Stories

The Prehistory of the ROM

The Prehistory of the ROM

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1900s

Before there was a ROM, there were museum buildings and collections in Toronto. The Provincial Museum (you can see its facade on the Ryerson University campus) had three parts: archaeology, biology and fine art. At the University of Toronto, there were several collections: some of the colleges had...

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...

Accessible Galleries: The Discovery Room/Gallery

by Kate Zankowicz

1970s

In July 1977, the ROM’s Discovery Room opened and was billed as a “mini-museum for the blind.” It was called the first gallery of its kind in Canada, a learning environment that emphasized hands-on engagement with original objects and specimens. Visitors crossing the threshold of the gallery...

Architect Chosen

Architect Chosen

by ROM ReCollects Editor

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.

A Prominent Woman

A Prominent Woman

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1910s

Mrs Warren was the only woman on the first Board of Trustees and she served for 40 years. When her husband died unexpectedly in 1909, she took over the running of his company. She was a founder of charitable institutions such as the Canadian Red Cross, which used her home on Wellesley St. as its...

Friends! Registrars! Hand me that ear!

by Beth Watkins

1990s

While a student in the University of Toronto's Museum Studies Master's program in 1996-8, I had an internship in the West Asian collections with Bill Pratt, assisting him with an inventory of the Egyptology collections. We took turns with tasks, one of us at a laptop - and it must have...

Opening the Dior

Opening the Dior

by ROM ReCollects Editor

2010s

The ROM commissioned a Dior dress for the exhibition "BIG". Here is how it is received upon arrival.

Honey bees

Honey bees

by Karen Clumpus

2010s

I have been volunteering for eight years and one of the reasons I am still giving my time is the honey bees. They are so cute and all the visitors just love hearing all about them. I learn something new about them every time I'm here. The people in biodiversity are great too. Happy 100th,...

Love at the ROM

Love at the ROM

by Katherine Dunnell

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...

The ROM's Prize Bulldog

The ROM's Prize Bulldog

by ROM ReCollects Editor

1930s

Most of our domestic dogs came from Toronto families, but Bungy had a different background. (See also "Curator's Work")