Vintage Toronto Ads: Holy Praise for Acid

Originally published on Torontoist on May 24, 2007.


Source: Truth, March 17, 1894.

Toronto rheumatism sufferers, are you ready to receive holy praise on the newest patent cure to hit the streets of our city?

This ad follows the formula of many period ads for remedies: an endorsement from a respected figure, extolling the virtues of how the product has helped their family over the years. We can verify the identity of this acid user — Reverend Alexander Gilray (1843-1915) had been minister of the College Street Presbyterian Church since the mid-1870s, presiding over the opening of its permanent home at the northwest corner of College and Bathurst in 1885. Gilray’s residence at 91 Bellevue Ave, built in 1887, is a heritage property that is now part of the St. Stephen’s Community House organization . His congregation later became College Street United Church.

One hopes he didn’t reek strongly of vinegar during the Sunday sermon.