The Revenge of the Methodist Bicycle Company: Sunday Streetcars and Municipal Reform In Toronto…

Paperback | October 12, 2010

byChristopher Armstrong, H. V. Nelles

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Bribery! Corruption! Fist fights on the steps of City Hall. Thunderings from the pulpits! Mass meetings, petitions, rallies, unrest in the streets! The Revenge of the Methodist Bicycle Company is a lighthearted, impeccably researched excursion through the thickets of chicanery, hypocrisy, andsanctimony that were the special marks of High Victorian Toronto.The story is simple: big-money interest who owned Toronto's street railways wanted to run streetcars on Sundays. They claimed this would be a boon to the working man on his day of rest, but it was clear that profit was their real motive. Respectable leaders of Toronto society were adamantly opposed;Sunday streetcars were a desecration of the Sabbath, the work of the Devil. But ultimately, the robber barons won and the cars ran on Sunday - just as the first great bicycle craze began. Everybody bought bikes - some of them from the Methodist Bicycle Company - and the Sunday streetcars werevirtually empty. Revenge is a rollicking good story peopled by flamboyant characters with Good and Evil fighting it out in public view. Richly illustrated with cartoons and photographs from the period, it is an exuberant refutation of the notion that Canadian history is dull. With a new Preface by the authors, the attractive Wynford edition brings this award-winning classic to a new generation of readers.

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Bribery! Corruption! Fist fights on the steps of City Hall. Thunderings from the pulpits! Mass meetings, petitions, rallies, unrest in the streets! The Revenge of the Methodist Bicycle Company is a lighthearted, impeccably researched excursion through the thickets of chicanery, hypocrisy, andsanctimony that were the special marks of Hi...

Christopher Armstrong is Professor of History at York University. His numerous books on Canadian history have won critical acclaim, and in 2002 he received the Ontario History Society JJ Talman Award for his study of Canadian capital markets in Moose Pastures and Mergers: The Ontario Securities Commission and the Regulation of Share Ma...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.58 inPublished:October 12, 2010Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195443373

ISBN - 13:9780195443370

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Table of Contents

Preface to the Wynford EditionPreface to the First Edition1. A Sense of Time and Place2. Ned Clarke's Toronto3. Senator Smith's Goldmine4. The Sale of the Railway and the Purchase of the Council5. Weathercocks and Flapdoodlers6. A Business Man and a Business Plan7. The City Virgin8. Boodle Everywhere9. The Redemption of the City10. Organizing to Whip the Saints11. The Unbluing of Toronto12. The Revenge of the Methodist Bicycle Company13. PostscriptAppendicesNotesIndex