1893 Fisk and Co. Map of Toronto

These Atlas maps represent in a certain sense an ‘outsider’s’ view of Toronto. They are straightforward and unadorned with the loving details of maps intended for local usage.

The utilitarian street map of Toronto shown below notably indicates steam-driven railway lines and horse-drawn transit (streetcar) routes. Also of interest are the very clearly labelled wharves along the waterfront.

Major structures are shown. Observe the size and scale of the ‘Lunatic Asylum’ on Queen Street. Meanwhile, within the area marked as Queen’s Park, the Ontario Legislative Building was still under construction and oddly doesn’t appear -- though the old King’s College/Provincial Lunatic Asylum building on the east side is shown. It’s remarkable how prominent Taddle Creek is (beside University College)! McCaul’s Pond is also visible.

The map was published in The Columbian Atlas of the World We Live In, a ‘pictorial survey of the universe for office, home and school containing 200 colored maps and diagrams and 300 illustrations.’

Click the image to view a full-size version.

1893 street map of Toronto showing steam-driven railway lines and horse drawn transit routes, by Fisk and Co.

Image courtesy University of Alabama Map Library.
Published by: Hunt and Eaton, c.1893; from The Columbian Atlas of the World We Live In
Scale: 1:22,000

Bonus Map 1
The following map was produced by George F. Cram Co., a leading American map firm, in the 1895 Cram’s Universal Atlas - Geographical, Astronomical and Historical. George Franklin Cram was born in 1841 and served with the Union forces in the Civil War before going into the map publishing business with his uncle in 1867. Two years later, he founded his own company, publishing maps and atlases.

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1895 Map of Toronto by George F. Cram from the Universal Atlas

Image courtesy University of Alabama Map Library.

Bonus Map 2
And for kicks, here’s the 1898 Rand, McNally and Co. Map of Toronto, from The Enlarged Business Atlas and Shippers Guide, published in 1901.

Click the image to view a full-size (2MB) version.

1901 Rand McNally Map of Toronto

Image courtesy University of Alabama Map Library.

Rand McNally was an American publisher and printer of maps, atlases, globes, and tourist guidebooks. Founded in 1856 by William H. Rand and Andrew McNally, it was one of the world’s leading mapmakers. The company’s first publication was an annual report of a railroad company in 1868, and the first map was issued in 1872. The Business Atlas, now known as the annual Commercial Atlas and Marketing Guide, began publication in 1877.

In a world far, far removed from Google maps and the World Wide Web, these popular atlases were a valuable resource for learning about geography and the greater world.

Please ‘Like’ and Share these maps with other Toronto history enthusiasts! (+1s are also welcome!)