Toronto’s First Post Office

Type: Museum

This museum, operated by the Town of York Historical Society, aims to research, interpret and promote the history of the town of York and early Toronto, and, in particular, the history of Canada’s early postal service. It is also dedicated to the preservation of Toronto’s built heritage.


Conservation / Preservation:


  • Primarily early nineteenth century letter-writing materials such as pens, penknives, quill cutters, inkwells, seals, pounce pots, a post master’s desk and a portable post master’s desk.
  • Artefacts pertaining to the history of the Bank of Upper Canada and the De La Salle Institute, buildings to which the 1833 post office was conjoined after 1873.
  • Nineteenth century currency from Upper and Lower Canada, United Kingdom, United States, and Spain.


The building itself has been restored to its original condition. The original fireplace has been uncovered and restored.

Archives and Library

  • Correspondence relating to the postal service in Upper Canada.
  • Several rare books relating to the early postal system in Upper Canada.
  • Documents relating to the Bank of Upper Canada and De La Salle Institute.
  • Research files on subsequent owners of the Post Office building, such as Christie Brown and Co..
  • Hundreds of letters by nineteenth-century Torontonians.

Public Programming:


  • The post office is decorated with furniture and accessories authentic to the period, and visitors can write letters using nineteenth-century paraphernalia.
  • The Post Office reading room houses permanent and changing exhibitions relating to the history of Toronto’s postal service.
  • Scale model of Toronto (York) in 1837, with an online legend that identifies significant landmarks.
  • Occasional traveling exhibits featuring items from the Post Office’s collection.

Public Lectures

  • Annual public lecture on Toronto history to coincide with the annual meeting of the Town of York Historical Society.
  • Occasional public lectures in conjunction with the work of other heritage organizations in Toronto.


  • Quarterly newsletter that updates members on developments in heritage preservation efforts in Toronto, particularly as regards the city’s built heritage, and events in the heritage community.

Volunteer/Internship/Placement Opportunities:

This institution accepts volunteers. They are particularly helpful in organizing large events, such as the opening of a new exhibit or annual meetings of the Town of York Historical Society.

Address & Contact Information:

260 Adelaide Street East
Toronto, ON
M5A 1N1

Phone: 416-865-1833

Hours of Operation:

Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 4:00pm; Weekends, 10:00am – 4:00pm

Key Words: pioneer, government