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Evocative Images of Lost Toronto

thedeepend

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Hello everyone! This is a great thread, and I have some interesting pictures that I want to share. Toronto's Macedonian immigrants were known for entering the food industry upon their arrival since the early 1900s. In the 1970s, it is estimated that two-thirds of all the restaurants in Toronto were own by Macedonian families! Here are some of Toronto's early Macedonian restaurants:







thank you for contributing these! they are wonderful. do you have any idea of the location of the restaurants in the first three? the third street scape looks kind of familiar...
does anyone know why the Macedonians were drawn to the food industry when they arrived? there are of course some later groups who also gained entrance into Canadian society through the restaurant business--the Thai immigrants most recently...
i'm wondering whether the menus in these establishments reflected Macedonian heritage at all--or whether they served exclusively 'Canadian' or 'North American' dishes. the sign in the second one is advertising 'Strawberry Shortcake'!
 

Maco in the 6

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Sorry, but I don't know where exactly they were located. Very few establishments reflected Macedonian heritage, the most famous of them was "Macedonian Village" on Queen near Parliament.

edit: You could find more information on the history of Macedonian Restaurant Owners in Toronto in "MEN IN WHITE APRONS - A Study of Ethnicity and Occupations" by Harry Vjekoslav Herman. Another great book is "Sojourners and settlers: the Macedonian community in Toronto to 1940" by Lilian Petroff.
 
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adma

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CP restaurant--more recently, there was the more unfortunately named "CPR" restaurant on St Clair E of Runnymede.

In that second picture, what caught my eye was the OXO sign...
 

Goldie

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Here are some more photos:

Toronto's early Macedonian community protesting against Greek and Bulgarian occupation of their homeland, in favor of an independent and united Macedonia. Location: Trinity and Eastern Ave, in front of what was once the first Macedonian Church in Canada (white building) of Sts. Cyril & Methody.

Click here for full size
This must be one of the largest groups ever to appear on Urban Toronto - Magnificent photo!
 

Jonny5

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There's a story behind this photograph titled "Women Sharpshooters 1914", and I wish I knew what it was:

Front row, second woman from the left: I wonder if she shot all those minks herself?

The gentleman on the left looks South Asian, which I would think is rare for Toronto in 1914, especially in a uniform of some kind.
 

thedeepend

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CP restaurant--more recently, there was the more unfortunately named "CPR" restaurant on St Clair E of Runnymede.

In that second picture, what caught my eye was the OXO sign...
the entire image is a cornucopia of 'lost symbols of mid century diners'. the 'quilted' metal backsplash behind the sink; the mint green Hamilton Beach milkshake machine; the little metal surrounds that corral the sugar, s&p, serviettes; the arborite counter with metal contoured trim; the 'Stone Straws' box (these may still be around); the vinyl stools that rotate; the display graphic of a banana split top right...wow.

it reminds me that The Stem on Queen W had most of these things, right up to the end....sad

 

wwwebster

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GenerationW

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does anyone know why the Macedonians were drawn to the food industry when they arrived? there are of course some later groups who also gained entrance into Canadian society through the restaurant business--the Thai immigrants most recently...
i'm wondering whether the menus in these establishments reflected Macedonian heritage at all--or whether they served exclusively 'Canadian' or 'North American' dishes. the sign in the second one is advertising 'Strawberry Shortcake'!
Interesting story. Greeks in Toronto ran many of those restaurants until a rather ugly incident during the period of the First World War. Due to internal politics, Greece remained neutral for most of the war, and apparently some returning Canadian soldiers got into a political argument with some employees and/or patrons at one of these restaurants, and, compounded by the language barrier, this escalated into a riot which led to the police being called in. The Greek restaurateurs then became afraid for their livelihoods and began unloading their businesses en masse. The easiest way to do that was to sell to their coreligionists.

The menus remained basically unchanged after the Greeks left, and were mostly if not exclusively Canadian/North American dishes.

I found this. Note the mentions of the late Steve Stavro (aka Manol Sholdoff).
http://www.makedonskatribuna.com/TheManyfaces of Toronto AM.pdf

As for the description in this link of these people as Bulgarians or Bulgarian-Macedonians instead of Macedonians, that's a WHOLE other topic.
 

GenerationW

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Correction: Officially a Macedono-Bulgarian church, part of the Bulgarian Archdiocese. There were no Macedonian churches in 1932.

As for Stavro, the only thing he was truly proud of was making money.
 

lesouris

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That "what people have to say" section is fascinating - kind of what I'd imagine a 1960s UT to look like. In fact, we can find a lot of the same arguments made here today (the "City Hall tower ruining the effect," reminds me of the BA façade debate). Interesting too how the only people not to like it were both women and artists (if you consider interior design an art, but why wouldn't you?).
 

thedeepend

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Charioteer, thanks for posting those corresponding images! it sure was a monster plan. i'd forgotten how big the buildings were....

its clear that the announcement that the plan called for the demolition of Old City Hall was immediately polarizing, as evidenced by some of the letters to the editor:






the language and rationales contained deployed by the pro-demolitionists throughout these articles, letters and columns are a great window into 'the mind of the modernist' at its most parrot-like, arrogant and unthinking. the 1960's was the high watermark of modernism as a kind of 'received opinion', and the utter and cavalier contempt for the value, interest or importance of the building causes one to shudder:

"Proponents have called the building a monstrosity that should be demolished as soon as possible".

"I wish they'd tear down the old city hall tower. Old fashioned buildings of 100 years or less add nothing to a city's appearance"

wow. in this way at least, we have truly evolved.

in any case, it also seems that the momentum seems to be almost immediately on the side of the preservationists. the plan is announced March 1 1966, three weeks later on March 22, the Star publishes a front page story on the opposition to its demolition.

anyway its clear that we dodged a big bullet! I wonder when the original plan well and truly died?
 
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