Archives of Ontario at York offering free tours

Archives of Ontario

The Archives of Ontario, located at 134 Ian MacDonald Blvd. at York University’s Keele Campus, has been collecting, preserving and making available the history and documentary heritage of Ontario and its people since 1903.

Free one-hour tours of the Archives will be offered every Wednesday at 11 a.m., between Sept. 13 and Oct. 25.

Tours of up to 15 people will be led by the Archives’ staff through one of the largest archival facilities in Canada. Collections consist of a wide variety of records, including unique, multifaceted records donated by individuals, businesses and organizations that illustrate the province’s history and development. These date back to the 16th century and include everything from hand-written letters and diaries to books, maps, architectural drawings, city plans, photographs, films, sound recordings, electronic documents and more.

The Archives are also home to the eclectic Government of Ontario Art Collection, which has over 2,800 original works of art and antique furnishings that can be found in legislative buildings in Toronto and in government offices throughout the province.

The tour will include a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the Archive’s vaults, preservation lab and reading room, as well as a personal tour of the exhibit ANIMALIA, which features fascinating records from the Archives’ collections that explore humankind’s changing relationships with animals.

Faculty and students who take the tour will also have the opportunity to learn more about applying for a researcher card, using the microfilm and digital collections, and getting started on research with the assistance and expertise of the reference staff.

Register for a tour online by visiting

For more information, contact Danielle Manning, outreach officer, at or visit