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A Toronto Album 2: More Glimpses of the City That Was (No.2) by Mike Filey

By Mike Filey

A Toronto Album 2, better half variation to Mike Filey's immensely well known unique album, is a photographic trip via bustling Toronto from the past due Thirties to the early Seventies. one of the 100-plus pictures is a quartet that exhibits the extraordinary alterations to Toronto's skyline over a half-century. Others seize the 1939 royal stopover at, steam trains of their twilight years, the evolution of the sanatorium for ailing young ones, a glance at Christmas earlier, and glimpses of some landmark structures we were not shrewdpermanent sufficient to maintain. A Toronto Album 2 is a memento Torontonians will treasure.

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The pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters collected in each school were taken to a branch of one of the major Canadian banks, where they were forwarded to the Penny Bank's main Toronto office, initially at Richmond and York streets and later at McCaul and Orde streets. The Penny Bank invested in government securities and was usually able give a higher rate of interest than the regular banks. After a period of inactivity during the Second World War (patrons were encouraged to buy war bonds instead) the idea of reopening the Penny Bank was discussed, but owing to constraints within the school timetable, it was rejected.

A few of the performers who played the Casino were Kay Starr (August 1950), Rudy Vallee (June 1951), Tony Bennett (July 1951), Nat King Cole (January 1952), Basil Rathbone (October 1952), Toronto's own Four Lads (December 1952), Mickey Rooney (June 1953), Christine Jorgensen (the original crossdresser, December 1953), Johnnie Ray (the other Prince of Wails, June 1953), Louis Armstrong (February 1953), and Eddie Fisher (July 1955). Before its closure and subsequent demolition the Casino tried showing strippers and then, as the Civic Square and later the Festival theatres, tried plays and international films.

Interestingly, most of the money from the 1944. Fund (almost $3 million) was used to build replacement housing for senior citizens throughout England who had lost their homes during bombing raids. All of these new housing complexes incorporated the name "Toronto" in their titles and are still to be found in such cities as Liverpool, Sheffield, Southampton, and Exeter. 49 Mike Filey 61 Victory in Europe celebrations in Riverdale Park, May 1, 1945. 50 A Toronto Album 2 62 Victory in Europe celebrations onYonge Street south of Queen, May 17, 1945.

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