to be swimming in the reservoir at one point.  In 1960 the Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto commissioned consulting engineers Gore & Storrie Ltd to plan for an expansion and covering of the reservoir to much protest of the local community who didn’t want to lose their lake. The renovation project (1964-1966) cost $3.4 million dollars and increased the reservoir to 270 million litres. A water fountain, reflecting pools, waterfall and other water features were added to the new landscape to make up for the loss of the lake.

Reservoir Park became part of the larger present day David Balfour Park whose entrance is located at 75 Rosehill avenue and is now a 20.5 hectare park. A major renovation was completed in 2022 with work on both the reservoir and its surrounding park. Accessible, multiple use trails, new lighting, and an expanded community garden were added.

Government House

Stereographic card showing front of Government House, looking east, with pathways and gardens
Government House looking east towards St. Andrew’s Church (present day King and Simcoe Sts.) 2018.09.04.07.37
Interior view of Government House greenhouse showing walkway and plants on either side
Interior of greenhouse located on west side of Government House. 2018.09.04.07.37

Government House was the name for the official residence of the Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada and Ontario – a tradition which ended in 1937 with the closing of the final residence Chorley Park. Between 1792-1937 there were 9 homes used by the Lieutenant-Governor, none of which are still in existence today.

The Government House featured in these stereocards was the 7th home – is known as Old Government House. Located on property at King and Simcoe Sts (where Roy Thompson Hall and Metro Hall currently stand) the house was designed by architect Henry Langley of Gundry and Langley and constructed by Grant & York of Peterborough. The three storey red brick and ohio cut stone home featured galvanized iron cornices and a mansard roof. The main entrance faced Simcoe Street and featured a covered carriage entrance featuring a 100 foot tower. The main building was three storeys above a basement level, with the kitchen wing only 2 storeys. It also had a large glassed conservatory which opened off of the dining room.  The house completed construction in 1870, with the John Beverley Robinson, the 5th Lieutenant-Governor for Ontario, being the first to reside there.

View of Government House looking west with King Street and Simcoe Street visible.
Looking west along King Street with Government House in the foreground, 1912. Baldwin Collection of Canadiana – Toronto Public Library.

The house cost $102,000 dollars to build and was paid for with government money. Its construction was not without critics – many not seeing the need for a whole residence for the Lieutenant-Governor to live in, when offices and sitting rooms in the legislature could be provided at a much lower cost. An article in the January 6 1869 Globe newspaper pointed out “Very little is said in any quarter in defence of the lavish expenditure being made upon the residence of the Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario…the prospect is that the Governor’s residence in Toronto will be, all circumstances considered, more expensive than Rideau Hall at Ottawa.”  The article continues on to discuss the considerably less amount of funds being spent on hospitals.

In 1910 the area where Old Government House was located was becoming increasingly commercial and industrial. The Canadian Pacific Railway (C. P. R.) began purchasing lands adjacent to the house. It was felt that a new residence was needed and property in north Rosedale was purchased. In the April 18, 1910 edition of the Toronto Star the Ontario Government put a legal notice:  “Tenders for Government House property…up the first day of June 1910 for the purchase of property known as Government House property situate at south-west corner of King and Simcoe Sts…containing 6.19 acres…the buildings on the said property consist of a three storey residence, coach house, stables, gardener’s house, gate lodge, conservatories and greenhouses.”

The property was purchased for $800,000 by the C. P. R in June with the Lieutenant-Governor staying in residence while the new house was constructed. Unfortunately in March of 1912 the C. P. R. requested that the residence be vacated so they could begin developing parts of the property. A temporary residence was located for the Lieutenant Governor – Pendarves House (now Cumberland House) at College and St. George Sts. was rented until Chorley Park was completed in 1915. Lurie and Company wreckers purchased Government House, demolishing the building and selling off materials for use in other construction projects. Demolition began in June of 1912 and was completed in August of that same year. The C. P. R. used the space for a railway yard.

spliced 1884-1924 Goad's Fire Insurance Plans
Goad’s Map showing the intersection of King and Simcoe in 1884 on the left and 1924 on the right. https://www.toronto.ca/ext/archives/goads_atlases/1884/g1884_pl0005.jpg https://www.toronto.ca/ext/archives/goads_atlases/1910_1923_v1/g1910_1923_pl0005.jpg

The Bass Stereographic Photography Collection was donated to the University Archives and Special Collection by Gail Bass in 2018. The items were collected by the late Dr. Martin J. Bass and Gail Silverman Bass and included approximately 8000 stereograph cards – including 800 cards showing scenery, buildings, and landmarks from across Canada.

