History of Exhibition Place
The area in and around Exhibition Place in Toronto has a rich and colorful history involving military movements, occupations and attacks. Forts and barracks were erected in the area but burned down by attacking troops in various wars throughout the years.
In 1878, the Provincial Agricultural Fair, which traditionally moved from city to city in Canada chose Toronto as a location and was held at Exhibition Place. A year later, the Toronto Industrial Exhibition was held at the site and started a tradition of an annual trade show. Since 1904, the show has been called the Canadian National Exhibition, or the Ex. The CNE has run consecutively since then, except for a five-year respite during World War Two.
During the war years, Exhibition Place was ceased by the government and used as training grounds and after the war, it was used as a demobilization area.
Since the 1970’s, a number of major changes have taken place at Exhibition Place to make it more family oriented and ‘fun’. The site continues to host fairs and shows throughout the year although the highlight remains the annual Ex event.