Showing 196 results

People and organizations
Victoria University Archives

Sheridan, Miriam

  • Person

Miriam Sheridan (née Marshall) was a graduate of Victoria University, Class of 1920. She was active in the United Church of Canada Women's Missionary Society, and served as Secretary of Work for Mission Circles, Ottawa Presbyterial. She was born Miriam Marshall, the daughter of Rev. Sandford E. Marshall.

Cowan, Kathleen

Kathleen Cowan was a student at Victoria University and resident at Annesley Hall, 1907–1910. She was later married to Methodist/United Church minister, Harold Lloyd Morrison.

Ching, Julia

Julia Ching was a Victoria University professor and an internationally recognized expert on neo-Confucian philosophy and religion. Born in Shanghai in 1934, she grew up there and in Hong Kong before fleeing China during World War II. She was a student at the College of New Rochelle in New York, and then became an Ursuline nun for twenty years. She resumed her studies at the Catholic University of America (M.A.), and then at the Australian National University (Ph.D. 1972). After teaching at Columbia University (1973–1975) and Yale University (1975–1978) she joined the faculty at Victoria University in 1978, becoming a Professor of Religious Studies/Study of Religion, 1981–1995, and then a University Professor of Philosophy, 1995 until her death in 2001. Dr. Ching was very active in the academic world, publishing widely and a contributing member of many organizations. She was also in demand as a consultant and interviewee concerning news relating to China. She was survived by her husband and academic colleague, Willard Oxtoby, who died in 2003.

Potts, John

John Potts was a clergyman and co-Bursar/co-Treasurer of Victoria University, 1900–1907.

Born in Ireland and originally an Episcopalian, he was ordained in the Methodist Church in 1861. He served at Thorold, 1859-1861; London, 1862-1864; Toronto Yorkville, 1865-1866; Hamilton West, 1867-1869; Montreal, 1870-1872; and then in Toronto and Montreal until his appointment in 1901 as Secretary of Education in the Methodist Church until his death. In 1901 he was also appointed as President of the Lord's Day Alliance and was a member of the Board and Senate of Victoria College. He was married to Margaret Bredin in 1861.

Robson, John Mercel

John Mercel Robson was born on May 26, 1927, in Toronto, to William Renton Mercel Robson and Christina Henderson Sinclair. He studied at Swansea Public School and Runnymede Collegiate Institute and received his B.A. (1951), M.A. (1953), and Ph.D. (1956) from University of Toronto. His PhD thesis, “The Social and Political Thought of J.S. Mill” was supervised by A.S.P. Woodhouse.

In 1953, he married Prof. Ann Provost Wilkinson Robson, and they had three children: William Bertie Provost (born August 9, 1959), John Sinclair Petifer (born December 9, 1960), and Ann Christine Wilkinson (born December 24, 1962).

Robson served as a teaching fellow in the Department of English, University College, from 1952–1954; researcher under G. Tillotson at Birbeck College, University of London, 1954–1956; and instructor with the Department of English, University of British Columbia, 1956–1957. He then joined the Department of English at Victoria College, serving as Assistant Professor from 1958–1963, Associate Professor from 1963–1967, and became Professor in 1967. He also served as Principal of Victoria College from 1971–1976.

Robson's most recognized academic accomplishment was his general editorship of the 33 volume Collected Works of John Stuart Mill.

He sat on many committees within Victoria University and the University of Toronto, serving as chair of the SGS Dean’s Advisory Committee on Admission to the Graduate Faculty and sitting on the Department of English Graduate Planning Committee. In addition, he served as Chairman of the Manuscript Review Committee at the University of Toronto Press from 1975 until his death. He also served as the general editor of the collected papers of Northrop Frye, until his death in 1995.

His other scholarly offices include: Advisory Editor, Wellesley Index to Victorian Periodicals; Board of Directors, Research Society for Victorian Periodicals; Advisory Board, Victorian Periodicals Review; Advisory Board, Scholarly Publishing; Chairman, Editorial Committee, Disraeli Project, Queen’s University; Bentham Committee, University of London; Advisory Board, Bertram Russell Edition, McMaster University; Advisory Board, Centre for Editing Early Canadian Texts, Carleton University; Advisory Board, A.M. Klein Edition, Trent University; and Trustee, Dickens Society. He became a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1974, served as its Vice-President from 1980-1982, and its honorary editor in 1984.

