Exploring Toronto’s architectural gems– row of shops that includes Jacob’s Hardware at 410 Queen Street West


These four buildings at 408-414 Queen Street West, one block west of Spadina, were all constructed in the 1880s. The Cameron House is perhaps the most well known of the structures, but Jacob’s Hardware is also a unique institution on Queen West. Its friendly and knowledgeable staff harken back to earlier decades, when every community possessed a local hardware store that supplied their daily needs and offered expert advice on how to solve household problems. Today, it is rare that Jacob’s Hardware does not have the answers to your plumbing or electrical problems.


With the exception of the wires and the hydro pole, the upper floors of the buildings appear much as they did in the 1880s. However,  I suspect that alterations may have occurred to the building second from the left (#412).

I have already published a post on this blog about the Cameron House at 408 Queen Street. To view this post follow the link : https://tayloronhistory.com/2012/07/27/history-of-the-building-that-houses-the-cameron-house-on-queen-st-w/

This post will concentrate on the other three buildings. The structure that houses Jacob’s Hardware at 410 Queen Street was completed in 1882. In that year Mr. T. Murray opened a provisions store. He and his wife lived above the store. This living arrangement was common to most shopkeepers on Queen Street in this era.

In 1882, the building that today houses Queen Video at 412 Queen Street was the tobacco shop of Mr. T. Martin, and his wife operated a registry office on the premises.

The fourth building examined is the Ton-ne Sushi restaurant at 414 Queen Street. It commenced its life in 1884 as a dry goods store operated by G. R. Grant.


                                          Jacob’s Hardware

      DSCN8082   DSCN8083

                  Queen Video                                      Ton-ne Sushi

DSCN8084   DSCN8079

The building at 414 Queen is perhaps the most architecturally interesting, with its gable window inset into the roof on the third floor.

I have spent much of my adult life researching Toronto. Despite the traffic jams and daily congestion, I find Toronto an exciting and vibrant city in which to live. The Pan Am pianos have added greatly to the summer of 2012.

I enjoy exploring the city’s past through my writing. One of the books, “The Villages Within”, was nominated for the Toronto Heritage Awards. If interested in novels with a Toronto setting, descriptions of the books are available by following the link: https://tayloronhistory.com/2012/03/22/toronto-author-publishes-seventh-novel/

They can be purchased in soft cover or electronic editions. All books are available at Chapters/Indigo and on Amazon.com. The electronic editions are less that $4 on Kobo and Kindle. Follow the links:

There Never Was a Better Time: http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000056586/THERE-NEVER-WAS-A-BETTER-TIME.aspx

Arse Over Teakettle: http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000132634/Arse-Over-Teakettle.aspx

The Reluctant Virgin; http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000188306/The-Reluctant-Virgin.aspx

The Villages Within: http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000175211/The-Villages-Within.aspx

Author’s Home Page: https://tayloronhistory.com/

Authors can be contacted at: [email protected]

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