Rathnelly's history revolves around the former Rathnelly house built in 1830 by Senator William McMaster. McMaster's home was named after his birth place in Rathnelly, Ireland. The McMaster estate remained intact until the 1880's, when it was sold to developers. The present day neighbourhood began shortly thereafter.
The Rathnelly neighbourhood made headlines in 1967, while celebrating Canada's 100th birthday. During the celebrations Rathnelly residents playfully declared themselves as an independent republic of Canada. To mark their independence, the "Republic of Rathnelly" elected a queen, organized a parade, formed an "air farce" of 1,000 helium balloons, and issued Republic of Rathnelly passports to everyone in the neighbourhood.
Over forty years later the "Republic of Rathnelly" is still going strong.
Rathnelly is a picturesque little enclave of homes, situated at the bottom of the Avenue Road Hill. It is home to a large number of artists, academics, writers, and media people.
Rathnelly residents organize a one-of-a-kind street festival, held either every year or “when the mood strikes”. The highlight of the festival is a much anticipated pancake breakfast that Rathnelly residents literally flip over.
Rathnelly's impressive Victorian homes are shaded by a canopy of silver maple trees. These solid brick detached and semi-detached houses were built between 1880 and 1910.
(P) Brown Jr., 454 Avenue Road, (416) 393-1560
(P) Cottingham Jr., 85 Birch Avenue, (416) 393-1895
(P) Jesse Ketchum Jr. & Sr., 61 Davenport Road, (416) 393-1530
(PH) Forest Hill Collegiate Institute, 730 Eglinton Avenue W., (416) 393-1860
(PH) North Toronto Collegiate Institute, 70 Roehampton Avenue, (416) 393-9180
(PC) De La Salle College, 131 Farnham Avenue, (416) 969-8771