The University of Toronto has some well known ghosts around campus. Take our trivia quiz below to test your knowledge, just in time for Halloween season! Once you’re ready, click on the button to reveal the answer. Happy Halloween!
The story of University College’s Reznikoff ghost starts with an altercation between Ivan Reznikoff and Paul Diabolos. What were they fighting over?
B) A Woman
C) A Dog
Answer: B) A Woman
Ivan Reznikoff and Paul Diabolos were stone masons during the construction of University College in the late 1850s. They were both in love with the same woman. One fateful night, Diabolos and Reznikoff confronted each other in the unfinished college building. In the altercation, Reznikoff lost his life and Diabolos had hidden the body down a stairwell. Reznikoff’s body was only found decades later after the fire of 1890. To this day, students report that they can hear Reznikoff’s ghost roaming around the college.
To read the full gruesome story, see The Legend of Reznikoff and Diabolos
Students have reported that strange things happen at the Christie Mansion and suspect there is a ghost residing there. What is this strange occurrence?
A) There is a short hallway with no windows but you always feel a cold breeze.
B) There is a stairwell in Christie Mansion where you can always hear footsteps above, even when no one is there.
C) There is a room in Christie Mansion that if you visit at night, the door will slam shut and will lock behind you and you cannot get out unless someone outside lets you out.
D) There is a room that used to be a kitchen and students say that you can still smell biscuits that once was baked there by William Christie who was a baker and the president of Christie, Brown & Co., a biscuit manufacturer.
Answer: C) There is a room in Christie Mansion that if you visit at night, the door will slam shut and will lock behind you and you cannot get out unless someone outside lets you out.
Christie Mansion is a famous building on campus because of its beautiful architecture but it also has a dark story… It is said that the last owner of Christie Mansion had a secret mistress who he hid away in a hidden room. The mistress was locked inside without much contact with the rest of the world and eventually could not take it anymore and ended her own life. It is said that her ghost still roams around the building and locks people in the room she was kept in.
Read the full horrific story here.
The Hart House ghost was known for a benevolent gesture. What did he do?
A) Saved a man from fire.
B) Opened doors for people carrying many things.
C) Closed the windows when it got too cold outside.
D) Guided a lost child to safety.
Answer: A) Saved a man from fire
Bert used to be the Hart House Theatre caretaker. One day in the 1950s, he had passed away in an accident. However, people say he still came into work. Many decades later, Paul Templin who managed Hart House Theatre at the time was working late one day and decided to sleep in his office, as he did often due to his long shifts. He was startled awake as the office door hit his cot. He woke up to see that the room was filled with heavy smoke and saw a figure behind the door. Once he got to safety, he had asked who had come to wake him up – none of them did. A few years later, a woman had come to see Templin and insisted that he knew her grandfather. Her grandfather was named Albert.
Read Paul Templin’s telling of the story here.
Robertson Davies was the Master of Massey Colllege for 18 years and was known for his annual Christmas parties where he would tell his own ghost stories. What did he vow to do from beyond the grave?
A) Davies vowed he would put a curse on Massey College that only he can
B) Davies vowed he would watch over Massey College and keep its students safe.
C) Davies vowed he would continue telling his ghost stories.
D) Davies vowed that he would come back to Massey College to haunt it himself.
Answer: D) Davies vowed that he would come back to Massey College to haunt it himself.
Robertson Davies wrote a ghost story that he would tell at the College’s annual Christmas party and this became tradition. Right before he passed, he said he would come back to Massey College from beyond. Since then, students have reported hearing strange noises, seeing a figure that disappears into thin air, and objects mysteriously showing up in odd places. Looks like Davies kept his promise.
John Strachan founded one of the colleges at the University of Toronto and was known to be very particular on how things were done. People have said to see him around the college, particularly close to his death anniversary on November 1st each year, presumably to check that things are still running smoothly. Which college is this about?
A) Woodsworth College
B) Innis College
C) Trinity College
D) New College
Answer: C) Trinity College
John Strachan was the founder of Trinity College and also the first Anglican Bishop of Toronto. He was known to like things done his way and seems like he still comes back to make sure of it!
Read more about John Strachan in the Trinity Alumni Magazine in this edition.