|Saturday, January 13, 1940
|The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
|Page 11, col. 7
The home forum
More about the old Belt Line
At the time the Old Belt Time was discontinued land in the city which had been bought at as high as a thousand dollars an acre depreciated to a hundred dollars an acre, and farms purchased went back to farm values. Foreclosures and sales for taxes and other costs were common, and many portions of land sold at that time are now worth many thousands of dollars.
During the Great War the tracks east of Yonge Street were torn up and used in France.
This section of the road presents a never-failing source of interest and delight to strollers and lovers of nature. From Rosedale Station it follows the winding course of a brook through a narrow, luxuriantly wooded ravine to the old station nestling below the embankment at Moore Avenue. This was built by John T. Moore, managing director of the company, and some of our readers will remember his beautiful rose garden on Avoca Vale at the east end of the St. Clair Avenue Bridge.
Recently I met a farmer whose pasture land lies along the east side of the track in Moore Park, and he remembers watching the little engine, with only one or two cars, puffing its way up the long grade to Moore Park Station. The rambling old building, with turrets on each corner, is quite ornamental, and it has a lovely location. It was the most pretentious one on the line, and was built by Mr. Moore. He must have been partial to this form of tower, as he had a similar one on his own residence on Inglewood Drive. During the intervening years the old building has always been occupied.
When the railway was in operation there were only five families living in Moore Park, viz.: Messrs. Firstbrook, Moore, Mellroy, Calvery and Duncan, and they must have provided all the business at Moore Park Station.
Some time when you want a lovely walk follow the old right-of-way from Rosedale Station to Yonge Street, and follow the route northwest to Eglinton on to Fairbank and Lambton. You can use any part for the letter I sent in.
And street cars in the nineties.
The street-car franchise expired in 1891. The new company wanted the privilege of changing the old horse-drawn cars to electric power, and also the providing of a Sunday car service. There was quite a number of the electorate of that held back, saying that "horse cars were good enough." However, the following year electric cars started running along King Street from Sherbourne to Exhibition Park.
The City of Toronto has long been known as "Toronto the Good," and when the Sunday car question arose a large number defied the Sabbath breakers. In fact, it turned the city into a regular debating society. Meetings were held in churches, the Horticultural Pavillion, and a flood of letter appeared in the press. Public opinion was generally hostile, and a clause had been written into the new agreement providing that no Sunday cars be allowed on the streets until the electors approved at the pools. The question was submitted to the electors in 1892, and also the following year. For fully six years it was a controversial question of first importance. At last, in 1897 the electors gave a favorable decision.