Lot 39 - Abrams (Canadian), Untitled (Soldiers' Tower, University of Toronto), ca. 1920

etching
ca. 1920
image size: 5 x 4 inches
Notes: Signed in the lower right hand corner, under the image.
-
Soldiers' Tower is a bell and clock tower at the University of Toronto that commemorates members of the university who served in the World Wars. Designed by architects Henry Sproatt and Ernest Ross Rolph, the Gothic Revival tower stands at 143 feet (43.6 m) tall and houses a carillon of 51 bells. The University of Toronto is the only Canadian university with a functioning carillon.

History
After the Great War, university alumni raised $397,141 to erect the tower as a war memorial. The cornerstone was laid in 1919 by Victor Cavendish, 9th Duke of Devonshire, the 11th Governor General of Canada. Construction was completed in 1924 at a cost of $252,500, with the surplus funds endowed for scholarships in perpetuity. The names of those lost in the Great War (1914–18) are etched on a sheltered stone screen adjacent to the tower's base, while the inner walls of the tower's stone archway are inscribed with the names of those lost in the Second World War (1939–45).

In 1927, the clock was installed and the carillon was dedicated with its first 23 bells. Both were purchased by the alumni association from the famous British firm Gillett & Johnston, which also cast the bells atop the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill. An additional 19 bells were added in 1952 to commemorate World War II, but were replaced in 1976 and more bells added. The carillon was rededicated that year at its present size with the addition of these 28 bells from Petit & Fritsen. In that same operation the transposition of this carillon was unfortunately raised: whereas the instrument at first transposed down a major second, its 51 bells now speak at concert pitch. The bells of Soldiers' Tower Carillon range in weight from 23 pounds to the bourdon's 4 tons, and are performed on special occasions such as convocation, reunions, homecoming and Remembrance Day in addition to regular recitals attended by university members and the general public. Remembrance Day Ceremonies at the University of Toronto are held yearly, on or about the 11th of November, with representatives from many Canadian institutions laying wreaths at the foot of the Soldier's Tower in honour of alumni who, as soldiers, made the ultimate sacrifice during WWI and WWII. In 2011, the first wreath in honour of LGBTQ2S [please expand this code] soldiers was laid by representatives of the University of Toronto Sexual and Gender Diversity Office, who were graciously invited to participate in the ceremony.

Lot Name
Abrams, Untitled (Soldiers' Tower, University of Toronto)
Media
etching
Size
image size: 5 x 4 inches
Date
ca. 1920
Estimate
$150 - $175

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