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Number of schools: 115
Other organizations: 1
Names on memorials: 45,834
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Duke of Connaught Public School
Forest Hill Village Schools
Palmerston Avenue Public School
Aura Lee Club

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Elementary Schools: D to F

DAVISVILLE / DEER PARK / DENNIS AVENUE / DEWSON STREET / DOVERCOURTDUKE OF CONNAUGHT / EARL BEATTY / EARL GREY / EARL HAIG / EARLSCOURT / EGLINTON / ESSEX STREET / FAIRBANK MEMORIAL / FERN AVENUE / F. H. MILLER / FOREST HILL VILLAGE / FRANKLAND /

Davisville Public School (DAV-PS)

Carved stone with the inscription: 1860, B. Hammond, J. Davis, D. Matheson, school trustees.

Date stone outside Davisville Public School, Toronto. ©2014 Toronto Branch OGS

Location: 43 Millwood Road, Toronto, Ontario M4S 1J6 (east of Yonge Street; north of Davisville Avenue)

Opened: 1860

Alternate or former names:
School Section No. 1, York Township
Metropolitan Toronto School for the Deaf (in same building from 1962; twinned with Davisville from 2002)
Spectrum Alternative School (established 1978; located in Davisville school building)

Pre-1998 municipality: Toronto

Type of school: Elementary

History:
The village of Davisville was centred around the intersection of Davisville Avenue and Yonge Street. It was bounded by Eglinton Avenue on the north; Mount Pleasant Cemetery to the south; Bayview Avenue to the east; Yonge Street to the west. Davisville was named for John Davis who immigrated in 1840 from Staffordshire, England, and five years later started the John Davis and Son Pottery on one corner of Millwood—at the time just a lane. Davis was the first postmaster, a trustee for 25 years, and was instrumental in having the school built.

1860: Two-roomed (or one room divided by a partition that didn’t reach the ceiling) red brick school opened in Davisville. It was the first proper school building in what became North Toronto. Davisville lay mostly in Concession 1 East of Yonge Street, between the second concession road (St. Clair Avenue) and the village of Eglinton (third concession road). There were 1 1/4 miles between the roads. Yorkville (at Bloor Street, the first concession road) was the nearest incorporated village. Davisville and Eglinton were unincorporated. A pump behind the school provided water; coal oil lamps on the walls provided light; wood-box stoves with pipes reaching to the ceiling gave heat, and there were outdoor toilets. There was one male teacher and one female teacher. (Advertised salary was $1,200. for a period of six years.)

1889 Nov 22: The villages of Davisville and Eglinton and their immediate neighbourhood were incorporated as separate from the Township of York and named the Village of North Toronto.

1890 Mar 5: Village of North Toronto became the Town of North Toronto. Four rooms added to the school; coal furnace installed. Younger children had classes at Davisville Methodist Church; older children shepherded them across Yonge Street. Myrtle Cook played the school’s organ as children marched in.

1908: Four rooms added; two up, two down.

1910: Plank sidewalk laid along the north side of school because of muddy roads.

1911: John Davis sold a large tract of land to Dovercourt Development Company. The community began expanding.

1912: North Toronto annexed to the City of Toronto. Davisville became a city school with indoor plumbing and electric lighting. Until this year, children bought their own books. In early days, there was much rivalry among the village schools: Davisville, Deer Park, Eglinton (renamed John Fisher in 1915) and Bedford Park. The North Toronto School Board gave each school ten dollars for the scholar attaining the highest degree of efficiency on the Entrance exams. This sum was to pay tuition fees to high school, which was not free until 1921.

Framed memorials with names of soldiers who served.

Davisville Public School students of two world wars remembered side by side. ©2014 Toronto Branch OGS

World War I (1914-1918): Two school rooms were used at times for the instruction of soldiers. The government took over the Salvation Army Training College, just erected on land formerly part of the farm of John Davis Senior, for use as a military hospital. Recovering soldiers, walking or in wheelchairs, sat on benches at “the corner,” sometimes called “Whiz Bang Corner.” Davisville children took gifts of candies and books to the soldiers.

1960: School had 11 classrooms, including a large kindergarten, art room, library and visual education room; offices for the principal, the secretary and a medical office.

1962 Sept 4: Old building replaced. New building included Metropolitan Toronto School for the Deaf.

2002 Sept: Davisville twinned with The Metropolitan Toronto School for the Deaf, which had shared the school building since 1962.

2009 Sept: Davisville became a dual-track school, offering English in the regular program and Early French Immersion (SK to Grade 4).

2014 Sept: French Immersion expanded to Grade 5.

Published history:
Brown, Ron. Toronto’s Lost Villages: Discover a Toronto You Never Knew. Toronto: Polar Bear Press, 1997. pp. 64-66.

Davisville’s Centennial Story, 1860-1960. [Publisher not named. Toronto, 1960.] 56 p. Contains much school and neighbourhood lore.

Memorials transcribed:
DAV-PS-a: (WWI): (illuminated list) In the lower right hand corner “Illuminated = and = designed by = / Fred. W. Dixon — Markham — Ont.” Davisville / School / 1914 [two soldiers with field artillery on either side of a crest of Canadian symbols] 1918 / Scroll of Honour. Bottom of scroll: Lest We Forget. Four columns. Initials followed by surnames. Only two given names appear. Names in random order. No key. Seven names at the top of columns i-iv are boxed in, probably indicating death. NOTE: The ornate calligraphy makes many letters hard to decipher. As initials are used instead of given names, there is a possibility of errors. Researchers should study the photograph of this scroll.

DAV-PS-b: (WWII): “For King and Country / Members of / Davisville Public School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Four columns. Surnames followed by given names or initials. No key, but a faint hand-drawn cross in the left margin probably indicates death. In the lower right hand corner: Paul Sears (presumably the calligrapher). List does not specify which war, but the presence of a World War I memorial, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

Deer Park Public School (DEE-PS)

Location: 23 Ferndale Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M4T 2B4 (east of Yonge Street; north of St. Clair Avenue East)

WWII memorial at Deer Park Public School, Toronto, ©2011 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Opened: 1888

