A Brief History (1829 to present)
This building is the sixth Church to be occupied by this historic Baptist Congregation. The origins of the congregation date from 1829 under the leadership of “good old Dr. Caldicott”, a young Englishman who preached to a small gathering just south-east of King and Yonge Streets. By 1869 the Church had become Bond Street Baptist Church, just north-east of Yonge and Queen Streets. One of the young laymen of this Church became Senator William McMaster, the founder of McMaster University.
In March 1870, a Sunday School mission was opened in the village of Yorkville by a few workers to serve the northern neighbourhoods of the city, a regular prayer meeting soon followed. During that summer a small chapel was built on Scollard Street, and it was opened on September 1st 1870. The church was officially recognized and dedicated a year later in 1871 as Yorkville Baptist Church.
By 1882 the congregation had grown sufficiently to justify the construction of a new brick church; the Toronto architect E.J. Lennox was commissioned to design a new building at the south-east corner of Bloor Street and Bay (now the site of the Manufacturer’s Life building). The new church was renamed Bloor Street Baptist and remained on this site until 1926.