Stories

"He's looking at rocks"

"He's looking at rocks"

by Gary Layng

1960s

So my parents took their young son to the ROM for some education and entertainment. Being as I was about 5 at the time, I quickly wore Mom out. She sat on a bench in the rotunda waiting for Dad and me to finish in the gemmology exhibit. Dad comes out - alone - and slumps next to her in exhaustion....

Scary Mummy

Scary Mummy

by Shirley Fowley

1940s

About 1946, when I was 2 years old, my Grandparents were babysitting me in Toronto while my mother was expecting a baby. My Granddad took me to the ROM for the first time. Now, I know current theory holds that children don't remember things earlier than age 3 or 4, But, I assure you, I am an...

Unexpected Lesson

by David Wilmot

1950s

The ROM tour had come to an end. My grade seven classmates and I descended to the lower level to collect our winter coats and galoshes. At the bottom of the stairs, I saw a skull, sitting rather haphazardly on a small stand in the hallway. On one side of the skull was a hole, neatly cut about...

The Yellow Line

The Yellow Line

by Julia Matthews

1960s

School busses are a constant at the ROM. In addition to the coach styling, notice the sign over the front doors. It depicts a man with a magnifying glass and a big question mark to advertise the special exhibition "Search and Research". This show called attention to the work of ROM...

The View from 'Home'

The View from 'Home'

by Patricia Shaughnessy

1960s

ROM was one of my favorite haunts growing up in the '60's. Dad was executive manager of the Park Plaza Hotel across the street, and we lived on the 11th floor of the south wing. The rich green of ROM's copper roof dominated our view every time we looked out our windows. It felt like...

A Special Place

by Judy Knox

1930s

I've always considered the Royal Ontario Museum a "home away from home". When I was very young in the 1930's, my uncle, Eric McDougall, who was an assistant in the "stuffed animal" (as I knew it then) gallery on the third floor, would bring me there each year to...

My Father's Home

My Father's Home

by Mary Hofstetter

1950s

My father, C. H. Douglas Clarke, was a naturalist who studied forestry and wildlife biology at U of T in the 30s and went on to a distinguished career as a researcher, administrator and writer in the field of wildlife management. He always told me that when he first came to U of T as an...

Family tradition

Family tradition

by James Hinnecke

1960s

My parents had a defined set of family activities that we would do together. One of these was visiting the Royal Ontario Museum. We used to go at least annually by subway -- taking the subway was a novel experience in itself for kids who seldom left suburbia. In those days many exhibits were kept...

My First Visit!!!

My First Visit!!!

by Gary Skelton

1960s

The year was 1961, I was 10 and in grade 5 (or 6?). At that time our public school, Highview, in Hamilton, had a wonderful man for a Principal, Mr. Howard. This man would, over a period of a few months, load 5 or 6 kids into his brand new 1961 Thunderbird on a Saturday morning, and take us all to...

Tactile Tours

Tactile Tours

by Kate Zankowicz

1960s

Two unnamed women are carefully running their fingers around the rim of a lion’s mouth. It’s a ceramic Wedgwood ornament from the nineteenth century. They are in a study room, presumably a behind-the-scenes curatorial space at the museum. A volunteer instructor stands behind them, watching...