Trillium, circa 1913. City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 1244, Item 261A.
Built by the Polson Iron Works at the foot of Sherbourne Street, the Trillium was officially launched on June 18, 1910. Reputedly named by eight-year-old Phyllis Osler, the granddaughter of Toronto Ferry Company president Edmund Osler, the new ferry provided service to the amusement park and baseball stadium at Hanlan’s Point. According to the Star, the Trillium was “fitted with a turbine electric generating plant and steam steering engines, so that she can be guided by the little finger.” The ferry began full service two weeks later and proved popular among children eager to escape to the Island for the July 1 holiday, even if their mothers tried to rush them onto whatever ferry was boarding.
During its first month of service, the Trillium was pressed into emergency firefighting duty when a blaze broke out at a wharf at the foot of Scott Street on July 23, 1910. The ferry was heading toward its dock when the fire was spotted. Toronto Ferry Company manager Lol Solman happened to be on the Trillium and reportedly manned the ferry’s fire hose to help put out the fire.
Additional material from the June 18, 1910 edition of the Toronto Star.