Using the Archives

Aerial photographs

Aerial photographs in the Archives' collection (Series 12) document the City of Toronto for most years from 1947 to 1992.

These photographs, taken from planes, are close enough to the ground that you can see buildings appearing, changing, and disappearing over the years. You can also distinguish geographic forms, such as rivers that seem to vanish, indicating that they have been channelled into sewers, and neighbourhood features such as parks, schools and community centres.

1947 1960 1966 1973 1985
1950 1961 1967  1975 1987
1953 1962 1968  1976 1989
1956 1963 1969 1977  1991
1957 1964 1970 1981  1992
1959 1965  1971 1983  

This aerial photograph shows apartment buildings and single-family houses beside a cloverleaf highway interchange. You can use a standard map to identify major roads and landmarks in order to find your property.

Each aerial shows a part of the city, not the entire city

An additional small group of aerial photographs shows areas outside the city core from 1937 to 1942. This group is known as Series 97, Aerial Photographs of Valley Lands. These aerial photographs are also available online.

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