St. Clair From The Archives

The City of Toronto Archives contain many photos and documents of the early days of the TTC and its predecessors.  Among them is a June 1914 schedule for the St. Clair car, a line that had opened only a year earlier.

The line ran from the Grand Trunk Railway crossing just west of what is now called Caledonia Road, but on the timetable shown as “Station Street”.  A one way trip was given 18 minutes to reach Yonge Street during all hours of service.  Headways were 4.5 minutes AM peak, 6 minutes midday, 4 minutes PM peak, 7 minutes evenings.

There were 13 crews for a day’s service with work hours ranging from 8 to 10 hours, most of them over 9 hours with a spread of 11 to 14(!) hours.

Thanks to Martin Phills for alerting me to this item in the archives.

Once you visit that site, it’s hard to leave without much browsing.  Here is a selection of photos of St. Clair before and during construction of the streetcar line.

Seller’s Hotel SW corner at Yonge 1911

Avenue Road and St. Clair 1911 1913

St. Clair west to Bathurst 1912

St. Clair east from Bathurst 1912

City of Toronto locomotive 1 at the Wells Hill fill 1912

City of Toronto locomotives 1 and 2 near Bathurst and St. Clair 1912

Wells Hill Bridge 1914 (temporary trestle in the background)

In the woods at St. Clair and Ossington (Winona) 1911

St. Clair and Ossington (Winona) looking west 1911 (Oakwood Collegiate in background)

St. Clair and Ossington (Winona) looking east 1911

St. Clair at Ossington fill (Winona) looking east 1912

St. Clair W from Dufferin 1912

St. Clair W from Lansdowne 1912

Site of future carhouse 1913

Rear St. Clair Carhouse 1914

Transit Toronto has a good article on the history of the route.

3 thoughts on “St. Clair From The Archives

  1. Steve,

    The “schedule” for June 1914 is what is actually referred to as a “Crew Guide”. We still use a very similar format at the TTC. As a matter of fact, we are currently in the middle of the “sign-up” for the March 28 – May 8, 2010 Board Period.

    “There were 13 crews for a day’s service with work hours ranging from 8 to 10 hours, most of them over 9 hours with a spread of 11 to 14(!) hours.”

    Not much has changed over the years. I see that they still have some large swing crews and that the crew values still compare to the present (lower right side).

    All in all, this is extremely interesting to me as it shows that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

    Steve: Yes, I used “Schedule” for general consumption by readers. If we want to get picky (grin), there were commonly two sets of sheets. One was the “Run Guide” with the schedule for the cars, and the other was the “Crew Guide” with the schedule for the operators. In this case they all fit on one sheet. I too was struck by the way so little has changed in the format over a century.


  2. Good job of outlining the issues, Steve. The archive photos remind us how much effort it has taken to make over Our Town to become so urban.

    Did the audience seem to favor Transit City or Auto City?

    Steve: The discussion turned mainly on transit stuff, but there were several who remained silent. Mind you at a downtown campus, I would expect the balance to favour transit, although as it turned out many in the class were from the 905.


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