In the 1790’s the Queen’s envoy, John Graves Simcoe arrived at what was once a small French trading post on Lake Ontario and decided it was a perfect location for York, the new capital of the province of Upper Canada
Incorporated in 1834 Toronto’s history is filled with intriguing characters, tremendous challenges, tragedy and triumph; a history that comes to life with the assistance of archaeologists, historians, authors, politicians and curators.
In 90 minutes, this grand urban narrative encompasses early settlers’ battles with the elements; the War of 1812; and the influence of waves of immigrants who arrived in the 1800s to help build the streets, railway tracks and subway system, creating an ethnic mosaic of unique neighbourhoods and bringing a diversity of food and culture to the marketplaces and the streets of Toronto.
The story progresses from the Great War to Afghanistan; from wooden log cabins to massive steel and glass structures; and from the iconic CN Tower to diverse museums and attractions. Along the way, viewers are invited to explore the history and the back streets of the Old City; discover the location of the first Parliament buildings under a car wash; and learn of the fateful decisions that saved Toronto from an epidemic. Archival footage reveals the drama of the 1904 fire that destroyed the city’s financial center and of the hurricane that created havoc but in turn led to the establishment of a scenic park system
Toronto 175 is a fast-paced, informative look at the evolution of the little town of York to the modern metropolis