Alternate or former names: S.S. No. 10 Township of York

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Type of school: Elementary

History:
First Nations called the area “Mushquoteh,” meaning a meadow or opening in the woods where deer come to feed. The name Deer Park first appears on maps mid-19th century, referring to the southern 40 acres of Lot 21 on the west side of Yonge Street in the third concession north of Lake Ontario between St. Clair Avenue and Eglinton. Mrs. Agnes W. Heath and her son, Charles, acquired the property in 1837. A small herd of semi-tame deer lived on the northeast corner of the property; thus the name “Deer Park.” The nearest settlements were Yorkville (Bloor-Yonge) to the south and Eglinton (Yonge-Eglinton) to the north. St. Charles Separate School (frame in 1858; brick in1880; just south of entrance to St. Michael’s cemetery) was the first school in the area, but there was no public school until Deer Park School was built. The nearest public schools were Davisville (1860) and Cottingham (1887). The Trustees’ records for School Section 10, York Township, have been lost, but in 1888 they issued debentures to raise money to build a school.
1889 Feb 18: Agreement with Dr. Thomas Armstrong of Toronto and wife Fidelia to purchase land for the school. Architect: Mancel Willmot. The building faced St. Clair Avenue East. Brick west wing with basement. Coal- and wood-heated hot air furnace. About 80 feet north of the school was a play shed with bicycle storage and attached privies. The well was northeast of the school. House of the caretaker, Mr. Martin, was on the triangle of land between St. Clair and the ravine. First principal: William J. Thomson. Municipal and political meetings were held at the school. Every month, the local paper, The Recorder, named the top three students in each class; names of prize winners and runners-up at the end of June.
1891 June 30: Seventy-five parents and friends attended closing exercises for about 90 students.
1892: Two teachers: Mr. Thomson and Miss Jubb, each with their own room; 96 students. One-day closing in January because of illnesses, including diphtheria, caused by polluted well. Some students stayed home until the well and the privies were cleaned.
1904: Second wing added. Four classrooms, with an extra in the basement when needed. Gas lamps at the front of the rooms. Running water introduced; privies remained. Two hot air furnaces.
1905: New public library opened in the northwest tower room, second floor. Mr. Thomson was first librarian, helped by his son, Grant. Subscription was 50 cents per week for adults; 25 cents for children.
1908 Dec 15: Deer Park annexed to the City of Toronto. Library closed—1,200 volumes stored at the school—as no funds available after annexation. (Reopened 1911 at 1534 Yonge Street.)
1914: Addition and renovations costing $33,865. The caretaker still lived in a small house to the east of the school.
1924: Enrolment of 420; 10 classrooms with an average of 42 students per room; 12 teaching staff; no mixed grades; Board bought additional playground space from original sellers (an increase from 1.5 to 2.4 acres, including half acre of ravine land); old caretaker’s cottage demolished around this time.
1948: Jan 12: Formal start of Home and School Association.
1959: Board had acquired 21 residences on Ferndale and Heath streets at a cost of $464,284, in preparation for the new school (to face Ferndale Avenue).
1961 Mar 20: New building designed by Pentland and Baker (for 745 pupils) occupied by students. Board now had 3.1 acres, with an additional 1.5 acres of ravine land; old school demolished.
1961 Oct 20: Formal opening at 8:00 p.m.
1971: School library added.

Published history:
Heidenreich, Conrad E. and Nancy. Deer Park School; a Centenary Celebration, 1888 to 1988. Toronto, Ontario: Deer Park School Association, 1988. 116 p.: ill., maps, ports. Includes detailed descriptions of changes to the school and neighbourhood; enrolment information; reminiscences.

Memorials transcribed:
DEE-PS-a: (WWII) Bronze. For King and Country (Canadian coat of arms) Members of Deer Park / Public School who have/volunteered for active / service with Canada’s / fighting forces / 1939 – 1945. Names in relief. Twenty-one rows (no columns); four names per row. Given names (some with middle initials) followed by surnames. Surnames are in alphabetical order. Key: diamond shape indicates: Killed in action.
NOTE: No WWI memorial found.

Dennis Avenue Public School  (DEN-PS)

Location: 17 Dennis Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M6N 2T7 (south of Eglinton Avenue; west of Weston Road)

Historical Photos at Dennis Avenue Public School. ©2010 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Opened: 1891

Alternate or former names: S.S. No. 28 York Township (Village of Mount Dennis)

Pre-1998 municipality: City of York

Ward during WWI: York Township

Ward during WWII: York Township (Mount Dennis)

Type of school: Elementary

History:
School first held in two rooms of the Marshall homestead.
1891: Two-room school on Dennis Avenue opened. First principal was J.R. Trumpour, M.D.

Published history: Boylen, J.C. York Township, An historical summary. Municipal Corporation of the Township of York: York Township, 1954. pp 103-104

Memorials transcribed:
DEN-PS-a: (WWII) “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Four columns. Surname followed by initials (only nine first names listed). Symbol indicating death is a stick-on silver star. Memorial does not specify which war, but the use of an A.J. Casson document indicates World War II.

Dewson Street Public School (DEW-PS)

Location: 65 Concord Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M6H 2N9 (west side of Ossington Avenue; north of College Street)

WW1 Memorial at Dewson Street Public School (DEW-PS-c). ©2010 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Opened: 1884

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 5

Ward during WWII: Ward 5

Type of school: Elementary

History:
The original school (corner of Concord Avenue and Dewson Street) consisted of a basement and four rooms on two floors. The land had been in the Village of Dovercourt, which was annexed to the City in 1910. The school opened December 1884 with 76 pupils; Mrs. J.S. Arthurs was head mistress. The building was replaced in 1968.

Memorials transcribed:
DEW-PS-a: (WWI) A—M (part). Framed, under glass “Roll of Honor” Union Jack, Red Ensign, crown, maple leaf, and “Canada.” “Greater love hath no man than this.” Four columns. First names followed by surname. Copyright R. Douglas Fraser, Toronto, 1916.

DEW-PS-b: (WWI) M (part)—end. Framed, under glass “Roll of Honor” Union Jack, Red Ensign, crown, maple leaf, and “Canada.” “Greater love hath no man than this.”  Four columns. First names followed by surname. Copyright R. Douglas Fraser, Toronto, 1916.

DEW-PS-c: (WWI) Bronze plaque (relief showing a running soldier, and an aircraft flying over him): 1914–1918 / In memory / of former pupils of Dewson Street School / who gave their lives in the Great War. Three columns. First names followed by surname. “Their name liveth for evermore.”

DEW-PS-d: (WWII) A—R (part). “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Six columns. Surnames followed by given names. Silver stick-on star is footnoted “Supreme Sacrifice”. List does not specify which war, but presence of World War I memorials, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DEW-PS-e: (WWII) R (part)—end. “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Six columns. Surnames followed by given names. Silver stick-on star is footnoted “Supreme Sacrifice”. List does not specify which war, but presence of World War I memorials, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

Dovercourt Public School (DOV-PS)

Location: 228 Bartlett Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M6H 3G4 (north of Bloor Street; east of Dufferin Street; south of Dupont Street)

WW1 Memorial at Dovercourt Public School, ©2010 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Opened: 1886

Alternate or former names: Dovercourt School Section No. 10

Pre-1998 municipality: Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 6

Ward during WWII: Ward 6

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1870s: The Village of Dovercourt, named for the Denison estate (west of Dundas and Ossington) was founded. Early residents were poor immigrants from England living in dozens of one- and two-bedroom tar paper shacks. The village was called a shantytown.
1886: First school in Dovercourt Village opened in a house at 158 Hallam Street under teacher, Miss Margaret McMillan.
1887: Pupils were accommodated in a community hall on Wallace Avenue, just west of Dufferin Street. Trustees authorized purchase of present school site for a four-room school.
1888: Classes started in new school under W.F. Chapman, principal.
1912: Toronto annexed the village. City services stimulate growth and development.

