Historical Context

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"St. Patrick's Ward", now known as Tytler Public School.

This postcard is one of many in the Sleeman collection owned by the University of Guelph. However, it has been found to be difficult to actually tie this specific postcard to George Sleeman. There is a possibility that he has nothing to do with the postcard at all and the postcards were just added to the collection as a whole. This could have been because George Sleeman was a very important person in the history of the city of Guelph so anything that had the chance of being associated with him would have a high chance of being added to the collection. However, through my research I did find that George Sleeman was mayor of Guelph during 3 of the years the school was operating as St. Patrick's Ward. I also found that the Sleeman company is one of the companies contributing towards the reopening of the school. 

The school pictured on the front was known as St. Patrick’s ward, it was public school for young children that was built in 1879. It happened to be one among many ward schools that were operating in Guelph, however, it is in fact the oldest school in Guelph. There were about  It operated under that name until 1922 when the school was renamed Tytler public school. The reason for the renaming was to honour a man who had worked as the school’s inspector and was the secretary for the board for almost 30 years. There is no specific reason why St. Patrick’s ward was chosen over all the other ward schools, it just happened to be the one that was picked.

The original school building, although no longer operational, is still standing and is located at the address 131 Ontario St, Guelph, ON. There have been plans circulating to reopen the school for use in the future. Now the name St. Patrick’s ward belongs to a community in Guelph known to be home to lower income families.

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