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Using Historical Books with Interactive Page Turning

Each book is displayed as a digital reproduction of the original, complete with all its pages and covers. You can virtually turn the pages in a realistic way using a mouse, buttons, or a slider bar. To help understand and use these historical documents, links have been added on some pages to help explain and give further information about words, names, phrases or illustrations in the book. These supporting links can be text, images, sound, or video.

To navigate the books:
help_pageturn Drag the lower right-hand corner to turn the page.
help_annotations Click the orange icons on the pages to reveal pictures, explanations, definitions, sound clips, and videos related to what is inside the box.

You can also use the navigation bar to:

help_forward_back Move forward and backward within a book
help_icons Turn the orange icons on or off
help_pages Jump to another page
help_zoom Zoom in to see the pages magnified
help_rotate Rotate magnified page images
help_transcription View the transcription of a handwritten page
To print from the books:

The virtual books were designed to be used online. There is no print button and no way to print an entire book at once. To print one screen at at a time, change your printer setup to landscape and try a normal browser print.

Ordering Reproductions

  • Some of the books, and images linked to their pages, can be ordered as digital files for a fee from Toronto Public Library. Before ordering, make sure Toronto Public Library holds the material, then follow the link below for instructions.
  • Toronto Public Library

Technical Requirements

  • Browsers – We strongly recommend that you use a recent version of Firefox, Internet Explorer, or Safari. Firefox is available for Windows, OSX (Mac), and Linux. This website uses valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional and CSS 2.1.
  • Plug-ins – The Virtual Books and some navigation require the Flash Player 8 or higher. The Flash Player is a free download from Adobe.com.
  • Computer – Windows or OSX with a 1.3Ghz processor or faster.
  • Monitor – A screen resolution of 1024 x 768 or greater.
  • Broadband – We recommend a 1Mbps or faster connection such as would be found with a DSL or cable connection. While a slower connection may work, some of the Virtual Books may take longer to load.

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