Many people blame the big bad developer for the loss of Toronto’s original buildings. Of course there have been many buildings brought down to make way for “progress” but it’s important to understand that The Great Fire of 1904 essentially gutted the Financial Core. The destruction was wide spread and destroyed dozens of buildings only sparing 12 near the corner of Yonge and Wellington. Many facades were saved and incorporated into today’s buildings.
Until this week I had not idea this footage existed. I’ve seen photos and read stories but this is just amazing. There is actually Toronto Archive footage of the great fire. You can see the first responders in their horse drawn fire trucks, then the raging fire, followed by the demolition of the ravaged buildings.
Here are a few images from April of 1904.