M2001X.6.23 | Synopsis of temperature, cloud and precipitation

Synopsis of temperature, cloud and precipitation
1875, 19th century
20 x 33 cm
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Chart (1)
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Keys to History

This chart of monthly temperature, cloud and precipitation readings was compiled at the Toronto Observatory in October 1876 from observations made in several Canadian provinces.

Canada's first regular weather observation data dates to 1765. The first permanent observation station was established in Toronto in 1839. In 1871, four years after Canadian Confederation, the Meteorological Service of Canada was created to provide weather warnings to mariners on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River.

All observations were recorded by hand in registers that are now carefully preserved in archives or museums. The Meteorological Service publishes its compiled data annually.

Source : Disasters and Calamities [Web tour], by Nathalie Lampron (see Links)

  • What

    The systematic collection of weather data serves to provide an overall picture of Canada's climate and as a basis for weather forecasts used to ensure transportation safety and efficiency and many other purposes.

  • Where

    Canada's first weather observation station began operating on December 25, 1839. It was located on the grounds of the University of Toronto and run by the British military.

  • When

    Following the Great Nova Scotia Cyclone of 1873, the Canadian government recognized the need for a national meteorological alert system and agreed to fund it.

  • Who

    In the 19th century, and still today, volunteers provided a large part of the observations found in the climate data archives.