Published history:
A Short History of Dovercourt Public School. Toronto, 1939.
Early History of Dovercourt Public School 1887–1888. May 1976.
Franklin, Herbert. Street stories of Toronto: around the area of Dovercourt School and other places in the city: including life before, during and after World War Two, 1939–1945. Burlington, Ontario: H. Franklin, 1996.

Memorials transcribed:
DOV-PS-a: (WWI) “Our / Roll of Honour.” Illuminated list designed by Henry Birks & Sons, Limited. Highly decorative; includes a pictorial medal with letters GR over the words “For Bravery In The Field” within a laurel wreath. Four columns, with one name diagonally in the top left and right corners. Rank followed by initials, or given names, then surnames (not in alphabetical order); some are fading and difficult to read. Some notations below names such as “died effects of war” are in red ink and are also difficult to read. Key: Asterisk in black ink indicates “Killed in action.” Cross in red ink indicates “Wounded.” List does not specify which war, but the appearance of the document and the presence of three WWII memorials, means we can assume this list is WWI.

DOV-PS-b: (WWI) “Our / Roll of Honour.” Illuminated list designed by Henry Birks & Sons, Limited. Highly decorative; includes a pictorial medal with letters GR over the words “For Bravery In The Field” within a laurel wreath. Four columns, with one name diagonally in the top left and right corners. Rank followed by initials, or given names, then surnames (not in alphabetical order); some are fading and difficult to read. Some notations below names such as “died effects of war” are in red ink and are also difficult to read. Key: Asterisk in black ink indicates “Killed in action.” Cross in red ink indicates “Wounded.” List does not specify which war, but the appearance of the document and the presence of three WWII memorials, means we can assume this list is WWI.

DOV-PS-c: (WWI) “Our / Roll of Honour.” Illuminated list designed by Henry Birks & Sons, Limited. Highly decorative; includes a pictorial medal with letters GR over the words “For Bravery In The Field” within a laurel wreath. Four columns, with one name diagonally in the top left and right corners. Rank followed by initials, or given names, then surnames (not in alphabetical order); some are fading and difficult to read. Key: Asterisk in black ink indicates “Killed in action.” Cross in red ink indicates “Wounded.” List does not specify which war, but the appearance of the document and the presence of three WWII memorials, means we can assume this list is WWI.

DOV-PS-d: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Dovercourt School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Four columns. Surnames followed by initials. No key, but a gold stick-on star probably indicates death. List does not specify which war, but presence of three World War I memorials, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DOV-PS-e: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Dovercourt School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Four columns. Surnames followed by given names or initials. No key, but a gold stick-on star probably indicates death. List does not specify which war, but the presence of three World War I memorials, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DOV-PS-f: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Dovercourt School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Four columns. Surnames followed by initial(s) except for women whose given names are in full. No key, but a gold stick-on star probably indicates death. List does not specify which war, but the presence of three World War I memorials, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DOV-PS-g: (WWI) Bronze plaque: The Great War / 1914 (emblem) 1919 / Dovercourt Public School / Honour and Loving Memory / to those who died. / Honour also and grateful tribute / to those / who daring to die. Survived / Erected by the School.

Duke of Connaught School (DOC-PS)

Duke of Connaught School, Toronto

Location: 70 Woodfield Road, Toronto, Ontario M4L 2W6 (north of Queen Street East; between Greenwood Avenue and Coxwell Avenue).

Opened: 1912

Alternate or former names:
Leslie Street School Annex (informal)
Woodfield Road Senior Public School (from September 1965)
Duke of Connaught Public School (from 1989)
“Duke” (informal)

Pre-1998 municipality: Toronto

Type of school: Elementary

History:
This East Toronto school was named for Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathern—the seventh child of Queen Victoria and Albert, Prince Consort—who was governor general of Canada 1911-1916.

1911 July 10: The Board of Education bought six and a half acres (about two hectares) of Ashbridge’s garden and orchard from Mrs. E. Ashbridge. (Cost: $33,127.50.) The original Ashbridge family—widow Sarah Ashbridge, two sons and three daughters—arrived in York, as Toronto was then called, in 1793 from Pennsylvania. In her diary, Lady Simcoe referred to the family as “Pennsylvanians” who were among the first settlers east of the Don River. Their 600 acres (243 hectares) covered what is now Greenwood Avenue to Coxwell Avenue; Danforth Avenue south to Ashbridge’s Bay/Lakeshore Boulevard East. The school was built next to the historic Ashbridge house. The property was on Morley Street—which had been the Ashbridge farm lane—later renamed Woodfield Road. The mostly waste land between Toronto city proper and East Toronto was called “the Midway.” Population was sparse, but the fast growth of enrolment at Duke of Connaught soon proved that the decision to build a school at this site made sense.

1911 Sept 22: School opened as an annex “to relieve” Leslie Street School, under supervision of Leslie Street School principal, Walter Bryce. Junior Third (Grade 5) and Junior Second (Grade 3) classes—a total of 103 pupils—were held in a two-room portable on the south west corner opposite Vancouver Avenue. One of the teachers, Edith Grant, remained on staff until her December 1945 retirement.

1911 Nov: Board invited the Duke of Connaught to visit some of the schools when he came to Toronto; subsequently invited him to turn the first sod for the new school.

1911 Nov 30: After turning the first sod, the Duke gave the ceremonial shovel back to the school. (It remains on display in a wooden glass-front case inscribed: Presented to / His Royal Highness / The Duke of Connaught / at the turning of the / first sod / of the / Duke of Connaught School / November 30th 1911.)

1912 Apr and June: Board accepted tenders for construction of a school. Masons: J.C. Bayliss & Son $53,200; Carpenters: William Williamson $22,545; Heating & Ventilating: Keith & Fitzsimmons $20,144. The architect was Charles Hartnoll Bishop.

1912 Sept: The Duke of Connaught laid the cornerstone and formally opened the school

1913 Jul 13: Board approved sending one portable to McMurrich Public School; the other to Palmerston Avenue School.

1913 Sept: New building opened with eight classes; 707 pupils enrolled. Principal George Ritchie transferred from Wellesley School and remained until 1928. The school evaluation was as follows:
Lot (367 ft x 747 ft) $60,000
Building (16 rooms) $100,000
Furniture $3,600

1914: Upper storey completed. Annual salaries: Principal George M. Ritchie–$2,400; one male assistant–$1,400; 13 female assistants–$450 to $700; caretaker–$1,500.10.

1917 Feb 3: W.A. Craik writing in the Star Weekly described: a 25-room building with immense school grounds; hall space so lavish that Principal Ritchie could assemble the entire school of 900 students and address them from the landing of the main stairway. An “open house” policy allowed parents and friends of the students to visit and watch class instruction. Many, perhaps most, of the children “belong to old country families.” The Penny Bank and a school sports’ day were popular.

1919: School enlargement to go ahead, but without a planned swimming pool.

1920: A new north wing (six classrooms; a manual training room) made a total of 32 rooms. Bowmore Road School opened; some transferred there from Duke.

1922: Students west of Hastings Avenue transferred from Duke to Bruce.