McLaughlin, John Fletcher

  • Person
  • 1863-1933

John Fletcher McLaughlin was born in Cavan Township in 1863. He attended Victoria University from 1885 to 1888 and then entered the Methodist ministry. In 1891, he was appointed to the Chair in Hebrew at Victoria and lectured in Biology for the 1891-1892 year before spending two years at Oxford University preparing for his teaching career. From 1892 to 1932 he was Professor of Oriental Languages and Literature at Victoria, also teaching Old Testament. He was Dean of the Faculty of Theology from 1920 to 1928 and Registrar at Emmanuel College from 1928 to 1931. His daughter, Roberta Irwin, is also his biographer.

Davies, Alan T.

Alan T. Davies was a Lecturer and then Associate Professor in the Department of Religious Studies, Victoria College, 1969–1989; Professor, Department for the Study of Religion, Centre for the Study of Religion, University of Toronto, 1989–1998. Dr. Davies' work included research in the area of Jewish-Christian relations.

Moore, Arthur Bruce Barbour

  • LCCN 90655819
  • Person
  • 1906-2004

A.B.B. Moore was President of Victoria University, 1950-1970, and also a prominent United Church minister. Born in Keswick Ridge, New Brunswick in 1906, the son of a Congregationalist minister, he grew up in The Eastern Townships in Quebec, before attending McGill University (B.A. 1927). After earning a B.D. (1930) from United Theological College in Montreal, Moore completed his graduate studies at Oxford. In 1933 he married Margaret Price; they celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in 2003, before her death later that year. Moore served as a minister in Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Pennsylvania before becoming Principal and Professor of Theology at St. Andrew's College - University of Saskatchewan, 1946-1950. A.B.B. Moore's twenty year tenure as President at Victoria University was marked by his vision as a builder of campus resources and for his involvement in the formation of the Toronto School of Theology. The same year Moore retired from the University, he was elected Moderator of the United Church of Canada; prior to that he had been co-chair of the commission to form a union between the United and Anglican Churches. In 1977 Moore began a three year term as Chancellor of the University of Toronto. While in "retirement" he continued to be active in educational and religious affairs until his death in 2004.

Emmanuel College (Toronto, Ont.). Principal’s Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1928-

The Principal’s Office was created in 1928 when Emmanuel College was founded. The College was established as a result of the formation of The United Church of Canada in 1925 and formed with the intention of continuing the tradition of theological education established earlier by Canadian Methodists and Presbyterians. The Principal is head of the College, and thus responsible for its academic program, life and work.

List of Principals:
Alfred Gandier (1928–1932)
Richard Davidson (1932-1943)
Frederick Langford (1943–1945)
Alexander Dawson Matheson (1945–1956)
Kenneth Harrington Cousland (1956–1963)
Earl S. Lautenschlager (1963–1971)
William O. Fennell (1971–1981)
Douglas Jay (1981–1990)
John Hoffman (1990–1996)
Roger Hutchinson (1996–2001)
Samuel Peter Wyatt (2001–2008)
Mark G. Toulouse (2009-2017)
Phyllis D. Airhart (interim - 2017-2018)
Michelle Voss Roberts (2018-present)

Victoria Women's Association

  • Corporate body
  • 1897-

In 1892, when Victoria University moved to Toronto, there were fourteen women students, seven of whom needed help finding proper accommodations. Aware of the difficulties faced by the women, Margaret Proctor Burwash, wife of Vic's Chancellor-President and a former teacher, and Margaret Addison, Vic 1889, began discussing the need for a residence in 1895. Lillian Massey also shared their concerns and had convinced her father, the businessman and philanthropist Hart Massey, Vic 1844, to reserve $50,000 of the $200, 000 he left in his will to Victoria for a women's residence. In 1897, Margaret Burwash and a few influential women met in the Vic chapel with the General Superintendent of the Methodist Church Conference Dr. Carman, Chancellor Burwash, members of the Vic staff and the Board of Regents. The result was the formation of the Barbara Heck Memorial Association. The Chancellor's wife became president and Margaret Hopkins Cox, wife of Vic's treasurer Senator George Cox, became treasurer. The Association was sanctioned by the Board of Regents which authorized it to raise money.

