This week, a sign was placed near the club – on city property – at the city’s historical monument on the Point. The sign provides information about James Baby that outlines his purported enslavement of human beings, both of African and Indigenous heritage (see attached image), as well as his purported efforts to prevent the abolishment of slavery in Canada. While we do not know if the facts presented are correct, it is true that slavery was a commonplace practice during James Baby’s lifetime. Of course, it is a disturbing thought to consider that slavery occurred in our very own neighbourhood.
While we cannot change the past, we can examine the story we tell of the history of the place where we live. The City has established the Dundas Street Renaming Project. For more information on this project please review the link www.toronto.ca/dundasreview.The City has advised the Board that larger issues raised by the Baby Point sign would be addressed within the scope of the Dundas Project. This reflects that part of the project’s terms of reference is the development of a broad framework to address matters beyond the specifics of Dundas Street, like those affecting Baby Point.
The Board of the Club will continue to monitor the work of the City to investigate this matter further, and will report to the membership as appropriate.
Any questions regarding the club’s handling of this issue can be directed to Monica Maile firstname.lastname@example.org, or to our city contact directly:
Chief Curator, Museums & Heritage Services
City of Toronto