Stories

Love at first snap

by Meryl Leslie

1950s

I was asked to attend the ROM by my then, classmate. He asked me to assist him with his photography equipment while shooting at the museum. He was shooting the large dinosaur by the main entrance. After our trip, we began dating and today we have been married for over 50 years. We bring our...

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...

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...

The Night the Bells Were Silent

The Night the Bells Were Silent

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1930s

This story comes from Elvira Hamilton, who joined the ROM in 1913 and was a staff member for 48 years. " I well remember the night the bells didn't ring throughout the Museum. This was the responsibility of the guard on duty. I don't recall his name but he had a physique that would...

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...

Just a speck of dust?

Just a speck of dust?

by Mark McAlister

1960s

A subtle feeling of anxiety crept over me every time I passed by that large globe in the Geology gallery. The Earth was described as a mere speck of dust, and I felt cold and alone. Somehow, this experience was a seed for new feelings of veneration that developed as I grew older. These feelings...

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...

The Toronto Junior Field Naturalist Club

The Toronto Junior Field Naturalist Club

by Paul McElcheran

1960s

I was a member of the TJFNC through the '60s. Our meetings took place in the theatre and spread out from there to the unexplored back rooms that contained the really good stuff. I was in the herpetology and ichthyology group so we saw a lot of specimens in formaldehyde, but nothing was more...

Close Examination

by Graham Bowden

1960s

 In the early 60's my mom took my brothers and me on our first visit to ROM. After hours of viewing display case after display case if intriguing objects we walked the stairs to the top floor. Enthralled and not wanting to miss anything, partway up the stairs I stopped to examine another...

Visiting the ROM as a solo kid in the early 1960s

by Carl Benn

1960s

  I was born in Toronto in the early 1950s and grew up just east of High Park and south of Bloor Street. I don’t remember my first visit to the Royal Ontario Museum, but recall that somewhere around the ages of eight or ten I very much wanted to go to the ROM and explore its galleries,...