March 15, 1827, King's College - the precursor to the University of
Toronto - was granted its royal charter by King George IV. Throughout
2002, U of T celebrated 175 years of Great Minds. As part of the
celebration, the U of T website featured excerpts from The
University of Toronto: A History, written by Martin Friedland, University
Professor and Professor Emeritus of Law at U of T.
also was unprepared to join the University, particularly when it
became clear that the government would not compensate it for the move.
Trinity had an impressive building on Queen Street, in the west end
of Toronto, and in the fall of 1884 it had opened a fine new Gothic
chapel. It would not enter into federation until after the turn of the
century, and it would not physically move from Queen Street until its
present building was constructed in 1925.
College moved from its Queen Street site to its present location
on Hoskin Avenue in 1925; a quadrangle was completed during the
Second World War and Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's chapel in 1955.
colleges of Knox and Wycliffe were happy to continue their association
with the University .
colleges of Knox and Wycliffe, however, were happy to continue their
association with the University. Both formally affiliated with the University
in 1885 and were satisfied to continue focusing on ecclesiastical training.
Knox had had a long association with the University and encouraged its
students - who at times constituted a significant proportion of University
College students - to take degrees at the University while studying
for divinity degrees at Knox.
was located physically close to the University, having opened, in 1875,
in the still-standing churchlike structure on a crescent in the middle
of Spadina Avenue north of College Street. In 1915, it moved even closer
- to a prominent position on what would later be called King's College
Circle. Wycliffe had been founded in 1877 by low church Anglicans who
wanted to "combat the Catholic heresies allegedly promoted by Trinity."
In 1882, it was established on university land near College Street.
In 1890, it chose the closer link of federation with the University,
and in 1891 it moved to its present location on Hoskin Avenue.
College on Spadina Crescent, completed in 1875; date of image unknown.
Note the horse-drawn streetcar. The Spadina streetcar was electrified
denominational college, however, the Toronto Baptist College, rejected
federation in favour of becoming an independent arts and theological
college. Its building on Bloor Street on land purchased from the University
(now the Royal Conservatory of Music) had been made possible in 1881
by the generosity of the Toronto businessman William McMaster, who provided
$100,000 for what became known as McMaster Hall, and an annual contribution
of $14,500 a year. Although the college participated in the federation
discussions, it had serious concerns about the form of federation.
Postcard of McMaster University on Bloor
1887, legislation was introduced to unite the Baptist theological college
with a Baptist arts college in Woodstock. The supporters of an independent
Baptist university knew they could count on further support from William
McMaster, and three weeks after the bill was introduced, he drew up
a new will leaving virtually his entire estate to the new Baptist institution,
McMaster University. He died suddenly the following spring, and the
princely sum of close to $1 million came to the institution.
by some prominent Baptists to thwart independence and join the University
of Toronto was decisively defeated by the Baptist Convention of 1888,
which passed a motion that McMaster University "be organized and
developed as a permanently independent school of learning, with the
Lordship of Christ as the controlling principle." In 1912, the
university purchased a large block of land on Avenue Road north of Eglinton,
but owing to the war it did not proceed with its plans to relocate there.
The question of federation would continue to be raised from time to
time, and in 1930 it was finally laid to rest when McMaster University
physically moved to Hamilton, Ontario.