The main mission of the Association was to build a residence for women students, to honour United Empire Loyalist pioneer Barbara Heck "the Mother of Methodism in America" by naming the residence after her, and to celebrate Queen Victoria's Jubilee, by the advancement of "the future queens of the homes of our Church and land." They also encouraged the formation of the Victoria Alumnae Association in 1898 believing the Vic women grads could assist with fundraising.

In 1902 the corner stone was laid for the first residence for women - Annesley Hall. It was built with significant contribution of the fundraising efforts of the Association. Margaret Addison because the first Dean of Residence when the building opened in 1903.

The Barbara Heck Memorial Association changed its name to the Victoria Women's Residence and Educational Association in 1904, and became the Victoria Women's Association in 1912. It began to attract additional members that included Vic alumnae, wives of professors, and women from Methodist churches who believed in the cause.

The Association also worked to renovate and furnish other residences for women, and also formed a boarding house committee to inspect and recommend rooms off campus. They also furnished a parlour for the women students who commuted to the Vic campus in 1912 and in 1930 created a women's staff room, both in the College building.

In 1925, VWA member Agnes Euphemia (Pheme) Wood convinced her husband Edward Rogers Wood to donate their home at 84 Queen's Park, Wymilwood, to Victoria for a women's residence and student centre.

Other activities and projects of the VWA included events to help with Church Union (formation the United Church of Canada) including an event held over 3 days with over 1000 guests from the three Toronto presbyteries. The VWA also became a member of the local Council of Women, helped with the war effort by working for the University Hospital Supply Committee, donated to the Armenian relief in 1922; and joined the League of Nations in 1925, among other activities.

The executive arm of the VWA was the Committee of Management which operated from 1902 until 1932. It had eighteen members, nominated by the VWA and approved by the Board of Regents. Margaret Burwash (1902-13), Mrs. R. N. (Mary Jane Crossen) Burns (1913-30), and Mrs. A. E. (Florence Warner) Lang (1930-32) served as Presidents. The Committee was responsible for Annesley's furnishings and equipment and for its administration. In 1932, the Board of Regents hired a warden to take over the administration of residences from the Committee of Management and the Committee merged into the Women's Council.

No longer involved with the administration of the residences and the student centre, except in an advisory capacity, the VWA found a new role for itself as a link between Victoria and the parents of the students. Therefore, in 1933 the VWA decided to invite the mothers of first-year students to join the organization. The VWA expanded its membership base in 1965 by inviting men to become part of the Association

In contemporary times, the VWA continues to act as a liaison between Victoria and the alumni, friends and relatives of past and present students, and members of the public by hosting events such as lectures, luncheons, as well as raising money for Vic students in financial need, primarily with the Bursary Fund.

Until 1964, the presidents of the VWA were the wives of Victoria University administrators. Marguerite Fidler was the first president not connected to the administration.

List of Presidents :
Margaret Burwash, 1897-1912
Julia Graham, 1912-1913
Margaret Addison, 1921-1933
Maud Brown, 1933-1949
Ethel Bennett, 1949-1958
Helen Frye, 1958-1964
Marguerite Fidler, 1964-1966
Ruth Fallis, 1966-1968
Dorothy Crummey, 1968-1971
Alice Jackson, 1971-1974
Ruth Hodgetts, 1974-1975
Susie Eggert, 1975-1978
Doris Stokes, 1978-1980
Audrey McCullough, 1980-1982, 1999-2000
Joan Breukelman, 1982-1985, 1999-2000
Audrey Chapple, 1985-1988
Joyce Clarke, 1988-1991
Margaret Roots, 1991-1994
Marian Gibson, 1994-1999
Anne Sinclair, 2000-2004
Diane Dyer, 2004-

Addison, Margaret Eleanor Theodora

Margaret Eleanor Theodora Addison was born in 1868 in Horning's Mills, Ontario. She graduated from Victoria College in 1889 with a B.A. and was awarded the silver medal and 1st class honours in Modern Languages. After graduation, she taught in high schools and at the Ontario Ladies' College in Whitby. In 1900 she travelled to Europe to study educational methods and was inspired by women's higher education there, particularly with the sense of college life that women students had; made possible through ensuring that they had space on campuses, something that Victoria College had lacked when Addison had attended. Back in Toronto, one of her goals to make a residence for women at Victoria had become a reality. Annesley Hall, the first women's residence was opening in 1903 and Addison had been asked by Mrs. Burwash, the President of the Victoria Women's Residence and Educational Association (later the V.W.A), to serve as Dean of Annesley Hall. In 1920, she was appointed as and Dean of Women at Victoria University, to reflect that not all women lived on campus. She served in this role until 1931 when she retired. Addison was also involved with the International Y.W.C.A., the Student Christian Movement, and the University Club. Margaret Addison died in 1940.

