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HST118 The City in History

This LibGuide has been developed for use with a new undergraduate History course, HST118.

Suggested Sources for Finding Articles

If using Search Everything from the RU Library home page, the default setting excludes non-electronic content. Some journals remain print-only or are only partially digitized. Subject specific indexing and abstracting tools like America: History & Life will also identify resources that you can request through the Racer Inter-library Loan Service.

Newspaper Resources

There are numerous initiatives to digitize the text of local newspapers as well as the photographs and negatives of newspapers and news agencies. Additionally, the amount of indexing of historic newspapers continues to increase.Some relevant initiatives follow:



The Google News Archive was live from 2006-2011. The addition of new content and access to the home page was discontinued in August 2011 according to an entry in Wikipedia. You can still browse the content of the Google News Archive but the search function is far from ideal.

See also Carol Singer's extensive guide from Bowling Green State University Library: Historical Canadian Newspapers Online

A Sample of Books from the RU Library Collection


This site that also exists as downloadable apps (Google Play store and the Apple Apps Store, search for RULA Maps) began as the RULArch project, a collaboration between the Ryerson University Library & Archives, Department of Architectural Science, and the School of Interior Design. It showcases the architectural, and historical relevance through information and photos of various buildings.

Toronto Public Library Resources

Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto

Toronto's 187th Birthday. Drawings of Toronto from 1854-1856 ... from the Album of Drawings and Sketches of Toronto and Surroundings. Digitized images posted to the library's Flickr site.

Toronto in the Camera: O. Thompson's Photographs of Historic Toronto. Photographs of 48 buildings taken by Octavius Thompson between 1864 and 1868.

Ontario in the Spotlight: Early Photographs of Toronto, Niagara, and Belleville. A collection of 38 photographs, chiefly "cartes de visite" collected by Henry Scadding in the last half of the nineteenth century.


Archival Resources

Archives at the local, provincial and national level may be custodians of important primary sources, particularly photographs, registers, legal documents etcetera. Some university archives also contain unpublished theses and dissertations that are not available in digital or microformat.

Archives and Special Collections LibGuide -- Ryerson University

Archival Research Tutorial -- York University Libraries

Using the Archive webpage -- City of Toronto Archives. [The staff at this archive is extremely helpful to inexperienced archive users. Groups of 10-30 can book a tour and orientation to the archive.]

City of Toronto Archives

MHSO Multicultural History Society of Ontario

Sounds Like Toronto. A project of the Virtual Museum of Canada and Heritage Toronto.

The website contains numerous postcards and other images. Images may be protected by copyright legislation. For further guidance, consult the RU Library Copyright guide.