Sunday 3 August 2014

Book ~ "Toronto Sketches 6: The Way We Were" (2000) Mike Filey

From Goodreads ~ Stories of Old Toronto never lose favour with the city's nostalgia buffs, and as long as Mike Filey continues to provide us with his "The Way We Were" columns, no one's appetite will have to go unsatisfied.

When Mike's Toronto Sunday Sun columns were first brought together in Toronto Sketches, demand was so high that it prompted a second collection ... then a third ... and a fourth ... and a fifth.

Now, for 2000, Mike has once again brought together some of the best of his Toronto Sunday Sun columns for "Toronto Sketches 6", the latest installment in the wildly popular series. This time around, Mike takes us to a performance at the Royal Alexandra Theatre by Al Jolson, the opening of Sunnybrook Hospital, a game between the baseball Leafs and the Havana Sugar Kings - with Fidel Castro throwing out the first pitch - and many more famous, notorious and entertaining episodes in the history of this great city.

Mike Filey had a column in the Toronto Sun for about 30 years and I read it for many years (I like learning about the history of Toronto) ... this book is a compilation of some of his columns.  In this book, we learn more about Casa Loma, the Commercial Bank of the Midland District Bank, Al Jolson, cruise ships, Joy gas stations, Santa Claus, etc.

Built in @1845, the Commercial Bank of the Midland District Bank is on the
left side of Wellington Street W, in front of the building with all the signs
The facade was dismantled and reassembled in BCE Place (now called
Brookfield Place) - I worked in BCE Place about that time (early 1990s)

Even though the book was published in 2000, it was still an interesting book because it dealt with many historical events in Toronto.  Plus since it was published in 2000, it was interesting to see what was going on back then and what has changed. For example, Bay Street from College Street to Bloor Street used to be called "auto row".  I bought my first car from Addison on Bay in the early 1990s which was in the old McLaughlin Building.

The building opened in 1925 as the McLaughlin Motor Car Showroom
and is designated as a heritage site
When the author wrote the book, it was still Addison's ...
it's now being developed as condos

If you live in Toronto or are from Toronto, you should check it out. 


Unknown said...

I think looking at old photos like that is really neat.

Teena in Toronto said...

Me too :)