Victoria University Historical Collection

  • Corporate body
  • 1829-1981

This collection consists of various material relating to the history of Victoria University/College that has been accumulated by the Victoria University Archives and had previously been unaccessioned and for which provenance could not be ascertained. This material was gathered together in this general historical collection, and is organized by subject.

Davidson, Richard

  • Person
  • 1876-1944

Richard Davidson was born in Ayr, Ontario and graduated from University College in 1899 and Knox College in 1902, earning a degree of Doctor of Philosophy. His teaching career began at Trinity College with a tutorship and in 1910 he took the chair of Old Testament Language and Literature in Knox, transferring at the time of church union to the United Church College. In 1932, he was appointed Principal at Emmanuel College; he held this Office until retiring in 1943.

Barber, Francis Louis

  • Person
  • 1877-1945

Francis Louis Barber was a graduate of Victoria University (Class of 1903) and Victoria University Librarian, 1924-1945.

Victoria College (Toronto, Ont.). French Department

  • Corporate body
  • 1889-

The first courses in French and French Literature were offered at Victoria College in 1856, however the programme did not expand until the 1880s when the College appointed Alfred H. Reynar, S.C. Smoke, Andrew James Bell and Lewis Eermson Horning. After federation with the University of Toronto, Reynar continued to lead French studies. After the move to Toronto from Cobourg, the French Department was led by John Petch from 1889 until 1898 when it was taken over to Oscar Pelham Edgar. Victoria College's French Department continued to exist separately from that of the University of Toronto, however collaboration was common and the heads of the departments from all the federated college's would meet bi-annually. The were led by a Chairman and a committee was also struck in order to strengthen collaboration and set guidelines. In 1975, the federated college's undergraduate french departments were unified (prior to this graduate programs had unified under the Graduate Department of Romance Languages). A single university Department of French was thus created to ease administrative issues. For practical purposes, most members of the College's department remained in their offices at Victoria. David Smith of Victoria College became the first chairman of the new centralized department.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). President's Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1884-

With the federation of Victoria College and Albert College in 1884 to create Victoria University, the chief administrative and ceremonial duties of the institution were combined in the shared office of President and Chancellor, a custom which continued until 1944. At that time, the Chancellorship became a separate office, and the Presidents assumed the title of Vice-Chancellor. The President derived his authority from the Board of Regents which served as the ultimate governing body of the university. As the chief administrative officer of the Board, he supervised "the business of the Board in its administration of the property and funds" and was responsible for implementing its decisions. He was the chief counsellor and executive officer of Victoria University in its relationship to the University of Toronto and the chief representative of Victoria to the General Conference of the Methodist Church and, later, the General Council of the United Church of Canada. In his role as Chancellor, the President presided over meetings of the Senate and Convocations and conferred degrees upon graduates in Theology. In 1928, some of the administrative duties of Victoria and Emmanuel Colleges were delegated to their Principals, leaving the President free for "the general oversight of the university as a whole."

The President, along with the Principals, also served on the Caput which had disciplinary jurisdiction over all Victoria students.

As the university grew in both size and complexity, the administrative duties of the Presidency expanded correspondingly. The appointing of Principals for Victoria and Emmanuel and the separation of the offices of President and Chancellor recognized that the President could no longer handle all the functions associated with the leadership of Victoria University. The President continued, however, to set the general tone within the university and to act as its spokesperson to the outside community.

Until 1944, the President, as the chief administrative officer and the person responsible for ceremonial duties, was also the Chancellor. After 1944, the President served as Vice-Chancellor.