1923: The school now had 1,250 students; two auxiliary classes; one sight-saving class; special classes taught by the school nurse for girls “on the care of the baby in the home.” Senior pupils from five other schools attended manual training and household science classes at Duke. The six-and-one-half acre school grounds were used for football, baseball, volleyball, and hockey. Cadets were popular. Teachers enjoyed playing tennis. Boys’ choir formed.

Duke or Connaught School sports memorabilia proudly displayed.

1948 Mar 23: Boys’ choir reunion.

1930: Portrait of Principal George M. Ritchie painted by Robert Allan Barr exhibited at the Canadian National Exhibition.

1954: S.H. Armstrong Recreation Centre built at 56 Woodfield Road. (Site of S.H. Armstrong/Duke of Connaught shared swimming pool.)

1958 Nov: Building of a new senior school stalled by strikes, material shortages, underground streams, and bankruptcy worries.

1959 May 15: Cornerstone for senior school laid by Ward 8 trustees.

1960 Sept: New composite junior and senior school opened with more than 1,600 senior students from Duke of Connaught, Bruce, and Leslie Street schools; 60 staff members.

1960 Nov 7: Formal opening of Duke of Connaught Senior Public School.

1962: Golden (fiftieth) anniversary. Silver spade from 1911 used for tree planting.

1965 Sept: Duke of Connaught Junior and Senior Public School reorganized into two schools, each with its own administrative staff: Duke of Connaught Public School-Junior; Woodfield Public School-Senior.

1987 May 9: The 75th anniversary was celebrated with decades rooms (1911 to 1987); an archaeological exhibit of the Ashbridge Estate; slide presentations of the 1958 St. Lawrence Seaway trip; and the 1961 Island Science School trip. Home and School sponsored the annual graduation dinner and dance. An alumni fund was promoted.

1989: Duke of Connaught Junior Public School and Woodfield Road Senior Public School joined to form Duke of Connaught Public School.

2012 Oct 12: One hundredth anniversary. Eight hundred guests attended. Former students of the 1930s and 1940s were especially well represented. Current students reenacted the 1911 ground breaking. About 2,500 photographs were collected for a digital archive, along with a backlog of more than 7,000 additional photos, with suggestions of later allowing public access to the collection. Students formed the numeral 100 for a large aerial photograph.

Published history:
A Short History of the Duke of Connaught School. [Toronto?]1962. Five unnumbered leaves.
Duke 100: memory book 1912-2013: Duke of Connaught Jr. and Sr. Public School. [Toronto, Ontario: Duke of Connaught School, 2012]
Dayal, Sarah. “Generations of students wish Duke of Connaught P.S. happy 100.” The Toronto Observer, October 26, 2012.

Above the memorials—portraits of two Duke principals by Robert Allan Barr

Memorials transcribed:
DOC-PS-a: (WWII) Bronze plaque: 1939 (coat of arms) 1945 / Honor et Justitia / Duke of Connaught School / In grateful memory of the / Ex-students of this school / Who gave their lives in / Defence of Freedom. Two columns; four names spread across the bottom of the column. A torch on the left side; a torch on the right side; given names followed by surnames. Below the columns: Their name liveth forever more.

DOC-PS-b: (WWII) Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Duke of Connaught School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns; given names followed by surnames. No key. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, the presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DOC-PS-c: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Duke of Connaught School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns (col i and col ii only about one third filled); given names followed by surnames. No key. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

DOC-PS-d: (WWII): Framed illuminated certificate. Robert Henry / A/B Robert Henry was born April 11, 1921, in Toronto / Ontario. Attended Duke of Connaught School / Enlisted R.C.N.V.R. October 1939 / Served on H.M.C.S. “Pictou.” / Lost at sea in the sinking of H.M.C.S. “Ottawa,” September 13, 1942.

Earl Beatty Public School (ELB-PS-a)

Location: 55 Woodington Avenue at Glebeholme Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M4C 3J6

Earl Beatty Public School between 1927 and 1930 (City of Toronto Archives Fonds 1257, Series 1057, Item 213)

Opened: 1924

Alternate or former names: North Danforth School

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWII: Ward 8

Type of school: Elementary

History:
Classes first taught on site in portables May 1924, with an enrolment of 128 pupils. By April 20, 1925, 12 rooms of new school occupied. Official opening Oct. 21, 1925.

Website:

WW2 Memorial at Earl Beatty Public School (ELB-PS-b). ©2010 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Memorials transcribed:
ELB-PS-a: (WWII) A.J. Casson “For King and Country Members of Earl Beatty School who have volunteered for active service with Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns of names. Surnames followed by given names. Many given names have a shortened version or nickname in brackets (before or after first name or initials): e.g. BARNES, (Barney) George F. Under the name YOUNG, (Jack) J.A. in column vi, a separate short list in random order appears. Silver stick-on star indicates “Paid the Supreme Sacrifice.” Blue stick-on star indicates “Prisoner of War.” List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

ELB-PS-b: (WWII) Bronze plaque: “Honour and grateful tribute/to the boys of Earl Beatty School/who gave their lives/in World War II/1939—1945” Initials followed by surname. At the bottom: “There name liveth for evermore.”  Displayed with the memorials are two photographs taken on 4 May 1948: (i) the unveiling of the bronze plaque; (ii) the opening of the school’s Memorial Library.

Earl Grey School (ELG-PS)

Location: 100 Strathcona Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M4J 1G8 (south of Danforth Avenue; east of Pape Avenue)

Earl Grey School, Toronto (City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 1257, series 1057, item 263)

Opened: 1910

Alternate or former names: Jones Avenue Public School

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1909: School board bought five acres of land, fronting on Jones Avenue, a short distance south of Danforth Avenue, from Sam Bulley. Cost: $12,500.
1910 Jan 5: Name changed from Jones Avenue Public School to Earl Grey School, after Albert Henry George Grey, 4th Earl Grey, 9th Governor-General of Canada (1904 to 1911); donor of football’s Grey Cup; supporter of Canadian arts, fitness and sport.
1910 Sept: One-floor, six-room school designed by Charles Hartnoll Bishop, opened with 310 pupils. Immigrants from England, Ireland and Scotland, or the children of those immigrants, comprised about 90% of the area’s population. G. Elliott was principal from 1910 to 1941. During Second World War, he taught bookkeeping and accounting to RCAF secretaries at Central Commerce.

