Calling all horror addicts and history lovers alike!
Though October may have come and gone, as far as I’m concerned, it’s always the season to be spooky. No matter the time of year I love to indulge in scary movies, pumpkin-spice-everything, and some good old-fashioned ghost stories. And what better way to enjoy the latter than with a visit to Toronto’s very own Mackenzie House.
Mackenzie House was home to Toronto’s first mayor, William Lyon Mackenzie. After sailing from Scotland to Upper Canada, Mackenzie wore many metaphorical hats: writer, editor, mayor. He was a rather controversial political figure. After leading the failed Upper Canada Rebellion of 1837, he and his family fled to America and remained in exile there for 12 years before making the journey back to Toronto.
If you’re a believer, it may not be difficult to imagine that a life like Mackenzie’s might stir up some ghostly activity. It has been suggested that Mackenzie House is one of the most haunted places in Toronto after all.
My first experience with the late-Georgian house was a couple of years ago when I attended a haunted walking tour of the area. Mackenzie House was one of the last stops on the tour. By this time, it was dark out and the street was relatively quiet. Even the facade of the house seemed darker in this light; brickwork which seemed yellow and bright during the day had faded to a darker, eerie tone. The squat, black street lamp was lit but did little to light the path leading up to the house. The group slowly made its way up the steps, each person taking turns peering in windows in the hopes of catching a spectre on the prowl. Although I personally did not make any ghostly encounters that night, I have been entranced by the lovely old house ever since.
In addition to the Haunted Walk, there are some seasonally-appropriate events going on inside Mackenzie House too. From printing a Trick or Treat bag on an old-fashioned printing press to an exploration of the Victorian obsession with the macabre, Mackenzie House has some spook-tacular Halloween events on offer. And it’s not just Halloween: there are plenty of events on offer for just about any season. If you’re in Toronto (whenever possible) I highly recommend taking a trip to this lovely historic house museum.
All historical information from this post was gathered from the Mackenzie House website. Find out more here:
Check out The Haunted Walk here: https://hauntedwalk.com/toronto-tours/