Painting in TTC subway station at Bloor and Yonge Streets, Toronto

When Toronto’s first subway line on Yonge Street opened in 1954, the Toronto Building and Construction Trades Council and the Toronto Transit Commission joined to honour the memory of those who lost their lives while it was being built. Rudyard Kipling’s lines accompany the figure of a sturdy subway construction worker with a jackhammer:
It is their care in all the ages
to take the buffet and cushion the shock.
It is their care that the gear engages;
it is their care that the switches lock.
It is their care that the wheels run truly . . . .
The painting is by Edwin McCormick. The plaque honours “the men who worked so faithfully to build our subway system and in grateful memory to those who lost their lives during its construction”. The black and white photo eloquently reflects some of the mood of the construction site.

Photo Credit (colour): Alex Frank