War memorials (ELG-PS a, b, c) at Earl Grey School, Toronto, ©2011 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

1911 May 24: Earl Grey saw the name “Earl Grey School” on an Empire Day floral tribute for Queen Victoria’s monument at Queen’s Park. He had forgotten that the city’s newest school had been named after him; immediately arranged a visit to the school.
1911 May 26: Earl Grey signed the first page of the school’s guest book. “I remember when the Governor-General, Earl Grey, visited the school. I was asked to present flowers and was mortified when he kissed me as I wasn’t used to being familiar with a stranger. I was in Kindergarten.”—Dorothy Elliott. (The Toronto Star Weekly, March 24, 1917. p. 11)
1913: Second and third floors completed. School had 19 rooms; 23 teachers; 1,103 students in kindergarten to senior fourth (Grade 8).
1918: Household science and manual training now taught at Earl Grey. Before this, students travelled to Riverdale Technical School (now Danforth Technical School).
1919-1920: West-side wings added to back of school. 27 rooms; 30 teachers. Phone number was Gerrard 67.
1920s: Commercial class program began.
1924: Surge of growth in the area was now over. School had 32 classes, including an auxiliary class, one senior commercial class and two junior commercial classes. Phone number changed to Gerrard 0067.
1925/6: First school secretary on staff: Julia A. Bartliff. Commercial classes moved to newly-opened Eastern High School of Commerce.
1930s: Local stores donated unsold fruit. Teachers helped grade 4 to 8 students can tomatoes and applesauce for the needy.
1950 June 6: Home and School Association formed with 70 charter members.
1952: Changed to a senior public school.
1954: First edition of yearbook, The Mirror.
1956: Commercial classes moved from Earl Grey to Earl Haig Public School. During the 1950s, residents of British origin decreased from 80% to 60%; Italian population increased from about 1% to 10%. By the 1960s, many people of Greek origin settled in the area.
1962 June 13: New building formally opened.
1965: The old Earl Grey building, 540 Jones Street, became Jones Avenue Adult Education, providing English as a second language classes and other services. The sign on the northwest side of the old building still (2011) reads: Jones Avenue School. The old and new building are close together in a backward L-shape. The old school faces the north-south running Jones Avenue; the new faces Strathcona Avenue, which runs east-west
(1969 Sept: Blake Street Public School opened in temporary quarters in old Earl Grey building.)
1985: Seventy-fifth anniversary.
2010 Nov 6: Celebration of 100th anniversary.
NOTE: Earl Grey was used for some segments of the Degrassi TV series. Linda Schuyler, creator/producer of the series, had taught at Earl Grey.

Published history:
Earl Grey School 75th anniversary reunion, October 19, 1985. (Toronto: Earl Grey Public School), 49 pp. Staff and students who gave their lives in World War I are listed on p. 10; World War II on p. 22; Korean War veterans on p. 27 – see ELG-PS-d (below).

Memorials transcribed:
ELG-PS-a: (WWI) Bronze plaque: De Bon Vouloir Servir Le Roi*. / 1914 – 1918 / In loving memory / of the boys from / Earl Grey School / who gave their lives / in the Great War. At the bottom: Their name liveth for evermore. Two columns. Initials followed by surnames.
*French: To serve the king with good will. (Motto of Earl Grey’s family.)

ELG-PS-b: (WWII) Bronze plaque: 1939 – 1945 / World War / In Memory of / Earl Grey Ex-Pupils. At the bottom: They died for Canada – May we live for Canada. Three columns. Initials followed by surnames.

ELG-PS-c: (WWII) “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). (WWII): “For King and Country / Members of / Earl Grey School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns. Initials followed by surnames (only six first names listed). Memorial does not specify which war; no deaths are indicated on this list, but deaths appear on ELG-PS-b, which specifies WWII.

ELG-PS-d: (Korean War). Earl Grey School 75th anniversary reunion, October 19, 1985, p. 27. Six names are listed under heading “Korean War Veterans, 1950-1953.” Given names followed by surnames.

Earl Haig Public School  (ELH-PS)

Location: 15 Earl Haig Avenue at Coxwell Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M4C 1E2
(Note: The street name was Haig Avenue until about 1925 when it became Earl Haig. The school had both names from the start.)

Earl Haig Public School after 1928 (City of Toronto Archives Fonds 1257, Series 1057, Item 214)

Opened: September 1922

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWII: Ward 8

Type of school: Elementary (There is also a secondary school named Earl Haig.)

History:
School opened with an enrolment of 395 pupils. At a Board of Education meeting on September 27, 1922, an autographed photo of Earl Haig together with a photo of Earl Haig School (also autographed by Field Marshall Haig) was received. The Globe of September 28 reported that they would be framed and hung in the school “which bears his name.” The same article noted the following teachers assigned to the school: Miss I.S. Norwell, Miss C.M. Amoss, Miss Mary McDiarmid, Miss Ada D. Farr, Miss Lillian V. McBride, Miss E. Marguerite Staples, Miss Gladys Brown, and Maud Middleton. (Miss Norwell, an exchange teacher from England, was dismissed from her position in March 1923 when it was discovered she was a Roman Catholic.)
January 1923: The Board of Education’s Property Committee recommends the addition of eight more room and the construction of a “shell” for eight more at a cost of $160,000. By autumn of 1923, 160 students were being accommodated in portables.
November 1926: The cornerstone was laid in the presence of “a large assemblage of children” by Board of Education Trustee Dr. W.R. Walters.

Memorials transcribed:
ELH-PS-a: (WWII) “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Four columns. Surnames followed by given names. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II. No indications of deaths, etc.

ELH-PS-b: (WWII) “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Four columns. Surnames followed by given names. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II. This is the shorter list. Names are printed on pieces of paper pasted onto the memorial. No indications of deaths, etc.

Earlscourt Junior School (EAR-PS)

Location: 21 Ascot Avenue at Dufferin Street, Toronto, ON  M6E 1E6

Opened: 1889 (present building opened 1966)

Alternate or former names: S.S. #13 York Township; Bracondale School, now Stella Maris Roman Catholic School (elementary)

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 5

Ward during WWII: Ward 6

Type of school: Elementary

History:
Erected in 1889, officially named S.S.#13 York Township, the two-room school was known by the community name of Bracondale. In 1907, as the new community of Earlscourt developed, the school was expanded to six rooms. In 1910, Earlscourt was annexed to the City of Toronto. Between 1910 and 1923, the school grew to 32 rooms. Earlscourt Junior School was closed on June 30, 2000.

Published history:
Cockburn, Lily M. A history of Earlscourt Public School (1889-1964). Toronto: Earlscourt Public School, 1964.
An historical perpetual date book in honour of Earlscourt Public School’s centennial 1889-1989. Toronto: Earlscourt Public School, 1989.

Memorials transcribed:
EAR-PS-a: (WWI) “Roll of Honour/Earlscourt Public School/Old Boys.” Framed illuminated list; ornate script is difficult to read; the first names are listed before the surnames. Cross symbol appears to indicate death. Was transcribed before Earlscourt was closed. Present location of memorial is unknown.

EAR-PS-b: (WWII) “For King and Country.” Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson; surnames followed by given names. Cross symbol appears to indicate death. This memorial is now housed in Regal Road Public School.

EAR-PS-b-DEC: Decorations are listed below columns i and vi lists

Eglinton Public School (EGL-PS)

Location: 223 Eglinton Avenue East at Mt. Pleasant Road, Toronto, Ontario  M4P 1L1

Opened: ca. 1912

Alternate or former names: John Fisher School (There is another school called John Fisher.)

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 2

Ward during WWII: Ward 9

Type of school: Elementary

History:
Built by North Toronto Public School Board. On December 13, 1912, North Toronto was annexed to Toronto.

