Toronto Sketches 8: "The Way We Were"


341 pages
Contains Photos, Maps
ISBN 1-55002-527-9
DDC 971.3'541






Reviewed by Trevor S. Raymond

Trevor S. Raymond is a teacher and librarian with the Peel Board of Education and editor of Canadian Holmes.


For almost three decades, historian, tour guide, and broadcaster Mike
Filey has written for a Toronto newspaper a weekly column called “The
Way We Were,” offering reminiscences and vignettes about the city’s
history. This eighth volume in the series contains all his columns from
2001 and 2002, each dated and accompanied by at least one fascinating
illustration from archives and attics. Many sets of pictures illustrate
Toronto scenes “then and now,” and other photographs illuminate
historic events, such as the visit in 1919 of a captured German
submarine or the 1924 opening of new streetcar line. Some columns are
occasioned by the publication of a new book that he recommends, others
by old photos or queries sent to him by readers, and still others by
anniversaries, such as the 35th anniversary of the start of GO Train
service and the 133rd anniversary of the day Timothy Eaton opened his
first Toronto store. Some pieces include a footnote that updates the
information therein; for instance, a June 2001 piece on HMCS Haida is
followed by a note about its removal in August 2003 to Hamilton. Each
short essay is an informative delight, and Mike Filey is a Toronto


Filey, Mike., “Toronto Sketches 8: "The Way We Were",” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 14, 2024,