Cat No.: CA0133:
Written and published to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the December, 1869 opening of Timothy Eaton’s first store in Toronto, it is inevitable that the book bears the mark of the advertising copy writer’s extensive use of the superlative, and yet it still provides valuable information and hard to come across background on the everyday activities and lives of Canadians throughout the 50 year period. The book is liberally illustrated and easy to read.
Several early chapters are given over to drawing a sketch of the day to day details of life in Toronto in 1869, not least amongst which are illustrated examples of fashionable dress for all members of the family. In fact the discussion of changes in fashion is a recurring theme throughout the book, and anyone making a study of popular clothing and furnishing trends during this period will find this book a gold mine. (As a parent you might also want to offer your children a choice of the outfits shown on pages 214 and 215.)
Another theme of particular interest is the discussion of prices and wages, a part of historical everyday “trivia” which is normally hard to quantify. In fact I expect most people will be interested in the insights into the whole business of mercantile trade and in the innovations introduced by Eaton such as fixed pricing, “sales”, and over the counter cash payment at the time of purchase, all of which we take for granted today. This may seem like an excessively wide range of topics but it was the genius of Timothy Eaton to recognize that the successful merchant must understand his customers as much as he understands the mechanics of his trade. This book is the story of the development of one of Canada’s largest, perhaps the largest, merchant organizations, even though it has since failed to hold its niche in the marketplace and has passed into the history books.
Worthy of special mention is a chapter dedicated to members of Eaton’s staff who answered their Country’s call to fight in three military actions, notably in the Great War. All the staff members names are recorded together with the honors they earned.
This book is of far greater value to the practical genealogist than its title would seem to imply. It provides valuable insights into many aspects of everyday life that are so hard to come by in other history books. The whole text of the book is searchable and search speed has been enhanced with our FastFind technology.
We have provided a free downloadable sampler of this book on our Ontario Downloads web page. You can also reach this Sampler by clicking on the following link Sampler. You can return to this page by closing the Sampler Page when you are ready to purchase.
No. of CDs is: 1 ; Format is: PDF ; Searchable?: YES;
FastFind: yes; ISBN No.: 978-1-897405-35-2 ;