G.L. Smith

Fire Ruins

G.L. Smith was a postcard publisher known for his cards documenting the Great Fire of Toronto of April 19, 1904.


The City of Toronto Archives features extensive material, including maps and photographs of the area devastated by the fire. They note “The fire devastated a large part of Toronto’s commercial and industrial centre. Over 125 businesses were burnt out, most of them manufacturers and importers of fabrics and clothing, paper goods, books, drugs, chemicals, hardware, and machinery. Many of the factories and warehouses that burned were less than twenty years old, and had been built as architectural showcases for their owners’ prosperity, modern commercial methods, and business acumen.”


Of particular note for collectors of postcards was that the business of Warwick Bros. & Rutter, prominent Canadian postcard publishers and Queen’s Printer for Ontario, was destroyed by the fire, and required their relocation to a new facility on King Street West near Spadina, just west of what is now the Spadina Hotel.

Using Dynamite

A Dangerous Wall