The 1940s was a significant decade for Toronto, as it was for many cities around the world. During this time, the city was heavily involved in the Second World War, with many residents serving in the military or working in war-related industries. Many factories in the city produced goods for the military, including vehicles and aircraft. The city was also home to several military training facilities, including the Toronto Armories and Camp X, which was a secret training facility for spies. The war also significantly impacted Toronto’s economy and population, as many people moved to the city to work in the war industries. Many new buildings and infrastructure were built, including the first stretch of the Toronto subway system.
The economy was strong, and the population was multiplying, with many new immigrants arriving in the city. In 1943, Toronto hosted the first-ever meeting of the United Nations, which was a significant event for the city. Despite the challenges of the war, the 1940s was also a time of significant cultural and artistic growth in Toronto, with the establishment of several important cultural institutions and the emergence of a vibrant arts scene.
The decade was also marked by unspeakable tragedy when SS Noronic, a lake steamer, caught fire and 118 people lost their lives in 1949. The ship caught fire while it was docked at the Toronto waterfront, and over 100 people died as a result. The exact cause of the fire is not known, but it is believed to have been caused by a cigarette or match that was improperly discarded. The disaster was one of the worst maritime accidents in Canadian history, and it led to significant changes in safety regulations for passenger ships.
Here are some stunning photos that show Toronto in the 1940s.