Osgoode Hall Site History


The creation of the Law Society of Upper Canada occurred in
Niagara-on-the-Lake in 1797. The Society held their second
meeting in Toronto in 1797. In 1820 the Law Society of Upper
Canada decided to allocate 500 English pounds toward the
construction of Osgoode Hall. The original agenda was to
situate the structure on the premises owned by the Law Society
at Church and King Street. The plan was abandon and the
pursuit for another site ensued.

The location of Osgoode Hall rested upon the shoulders of
several prominent figures namely Sir John Beverley Robinson,
J. J. Boulton and Dr. William Warren Baldwin, Treasurer of
the Law Society pictured below.

William Warren Baldwin

These men had varying opinions of where Osgoode Hall
should be located. The debates, discussions and disputes
from 1827 to 1829 resulted with one common denominator.
Construct Osgoode Hall at the bottom of Berkely Street
on the site of the old Parliament Buildings. However,
Dr. Baldwin's passionate plea persuaded the Benchers to
purchase land from the Attorney General Sir John Beverley
Robinson pictured below.

Sir J. B. Robinson

The six-acre site located at Queen and University was acquired in
1828 for one thousand pounds. Osgoode Hall was in the middle
of a field with mud road access to the core of the city located
at King and Jarvis. In 1828 Osgoode Hall situated on the
northwest boundary of Toronto was almost outside the city
limits. Today Osgoode Hall is in the heart of downtown
Toronto. J. J. Boulton is pictured below.

J. J. Boulton

The only purpose built institutions of the day were:
Osgoode Hall (1829), Parliament Buildings (1829-1832),
Court House (1824), Registry Office (1829),
and the Bank of Upper Canada (1830).

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