SHEDDING ITS DARK PAST, HISTORIC DON JAIL PUTS ON A HAPPY FACE

DONJAIL7Built in 1864, the DON JAIL has become the administration centre for a brand new hospital – Bridgepoint Health.  On the ground floor, the rotunda with its skylight and recently uncovered glass floor, is the highlight.
On the second level, walkways are held up by wrought-iron gargoyles (dragons and snakes).  A group of cells and the gallows have been retained in their original state in the basement.

DONJAIL2

<PHOTOS – “Father Time” peering down over the front entranceway which had been closed for more than 30 years; and the rotunda with its skylight, soon to become a public gallery and a place for lectures, community and hospital events.>

DONJAIL3

DONJAIL4

DONJAIL5

“Decisions-Decisions”, Queen Elizabeth II chooses a hat, by CHARLES PACHTER

DECISIONS,DECISIONS1Queen Elizabeth II peruses her hat closet, in “Decisions-Decisions”/2013 by TORONTO artist, CHARLES PACHTER.  Upcoming for Mr. Pachter: a series of paintings about Canada’s role in the First World War commissioned by Ontario’s Attorney-General, and a series of large paintings depicting the War of 1812.  These will be displayed at the new Fort York visitors centre.

DON JAIL PRISONERS ONCE FARMED RIVERDALE PARK EAST

RIVERDALE1

In 1856 the City of TORONTO purchased 119 acres east of the Don River, including the present-day park, for the building of the Don Jail.  The land, originally cultivated by John and Melicent Scadding, was then farmed by prisoners as part of a Victorian-era reform program.  The site opened as a park in 1880, and with the annexation of Riverdale in 1884, it was expanded to the west side of the river as well.  It’s a gem.

RIVERDALE2

Riverdale Park – both East and West – offers some of TORONTO’s finest city views.  <PHOTO ABOVE – the Financial District; BELOW – St. James Town and the Parliament/Bloor neighbourhood>

RIVERDALE3

Massey College is a “place of dignity, grace, beauty and warmth”

MASSEY1MASSEY COLLEGE, 4 Devonshire Place, is a well-connected and financially endowed institution in downtown TORONTO.  Designed by Canadian architect, RON THOM, and opened in 1963 by Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, this is one of the University of Toronto’s most beautiful buildings.  <PHOTOS 1 & 2 by SchwerinG/wikipedia>

MASSEY2

Massey College was conceived by VINCENT MASSEY, 18th Governor-General of Canada, as a “place of dignity, grace, beauty and warmth”.

MASSEY3 

MASSEY7

MASSEY8

The Founding Master (from 1963-1981) was Canadian journalist and author, ROBERTSON DAVIES.

MASSEY9

MASSEY6