Stories

Things That Cough in the Night

by Array Array

1990s

After the Planetarium layoffs, some staff found other positions in the ROM. One woman who had been a greeter became a Security Officer. She had to do the lonely midnight shift, making the rounds in a dark and empty museum. One night I got a terrified call: “I think there’s someone in the...

Remember the Popcorn Vendor?

Remember the Popcorn Vendor?

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1980s

We liked this scene so  much that we commissioned a poster

Love at the ROM

Love at the ROM

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2010s

Emily and Kyle met in line with hundreds of others at the architectural opening of the ROM’s crystal June 2nd 2007.  The line was long and they stood for 2 hours talking as they waited to see the new ROM.  A lot can happen in 2 hours! It was appropriate that almost six years later, June 24th...

Bishop William White

Bishop William White

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1920s

Bishop William White of Honan calls on Currelly. For the next decade they work to build the collections – from early bronzes to the great wall paintings in the gallery named after him.

Archaeologists Then and Now

Archaeologists Then and Now

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2010s

Museums are known for the things inside them – Egyptian mummies, dinosaur fossils,  Greek and Roman marble statues, ‘stuffed’ animals and, my favorite from the Field Museum in Chicago, two adult Neanderthals standing outside a cave, so life-like I stood frozen in awe, worried what their...

Wolverine Lodge

Wolverine Lodge

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1980s

Here is one of the tents with the opening title displayed.

Architect Chosen

Architect Chosen

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2000s

Daniel Libeskind is announced as the architect for the project, following an international search. He sketches (and submits)  his idea on napkins from the ROM's restaurant. William Thorsell talks about the process.

Bill 138: A home for culture and science

Bill 138: A home for culture and science

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1900s

On April 16, 1912, Bill 138 formally establishing the ROM received Royal Assent to “provide a home for culture and science under the same academical roof”. Press coverage was slight owing to the sinking of the Titanic. There were to be five ROMs, each with a director. The Board of Trustees was...

The Night the Bells Were Silent

The Night the Bells Were Silent

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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...

J. H. Fleming, Ornithologist Extraordinaire

J. H. Fleming, Ornithologist Extraordinaire

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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...