Top 10 Useless Historical Facts from “Inside the Museums”
1. The Orange Order began as an Irish Protestant fraternity sometimes referred to as the Loyal Order of Lodgemen, or LOL.
2. Robert Baldwin, of Spadina House, left instructions for a male version of a Caesarean section to be performed on his corpse in homage to his beloved wife, Eliza, who died at twenty-five in 1836 after such an operation.
4. John George Howard’s Colbourne Lodge features Toronto’s oldest existing indoor toilet.
5. “The most cruel and intense sensation of pain” that Rebel leader William Lyon Mackenzie says he ever endured came when, trying to escape, he walked naked up to his neck in an ice-filled stream carrying his clothes above his head.
6. A meeting to debate Toronto’s first municipal tax ended in horror in 1834 when the Market Hall balcony collapsed, hurling at least seven spectators onto the butchers’ hooks below and killing them.
7. With government militia closing in, rebel wife Liza Gibson hid her baby in a snowbank and returned to her house to rescue the family clock, the most technologically advanced item anybody could own in 1837.
9. As a high-school project in 1934, sixteen-year-old Sheila Wherry built one of Fort York’s standout exhibits, a scale model showing York and its defences in 1812.