You and anyone you wish to bring along are welcome to attend a historical tour of the 19th century patient built asylum boundary walls located at the present-day Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), 1001 Queen Street West, Toronto.
The purpose of this tour is to remember the contributions of the women and men who lived, worked, and died in the Toronto Asylum for the Insane, as is represented by the boundary walls that they built which stand as an enduring testament to their abilities, and to use the past to challenge discrimination experienced today by people who have a psychiatric history.
This tour is wheelchair accessible.
TIME: Sunday, November 1 from 1 to 3 PM.
LENGTH OF TOUR: Approximately 2 hours.
PLACE: CAMH is located at 1001 Queen Street West which is at the intersection of Queen and Ossington.
MEET: Meet at 1 PM just outside the FRONT DOORS of CAMH, 1001 Queen Street West, which faces onto the corner of Queen and Ossington. If you arrive late and the tour has already started, go along the length of the wall (east-south-west) and look for the tour as it proceeds along the boundary wall.
TRANSPORTATION: Take the Queen Street streetcar WEST from the OSGOODE Subway Station to the corner of Queen and Ossington (or east if coming from the opposite direction along Queen Street).
The OSSINGTON 63 bus can also be taken SOUTH from the Ossington station to Queen Street, right across the street from CAMH.
Pay parking is also available in the parking lot which is just off Shaw Street as well as on surrounding streets.
The wall tour is open to everyone interested so please bring along anybody you would like to invite.
Please note: since the tour is on the grounds of a mental health facility, in order to respect people’s privacy, we will not be going into the buildings.
The wall tour is entirely outside so please dress appropriately.
You can also read more about the history of the patient built wall on the Psychiatric Survivor Archives web site:
I’m a former patient of CAMH at the College Street Site, but have never been to the Queen Street Site. I’ve been hoping to have a tour of the site. I think it’s important for me to learn the history of the site since I plan to continue to support CAMH’s efforts and especially now that redevelopment of the site has begun. I realise this was posted last year, but was wondering if there a presently tours being given. If anyone could please let me know, I’d really appreciate it!
Carole G. Brault
I just received an e-mail about an upcoming event, that we should publicize on this website. Its on Wednesday, April 21st. I’ll paste it below. Hope that this is of some help,
To celebrate the re-issue of his groundbreaking study, Remembrance Of
Patients Past (University of Toronto Press), scholar and activist
Geoffrey Reaume will conduct a walking tour of the wall surrounding the
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH ) grounds at 1001 Queen St.
West. He will then guide the group to the Gladstone Hotel, where he will
have an on-stage conversation Ruth Ruth Stackhouse of Friendly Spike
Theatre Band. Three of the installation pieces from inSANITY: The Story
Behind The Wall, an exhibition by Workman Arts (WA) inspired by Reaume’s
text, will be featured on-stage. There will be a silent auction of
bricks painted by local artists. Proceeds from the auction will be
donated to the Psychiatric Survivors Archives of Toronto (PSAT) for the
purpose of purchasing commemorative plaques detailing the history of the
19th century patient-built wall and other aspects of unpaid patient
labour. Marc Glassman, Executive Director of This Is Not A Reading
Series, will host the evening event. – A TINARS event presented by
University of Toronto Press, Gladstone Hotel, NOW Magazine,
Torontoist.com, Take Five On CIUT, Psychiatric Survivor Archives of
Toronto and Workman Arts.
Gladstone Hotel Ballroom, 1214 Queen St West, Toronto
Wed Apr 21: 8:00 pm (Doors 7:30 pm)
$5 (Free With Book Purchase)
Silent Auction Viewing Begins 4:00 pm, Gladstone Hotel Ballroom,
Wall Walking Tour, 6:00 pm, Main Entrance (Unit 4), CAMH, 1001 Queen
Interview / Auction 8 pm (Doors 7:7:30 pm), Gladstone Ballroom,
Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. West