Cabbagetown resident, Sally Gibson has just published, The Distillery District: History by the Lake
Our volunteers are invaluable to making the CRPmuseum function smoothly. From daily tasks to special exhibition openings, volunteers serve on a weekly, monthly or as-needed basis. Meet new and interesting people with similar interests and become a volunteer now!
Past Exhibitions

The Toronto Police Service, 51 Division donated their lobby space as a temporary home for the Cabbagetown/Regent Park museum. Our past toy display, FADS & FAVOURITES was a big hit with the community.

Bill Stapleton: Drawing the Line November 9, 2007 to March 31, 2008. Supported by the City of Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation. This exhibition explored the life and work of the renowned people's artist, Bill Stapleton. Starting with the soldiers of the Second World War, to the plight of the Innu in Labrador, Stapleton captured humanity's fight against poverty and injustice - bearing witness to people in struggle. Stapleton's art speaks to the personal history of an artist and activist. The faces in his portraits tell of the real human story Stapleton pursued throughout his artistic career. Faces of the adults and children at ArtHeart community arts centre, the victims of political war in refugee camps, the segregated and neglected in Toronto - they all tell a story. Bill Stapleton donated over 1,000 works of art to the Cabbagetown/ Regent Park Museum. Selected works were on display at Riverdale Farm, Residence until the end of March.

A Walk Down Oak Street

May 3, 2007 - The Cabbagetown/Regent Park Museum, in partnership with the City of Toronto Culture Division, opened an exhibit at Mackenzie House. The exhibit focused primarily on the development of Regent Park North along Toronto's Oak Street during the late 1940s and 1950s. It explored the makeover of that street as part of Canada's earliest effects at urban renewal and social improvement.

A Walk Down Oak Street was a partnership exhibition between the Cabbagetown/Regent Park Museum and the City of Toronto Culture Division, which opened to the public on May 4, 2007 at Mackenzie House, Toronto.

This exhibition focused primarily on the development of Regent Park North along Toronto's Oak Street during the late 1940s and 1950s. It explored the story of a single street involved in a larger public debate, as part of Canada's earliest efforts at urban renewal and social improvement.

94-100 Oak Street, August 22 1949 City of Toronto Archives, Series 0372, SubSeries 0033, Item 1501

This small street in Toronto's east end underwent several important transformations: from an early 19th-century semi-rural area, to an architecturally mixed urban street of the Victorian middle-class, to a mainly working-class neighbourhood by the end of the First World War before being re-invented into a 'garden-suburbs superblock model.' Between 1947 and 1957, Oak Street became part of Canada's first large-scale social housing community, Regent Park.

Regent Park North City of Toronto Archives

Doomed to failure by its very design, which cut off low-income dwellers from the surrounding neighbourhoods, Regent Park once again is being re-invented. Currently Toronto Community Housing is revitalizing the original 1947 Regent Park development and between 2006-2018 it will be completely replaced with a healthy mixed-income community.

Regent Park Phase 1, crane and workers, July 2008.
© Carol Moore-Ede

The exhibit included photographs of the Victorian era architecture; information about the post-WWII public debate regarding social housing; oral histories given by former residents of the original Oak Street and of the Regent Park complex; a 3-D animation of the evolution of Oak Street; lost and found objects from the site; and plans for the Revitalization.

Regent Park Phase 1, 644 Dundas St. East, Block 13, July 2008.
© Carol Moore-Ede

Regent Park Revitalization update: This area is home to 7,500 people. Toronto Community Housing will spend the next 11-years to transform Regent Park into a vibrant mixed income community that will embrace its surrounding neighbourhoods.

The buildings of Phase 1 have been demolished and construction has begun on the first building at the northwest corner of Sackville and Dundas Streets. The ground is being excavated to a depth of 5-storeys in order to house the heating plant.

Daily progress can be viewed on the TCHC website at:

Regent Park Phase 1, tower, July 2008.
© Carol Moore-Ede

Regent Park Phase 1, workers laying foundation, July 2008.
© Carol Moore-Ede

Regent Park Phase 1, construction of tower, tower, July 2008.
© Carol Moore-Ede

The Police Service in Cabbagetown

The Toronto Police Service was the first urban Police service in Canada to establish a distinct Unit to respond to the needs of urban Aboriginal people, and was the brainchild of Sergeant Bob Crawford. It is known as The Aboriginal Peacekeeping Unit, and operates successfully throughout the Toronto and other parts of Canada. It is one of themes on which the exhibit will concentrate. Others include the history of women in the force (it took from 1913 until 1974 before police-women were armed for the first time, carrying their revolvers in specially designed handbags!); and this history of the cop on the beat including Torontoís own Police Chief William Blair. These are just a few of the narratives that will be told through the stories of Cabbagetown individuals in the police service, in the Cabbagetown Regent Park Museumís latest partnership with the Toronto Police Services and 51 Division. We are fortunate to have the expertise of Don Adams, whose many accomplishments include being the Assistant Curator of the CBC Museum from 2000-2007, designing the exhibit for us; and research by author/historian/archivist Sally Gibson, PhD, CAHP.

An exhibition of Bill Stapleton's donated work was shown in the Residence at the Riverdale Farm. Entitled Bill Stapleton: Drawing the Line, it ran from November 07 to the end of March, 2008.