Who was Dr Toles?

Silhouette of a man in a top hat

This gentleman is usually credited with bringing the game of basket ball to the students at Martina Bergman-Österberg’s college at Hampstead. However, there is presently much discussion on the subject as his name does not seem to have been linked with games of any kind after his short visit to north London.

In a report by Madame herself in 1895, she mentioned Dr Toles’ interest and research into the effects of wearing corsets and tight waistbands. She referred to the ten gymnastic lessons he had given her students and the help he had given in the laying out of the cycle track at Dartford, ahead of the move from Hampstead.

Several stories about this Dr Toles and Miss Porter of Baltimore (also credited with bringing basket ball to the students) are available in the Bergman-Österberg archives. Contact the archivist at: bergmanosterbergunion@gmail.com

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