1849–1850: Matthew Richey (President of Victoria College)
1850–1854: Egerton Ryerson (President of Victoria College)
1854–1884: Samuel S. Nelles (President of Victoria College)
1884–1887: Samuel S. Nelles (President and Chancellor of Victoria University)
1887–1912: Nathanael Burwash (President and Chancellor of Victoria University)
1913–1930: Richard Pinch Bowles (President and Chancellor of Victoria University)
1930–1941: Edward Wilson Wallace (President and Chancellor of Victoria University)
1941–1944: Walter T. Brown (President and Chancellor of Victoria University)
1944–1949: Walter T. Brown (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1949–1950: Harold Bennet (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1950–1970: Arthur Bruce Barbour Moore (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1970–1972: John Edwin Hodgetts (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1973–1987: Goldwin S. French (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1987–1994: Eva Milada Kushner (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
1994–2001: Roseann Runte (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
2001–2015: Paul W. Gooch (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)
2015– : William Robins (President and Vice Chancellor of Victoria University)

Victoria College (Toronto, Ont.). Conversazione Committee

  • Corporate body
  • 1896-1914

A 'conversazione' was first held in 1862 by the Literary Association and held annually after that for more than 50 years. It quickly became one of the major social events on the Victoria College campus. The local gentry were invited and served refreshments by members of the Association. The Committee was formed to help organize and hold the event, which was last held in 1914.

Victoria College (Toronto, Ont.). Students' Parliament

  • Corporate body
  • 1924-1930

The organization was constituted in 1924. Its object was to promote student fellowship, deal with questions of general interest to the student body, and cultivate literature, science and the orderly conduct of public business. In 1930 the Student Parliament became the Victoria College Union Council.

Victoria College (Toronto, Ont.). Union Council

  • Corporate body
  • 1930-1970

The Council was constituted in 1930. Its mandate included: amalgamating all existing student societies under one administrative body; promoting student fellowship; and controlling the formation of new societies, clubs, and associations. In 1970, it formed, along with members of the Emmanuel College Student Society, the Victoria University Students' Administrative Council.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Alumni Affairs and University Advancement Department

  • Corporate body
  • 1975-

Throughout much of the University's history, matters of alumni and fund raising were managed by the President, Bursar, and Board of Regents. Beginning in 1975, a separate office was created to manage these responsibilities: the Department of External Relations and Development. The name changed to the Alumni Affairs and University Advancement Department in 2002. Another name change occurred in the 2010s and the office became known as the Office of Alumni Affairs and Advancement. A committee of the Board of Regents continues to monitor and encourage matters relating to alumni and advancement.

Dignan, Alan

  • Person

Alan Dignan was a Victoria University graduate, Class of 1931.

Emmanuel College (Toronto, Ont.). Registrar’s Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1928-

The first Registrar of Emmanuel College was John Fletcher McLaughlin who served as Dean from 1928 until his death in 1932. The Reverend Frederick.W. Langford held the position afterwards and was named as Registrar. Following him, the duties of Registrar were carried out by the Dean or faculty members.

After 1955, the position of Registrar was restored and held by:
-Rev. K.H. Cousland (1955)
-Rev. W.O Fennell (1956-1959)
-Rev. C.D. Jay (1960-1966)
-Rev. A.G. Reynolds (1966-1973)
-Rev. G.W. Boyce (1974-1976)
-Rev. S.V. Fawcett (1977-1985)
-Jackie Lautens
-Shirley Wilfong
-Margaret Grisdale
-Wanda Chin (present)

Artifacts Collection

  • Corporate body
  • 1832 - 2011

The Victoria University Artifacts Collection consists of donated artifacts, artifacts of unknown provenance, and artifacts accumulated by the Archives via the University.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Bob Revue

  • Corporate body
  • 1874-

The Committee was formed to stage the Bob Revue, an annual presentation in honour of Robert Beare. Bob Beare was a janitor at Victoria and a friend to students. Beginning in 1874 he would invite the freshmen class to meet the rest of the college and out of this evolved the Bob Revue. The Revue was put on by the sophomore class and aimed its barbs at freshmen. It was considered as part of orientation to campus life.

The Bob Revue was traditionally an all male production and in 1949 the Scarlet and Gold revue was created as a co-ed musical revue. Scarlet and Gold co-existed with the Bob for two years (1949 and 1950) before it merged with the Bob in 1951 and the Bob officially became co-ed.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Alma Mater Society

  • Corporate body
  • 1903-1908

The Society was established 1903 by male students, including Edward Wilson Wallace, the first President (he would later become President and Chancellor of Victoria University). The Society was established to deal with student problems broader than those addressed by any particular society. After 4 years, the Alma Mater Society ceased to exist.

