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Miscellany Toronto Photographs: Then and Now

Mustapha

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Unfortunately, Toronto in the 19th century was hardly an oasis of tolerance for the Irish:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=980DE5DD133BEF34BC4C53DFB667838E669FDE

http://gladius-spiritus.blogspot.ca/2011/01/part-two-fo-brief-history-of-toronto.html

http://www.umanitoba.ca/colleges/st_pauls/ccha/Back Issues/CCHA1959/Galvin.pdf

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So much for 'Toronto the Good'; of course that was written in 1898, after this transpired.

I had to look up 'Dummer Street' as it was mentioned a couple times. It's now St. Patrick Street.

What a fascinating series of articles, thecharioteer. I did not know anything like this happened. I wonder if this is taught in secondary schools today?
 

Mustapha

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Then and Now for November 14, 2012.




Then. Price's Lane, again. Aug 23, 1914. Looking north this time. The small girl at far right poses for this photographer again that day - the picture can be found online at the Toronto Archives [search 'Price's Lane'] - and she is still barefoot.

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Now. April 2012. If our barefoot young girl is still alive she would be about 100.

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It's almost certain this kind of housing had no toilet or bathing facilities; one wonders if they even had drains.

As late as the 1960s, a group of Chinese 'bachelors' in their 60s and older lived on Foster Place [behind New City Hall], in a series of rooms in a Chinese benevolent society building [demolished]. There were no bathing facilities either - they had to go to the bath house on Stephanie; which is still there. I still remember the smell inside in the heat of summer.
 

Mustapha

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Then and Now for November 15, 2012.




thecharioteer: To my mind, aerial (or near aerials - those taken from rooftops or upper story windows) Then and Nows are the most compelling of the Then and Now genre.

There are quite a few aerial/rooftop Thens at the Toronto Archives but I've never gotten up the nerve to ask for rooftop access.

Below is a Then for which I wouldn't mind doing a Now. I do have a question about this picture. The Toronto archives describes it as 'View of high buildings from Royal Bank. April 22, 1929.' My question is: which Royal Bank building? I'm guessing the caption should read Royal York (Hotel).

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Can anyone here get me access into the higher regions of the Royal York Hotel? :)

Mustapha: When's your anniversary? Take your wife and book the north-facing Royal Suite (if there is one).......


It also makes sense that it would from the Royal York, since it would have been completed that year and nothing else was as tall at the time. I also haven't found anything that would suggest the presence of a major Royal Bank building in that approximate location.



The most interesting thing there, behind the Ford Hotel: the rising skeleton of Eaton's College Street. (And discernable behind Queen's Park, the Park Plaza/Hyatt, which I don't know what it would've looked like close up at this time, as it was an unfinished white elephant for several years...)

Not to mention the skeleton of Canada Permanent behind the Star (though that's far more obvious)




Today, the public relations staff of the Royal York Hotel gave me their kind co-operation and access to get the Now views below. The first three are respectively looking NW, then N, then NE from the Rooftop Garden. Needless to say the Now/modern view has been blocked by buildings (#s 95 and 79) on Wellington Street. There was an attempt made to find the small 'gap' between #'s 95 and 79 to get a picture across the street to the north, but the Royal York stairwells were in the wrong positions, the horror. :)

The Rooftop Garden is not a public area. Anna thought there might be a tea pavilion up there. :) It is a flat roof covered in stone pebbles; there are beehives and a number of raised beds for herbs for the hotel kitchens. Access is through a machinery room. They do give tours but a search on the internet shows these are very occasional. So, I have to break the bad news to the missus. :)


Enjoy the view. I would like to thank the Royal York Hotel public relations staff again, and especially for pointing out to me out their extensive photograph gallery from their archives on the mezzanine level - very worthwhile of your time to visit. If you can't visit, check out their Facebook page; many vintage pictures there.


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One of the pictures in their mezzanine gallery:

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Earlscourt_Lad

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Enjoy the view. I would like to thank the Royal York Hotel public relations staff again, and especially for pointing out to me out their extensive photograph gallery from their archives on the mezzanine level - very worthwhile of your time to visit. If you can't visit, check out their Facebook page; many vintage pictures there.

The Royal York deserves a hearty thank you from us Miscellaniers (I think I just made up a word).
 

adma

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The Rooftop Garden is not a public area. Anna thought there might be a tea pavilion up there. :) It is a flat roof covered in stone pebbles; there are beehives and a number of raised beds for herbs for the hotel kitchens. Access is through a machinery room. They do give tours but a search on the internet shows these are very occasional. So, I have to break the bad news to the missus. :)

Actually, I believe said beehives and herb beds might be the bigger alibi for said "tours" these days--the Royal York being a pioneer in such "rooftop gardening"...
 

Mustapha

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Then and Now for November 16, 2012.



Then. 'Main floor of the Adams store. City Hall Square'. At some point the Eatons store expanded into this space; I'm guessing in the 1920s... And of course the Eatons store is gone over 30 years now.

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Now. Office building lobby, NE corner of James and Queen W. June 2012.

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Earlscourt_Lad

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Goldie

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Then. 'Main floor of the Adams store. City Hall Square'. At some point the Eatons store expanded into this space; I'm guessing in the 1920s... And of course the Eatons store is gone over 30 years now.

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JT Cunningham wants to contribute this photo to the Adam's Furniture story - attached
 

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nostalgic

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Staying with retail, I found an interesting write-up about construction of the “new” Simpsons store in the October 1895 issue of Canadian Architect and Builder. The iron structure was made by the Hamilton bridgeworks, then assembled at the store site. (Vol. 8, issue 10, page 115). If you go back several issues you’ll find a drawing of the proposed store, plus floor plan.

http://digital.library.mcgill.ca/cab/search/browse_frameset.htm

Lots of attention to fireproofing. (it was replacing the previous store, which had been destroyed by fire.)

The various issues of the above mag contain some fascinating info. While so many lavish public buildings were going up in Toronto in the 1890s, typhoid, diphtheria and cholera were still a real threat from the sewage in Ashbridges Bay marsh, and the open privies. (An editorial about it in one issue called for something to be done about the conditions asap.) We look at the old buildings and tend to forget the reality.)
 

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