All posts filed under: Streets

345 Carlaw Avenue: Then and Now

345 Carlaw Avenue sits on a site by a lost creek, probably fished by the Mississauga and other First Nations for millennia. In the nineteenth century it was farmland and then market gardens, and then brick yard. Then in the early 20th Century Carlaw Avenue became the industrial heartland of Toronto’s East End and the quiet country lane changed forever. One of the firms that made its name on Carlaw was the Roden Bros. Ltd. Thomas and Frank came to Canada in 1879 and established a silversmith business in Montreal. They branched out into cutting glass as well. At the time, Roden had a sterling reputation (pun intended) and became: a household name with prestigious esteem amongst the affluent of Ontario.[1] Thomas and Frank Roden came to Toronto and founded Roden Brothers in 1891. Their first factory was at 99 ½ King Street West near York Street.[2] They turned out a wide range of silver hollowware and flatware in traditional English styles such as Stratford, Queens, and Louis XV.  Roden Bros. Ltd. was incorporated in 1912. …

Get away from it all on the Queen Car: a virtual escape through Leslieville to the Beach

One’s destination is never a place, but rather a new way of looking at things. – Henry Miller The Red Rocket, Presidents’ Conference Committee Car. T.T.C., 1966 View of original Eaton’s store and Old City Hall at Yonge and Queen Street June 15 1971 View of front of Simpson’s with holiday decorations, Yonge and Queen Street West, November 22, 1973 View of Queen Street East at Yonge St Jan. 30, 1982 View of Eaton’s Queen Street store, April 5, 1977 View of Queen Street East at Church Street, looking east, June 2, 1981 View of Queen Street East at Jarvis Street, looking east, July 9, 1977 Sherbourne and Queen, looking east,  June 6, 1981 View of Queen Street East, view east at Parliament Street, July 9, 1977 View of Queen Street East at Parliament Street, June 6, 1981 From Tracy  Street looking East towards River Street and the Don Bridge, July 9, 1977 View of Queen Street East, looking east to Don bridge, May 11, 1977 View of Dominion Breweries on Queen Street East, June …

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, …

Weaving Our History: The Isaac Price House and the Underground Railroad

An interesting house from the outside, the Isaac Price House at 216 Greenwood is even more interesting in ways we cannot imagine as threads of history run through it, weaving into a larger tapestry that includes the Underground Railroad. Isaac Price and Annie Margaret Price (nee Simpson) Toronto Star, Jan. 4, 1930 Isaac Price (Ike to his friends) was born on November 18, 1854 in Bridgwater, Somerset, England, into a family where the brickmaking trade was passed down through generations. John Price was the first brother to come to Canada, arriving in 1864, followed shortly by the rest of the family and many others from Bridgwater. This large brick villa showcases the Price skill and their products. It is featured on this advertisement for Riverdale Gardens, the subdivision from Prust to Greenwood, north of Gerrard.  William Prust (1847-1927), an English shoemaker turned carpenter and contractor, lived on the west side of Greenwood just north of Annie and Isaac Price. The area was then an old orchard. Prust wanted to save the trees as much as he …

Leslieville

Announcing a “Leslieville”, a new history by Joanne Doucette, available June 18, 2016. George Leslie was Canada’s “Johnny Appleseed”, owner of the country in the 19th century. His apple trees, grown in this country’s largest tree nursery of the time, went across Canada and even both the Atlantic and Pacific to Europe and Asia. His efforts made orchards a major industry and apples a major Canadian export crop. His Toronto Nursery was responsible for trees on city streets and along country roads, in parks, public places and people’s yards from Nova Scotia to British Columbia. He promoted sustainable forestry before the concept was invented. The book also tells of the Scottish Highlanders in the Napoleonic Wars and the Highland Clearances which formed their character and those descendants who played and still plays such a large role in history. The book tells of the major industries in Leslieville: abattoirs and cattle ranching: growing vegetables, fruit and flowers; and brickmaking. Chapters explore the First Nations history of Leslieville, the life of the early settlers, taverns and shebeens, …