Published history: Ritchie, Don. North Toronto. Boston Mills Press: Erin, ON., 1992. pp 130-133.

Memorials transcribed:
EGL-PS-a (WWII) A.J. Casson illuminated list. “For King and Country/ Members of/Eglinton Public School/ who have volunteered for active service/ with Canada’s fighting forces”. Six columns. Surnames followed by given names. Red cross symbol is footnoted “Killed”.

Essex Street School (ESS-PS)

Location: 50 Essex Street, Toronto, Ontario M6G 1T3 (north of Bloor Street West; west of Christie Street)

Opened: 1901

War memorial (ESS-PS-c) at Essex Street School, Toronto ©2013 Toronto Branch Ontario Genealogical Society

War memorial (ESS-PS-b) at Essex Street School, Toronto ©2013 Toronto Branch Ontario Genealogical Society

Alternate or former names: Essex Street Public School, (Christie Public School—See: History), Essex Junior and Senior School

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1900: Board awarded contracts for “new building on Essex Street.” A four-roomed school for Grades 1 to 8 built west of Christie Street on Essex Street. Cost: $7,337.00.
1901 Jan: School opened with 162 pupils registered. Principal: Charles G. Fraser.
1901 Sept 16: At a Toronto City Council meeting, W.C. Wilkinson, Secretary Treasurer of the Public School Board, requested that “Essex Street, between Shaw and Christie Streets, be opened up and that sidewalks be laid on the north side of Essex Street, and south of Garnet Avenue.” Essex was the first school in the area, which was known as Seaton Village. (Bloor Street to the south; CPR tracks to the north; Christie Street to the west; Bathurst Street to the east.) Before that, students went to Palmerston and Dovercourt schools. The Christie Sand Pits, operating until the early 1900s, supplied materials for Toronto roads; now a recreational area, just south of the school. [Northwest of the school site was Christie Street Veteran’s Hospital, which housed wounded and disabled soldiers, mainly from WWI, but a few from the Fenian Raids of 1866 and the Boer War (1899–1902). Overcrowded and outdated after WWII (1939–1945) the hospital closed when Sunnybrook Hospital opened in 1948.]
1902 Jan 2: Official opening by Alfred Jones, Chairman of the Board.
1906: Addition.

War memorial (ESS-PS-c) at Essex Street School, Toronto ©2013 Toronto Branch Ontario Genealogical Society

War memorial (ESS-PS-c) at Essex Street School, Toronto ©2013 Toronto Branch Ontario Genealogical Society

1907: Addition.
1912: Addition, making a total of 23 classrooms.
1915: Annex built.
1948: Department of Education, in cooperation with the Toronto Board of Education, opened an Art Centre, to determine the best teaching procedure for a modern developmental art program.
1952: Senior school established in annex.
1955: Annex damaged by fire. Third floor removed; rest of school rehabilitated.
1956: Site enlarged.
1956 July 15: New building started. Cornerstone laid November 30.
1957 July: Annex demolished.
1958 May 12: New building opened. (During the year the school was being rebuilt, students were bused to Charles G. Fraser or Ryerson schools. They were paid for any damage to any belongings. Total: $622.55.)
1977 Sept: (Hawthorne II—originally Hawthorne, a private school located at Vaughan Road and Bathurst Street— opened under the Toronto Board as its only bilingual alternative junior school in part of the Essex building.)
1980: Ninety-four-year-old former student, Amy Moore, (born 13 August 1887) interviewed by current students, recalled the end of the Boer War in 1902. Neighbours gathered wood from wherever they could find it and built a bonfire in the middle of the street to celebrate. A local man returning from the war was surprised that everyone would honour him.
1989: Combined with Christie Public School to form Essex Junior and Senior Public School. (Christie had opened in November 1964 to form the junior section of Essex).

Published history:
Essex, Christie  from 1901: a story of our community [Toronto: s.n., 1980?] 17 leaves: ill. (Research done by six grade six students and their teacher at the Toronto Board of Education and by interviewing former students.)

Memorials transcribed:
ESS-PS-a: (WWI) Bronze plaque: 1914 [coat of arms, labelled underneath: Dominion of Canada] 1918 / In Memory / of the former pupils of this school / who gave their lives in the Great War. A torch on each side of the wording. Two columns. Given names/initials followed by surnames. At the bottom: Their name liveth for evermore.

ESS-PS-b: (WWII) A–L (part). Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Essex Street Public School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns of names. Surnames followed by initials; women’s names given in full. List does not specify which war, but presence of a World War I memorial, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

ESS-PS-c: (WWII) L (part)–Y. Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Essex Street School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns of names. Surnames followed by initials; women’s names given in full. List does not specify which war, but presence of a World War I memorial, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.
NOTE: The A–L (part) memorial is headed “Essex Street Public School.” The L (part)–Y memorial is headed “Essex Street School.”

Fairbank Memorial Public School (FAI-PS)

Limestone plaque reading Fairbanks School Section No. 15, A.D. 1863

The stonecutter added an “s” to Fairbank on this datestone at Fairbank Memorial Public School, Toronto. ©Toronto Branch OGS

Location: 555 Harvie Avenue, Toronto (York) Ontario M6E 4M2 (west of Dufferin Street; south of Eglinton Avenue West)

Opened: 1920

Alternate or former names: S.S. No. 15 Fairbank (or Fairbanks—with an added “s”); Memorial Public School; The Memorial School; Fairbank Memorial School; Fairbank Memorial Community School

Pre-1998 municipality: York

Type of school: Elementary

History:
NOTE: The World War I (1914-1918) memorial at this school honours the students of S.S. No. 15, York. The World War II (1939-1945) memorial honours the students of “Memorial School.” We chose “Fairbank Memorial Public School” as our main entry because the school was sometimes referred to informally—and later officially—as Fairbank (Memorial) School. Fairbank was also the name of York Township’s early school sections. A stonemason’s error in adding an “s” to the 1863 date stones, to read “Fairbanks,” gives yet another name variation. We think researchers will most likely look under the neighbourhood name.
In 1825, a one-room log building called Needham’s School opened on Lot 2, Concession 3, on the west side of Dufferin Street, north of Eglinton Avenue West. In 1863, a Fairbank School Section No. 16 one-room brick school house was built (across the road from Needham’s, and meant to replace it) on the east side of Dufferin Street. See: web sites (below) for a photo of an April 2014 archaeological dig uncovering the 1863 school. School Section No. 16 became School Section 15 at this time. Eventually School Section No. 15 had four schools: Vaughan Road School (1914); (Fairbank) Memorial School (1920); Briar Hill School (1927); Duncan B. Hood (1927).
Fairbank neighbourhood was named for an early farm of the Parsons family, who came to Canada from Wiltshire, England in 1821. The first post office took the name when it opened in 1874 in the Watt family home on the west side of Dufferin Street at Eglinton. The area had first been known as “the Five Corners.” The intersection of Eglinton Avenue West and Dufferin Street made four corners. Vaughan Plank Road, which ran diagonally northwest from St. Clair Avenue West to join this intersection, was the fifth corner. The diagonal approach was necessary because Dufferin below Eglinton was impassable swampland. The many hills and valleys prompted the description “Highlands of Toronto.” Fairbank was bounded on the south by St. Clair Avenue West; on the north by the area just above Eglinton Avenue West; on the west by Prospect Cemetery (formed in 1890); on the east by the area between Dufferin and Bathurst Streets. The Belt Line, a commuter railway that encircled Toronto (completed in 1892) had a Fairbank station. (The 9 km Beltline Trail for walking and cycling now covers part of the old rail system.) Most planning of the neighbourhood was done during the 1920s and 1930s.
1908: Fairbank School Section No. 15 enlarged to two rooms. This would have been the school built in 1863.

