Scary Toronto urban legends to give you the chills

Urban Legends

Every city has its own urban legends, myths, and scary stories. While these stories may or may not be true, investigation into the paranormal can be fun, and we can all learn a bit of Toronto's past along the way.

Children of Old Finch

old finch bridge
Old Finch Ave and the Bailey Bridge, Scarborough

We will start with an urban legend we were told as teenagers living in Toronto.

The Old Finch Bailey bridge in Scarborough was built in 1954 as a temporary bridge to replace the previous bridge destroyed by Hurricane Hazel. The bridge is used by vehicles crossing the Rouge River, and hikers can take advantage of Finch Meander Trail nearby.

As the story goes, a girl was brutally murdered on the bridge along the road on her birthday. She had been celebrating her birthday when she was separated from her friends, and her mangled body was found the following day. The killer was never caught. As the urban legend goes, if you cross the bridge during witching hour when it is fully dark, and are brave enough to sing Happy Birthday, you will hear a girl screaming as if being tormented.

Another story has it that a set of train tracks crossing Old Finch is haunted by the ghosts of children killed in a school bus incident in the 1970s. Some claim their cars have stalled near the tracks, others have said that their headlights randomly flickered and turned off. Other stories suggest that if you are driving through on a foggy night, you can see hand prints of children all over your car.

Haunting of the Keg Mansion

old finch bridge
Keg Mansion, 515 Jarvis Street Toronto

Enjoy a great steak with a side of ghost stories? Keg Mansion surely has it all.

The initial structure was built in 1867. At the time, Jarvis Street was one of the wealthiest parts of Toronto, lined by large manors. In 1873, Hart Massey (of Massey Hall) and his wife bought the property and moved in.

During the Massey's occupancy, many deaths occured. The Massey's only daughter, Lillian died of disease while living in the house. Shortly after, out of grief, the family servant hung herself in the front foyer, and an unnamed boy also died falling down the stairs of the mansion.

In 1976, The Keg repurposed the building to serve as a restaurant. Both staff and guests have since reported hearing the sound of phantom children playing on the upper floors and kitchen. Staff have reported that some children have even asked their parents if they can play with the boy by the stairs.

Related or not, we thought we should mention that in 2016, a 23 year old man broke into the Keg mansion, fell through the stained glass window of the 3rd floor and died shortly of his injuries.

Ghostly Encounters at the Distillery District

old finch bridge
The Distillery District, Toronto

The Distillery District in Toronto is an iconic neighbourhood, recognized as a national historic site, and North America's largest collection of over 30 Victorian-era industrial buildings. The history of the Distillery District began in 1831, when brothers-in-law James Worts and William Gooderham migrated to Toronto to establish a milling company. Between 1830s and 1890s, Gooderham and Worts grew to become the largest distillery in the British Empire.

Anything this 'historic' is bound to have some scary tales, and the Distillery District is no exception.

Legend has it that James Wort himself roams the premise. Struck by grief after the passing of his wife in 1834, Worts drowned himself in a nearby well. There have been many ghostly sightings, with reports of random doors opening and closing, and loud banging heard in some of the rooms.

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Quy T.

Quy T.

Co-founder of Dealiem, data enthusiast with a passion for building products and finding great deals.

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