Government of Ontario     |    

Ministry of Public and Business Service Delivery

Preapare for Your Visit banner

Now that you plan to visit the Archives, there are a few things you should do to prepare for your visit that will help you find what you need. The Archives of Ontario has assembled a number of tools, databases, links and catalogues of information that can help you conduct much of your research from home. You might wish to start there.

For a very general overview of our collections, click here.

For information of particular interest to university students and professors, click here.

Watch the video below to learn more about our collections and services and how to access materials at the Archives:

Prepare for Your Visit to the Archives of Ontario

Please see the links below for other essential information you’ll need to know before you visit!

  • Our Location - Where to find us and how to contact us.

  • Hours of Operation - Reading Room and Helen McClung Exhibit Area.

  • Online Registration - All visitors to the Archives require an Archives of Ontario Researcher (AOR) card. Sign up for one in advance and save time when you arrive.
    • Please note: In order to register our guests at the Archives, we require 1 piece of Government issued ID to be presented (such as a Driver’s Licence, Passport, or a Government photo identification card). A Provincial Health card will not be accepted as a valid form of ID.
  • Ordering Materials in Advance - How to make sure your materials are here when you plan to be.

  • Services and Fees (Word, PDF) - An outline of the services we provide. What’s free and what we charge you for.

  • Rules of the Reading Room (Word, PDF) - What is and is not permissible in the Reading Room.

  • Our Copyright Policy - How to make sure you are abiding by the copyright policies of the Archives of Ontario.

  • Accessibility

[Return to top of page]

Our Location

Our Address

Archives of Ontario
134 Ian Macdonald Boulevard
Toronto, ON M7A 2C5

Our Contact Information

Telephone: 416-327-1600
E-mail us at:
For more contact options click here.

View Larger Map

[Return to top of page]

Getting Here

By Toronto Transit (TTC)

The Archives of Ontario is located at the York University Station stop on subway Line 1 Yonge-University.

For more information on how to visit us using the TTC, please consult their website:

  • TTC Will open in a new window

By Other Transit Agencies

We are also accessible by Go Transit, YRT (York Region Transit), Viva and Brampton Transit-Züm.

For more information on how to visit us by these transit agencies, please consult their websites:

By Car

From Highway 401

  • Take Hwy. 401 to Keele Street
  • Exit at Keele Street and go north
  • Follow Keele Street north of Finch Avenue (the campus is on your left)
  • Turn left at York Boulevard, north of Finch Avenue

From Highway 407

  • Take Hwy. 407 to Keele Street
  • Exit at Keele Street and go south
  • Follow Keele Street south of Steeles Avenue (the campus is on your right)
  • Turn onto the campus via York Boulevard, south of Steeles Avenue

From Highway 400 (southbound)

  • Take Hwy. 400 south to Hwy. 7
  • Exit onto Hwy. 7 and go east
  • Follow Hwy. 7 east to Keele Street
  • At Keele Street go south (the campus is on your right)
  • Turn onto the campus at York Boulevard, south of Steeles Avenue

From Highway 400 (northbound)

  • Take Hwy. 400 north to Steeles Avenue

Parking on campus is subject to York University Parking services and fees. For more information about the daily rates, consult the York University Parking Services website.

For parking updates, consult the York University Parking Services website.

Our Precise Location

For those using a GPS our coordinates are:

Latitude = 43.7749 - 43 degrees, 46.5 minutes North
Longitude = -79.5002 - 79 degrees, 30.0 minutes West

[Return to top of page]

Hours of Operation

Alexander Fraser Reading Room

The Reading Room is open for in-person services by appointment only.

Our hours of service are Monday - Friday, 8:30am - 5:00pm. We are pleased to announce that to better serve our customers, the Archives of Ontario Reading Room will now remain open between 12-1pm with no closure.

We look forward to providing you with even more time to research!

How to book an appointment:

Our new online appointment booking tool  will ensure your health and safety and will allow you to spend less time waiting and more time researching!

Book now

Send an email at or call us at: 416-327-1600 or toll free: 1-800-668-9933 (Ontario only) to book an appointment to view materials in the Reading Room

Helen McClung Gallery (main floor)

Our onsite exhibit is open Monday – Friday from 8:30am – 5:00pm for self guided tours.

[Return to top of page]

This is a Holidays list
Holiday 2024
New Year's Day Monday, January 1
Family Day Monday, February 19
Good Friday Friday, March 29
Easter Monday  Monday, April 1
Victoria Day Monday, May 20
Canada Day Monday, July 1
Civic Holiday Monday, August 5
Labour Day Monday, September 2
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Monday, September 30
Thanksgiving Day Monday, October 14
Remembrance Day Monday, November 11
Boxing Day Wednesday, December 26
Christmas Holiday Thursday, December 25

[Return to top of page]

Ordering Materials in Advance

Ordering in advance

You can request materials in advance:

  • By e-mail (highly recommended), at We suggest that you send your request about a week in advance; please indicate the date of your visit in the subject line of the e-mail.
  • By phone at 416-327-1600 or 1-800-668-9933 (toll-free in Ontario) or by fax at 416-327-1999

Please give us the following information for each container or item:

  • Title.
  • Reference code (RG xx-xx, F xxx, C xxx).
  • Container number or barcode. That information appears in the “How to order”, “Ordering information”, “Box” or “Container” field in the Archives Descriptive Database (ADD).
  • Accession or transfer number (if there is one provided with the container or box number).

A few ordering tips:

  • If the Archives Descriptive Database (ADD) mentions an inventory or file list that is not online, please contact us, as we may be able to send you inventories or lists in electronic or paper format.
  • If there are multiple entries with the same container number or barcode, you need to order that container only once.
  • You do not need to order self-service microfilm and DVDs, and you cannot reserve them in advance.
  • Records subject to an access restriction must be requested in writing and will take longer to retrieve; please submit an inquiry at or speak to our staff for more information.
  • If you plan to be at the Archives for a number of days, you can order the first records you’ll be reviewing in advance, then order the rest once you have arrived.

If you submit your order by e-mail, we will notify you once the records have arrived. If you order by phone, please let us know if you would like to be notified, and how to notify you.

[Return to top of page]

All records at the Archives of Ontario are covered by the Canadian Copyright Act. Customers who reproduce records are required to comply with the act. To find out more about the Copyright Act, different types of copyright and access restrictions on archival materials and the conditions that apply when copying archival materials held by the Archives of Ontario, please see the Archives of Ontario Public Policy on Copyright and Terms of Use for Archival Materials.


Our Building

The Archives of Ontario’s public facility is equipped with accessibility features and tools to make your visit easier. Our public facility is located a short distance from accessible parking and the York University subway station. Our entrances are wheelchair accessible with ramps and automatic door openers. All public services are located on the ground floor, including our accessible washrooms. We also welcome service animals. 

Our Services

Our Reading Room includes wheelchair accessible tables, and magnifying glasses upon request. The computer terminals have accessibility tools, including Microsoft Narrator and Magnifier, and our microfilm/microfiche viewers are equipped with various features to improve the quality and magnification of the images.

Due to the historic nature of records in our collections many items in our collections may not be accessible for people with disabilities. If a person with a disability needs an accessible format, or help to communicate with us, we will work with the person to provide the format or support that will best meet their needs — at no additional cost. If we are not able to meet the person’s particular requirement in a reasonable timeframe, we will inform them and will work with them to determine an alternate method or will provide a summary of the information.

We aim to make our online content accessible for all. If you require assistance visiting us in person or accessing our website, online tools and resources, please contact us.

[Return to top of page]