Bibliography

City of Toronto Archives “What’s Online” https://www.toronto.ca/city-government/accountability-operations-customer-service/access-city-information-or-records/city-of-toronto-archives/whats-online/

Toronto Public Library Digital Archive https://digitalarchive.tpl.ca/

Toronto Public Library Local History & Genealogy https://www.torontopubliclibrary.ca/history-genealogy/

Munro Park

Illustrated Historical Atlas of the County of York and the Township of West Gwillimbury and Town of Bradford in the County of Simcoe, Ont. Mika Silk Screening, 1972.

Morgan, Wayne. “Munro Park/East Beach City of Toronto Heritage Conservation District Study and Plan.” City of Toronto, 2008, www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2009/pb/bgrd/backgroundfile-18277.pdf.

“Munro Park (1896-1906).” The Coaster Enthusiasts of Canada – Closed Canadian Parks – Ontario – Scarborough, www.cec.chebucto.org/ClosPark/Munro.html. Accessed 6 July 2023.

“TO Built Walking Tour: The Beaches.” Architectural Conservancy Ontario, www.acotoronto.ca/res_files/TOBuilt-Walking-Tour_Beaches.pdf. Accessed 6 July 2023.

Rosehill Reservoir

“3 Places Where You Can Discover Toronto’s Indigenous History | CBC News.” CBC News, 21 June 2017, www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/first-story-toronto-indigenous-history-1.4170290.

Atlas of the City of Toronto and Vicinity, March 1890, revised September 1903. Library and Archives Canada. http://central.bac-lac.gc.ca/.redirect?app=fonandcol&id=3836028&lang=eng

Brown+Storey Architects Inc. (2016, June 6). Rosehill Reservoir, Toronto Heritage Impact Assessment. https://www.brownandstorey.com/content/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/Rosehill-Reservoir-HIA-Draft-Final-20160606-reduced.pdf

Kinsella, Joan C. Historical Walking Tour of Deer Park. Toronto Public Library, 1996. https://digitalarchive.tpl.ca/objects/336600#

Robertson, J. Ross. “Robertson’s Landmarks of Toronto : A Collection of Historical Sketches of the Old Town of York, from 1792 until 1837, and of Toronto from 1834 to 1908.” Internet Archive, 1 Jan. 1970, archive.org/details/landmarkstoronto05robeuoft/page/n5/mode/2up.

“Rosehill Reservoir.” Lost Rivers Walks, www.lostrivers.ca/points/Rosehill_Reservoir.htm#:~:text=Built%20in%201873%2674%20with%20a,was%20constructed%20on%20its%20roof. Accessed 13 July 2023.

Rosehill Reservoir Rehabilitation (2022, November 9). City of Toronto. https://www.toronto.ca/community-people/get-involved/public-consultations/infrastructure-projects/rosehill/

Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation. “David A. Balfour Park.” City of Toronto, 6 Mar. 2017, www.toronto.ca/data/parks/prd/facilities/complex/143/index.html.

Government House

“Fine stained window lost to the province”. The Toronto Star. 25 June 1912. pp. 1 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/page-1/docview/1432739672/se-2.

Forsyth, Grant, Mrs. “Memories of Government House: passing of a famous social shrine.” The Globe (1844-1936). April 27, 1912. pp. A2, A7 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/memories-government-house-passing-famous-social/docview/1316227696/se-2.

“Gallery 1793-1815: Fort York Government House, 1800. Library & Archives Canada, C-16016.” Friends of Fort York , www.fortyork.ca/29-gallery/103-gallery-17931815.html#!1800_Fort_York_Government_House. Accessed 3 Aug. 2023. 

Gross, P. (1877). Illustrated Toronto, past and present. Canadiana. https://www.canadiana.ca/view/oocihm.24893/1 

“Lieutenant-Governor obliged to vacate: C. P. R. wants possession of a portion of old government house property.” The Globe (1844-1936), March 2, 1912, pp. 9. ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/lieutenant-governor-obliged-vacate/docview/1324238400/se-2.

Parks Canada Agency, Government of Canada. “Fort George National Historic Site – Navy Hall.” Parks Canada Agency, Government of Canada, 25 May 2023, www.pc.gc.ca/lhn-nhs/on/fortgeorge/. 

“Pendarves – Cumberland House.” Ontario Heritage Trust, heritagetrust.on.ca/pages/programs/provincial-plaque-program/provincial-plaque-background-papers/pendarves-cumberland-house. Accessed 10 Aug. 2023. 

“Provincial Plaque Background Papers: Pendarves-Cumberland House.” Ontario Heritage Trust, www.heritagetrust.on.ca/pages/programs/provincial-plaque-program/provincial-plaque-background-papers. Accessed 3 Aug. 2023. 

