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John P.
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On April 18 and beyond, those interested in Toronto history are invited to take a moment to remember journalist and philanthropist John Ross Robertson (Born: December 28, 1841 in Toronto; Died: May 31, 1918 in Toronto) who founded the Toronto Telegram newspaper on April 18, 1876. The Telegram ceased publication... Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2019 at Local History & Genealogy
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The Ontario Legislative Building that adorns Queen’s Park in downtown Toronto at the present time was officially opened on April 4, 1893 (after six years of construction from 1886 to 1892) in an incomplete state by the then-Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, George Airey Kirkpatrick. The building was designed by British-American... Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2019 at Local History & Genealogy
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Toronto’s first subway underneath Yonge Street officially opened on March 30, 1954. How did the print media capture the moment of that auspicious beginning? Wilfred List, writer of “$50,000,000 Bundle of Joy: TTC Nervous as Expectant Father” in the March 30, 1954 issue of the Globe and Mail on pages... Continue reading
Posted Mar 31, 2019 at Local History & Genealogy
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On March 6 and beyond, take a look back to the celebrations surrounding the centenary of the pre-amalgamated City of Toronto on March 6, 1934. How did the newspapers of the day report upon the City’s centenary during the Great Depression? Let us examine some article excerpts from both the... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2019 at Local History & Genealogy
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The emotions of Canadians and Torontonians who follow the game of basketball are often intertwined with the fortunes with the only Canadian-based team in the National Basketball Association (NBA), namely the Toronto Raptors. However, Canadian ties to this popular game go right back to the game’s infancy and its invention... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2018 at Arts & Culture
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Some Canadians and Torontonians are familiar with the Battle of Ortona that took place in southern Italy in late 1943. Brendan Kennedy, writing in the Toronto Star on December 17, 2018, provided a crucial link between Toronto and that battle by interviewing three Canadian veterans (who had a connection to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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The fighting in the First World War came to an end on November 11, 1918. So what would Torontonians have read in the newspapers on November 11, 1918? Why not take a look at some of the content in the Toronto Daily Star and of the Globe (one of the... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On November 8 and beyond, take a moment to remember one of Canada’s preeminent economic historians, Harold Adams Innis (Born: November 21, 1894 at Otterville, Ontario [according to his military attestation papers]; Died: November 8, 1952 at Toronto, Ontario). In the November 8, 1952 issue of the Toronto Daily Star... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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Many Torontonians love baseball and avidly follow the Toronto Blue Jays from Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Toronto Maple Leafs of the Intercounty Baseball League (IBL). Yet, if those of us interested in Toronto history and baseball history both go back in time over 100 years ago and stop... Continue reading
Posted Sep 6, 2018 at Arts & Culture
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As one celebrates Labour Day on the first Monday in September each year, take a moment and go back in time to September 3, 1894 when the first official Labour Day was celebrated in Canada, Ontario, and Toronto. The federal Conservative government of Sir John Sparrow Thompson implemented the first... Continue reading
Posted Sep 6, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
On August 14 and beyond, many Ontarians and Torontonians might wish to remind themselves where they were on Thursday August 14, 2003 at about 4:11 p.m. EDT (Eastern Daylight Time) in the afternoon when the power went out, and what they did in the hours and days ahead until the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 15, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On August 2 and beyond, take a step back into Toronto’s history to remember the anti-Greek riot that beset Toronto from August 2-5, 1918 and played a role in shaping the city’s future. The riot stemmed from an incident in an eating establishment and some inaccurate information circulating about Greece... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On July 25 and beyond, take a moment to reflect back on the War of 1812 and in particular the Battle of Lundy’s Lane (also known as the Battle of Niagara Falls) that took place on July 25, 1814. Earlier in July 1814, American forces attacked across the Niagara River... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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July 20 is International Chess Day! July 20 gained such recognition from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1966 to commemorate the founding of the World Chess Federation (known also as la Fédération Internationale des Échecs and by its French acronym FIDÉ) on July 20, 1924... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2018 at Arts & Culture
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Take a moment to remember one-time World Champion sculler Edward (Ned) Hanlan (Born: 12 July 1855 in Toronto; Died: 4 January 1908 in Toronto). Ned Hanlan was the first Canadian athlete to become a world champion in a sporting event for individuals and the first individual Canadian athlete to be... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On June 8 and beyond, take a moment to reflect upon the disputed Toronto Purchase of 1787 and its eventual compensatory settlement reached on June 8, 2010 between the Government of Canada and the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation, an Anishinaabe-speaking Mississauga Ojibwa First Nation located on an... Continue reading
Posted Jun 10, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On May 10-11, take a moment to look back to 1968 when the Bloor-Danforth subway line (now known as Line 2 Bloor-Danforth), under the auspices of the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC), was extended to Islington Station in Etobicoke and to Warden Station in Scarborough. The official opening of the extensions... Continue reading
Posted May 12, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On April 27 and beyond, Torontonians and others with an interest in Toronto’s history may wish to pause a moment and go back to April 27, 1813 when York (Toronto’s forerunner), the capital of Upper Canada (predecessor of the Province of Ontario), was invaded and sacked by American forces at... Continue reading
Posted Apr 27, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On April 19 and beyond, those with an interest in Toronto’s history might look back to the Great Fire of Toronto that occurred on April 19, 1904. (This was the second such fire in Toronto’s history following the Great Fire of Toronto that happened on April 7, 1849.) G.W. Shorter,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On April 13 and beyond, take a moment to remember the Toronto Islands that make up an important portion of the City of Toronto’s waterfront. Individuals who follow Toronto’s history may be interested to know that “(t)he Toronto Islands were not always islands but actually a series of continuously moving... Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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Women from all backgrounds and walks of life have made their contribution to Canada. This is true in the political realm as well. On March 24 and beyond, take a moment to remember the contributions and life of Agnes Campbell MacPhail (Born: March 24, 1890 in Proton Township, Grey County,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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Many Torontonians and Canadians are familiar with the name William Lyon Mackenzie. Yes, that is the same William Lyon Mackenzie (1795-1861) who served as the first Mayor of Toronto, as one of the leaders in the Rebellions of 1837, as well as a journalist and a Member of the Legislative... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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On March 22 and beyond, take a moment to look back at the origins of a life-saving substance for many diabetics called insulin and those involved in its isolation, refinement and reproduction. Much of the story was relayed in a previous blog post called Remembering Sir Frederick Banting and Insulin:... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
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Hockey fans in Canada look forward to the start of the ice hockey season each autumn and the start of the playoffs each spring, including those who follow the National Hockey League (NHL) to see which professional team will win the Stanley Cup championship trophy. Let's take a moment to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2018 at Arts & Culture
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On March 6 and beyond, take a moment to reach back into the history of the city of Toronto and learn about Toronto Public Library and its first Central Library (at the northeast corner of Church and Adelaide Streets). Central Library opened officially on March 6, 1884 (the 50th anniversary... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy