Spectators at a sporting event, [ca. 1915]

Cheering: Fans of Sport

Boating to the ballgame

For decades, fans have filled sports facilities in Ontario to see and hear the game first hand. Many of these sports venues no longer exist.

Hanlan’s Point Stadium was home to the Toronto Maple Leafs baseball team from 1897 to 1910, when fans took a ferry or their own boats across to the islands to cheer on their team. In 1910, the team moved to a new stadium on the island, where Babe Ruth hit his first professional home run on September 5, 1914.

Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
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S.S. Jasmine in the shadow of the baseball stadium at Hanlan's Point, Toronto Island, August 12, 1927
Rowley Murphy fonds
Reference Code: C 59-3-0-50
Archives of Ontario, I0014001
Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
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Aerial view, looking north, of a baseball game in progress at Maple Leaf Stadium, Front and Bathurst Streets, Toronto, 1958
John Boyd fonds
Reference Code: C 7-6-0-0-4
Archives of Ontario, I0003778

Packed stands and parking lots

This aerial photograph features Maple Leaf Stadium, another sports venue that no longer exists. The stadium which sat near Toronto’s waterfront from 1926 until its demolition in 1968.

Soldiers taking a break from training to watch a soccer match

A military base in Shorncliffe, England served as a staging post for Canadian troops destined for the Western Front during the First World War. Along with soccer, soldiers participated and watched sports such as running races, high jump, hammer throw, boxing, baseball, and volleyball.  

Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
Click to see a larger image (33.5 KB)
Soldiers watching a soccer game, [ca. 1914-1918]
Young Men’s Christian Association of Metropolitan Toronto fonds
Reference Code: F 796-1-0-2-12
Archives of Ontario, I0009251
Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
Click to see a larger image (48.4 KB)
Sam Snead on the 18th green, Canadian Open, 1941
Gordon W. Powley fonds
Reference Code: C 5-1-0-23-2
Archives of Ontario, I0010975

Golf fans on the final green

Both international and Canadian sports championships have been held in Ontario – bringing not only excitement, but also visitors to the province. This photograph shows the 18th hole of the Canadian Open at the Lambton Golf Club, where American Sam “Slammin’ Sammy” Snead took the title in 1941.

“He Shoots, He Scores!”

With the advent of radio and then television in the 20th century, sports fans could now experience the action even if they weren’t there. Foster Hewitt, seen here in a  publicity photograph, was one of Canada’s most famous sports broadcasters and coined the phrase, “He Shoots, He Scores!” From the 1930s to the 1960s, Hewitt called NHL games for CBC radio and later Hockey Night in Canada on television.

Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
Click to see a larger image (32.5 KB)
Foster Hewitt speaking into a CBC microphone, October 19, 1948
Gilbert A. Milne fonds
Reference Code: C 3-1-0-0-472
Archives of Ontario, I0020097
Picton Collegiate girls’ callisthenics class, [ca. 1910]
Click to see a larger image (43.3 KB)
Canoes in the water with spectators on shore during regatta, Sioux Lookout, [ca. 1953]
John Macfie fonds
Reference Code: C 330-14-0-0-106
Archives of Ontario, I0012726

Shoreline spectators in Sioux Lookout

The fans cheering for athletes in this canoe race remind us of the social side of community sporting events. This photograph was taken by John Macfie, an employee of the Department of Lands and Forests who worked in northern Ontario.

Copyright:
  • Soccer match photograph used with permission of the YMCA of Greater Toronto.

In this Exhibit -