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Casa Loma

Canada's Fairy-Tale Castle and Its Owner, Sir Henry Pellatt

by (photographer) Vincenzo Pietropaolo
by Bill Freeman

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post-confederation (1867-), ontario, historical
list price: $19.95
category: History
published: 2016
imprint: Lorimer

In this fifth edition, with new photography showing Casa Loma in its newly restored state, Bill Freeman takes readers on a tour of every significant room in this dramatic hillside castle, including the towers, the gardens, the tunnel to the stables, the greenhouses and the garage.

He also tells the fascinating and tragic story of the man who built the castle, and who ultimately lost it. Born in 1859, Henry Pellatt was an accomplished athlete as a young man who broke the world record for the mile in 1879. He was an entrepreneur who was adept in the worlds of finance and industry. He was a keen royalist and military enthusiast. Above all, Pellatt was a romantic whose interest in architecture inspired the medieval-style castle that is now a Toronto landmark.

Casa Loma took three hundred workers three years to build at a cost of $43.5 million. Completed in 1914, the castle was enjoyed by the Pellatts for only ten years before bankruptcy forced the family to sell it. Today, Casa Loma is owned by the City of Toronto and managed by the Liberty Entertainment Group. It is one of the city's most popular attractions.

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Contributor notes

BILL FREEMAN is a historian, novelist and freelance writer. He is co-author of Their Town and the author of A Magical Place: Toronto Island and Its People and 1005: Political Life in a Union Local. He is also a respected children's author whose publications have earned him various accolades, including a Canada Council Children's Literature Award.

VINCENZO PIETROPAOLO is a well-known Toronto photographer whose work is in many collections, including the Art Gallery of Ontario.

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About the Authors

Vincenzo Pietropaolo

Vincenzo Pietropaolo was a city planner with the City of Toronto for over fifteen years before turning to photography full-time. His focus lies in social documentary photography and photojournalism and his projects have taken him to many cities around the world. Pietropaolo is an award-winning photographer and has been deemed “one of Canada’s pre-eminent documentary photographers” by Canadian Geographic Magazine. He and his partner still live in Toronto, ON where they are avid urban farmers in their own backyard.
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Bill Freeman

Bill Freeman is a Canadian urban issues writer and winner of the Governor General's Literary Award. He has authored nineteen books, including The New Urban Agenda. Bill lives on Toronto Island.

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