Back in 1907, Shacktown was springing up along Coxwell and Gerrard and new streets welcomed British immigrants with their “tarpaper castles” and big dreams. New names filled the City Directories, creating a puzzle for their compilers and editors. Just what to call this new suburb?
This area was not part of the City of Toronto until 1909, but neither was it part of the Town of East Toronto east of Norwood Road. It was in the old Township of York East.
City Directories, like many others, did not know what to call the “no man’s land” between the City of Toronto and the Town of East Toronto. Here they lump it in with the old village of Norway which was originally centered around the “four corners” at Kingston Road and Woodbine. But many others called it “Midway”, simply because it was midway between Toronto and East Toronto.
Almost 100 acres of the hilly, ravine-cut area belonged to the Toronto Golf Club. The Golf Club stretched between Coxwell and Woodbine, north of what is now Dundas Street, all the way to Norwood Road.
The City changed many of the street names. Berkeley became Edgewood; Reid became Rhodes, etc. Many of the new immigrants were trades people who built their own houses and the more upscale bungalows of the 1920’s. Painters, carpenters, bricklayers, plumbers and electricians, and others, from Scotland, northern Ireland, and England filled in the area between Greenwood and Coxwell. East of Woodbine the older Town of East Toronto was home to a huge Grand Trunk Railway yard at Main Street. Conductors, porters, engineers and other railway workers lived in company houses built by the railway or their own homes.
If you are interested in the neighbourhood, check this Directory out!