The History of the RCMI Library

When a group of Toronto area Militia officers decided to establish a military institute in 1890, they included in the Charter that it was for "the promotion of Military Art, Science and Literature" among other aims and objectives.  The Library was started with a donation of 200 volumes from "the late Militia Institute". 

A further large donation of 733 volumes came in 1925 from the estate of Colonel George T. Denison, so that by the mid-1930s, through donations and purchases, the collection stood at well over 10,000 volumes.  Since then the collection has almost doubled and has become the largest privately funded and maintained library of its kind in Canada and one of the largest in North America.

Its wide range of subject matter: Army, Navy, Air Force, training and equipment, tactics and strategy, uniforms, biographies, social issues, military art and poetry, allows for a detailed study of subjects not readily found elsewhere.

In May 2014 the newly renovated Royal Canadian Military Institute opened its doors with a brand new two story library lovingly recreating the historic ambiance of the old location.

Contact Librarian Penny Lipman for further information at [email protected] or 416-597-0286 ext. 128.