Title and statement of responsibility area
Oakham House dogs
General material designation
- Multiple media
Other title information
Title statements of responsibility
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Edition statement of responsibility
Class of material specific details area
Statement of scale (cartographic)
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Statement of scale (architectural)
Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)
Dates of creation area
ca. 1850 - 2010 (Creation)
- Thomas, William, 1799-1860
Physical description area
2 cast iron dogs
4 pp. of textual records
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Archival description area
Name of creator
Two cast iron Chesapeake Bay Retriever dogs, one male one female, were commissioned by architect William Thomas and cast at the iron works Toronto company, Phoenix Foundry, owned by John McGee. Originally they were of a red hue and were designed to hitch horses in front of Thomas's home, Oakham House (1848), on Church Street at Gould Street, Toronto.
Thomas lived in the house until his death in 1860 when the aforementioned John McGee purchased it. After a few more owners, including it being run as a boarding house, the house and the dogs were sold in 1899 to the Society for Working Boys - a charity for disadvantaged boys. With an addition built to the back of the original house, the building was run as the Working Boys' Home for almost 60 years until Ryerson Institute of Technology acquired it in late 1958. However, the dogs had moved with the boys to their new location on Montcrest Blvd and it was not until 1982 that Ryerson Polytechnical Institute was able to claim the dogs and move them back to Oakham House where they belonged. The Toronto Historical Board wanted the pair to be mounted in their historical place in the front of the house; however, in the interest of protecting them, the dogs resided inside until the University Archives adopted them in 2010.
Scope and content
- Two cast iron retriever dogs.
- Textual records includes correspondence and related material to the "Name the Dogs" contest held by the Archives to celebrate the Dog's move to the Archive holdings.
Immediate source of acquisition
Language of material
Script of material
Location of originals
Availability of other formats
Restrictions on access
Open. Records are available for consultation without restriction.
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
No further accruals are expected.