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The Globe and Mail

In pictures: Toronto's Old City Hall clock tower

Globe and Mail photojournalist Deborah Baic offers a glimpse behind the walls of Toronto's Old City Hall clock tower

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When Toronto built its city hall in 1899, it was among the largest civic builldings in North America. Today it is a courthouse, and the bell tower clock still runs.

DEBORAH BAIC/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

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There are over 200 steps on the way up the shaft.

DEBORAH BAIC/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

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John Scott, a horologist and titinnabulator with Scotiabell, lubricates the bell mechanisms.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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John Scott, a horologist and titinnabulator with Scotiabell, examines the "movement" that makes the clock run.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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The clock faces sit in the open air, though the movement is glassed in.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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The Gillett and Johnston clock has run nearly continuously since it was installed in1900.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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There are only four movements of this type still working.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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Maintaining the movement demands slow, patient work from Mr. Scott.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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The clock has three separate mechanisms: the quarter striking train, which sounds the bells at the quarter hour; the going train, for the hand movements of the clock; and the striking train for the hourly bell ringing.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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The historic clock installation uses a unique remontoire movement, which moves the hands every thirty seconds.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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Mr. Scott describes the clockworks as "a kinetic artwork."

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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“I come up here and I feel energized for the rest of the day," Mr. Scott says.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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Mr. Scott takes in the view towards the new City Hall.

Deborah Baic/The Globe and Mail

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