A. B. Rice of the Junction letter chastising the City of Toronto after annexation about the conduct of the pre annexation management of West Toronto.

Old West Toronto
Rice, A B letter to the Dec 3, 1931; The Globe and Mail pg. 4
About Old West Toronto
To the Editor of The Globe: May I thank you in anticipation of space to relate some facts concerning the finances of the former city of West Toronto, in view of statements contained recently in the press which are misleading and do an injustice to members of the old West Toronto Council, many of whom are still living. The statements, in effect, are that West Toronto, while awaiting annexation, let its finances go from bad to worse, and finally had to be taken in anyway.
As a matter of fact, during the seventeen years immediately preceding the amalgamation of West Toronto with Toronto the former municipality never issued a bond nor otherwise increased its debt to the extent of one dollar.
During that seventeen-year period it grew from a struggling town to a prosperous young industrial city, and increased its population from 3,000 to 10,000. Meanwhile many improvement were effected and paid for out of the annual taxes. It is incorrect to say that West Toronto was “awaiting annexation,” for the smaller city did not ask to be absorbed. The overtures emanated from the City Hall.
Mayor Baird, learning that  Toronto representative desired to confer with West Toronto as to the possibility of the to cities merging, invited them to a luncheon in a West Toronto hotel, where, to quote their exact words, the Toronto men, with ex-Mayor Urquhart as the chief speaker, proceed to “lay their cards on the table.” Hearty congratulations were expressed upon West Toronto’s amazing recovery after its serious financial crisis of a dozen years before.
The Toronto men declared there was abundant evidence that that young city could have a good future as an independent municipality, but pleaded for union in order to build up a Greater Toronto, and frankly stated that Toronto had about reached the limit of its borrowing powers with its then acreage, and that the absorption of West Toronto was desirable, in view of its location and sound financial condition.
The writer, who was a guest at the luncheon, had been constrained to set forth these facts in fairness to those who so wisely administered the affairs of West Toronto, and also because this fragment of local history may be of interest now while the question of again extending he city boundaries is under consideration.
A. B. Rice.


Who was

A. B. (Allan Berlin) Rice

Descended from United Empire Loyalist stock and Born November 11, 1858, Allan Rice was the civic-minded editor of the influential newspaper, The Tribune, from 1889 to 1904. He became the manager of a unique facility in the town, the customs house, and later served as Chairman of the West Toronto Public Library Board. In 1949–50 he published a column in the West Toronto Weekly in which he chronicled the political and social forces which shaped West Toronto Junction. Rice died on August 2, 1950.
He is interned at Section 10, Lot 537
Prospect Cemetery




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