Month: October 2016

Photos of Carlaw the Man and Street

These pictures do not fit neatly into any category but they are neat. Major Carlaw is listed as “capitalist”. In those days that was considered a very good thing indeed…at least by the “better half”. The magnificent facial hair that men of the era loved fell out of favour during the great influenza pandemic of 1918-19. Mustaches were then scene unsanitary and hotbeds of flu “germs”

Carlaw Avenue: Rolph-Clark-Stone the Building

  If you had stood at the corner of Queen and Carlaw in 1910, you wouldn’t see many factories except Phillips Manufacturing Co. Ltd. on the west side. The land on the east side was owned by wealthy brickyard owner John Russell. A City Alderman, he somehow failed to pay his municipal property taxes. The City of Toronto seized and sold his land between Carlaw and Boston. Russell fought back, but lost at the Privy Council in London, England, the last court of appeal in those days. In 1912 the City of Toronto used that land to develop Carlaw as an industrial artery in the East End. Manufacturers quickly seized the opportunity. By 1921 factories with belching smokestacks dominated Carlaw. Labourers filled Carlaw, coming to work to the sound of factory whistles and going home at shift change. In the minds of residents, the noise, pollutions and jobs naturally went together and were welcome. Not that people did not want higher wages and better working conditions. The birth of the new factory involved some “hard labour” …

Rolph-Clark-Stone Ltd., 201 Carlaw

  May my invention become known throughout the entire world by benefiting mankind in manifold ways through exquisite (printed) goods. May this only ever serve purposes of refinement, but never be abused for purposes of evil. May the Almighty Father grant this! May the hour be blessed in which I invented lithography!  Johann Alois Senefelder, (1771-1834), Inventor of Lithography Our next stop on our journey up Carlaw Avenue is 201 Carlaw Avenue. This plant was one of the largest employers in Toronto’s printing industry in 1921. By the late twentieth century Rolph-Clark-Stone Limited, lithographers will be one of the largest graphic art firms in Canada. Cutting machine, Toronto Lithography Co., 1898. The Rolph-Clark-Stone Limited Building was impressive in 1921 and will continue to be so even in 2016. It is an excellent example of an industrial building from the period of the First World War. On March 06, 2007, the City of Toronto included 201 Carlaw Avenue on its Inventory of Heritage Properties. It is one of only two Carlaw Avenue buildings to be designated a …

Time Travel Carlaw: Queen Street East Presbyterian and 181-183 Carlaw Avenue

Come with us way, way back to Carlaw Avenue 1921. We are going to walk up the east side of Carlaw all the way to Gerrard, experiencing some of the views and imagining some of the sounds and smells of Leslieville’s main industrial district. As we walk north away from Eastern Avenue towards Queen, we see how closely housing and factories sit. There was no city planning legislation in Ontario until just before World War One. Small working class houses line Carlaw up to Queen. Meet some new immigrants, mostly from England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, along with some families who’ve been in Leslieville for years — Fogartys, Snooks and others.   A Presbyterian Church anchors the southeast corner of Queen and Carlaw. On November 16, 1877 local Presbyterians with the help of Rev. J.M. Cameron founded Leslieville Presbyterian Church. They worshipped in the Orange Hall (Gowan’s Hall). George Leslie, prominent nurseryman, is the first name in the Church’s register. On November 25th, 1877 they celebrated Holy Communion for the first time. Members built a new red brick …

Time Travel Carlaw: 1920s South of Eastern Avenue

Is time travel possible? Maybe not literally (yet), but with a little imagination, some good pictures, and a smidgen of narrative, the past can come alive. Use your imagination to go up Carlaw Avenue in the mid-1920s with the Leslieville Historical Society.     Foot of Carlaw Avenue, City of Toronto Archives         First stop, just south of Eastern Avenue on the shore of what is left of Ashbridges Bay. A wave of pure stink washes over you. Raw sewage in the water competes with the over-powering smells from Fuller Stanbury Co., pork packers and the penetrating stench of tallow renderers on your right hand as you face north. At your left H. B. Johnston & Co.’s tannery reeks to high heaven. But that’s just one smell and we’ve just begun. Consumer’s Gas plants on Eastern Avenue near McGee are belching smoke into the air, as are dozens of factories.         Tannery Ashbridge’s Bay, 1926 (Toronto Public Library) Looking north from Eastern Avenue at the rail overpass into the industrial heart of Leslieville, …