A Victorian-era iron fence encircles OSGOODE HALL and 5 acres of lawns on Queen Street West at University Avenue. The gardens within are among the most tranquil in TORONTO’s city centre, an ideal place for wedding photography, and home to several inner city families of black squirrels.
Osgoode’s distinctive iron gates are narrow and restrictive. Myth has it that they were designed to keep livestock from wandering the grounds when the neighbourhood was more rural than urban. In the 1950’s students tried to push a cow through the gates but they failed.
The building itself is home to the Law Society of Upper Canada. Built between 1829 and 1832, it was named after William Osgoode, the first Chief Justice of Upper Canada (now Ontario), and contains two libraries – the Great Library of the Law Society, and a smaller one for judges. Behind the Great Library, with its etched glass windows, is the American Room with its spiral staircase.
Osgoode Hall is connected to the Toronto Courthouse on University Avenue by a tunnel. <PHOTO ABOVE – Osgoode Hall, 1856, albumen>