By Matthew Blackett, Wayne Reeves
In Souvenirs of Toronto Sports, Matthew Blackett and Wayne Reeves combed through the City of Toronto’s museum collection of over 150,000 objects to find items to inspire our writers to share stories of the city’s athletic history. From the guns used in shooting competitions at Fort York to Ned Hanlan’s rowing oar to a ticket from the first Blue Jays game at the SkyDome, the souvenirs showcased in this book from over 200 years of Toronto’s history give us a glimpse into local sporting legends.
Long before Penny Oleksiak was the face of women’s sports in Toronto that space was occupied by Doris Butwell. There was nothing athletic she couldn’t do but her accomplishments have been lost in the mists of time. We all know about Marilyn Bell and Angela James, iconic figures who preceded Penny on the national and world stages. But it took Souvenirs of Toronto Sports to introduce me to Doris. She was a softball and basketball star in the 1920s regularly stopped on city streets for her autograph. The momentos from her career are legion and among the most captivating images in Souvenirs. None is better than that of a sweater – blue and white, of course – with the name Butwell emblazoned on it decades before we would ever see such a thing on another blue and white uniform in Toronto. It is the singlemost impactful image for me. But there are dozens of others that no doubt would resonate with different readers. To read Souvenirs of Toronto Sports is to be enveloped by treasures small and large of sports nostalgia. It’s like a big warm hug and who doesn’t want one of those.
– Steve Dryden, TSN's Quiz Master & Senior Managing Editor, Hockey
– Trade paperback
– Dimensions: 8" x 5 1/2" x 1/4", 124 pages