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Bathurst St

By Deborah Sacrob, NYHS Board member


Bathurst St gets its name from Henry Bathurst, 3rd Earl of Bathurst. (1762-1834), British Secretary of State for War and the Colonies during the War of 1812. He held that post until 1827. He organized migration from the British Isles to Canada after the War of 1812. The name Bathurst Street was chosen by Sir Roger Hale Sheaffe, who, at the time was the Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada (Ontario).
Both Bathurst and Yonge Street were named for British Secretaries of War. Yonge Street, named in 1793, after Sir George Yonge by then Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, John Graves Simcoe. Sir George Yonge was British Secretary of War, 1782-1793.

The original Bathurst St was between Government Wharf and Queen St. the section to the north was at first a muddy trail, called Crookshank’s Lane. In 1870 it was renamed Bathurst St. Did you know that from 1923-24 Ernest Hemingway, when he was a reporter with the Toronto Star, lived in an apartment building on Bathurst St. a bit north of St. Clair?

Hemingway’s residence on Bathurst north of St. Clair (1980) – Toronto Public Library-Digital Archives Keith Beatty photographer

Bathurst St. looking north from Sheppard (1957) – Toronto Public Library-Digital Archives – James V. Salmon photographer