Stories

Free Rein

Free Rein

by Meg Beckel

1960s

My first experience with the ROM was in the mid 60’s when my brother and I participated in the Saturday Morning Club.  What is interesting is I have no recollection of adults being part of our experience.  I remember having free rein of the museum galleries and it being simply great.  Now .. I...

William Swinton, Director, 1962 - 1965

William Swinton, Director, 1962 - 1965

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1960s

William Elgin Swinton is appointed Director.  Having retired from the British Museum of Natural History and come to Toronto to be head of the ROM ‘s Life Sciences Division, he is both a scholar and a populariser, especially of dinosaurs. He uses television broadcasts to call attention to the...

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...

School Outreach

School Outreach

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1950s

Classes for school children begin in 1933 and continue today.  Lillian Payne, the first teacher, paid for by the Toronto School Board, worked at the ROM for 21 years. Not only did the children come to the ROM - in the 20s, groups from northern Ontario came by train to visit - but also the ROM...

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...

New technology

New technology

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1960s

There are many celebrations for the 50th anniversary. The new Information Office prepares a photo album for the American Association of Museums Annual Meetings and it provides some interesting glimpses of the work of the ROM midway through the first century.

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...

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...

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.

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...