Stories

J. H. Fleming, Ornithologist Extraordinaire

J. H. Fleming, Ornithologist Extraordinaire

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1940s

J. H. Fleming dies. He has had office space at the ROM since the 20s, when he willed his ornithological collection to the Museum. It was then the largest and most comprehensive private collection of skins, mounts, eggs in North America, with a special focus on birds of paradise. With it came his...

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...

Masks

Masks

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1950s

The opening gala for the 1959 exhibition "Masks: the Many Faces of Man" was great fun. Museum design staff provided some spectacular examples, but the guests rose to the occasion as well.

Charlie and Fido

Charlie and Fido

by Helen Lovekin

1960s

In the 1960s my father was seconded to the ROM from the Toronto Board of Education and the immediate effect of this career move for me was access to the Royal Ontario Museum after closing hours. I had a tremendous sense of privilege and insider knowledge when my mother and I picked my father up at...

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,...

11 millionth visitor

11 millionth visitor

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1950s

In just 13 years the ROM more than doubles its total attendance. Since opening its doors on March 19, 1914,  the ROM has welcomed 11 million visitors.

Canadiana Building

Canadiana Building

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1950s

Sigmund Samuel, who has been an important donor as well as a collector in his own right, pays for a building to house the fine and decorative art and rare books that he has donated, as well as the provincial archives. This building remains as a second ROM location until very recently and shows up...

My Brilliant Career

by Robert Taylor

1950s

Robert Taylor and  the ROM My first contact with the ROM was in 1948 when our grade 4 class from Coleman Avenue School took the Bloor streetcar along the Danforth to Avenue Road and across to the museum.  We were in awe of the magnitude of the building itself as we trundled up the concrete...

The Bishop White Committee

The Bishop White Committee

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1960s

Louise Hawley Stone founds the Bishop White Committee, which still exists. It was the prototype for "Friends of ...." various departments. Every year there is a festive banquet (a few teacups are on view here) and an inspiring speaker. This is just one of Mrs. Stone's many...

Ruth Home

by Kate Zankowicz

1930s

Ruth M. Home developed the education department at the Royal Ontario Museum from 1928-1945. She was an important figure in the history of the museum, and more broadly, in the history of museum-based education in the province. She developed programming that was geared towards what were then...