Thursday, January 6, 2011

Queen and Ossington/Then and Now

Looking west along Queen at the foot of today's Ossington. When this photo was taken in 1919
This intersection was the start of Dundas Street. It would be many years until the various small streets that make up today's Dundas would be joined together.
The hotel on the right is were James Earl Ray spent his days in the summer of 1968 and to the left the original north wall of the Lunatic Asylum. According to Ron Brown in his excellent book, Toronto's Lost Villages, the tavern's name was "The Gondoratu". An earlier Hotel on the same site was called "The Queen's Head".
This photo is from 2010 (Google) and while the old hotel is still there it won't be for long.
The old hotel during demolition in the summer of 2010.
A section of the original wall (1846) surrounding the Asylum.
The original Provincial Lunatic Asylum was designed by John Howard and stood on the same site as today's facility on Queen at the foot of Ossington.
Built in 1850 it survived until 1956.
Looking south down Ossington in 1920 the Asylum's dome is visible in the distance.
A hand tinted postcard of the Asylum from 1910.


  1. Well done on the opening image. I had to look twice. I love the way you dressed in the old and new. great work. Hey do you mind if I borrow the picture of the Lunatic Asylum for a piece im writing on Dr Rees and the Reese Wharf recently excavated on Toronto lake shore.

  2. Thanks,
    The old photos are all public domain, so fell free to use them.