Previous government houses. Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. (2017, June 14). https://www.lgontario.ca/en/tours/previous-government-houses/

“Separate depots for the railways – rumour that it is the C. P. R. which is buying land in Wellington Street”. The Toronto Star. January 4, 1910. pp. 1 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/page-1/docview/1435964760/se-2.

“Some bold biffs at Government”. The Toronto Star. February 9, 1910. pp. 7 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/page-7/docview/1431991356/se-2.

“Tenders for Government House Property”. The Toronto Star. April 18,  1910. pp. 6 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/page-6/docview/1436256066/se-2.

“The C. P. R. gets the Government House”. The Toronto Star. June 7, 1910. pp. 6 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/page-6/docview/1436270790/se-2. 

“The Governor’s Residence”. The Globe (1844-1936). January  6, 1869. pp. 2 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/governors-residence/docview/1518970923/se-2. 

“The Lieutenant Governor’s Residence”. The Globe (1844-1936). June 29, 1868. pp. 2 ProQuest, http://ezproxy.lib.torontomu.ca/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/lieutenant-governors-residence/docview/1518951434/se-2.

This Week in University History – Space Shuttle Discovery Mission Patch presentation

March 24, 2022 will mark the 30th anniversary of Astronaut and Photographer Roberta Bondar’s visit to Ryerson to present then President Terry Grier with space mission patches – including one bearing the school’s coat of arms, that had been to space aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery.

framed space shuttle discovery mission patches and Ryerson Crest patch
Space Shuttle Discovery mission patches and Ryerson crest patch (RG 12.85)

Why would these be presented to our school? Because Roberta Bondar had been studying and researching the effect of blood flow under weightless conditions and its effect on space adaptation (dizziness, nausea etc) with the help of Ryerson’s Centre for Advanced Technology Education (CATE). Under contract with the Canadian Space Agency, researchers at CATE were working on experiment methodology, modeling, evaluation, data collection and analysis. You can read more about relationship in the following articles from the Forum Newsletter:

Spring on Campus

Spring came in on March 20 this year and on campus this means the budding of the trees and the blooming of the wonderful smelling trees in the Kerr Hall Quad.

Many of us won’t get the chance to take in the campus green spaces in person this Spring, so at Archives and Special Collections, we thought it would be nice to look back at Spring on campus from years past.

“These are a few of our favourite things…” – The Expo Watch Camera

The staff in Archives and Special Collections bring you some of our favourite things. Objects and photographs from the collections that hold a special place in our hearts. Each week will highlight a different item, along with an explanation of why it stands out.

With such an amazing collection of materials – sometimes it is hard to pick just one…

This week’s post is Curatorial Specialist Olivia Wong’s choice:

Expo Watch Camera (2005.006.06.02)

Some of my favourite objects in the collection are specialized film and photography equipment. The Expo Watch Camera is part of our selection of detective or disguise cameras. As the name suggests, this novelty camera is the shape and size of a pocket watch. It uses a miniature daylight film cartridge that can hold up to twenty-five 16 x 22 mm exposures. The camera has a detachable external viewfinder, and the exposures are captured through the watch’s winding stem (the knob serves as a lens cap!)

This nifty gadget was manufactured by the Expo Camera Company in New York City between the early 1900s until 1939. An advertisement for the camera in a 1917 Photoplay Magazine stated: “Photography made a pleasure instead of a burden. You can carry the EXPO about in your pocket, and take a picture without any one being the wiser.” To see the full ad, click here

To learn more about the Expo Watch Camera, click here

To see what else is in the Heritage Camera Collection, click here

“These are a few of our favourite things…” – Jack Layton Library

The staff in Archives and Special Collections brings you some of our favourite things. Objects and photographs from the collections that hold a special place in our hearts. Each post will highlight a different item, along with an explanation of why it stands out.

With such an amazing collection of materials – sometimes it is hard to pick just one…

This post is Archival Technician Cathy McMaster’s choice:

“The Pilgrim’s Progress” by John Bunyan, a religious allegory, first published in 1678. This edition was published ca. 1900 (F 404.2.733)

I chose this wonderful little book, the story of which is the oldest religious allegory in English literature still in print. This edition is over 100 years old, in good condition, and with a personal inscription to “Lily” from her teacher, “N.M. Robb” (no date). But, it is what I discovered between pages 144 and 145 that makes this book much more special – a pressed four-leaf clover. Who found this rare plant? Jack Layton perhaps? Or, if it was Lily (or even N.M. Robb) who placed it in the book, that little plant is old. Not only a wondrous find back in the day, but also amazing it is still in this book, possibly for 120 years.  Good luck or no, it was a special find for that person and for me.

An elusive four leaf clover
  • To see other book titles in the Jack Layton library – click here
  • To see what else is in the Jack Layton fonds – click here

“These are a few of our favourite things…” – Motion Slides

The staff in Archives and Special Collections brings you some of our favourite things. Objects and photographs from the collections that hold a special place in our hearts. Each post will highlight a different item, along with an explanation of why it stands out.