Burwash, Nathanael

Nathanael Burwash was born in St. Andrews, Quebec, in 1839 and entered Victoria College, Cobourg as a prepatory student in 1852, graduating in 1859 after an interruption to allow his younger brother the funds to enrol. He was ordained in 1864 and continued his education at Yale (Science) and Garrett Biblical Institute of Evanston, Illinois (Theology) and received his M.A. from Victoria in 1866. Burwash began his teaching career at Victoria, lecturing in the natural sciences and in 1871 began teaching theology as well as science courses – two years later he was appointed Dean of the new Faculty of Theology and in 1877 helped set up the Theological Union of Victoria, an organization designed as a postgraduate extension of theological study. In 1887, Burwash was named Chancellor and President – he held these positions until 1913, and continued to teach doctrinal history until his death in 1918.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Students' Council

  • Corporate body
  • 1913-1916

The Men's Council was active 1913-1916. In 1914, the new president, Richard Pinch Bowles, signed the charter of the Annesley Student Government Association, which permitted the establishment of the Women's Students Council. In 1920, the name was changed to the Women's Undergraduate Association of Victoria College and membership was mandatory for all female students on campus. The Association was in charge of the administration of female students and undertook any business which did not fall under the jurisdiction of any other societies.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Dean of Students

  • Corporate body
  • 1990-

The positions of the Dean of Men and the Dean of Women were replaced by the Dean of Students in 1990. The Dean of Students has a particular responsibility for life in Victoria's residences, as the senior administrative officer, and promotes close ties between student residents and the University. In addition, the Dean is responsible for student government, residence admissions, room assignments, disciplinary systems and functions related to the quality of student life. The Dean works closely with the Residence Life Coordinator and the Dons. Decisions of the Dean on matters of residence procedure, policy, admissions, discipline, and the like, can be appealed to the President of Victoria. As well, the Dean is required to be a liaison with all levels of student government and student organizations.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Bursar's Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1831-

The Bursar of Victoria University was the chief financial officer of the University and head of its business administration. From the mid 1940's the Bursar also served as Secretary to the Board of Regents and its standing and special committees. Between 1932 and 1985, the responsibilities and duties of the Bursar were considerably increased.

Prior to 1932, the financial and business administration of the University was given little attention. It appears from the minutes of the Board of Regents that between 1907 and 1918 financial matters were in the care of a member of the Board of Regents. The terms "Bursar" and "Treasurer of the Board of Regents" were used interchangeably, and the only record of the Bursar's work is found in references in the minutes to the financial reports presented annually to the Board. In 1918, however, the two positions were separated and both the Bursar and the Treasurer presented reports to the Board. Thereafter, the position of Treasurer was an honourary post held by a member of the Board, who had to present the annual financial reports, while the position of Bursar became a salaried post on the staff of Victoria University.

The next major development was the appointment of an accountant, which the Board agreed to in 1920[1]. From 1921 to 1932, the position of Bursar was held by the University Librarian, F.L. Barber, and so increasingly the work of the Bursar's Office fell to the Accountant, W.J. Little. During this period, Little was appointed secretary of various financial appeals and building funds; and it was Little who appeared at meetings of the Board of Regents to answer the questions of members of the Board when the Treasurer presented the financial reports. Victoria University faced a financial crisis in the early 1920s, and carried a serious deficit into the 1930s which revealed the need for a full-time Bursar. In 1932, the Board recognised this when it moved:

That we accept Dr. Barber's suggestion that he relinquish the office of bursar, and that the Rev. W.J. Little be appointed bursar of Victoria University [2].

Little described his work in his first annual report to the Board of Regents in 1934. At this point, in addition to his financial and accounting responsibilities, the Bursar was Secretary to the Finance Committee and Property Committee, and business manager of Burwash Hall and the Men's Residences. In his routine duties, Little included the collection of fees; payment of accounts; bookkeeping and record keeping; the preparation of financial statements; printing and supplies; and publicity and advertising. He also prepared payroll reports for the Workmen's Compensation Board of Ontario. As Secretary to the Property committee, his main task was described as the supervision of insurance on all buildings and their contents. Finance committee work involved co-operation with the staff of the National Trust Company which acted as the financial agents of the University.

The two areas of Property and Burwash Hall and Men's Residences (later Residences and Services) formed what came to be known as the auxiliary enterprises of the University. These auxiliary enterprises, which were secondary to Victoria's main educational function, became a useful source of income for the University as well as providing accommodation for staff and students. The Bursar's active management and involvement in these areas consequently increased.

