A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

[URBAN NOTE] “How construction barriers are bringing downtown’s gritty past to life”

CBC News’ Lorenda Reddekopp looks at how archeologists are uncovering the history of Toronto’s infamous Ward, a neighbourhood that was an early center for immigration.

Mavis Garland clearly remembers the sign stuck in the window of her stepdad’s barbershop: “No Discrimination.”

That was back in the early 1950s. Garland’s mother, a white woman and British immigrant, made the sign. Her Chinese stepfather wanted clients of all races to know they were welcome.

Garland says it worked.

Her family’s story is one of six depicted in an art project — called Picturing The Ward — on the wooden construction hoardings surrounding what will eventually be a new courthouse in downtown Toronto, at 11 Centre Ave., northwest of city hall.

The street art covers two blocks, recounting life stories from the gritty, impoverished area that used to be known as “The Ward.” It was a first home for new immigrants to the city dating back to the 1800s.

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Written by Randy McDonald

December 19, 2016 at 6:45 pm

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