With such an amazing collection of materials – sometimes it is hard to pick just one…

This post is Special Collections Librarian Alison Skyrme’s choice:

In 2017, Special Collections received a generous donation of magic lantern slide projectors and slides from collector John Tysall. Magic Lantern Slides were projected in private homes, educational institutions, and public forums, and covered topics from amusing anecdotes, moral tales, world tours, and scientific or other educational topics. In addition to foretelling later 35mm slides and, eventually, digital presentation tools such as PowerPoint and Google Slides, the format of 19th century magic lantern slides were also a precursor to motion pictures. Motion was incorporated into magic lantern presentations in a variety of ways, including multiple lens projectors, movable hand-held projectors, and individual slides with moveable, hand painted scenes. A variety of techniques were used to create movement, including a glass overlay with selective blackout that was moved to conceal and reveal portions of the drawing to give the impression of movement (these were called slip slides). Other mechanical techniques included levers, pulleys, and rackwork. These motion slides are some of my favorite items in the collection because of their ingenuity and whimsy.

To learn more about the John Tysall collection – click here

“These are a few of our favourite things…” – Fraggle Rock

The staff in Archives and Special Collections brings you some of our favourite things. Objects and photographs from the collections that hold a special place in our hearts. Each post will highlight a different item, along with an explanation of why it stands out.

With such an amazing collection of materials – sometimes it is hard to pick just one…

This post is Archivist Curtis Sassur’s choice:

Photograph taken on set during the filming of the television series “Fraggle Rock” (2012.005.02.86)

I love this photo because I was a big fan of the show Fraggle Rock as a kid, but also because this image, like many others within the Hackborn Fonds, highlights Robert Hackborn’s casually keen photographic eye. At first glance, it seems like the shot could be a still from the show, but then the subtle production elements at the bottom of the image tease a little notion of the creative process entailed in producing a principally puppet-powered program such as this.

  • To see what other photographs are in this series – click here
  • To see what else is in the Robert Hackborn fonds – click here

“These are a few of our favourite things…” – Birth of a Campus

The staff in Archives and Special Collections brings you some of our favourite things. Objects and photographs from the collections that hold a special place in our hearts. Each post will highlight a different item, along with an explanation of why it stands out.

With such an amazing collection of materials – sometimes it is hard to pick just one…

This post is Archival Technician Rosalynn MacKenzie’s choice:

Excavation of the north end of the property, ca.1961

This is one of hundreds of photographs taken by late Ryerson Professor Charles Roy Horney. They are especially poignant as they document the “birth” of Ryerson’s campus with the construction of Kerr Hall and the demolition of the old Normal School buildings. Ryerson started out essentially as an experiment, but by the 1960’s it was really coming into its own and the construction of Kerr Hall represents this to me.

I picked this specific photograph because it shows how Kerr Hall was constructed. This shows the end of Unit I (which runs along Church Street from the corner of Gould to the corner of Gerrard) and the excavation for the Unit II.

  • To see a listing of the other photographs in this file – click here
  • To see what else is in the C. Roy Horney fonds – click here

Canadian Radio and Television History at Ryerson – November 1949

This month marks the 70th anniversary of two important Ryerson and Canadian milestones – The opening of CJRT – Canada’s first educational radio station on the FM band, and the broadcast of “This is the Fashion – marking Canada’s first live television show produced for a general audience.

CJRT FM is on Air

On November 1, 1949 Canada’s first educational radio station on the FM band went on the air. The station was licensed as a completely non-commercial enterprise and operated in conjunction with Ryerson’s Schools of Broadcasting and Electronics. The University of Toronto, the Ontario Department of Education and other Boards of Education in and around Toronto would also take part in programming. The first night of broadcasting was 3 hours in length and included a half hour of recorded music, followed by “CJRT Testing” a documentary on FM broadcasting and CJRT, and finally a concerto of works by a variety of composers.

  • Ryerson Radio Club

The station was officially opened on November 22, 1949 by Ontario Premier Leslie Frost and Ontario Minister of Education Dana Porter

“CJRT Finest in the World – Frost” Ryerson Institute of Technology The Little Daily

This is the Fashion

On November 14, 1949 Staff and students from Ryerson’s Schools of Fashion Design, Electronics, and Broadcasting combined their talents for “This is the Fashion”, a 20 minute live fashion/comedy broadcast. Using equipment loaned from Famous Players, the show was performed in the School’s boardroom and broadcast to an audience of 200 Radio Industry professionals in the school’s auditorium. The purpose of the night was to promote FM radio and FM radio tuners.