Limstone wall plaque with three columns of names

Returned soldiers cut, polished, and engraved this Great War tablet at Fairbank Memorial Public School ©Toronto Branch OGS

1915: Fairbank Section No. 15, divided to form new School Section No. 28, which included the area north of Eglinton Avenue, “where stood the old brick school house.”
1920: Opening of the eleven-room “Memorial School,” named to honour those who served in the Great War. The Dovercourt Land Company was building three-room houses on lots with 25-foot frontage and selling them for $600. The company donated a half acre of land on Harvie Avenue for a clubhouse. This was used as a school house until the eleven-room Memorial School opened.
1923: Four rooms added.
1930: Four rooms added.
1933: School Sections system dissolved; replaced by Public School Board.
1955: Addition.
1957: Addition.
1965: Addition.
2015: School appears on TDSB’s list of “under-used” schools to be reviewed for possible closing. Listed twice as follows: #44 Fairbank Memorial Jr. PS; #47 Fairbank PS.

Published history:
Brown, Ron. Toronto’s Lost Villages: Discover a Toronto You Never Knew. Toronto: Polar Bear Press, 1997. 208 p. : ill. “Fairbanks” pp.137-8.

Boylen, J.C. York Township: an Historical Summary 1850–1954. [Toronto] : The Municipal Corporation of the Township of York and The Board of Education of the Township of York, 1954. 131 p. : ill. Appendix B: Collegiate Institute Boards; Public School Boards. Appendix C: School Construction in York Township.

Thomas, Wilbert G. The Legacy of York: a Survey of the Early Development of the Communities of York. (York, Ont. : Historical Committee of the City of York, c1992] 96 p. : ill

Website: http://www.fairbank.gloamingheritage.com/ Includes photos; biographies; details of the Parsons family.

Memorials transcribed:
FAI-PS-a: (WWI): A tablet of Indiana limestone cut, polished, and engraved by returned soldiers. “Erected to the Memory of the Men of S.S.15, York / Who Laid Down Their Lives for Freedom / in the Great War 1914-1919” Three columns. Rank followed by initials, then surnames. At the bottom: If Ye break Faith…We Shall Not Sleep.

FAI-PS-b: (WWII) (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson “For King and Country / Members of / Memorial Public School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Six columns. Surnames followed by initial(s) except for women whose given names are in full. Some initials are hard to read. At the bottom of column iii and iv is the heading: Teachers (four names).
Names are listed under the initial letter of surnames but there are at least four sets of names under some letters. The arrangement is at times random. For example, there are four groups of “B” surnames in various places on the memorial, including at the very end. The list does not specify which war, but the presence of a World War I memorial, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II. Key: Three symbols (in red) indicate “Died in Service.” One symbol is a cross; another is wings; and the third is an anchor. Presumably these indicate respectively army, air force, and navy.

Fern Avenue School (FER-PS)

Location: 128 Fern Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M6R 1K3 (east of Roncesvalles Avenue; south of Dundas Street West)

Opened: 1895

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 6

Ward during WWII: Ward 6

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1895 Jan: Three-storey school opened with 461 pupils. Principal: Henry Gray. Fern Avenue was originally named Ruth Avenue.
1954: A two-storey primary wing was added to the three-storey old central building.

Published history: Fern Public School:100 years of excellence, 1894-1994.  Toronto: Fern Avenue Public School, 1994. unpaged, ill.

Website: http://fernavenuepublicschool.blogspot.com/

Memorials transcribed:
FER-PS-a: (WWI): Bronze plaque; black background: “In honour / of those who served / and fell in / the World War / 1914-1918 / Erected by / Fern Avenue School / Old Boys Association.” (No names are listed).

FER-PS-b: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members of / Fern Avenue School / who have volunteered for active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces.” Eight columns. Surnames followed by given names or initials. A separate B to W section begins in the middle of column vii and ends at the bottom of column viii. There is no explanation for this section. No key, but a silver stick-on star probably indicates death. List does not specify which war, but presence of a World War I memorial, women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

F. H. Miller Public School (FHM-PS)

Location: 300 Caledonia Road, Toronto, Ontario M6E 4T5 (northwest corner of Caledonia Road and Rogers Road)

WW2 Memorial at F.H. Miller Public School. ©2010 Ontario Genealogical Society, Toronto Branch

Opened: 1925-1926

Pre-1998 municipality: City of York

Ward during WWII: 6

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1925-1926: Red-brick, four-room, steam-heated school with basement, opened by York Township School Section 13. Estimated cost: $34,000. Named after Fred Harold Miller, first (York Township) Board chairman. First principal: Beecher Cryderman; vice-principal: Thelma Robinson. Staff members: Flora Machean and Dorothy Lock. Caretaker: Mr. Middleton, who stayed at F.H. Miller until 1946. James Alley came from Vaughan Road Collegiate to succeed Mr. Middleton, retiring in December 1955 at the age of 79.
1946 Sept. 3: Four-room addition including a kindergarten and grades 6, 7 and 8 opened; 335 pupils in the eight rooms.
1948, 1959, 1969 and 1973: Additions.
NOTE: The school displays a list of principals from September 1926.

Memorials transcribed:
FHM-PS-a: (WWII) (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson) “For King and Country / Members of / F.H. Miller Public School / who have volunteered for active service / with Canada’s fighting forces.” Four columns. Surnames followed by given names or initials. No deaths indicated. No key. Names are not on the document itself; instead, names are printed on separate pieces of paper, one for each column, pasted onto the document. Considerable fading. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

NOTE: By 2008, two memorials for Hughes Public School (closed June 2000) were also displayed here. Both schools were on Caledonia Road, but originally under different school boards. Hughes was a Toronto Board of Education school; F.H. Miller was in the Township of York.

Forest Hill Village Schools (FHV-PS)

Decorative brick work at Forest Hill Village Schools’ entrance

Location: 78 Dunloe Road, Toronto, Ontario, M5P 2T6
(east of Spadina Road; between Eglinton Avenue East and St. Clair Avenue East)

Opened: 1924

Alternate or former names:
School Section No. 30, York Township
Spadina Heights
“Central School”
Forest Hill Village Public School
South Preparatory School (the 1938 addition)

Pre-1998 municipality: Toronto

Type of school: Elementary (and Secondary—until 1949)
The official name Forest Hill Village Schools (plural) refers to the school’s consisting of two separate buildings: one built in 1923; the other in 1938. Until the 1949 opening of Forest Hill Collegiate Institute, high school and elementary students shared facilities at the Dunloe Road site. Architects were Page & Steele. The school has a 470-seat auditorium with a full stage. The spacious grounds include two separate baseball diamonds; soccer fields; and a full running track.

