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Category: Social Sciences, Toronto

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, Toronto Public Library's virtual exhibition that celebrates 10,000 years of the city's history. It recreates the exhibition on display at the TD Gallery, Toronto Reference Library, June 29 - September 22, 2002 and May 17 - August 2, 2003. Images are from the Library's Special Collections and private collections. The virtual exhibition is divided into five eras, beginning with the first human presence in the city 8000 BC and ending with modern city of 2003. You can explore the city's past by clicking one of the images on the map or a time period on the navigation bar. Each era begins with an Overview History , which summarizes the major trends and developments that shaped that time period.

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Introduction The Special Collections at the Toronto Reference Library reveal a wonderful diversity of focus, form, age and content. Together, they form a cultural legacy that began in the late nineteenth century with the opening of Toronto's first public library. They continue to grow through acquisition and donation to ensure that users today and tomorrow have free access to their cultural and literary heritage. From the humble to the exquisite, each item in the collection has been treasured and preserved, and its story maintained by the librarians of the Toronto Public Library. In celebration of the Toronto Reference Library's thirtieth year at 789 Yonge Street, we proudly present a special exhibition from these collected works.

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Toronto is celebrating its 175 th anniversary by engaging the community to a number of events. The city’s celebrations include museum tours, literary reading and book launches, music, art, festivals and a song competition. In celebration of this anniversary, Toronto Public Library invites you to explore Toronto's past with material from the Special Collections at the Toronto Reference Library. Click on each image below to explore. To learn more about the history of Toronto, explore these past exhibits: Also, check out the following two books from our Curator's Showcase : To search for more historical images of Toronto from our collections:

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On July 1st, Canadians from coast to coast will proudly wave the red and white Maple Leaf flag. But how many are aware that the tradition started here, in Toronto? At the time of Confederation in 1867, the maple leaf as a symbol of Canadian patriotism was relatively new. At a public meeting in August, 1860, a group of Toronto citizens, planning for the upcoming Royal Visit of the Prince of Wales, decided to identify themselves as native-born Canadians by wearing a maple leaf. This leather badge was worn at the reception for the Prince of Wales held in Toronto on September 7, 1860. Although the maple leaf had previously been used as a symbol for Canada, this was the first occasion on which it was worn as a national emblem.

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Gone Fishin’ Torontonians have a long and happy tradition of heading north to cottage country during the long, hot days of summer. In the 1860s the Muskoka Club was established by a group of Toronto adventurers who led annual expeditions to the Muskoka wilderness. By the 1870s several of the members had purchased land on Lake Joseph, and the tradition of summer cottaging was born. In 1898 a group of professors and alumni from the University of Toronto joined together to purchase recreational property in Go Home Bay, on Georgian Bay, held as shares in the Madawaska Club. Many of the cottagers in Go Home are descendants of those first Madawaska Club members.

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Royal Visits to Toronto. Toronto has hosted many royal visits. Anniversaries, fundraisers, conferences, athletic competitions and military duty are some of the events and occasions that royalty have celebrated or attended. These visits have included walkabouts and drive-bys that gave the public and media the opportunity to take photographs and catch glimpses of members of the royal family. George VI, visit to Toronto, 22 May 1939, at the King’s Plate, Woodbine (now Greenwood) Race Track, Queen St. E.

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Blessed with many ravines, wooded lots and parklands, early Toronto residents were able to enjoy many winter outdoor activies right in their own neighbourhoods. Sleighing, tobogganing, bobsledding, skating, curling, hockey, skiing and snowshoeing were all popular forms of winter recreation. As the city grew and prospered, clubs and associations formed, championships were organized and new facilities were built to meet the demand. Horse drawn sleighs were used to transport goods from farm to city stores in wintertime and wealthy businessmen had them in their stables. Toronto companies would occasionally decide to reward their employees by organizing group horse sleigh rides in High Park. Letter, 29 December 1883 Tobogganing became a popular sport in the late 19th century.

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Toronto Orphanages and Day Nurseries Introduction In the early half of the nineteenth century, it was common practice for orphaned or deserted children to be bound into apprenticeships. By mid-century, adoption and institutional care began to emerge as alternatives to apprenticeship. Orphanages or children's "homes" and day nurseries provided residential care for children in need. By the 1920s, institutional care was gradually phased out and replaced by programmes of foster care, or "boarding out". Day nurseries evolved as the pre-cursor to daycare centres. Reports and Papers from Toronto's early child care agencies reflect society's evolving attitudes towards childcare and the work ethic from the mid-1800s to the early 1900s.

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