History of Victoria Retirement Building
The cornerstone for the building that now houses Victoria Retirement Living was laid June 7, 1832. The building then housed the Upper Canada Academy, eventually became the University of Toronto. Egerton Ryerson was appointed Principal of Upper Canada Academy in 1839.
On October 6, 1836 the Academy was granted Royal Charter for its incorporation. The Academy provided co-educational, non-denominational preparatory education similar to the grammar schools of the time. In 1841 a Provincial Statute elevated the status of the Academy to a College. Thus on October 21, 1842 Victoria College started its first semester as a degree-granting institution. The College granted degrees in Arts, Science, Law, Medicine and Divinity.
From 1876 to 1878 a new building, called Faraday Hall, was built on campus to house the Science Department. Ryerson Commons is being developed on the land left vacant by the fire, which destroyed Faraday Hall in mid 1900’s.
On November 20, 1892 an Act was passed by the Province of Ontario that federated Victoria College with the University of Toronto. At this point the college professors and students moved to Toronto and the building which used to house the College became in turn a Provincial Asylum, a Military Hospital, an Ontario Hospital and a training centre for the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services. Today Victoria College is home to over 40 retirees who enjoy daily social activities, fellowship and meals in the dining room and the numerous other common areas within the 170 year old building.