“The railway and the harbour, both of which had such a great impact on the commercial and industrial economy of the city, were highlighted in later 19th-century views, such as that by G. Gascard in 1876.
The harbour and rail system had become a source of pride, symbolizing the city's growth and progress. Gascard's aerial view depicts at least six trains at the foot of the city and more than fourteen ships in the harbour. Buildings such as the churches and educational institutions that were so important in views before are still evident, but are secondary to the railways and harbour. The popularity of this image was reflected in its use as the mast-head for a Toronto newspaper [The Toronto Advertiser, in 1878. -N.].”
- Sharon Vattay, Visions of Toronto. Journal of the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada, Vol. 23, No. 1
Click the image to view a LARGE version.
City of Toronto Bird’s Eye View from the Northern Railway elevator, 1876
Drawn by G. Gascard (fl. 1873 - 1877).
Lithograph on wove paper, printed by Alexander Craig, Toronto.
Image courtesy Toronto Public Library, TRL, J. Ross Robertson Collection, JRR 745.
Here is the numbered key to the map:
1. Northern Railway shops.
2. Northern Railway offices, n.w. corner Brock and Front.
3. Knox College.
4. University of Toronto.
5. St. George's Church.
6. St. Patrick's Church.
7. Foot of Windsor St. (now Railway freight yards).
8. Grand Trunk Railway round house on esplanade.
9. Toronto Water Works.
10. John St.
11. Government House.
12. Parliament Buildings.
13. Osgoode Hall.
14. St. Michael's Cathedral.
15. Metropolitan Church.
16. Union Station.
17. St. James' Cathedral.
18. St. Lawrence Hall.
19. Old City Hall.
20. Old Great Western Station.
21. Yonge Street wharf.
22. York Street Wharf.
23. Grand Trunk Railway Elevator.
Alexander Craig was a printer located at 13 Adelaide East.
This map was printed with vignettes of commercial businesses around the edges, similar to the 1876 Gross Bird’s Eye View and the 1851 Fleming Topographical Map of Toronto. [The copy at the Archives of Ontario apparently includes these vignettes]
A miniature, slightly altered version of the map was used in this 1884 'Semi-Centennial Celebration' souvenir brochure:
and again for this 1896 brochure (20 years on!):
Images courtesy Toronto Public Library. Sources: 1st, 2nd
For comparison, check out this (unfortunately somewhat obscured) 1870 photograph from the same vantage point (atop the Northern Railway elevator):
Toronto harbour ca. 1870. View from Northern Railway Elevator, foot of Spadina Ave., looking east past Grand Trunk Railway wharf and elevator
Image courtesy Toronto Public Library: B 12-20b
See Also [Bird’s Eye Views]
1870 Canadian Railway News Bird’s Eye View of Toronto
1876 PA Gross Bird’s Eye View of Toronto
1886 Wesbroom: City of Toronto [Bird’s Eye View]
1892 Toronto Railway Company Map Shewing Toronto Street Railway Lines
1893 Barclay, Clark & Co. Bird’s Eye View Chromolithograph
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