A Toronto Album


Mike Filey’s collection of pictures of Toronto from the earliest days of photography had gained a reputation as one of the most interesting visual archives of the city’s history. This classic look at old Toronto portrays scenes of public life from 1860 to 1950, illustrating how dramatically the urban fabric and environment have changed. There are photographs of the beaches and the islands, of mud streets and gas lamps, of steam engines and trolley cars, amusement parks and the everchanging waterfront. Especially striking are the early photographs of downtown and the aftermaths of the fire of 1904.

Out of print for over 20 years, A Toronto Album has sold over 50,000 copies in various editions. It will appeal to Torontonians young and old - and to anyone interested in the evolution of one of the world’s fastest growing cities.


Great collection of early photos and Filey's delightful text.

(February, 2002)

…to peruse this book is to fight the urge to pull out Michael Ondaatje's In the Skin of A Lion and explore again the city's mythic past.

(November, 2001)

Carefully edited black and white photos show street scenes that are oddly familiar even to the the visitor. It makes the reader a traveller of a different kind: a traveller in time.

About the Author

Mike Filey

Posted by Dundurn Guest on December 6, 2014

Mike Filey

Mike Filey was born in Toronto in 1941. He has written more than two dozen books on various facets of Toronto's past and for more than thirty-five years has contributed a popular column, "The Way We Were," to the Toronto Sunday Sun. His Toronto Sketches series is more popular now than ever before.