History:
The area of Forest Hill Village was originally called Spadina Heights. “Spadina” came from a First Nations word ishpdinaa (various spellings) meaning a hill or sudden rise in the land. Spadina Heights was changed to Forest Hill Village at the December 15, 1923 incorporation as a village. It kept village status until it became part of Toronto in 1966. Frederick G. Gardiner (for whom the Gardiner Expressway was named) was the reeve 1938-1948. “Forest Hill” was the summer home of John Wickson, built in 1860 at the junction of Eglinton Avenue West and Old Forest Hill Road. Until the late 1800s, the area had few roads, and featured woodlands, farms, and estates, including the large Baldwin Estate. North of Toronto’s downtown, Forest Hill’s boundaries have changed over time, but run roughly east of Bathurst Street; north of St. Clair Avenue West; west of Avenue Road and north to above Eglinton Avenue West. The area is further designated Lower Forest Hill (below Eglinton; fully developed by the 1930s) and Upper Forest Hill (above Eglinton; developed later because it was earlier occupied by the old Belt Line Railway—opened in 1892—and industry). In 1931, the village voted tax increases to keep industry out, and in 1936 introduced measures to regulate the styles of new residences. Broad tree-lined streets, green spaces, sloping hills, and imposing mansions are features of today’s Forest Hill.

1910 May 16: School Section 30, York Township (Spadina Heights) formed. During the summer the trustees rented a lot on the west side of Dunloe Road and built a two-room wooden school on it.

1910 Sept: School opened with two teachers—Miss McKee and Miss Rutherford—in charge.

1914: Trustees purchased a site at Dunloe Road and Hawarden Crescent; moved the school to this site, adding a third room.

1923: Construction began on a five-room brick school house.

1924: Forest Hill Village Public School opened.

1933 Mar 13: Canada’s Governor General the Earl of Bessborough visited the school for the naming and dedication of the Bessborough auditorium. At the entrance to the auditorium is a plaque reading: This auditorium known as Bessborough Hall / was officially opened on Tuesday, / March 14th, 1943 / by His Excellency, / the Earl of Bessborough, Governor-General / of Canada, after whom it is named. / The Bessborough coat-of-arms / with the legend “Pro Rege, Lege, Grege” / (For King, For Law, For Country) / is displayed over the stage. A photograph of the Earl of Bessborough and four students appeared in The Toronto Evening Telegram. All of the students received a copy of the photo.

1934: School began to accommodate secondary school students, beginning with Grade IX.

1936: The Forest Hill Public School Board minutes begin referring to the school as “Central School,” probably because North Preparatory School was built in 1936 and officially opened in 1937.

HMCS Forest Hill earned 1944 battle honours in the Second World War.

1939: South Preparatory School built on the site to accommodate the elementary grades.

1940: By this date schools on site were offering complete curriculum to the end of Grade XIII.

1941: Junior High School Unit established.

1948 Jan: Senior High School attained collegiate status as Forest Hill Collegiate Institute.

1949 Sept: Senior Grades withdrew to be accommodated in new Forest Hill Collegiate Institute building (officially opened Sept. 29).

1967 Jan 1: Village of Forest Hill amalgamated with City of Toronto, joining Swansea Village as one of the last two independent villages to be annexed. Forest Hill Junior High School accorded status of a secondary school by Toronto Board. South Preparatory listed as South Preparatory Public School teaching “K to 7.”

1974 Mar 28: Board decided “that in September 1974 the present South Preparatory School and Forest Hill Junior High School be reconstituted as a single composite junior and senior public school” and “that in September 1974, Grade 9 students be transferred to Forest Hill Collegiate.”

1974 Jul. 4: On the recommendation of the Home and School Association, the Board named the consolidated school “Forest Hill Public School, Junior and Senior.”

2000 Sept: Former students donated a framed copy of the March 13, 1933 photograph of the opening of the Bessborough auditorium. The school council arranged funding, description, and permanent display of the photo outside the auditorium.

Published history:
French, William A. A Most Unlikely Village. Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1964. 89 p.
Wolfe, Susan. The Forest Hill Village Area, 1850-1923: A Bibliographic Essay. April 17, 1980. 36 p.

Memorials transcribed:
FHV-PS-a: (WWII): Illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson. “For King and Country / Members Of / Forest Hill Village Schools / who have volunteered / For active service / with / Canada’s fighting forces” Six columns; surnames followed by given names and initials. No key. List does not specify which war, but date of school opening, presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.

FHV-PS-b: (WWII): framed black and white photo and document titled: His Majesty’s Canadian Ship / Navire canadien de Sa Majesté / Forest Hill. Excerpts from the information provided: There has been only one vessel named Forest Hill in the Canadian Navy. Named for a village absorbed by Toronto, the Flower Class corvette Forest Hill (K486) was laid down as HMS Ceanothus, but was transferred to the Royal Canadian Navy and commissioned on 1 December 1943 on the Clyde, Scotland. Builder: Ferguson Bros. Ltd., Port Glasgow. Launched: 30 Aug 1943. Crew: 85. Canadian Battle Honours: Atlantic 1944. Broken up at Hamilton, Ontario in 1948. Plaque at the bottom reads: Presented to the / City of Toronto, Ontario / by the / Chief of the Maritime Staff / on the occasion of the / Canadian Naval Centennial / 1910-2010.

Frankland Public School (FRA-PS)

Location: 816 Logan Avenue, Toronto, Ontario  M4K 3E1

Newly constructed Frankland Public School, Toronto (Toronto Reference Library, Baldwin Room, B13-47)

Opened: 1910 April

Alternate or former names: Logan Avenue School

Pre-1998 municipality: City of Toronto

Ward during WWI: Ward 1

Ward during WWII: Ward 1

Type of school: Elementary

History:
1909 November 18: Board planned a new 11-room school on Logan Avenue.
1910 January: Board named the school “Frankland”
1910 April: Classes first opened in two portable rooms with 121 pupils enrolled.
1910 October: First classrooms in new school occupied with 360 pupils enrolled.

Published history: Myrvold, Barbara. Historical Walking Tour of the Danforth. Toronto Public Library Board: Toronto, 1992. p 25.

Website: http://frankland100.wordpress.com/

Memorials transcribed:
FRA-PS-a: (WWII) “For King and Country” (illuminated list designed by A.J. Casson). Eight columns. Surnames followed by given names. Symbol indicating death is a stick-on star. A separate “A to H” section begins in the middle of column viii. There is no explanation for this section. Two names (in pencil) are at the bottom of column viii. Memorial does not specify which war, but the presence of women’s names, and the use of an A.J. Casson document, indicate World War II.