The Bursar's responsibilities with regard to property were initially the insurance of buildings and their contents. However, as the need for regular income became more urgent and evident, and as the University expanded and required more buildings, the Bursar's work likewise increased. The Bursar became responsible for the legal negotiations and accounting over purchases, sales and leases; and the supervision and funding of alterations and renovations and the construction of new buildings. Along with this the Bursar dealt with property tax as the University was only exempt from this in respect to its property used for academic purposes.

As business manager of Burwash Hall and the Men's Residences, the Bursar was responsible for residence accounts and budgets throughout the year. The senior residence staff reported to the Bursar, and all major items and expenditures or policy decisions had to be passed by him. In addition during the summer vacation he was responsible for the general management and administration, as the dietitian was on a ten month renewable contract. The summer vacation management included the allocation of rooms to conference groups and individuals who used the residences. The Bursar also had a supervisory role in regard to the management of the Women's Residences and Wymilwood Students' Union.

Staffing structures with Residences and Food Services were ill-defined. Food Services staff were directly responsible to the Bursar. The appointment of a Director of Residences and Food Services, which caused some friction, did not create a proper departmental structure: both the dietitian of Burwash Hall and the Director reported to the Bursar. Commercial food management was introduced in 1982-83, with the retention of Victoria staff: the resolution of staff problems following this remained the responsibility of the Bursar.

Student discipline and government were the responsibility of the Senior Tutor/Dean of Men in the Men's Residences and of the Dean of Women in the Women's Residences. However, any discipline which resulted in fines or any damages to property were reported to the Bursar. Also, residence fees and applications for student loans or loan extensions, as well as summer residence applications, were handled by the Bursar. There was also some overlap in responsibilities, particularly as W.J. Little (Bursar, 1932-51) was Senior Tutor from 1924 to 1935 and Acting Senior Tutor from 1942 to 1946.

In the mid-1940s three extra areas of responsibility were added to the Bursar's work. In 1944, the Bursar became the Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds. W.J. Little comments in his 1945 annual report that he was convinced: that the most efficient and economical plan of operation is a centralised control with definite departmental organisation for the carrying out of the work [3].

The addition of Buildings and Grounds gave the Bursar control over all the non-academic departments of Victoria University. As Superintendent, the Bursar was responsible for the maintenance and repair of university buildings and had charge of the janitorial staff.

Also in the mid-1940s the Bursar became Secretary to the Board of Regents. It is not clear at what point this occurred. It was in 1935 that W.J. Little was first listed as present at a regular meeting of the Board of Regents [4]: previously he had attended only to answer questions in the financial report. In March 1936 Little was again listed, and described as Assessor [5]. Then in September 1936 Little was "re-appointed" as Minute Secretary to the Board [6]: there is no record of his original appointment as Minute Secretary. The Chancellor, E.W. Wallace, was Secretary to the Board, a position of some importance, whereas Little, as Minute Secretary, performed only minor administrative tasks. However, Little's appointment was significant, as before this the Minute Secretary had been appointed at each meeting of the Board from amongst their number. The transition from Minute Secretary to Secretary appears to have taken place around 1944-45, with the passing of the 1944 Victoria University Act. In practical terms, it may have occurred earlier, most likely after Principal Brown of Victoria College was appointed Acting Chancellor during Wallace's leave of absence, at which time there was a need to reduce Principal Brown's administrative workload [7].

The third additional responsibility in this period was the result of World War II and the Canadian Government's attempts to rehabilitate war veterans. The Department of Veterans Affairs instituted a scheme to provide money for the tuition fees of veterans who chose to take up university or other training courses. The net result was an influx of students and complicated reports and claims to the Department of Veterans Affairs on behalf of students at Victoria. This was the precursor of the general schemes of Government grants to assist students in the payment of fees and living expenses.

The next series of changes in the Bursar's work occurred in the period 1950-52. W.J. Little mentioned in his annual report for 1950 that there were plans for a major re-organisation of the business department. He stated that:

This will involve the termination of the arrangement by which the bookkeeping of Victoria University was done by the National Trust Company; the organisation of a complete accounting division; and the segregation of the work relating to buildings and grounds [8].

The restructuring did indeed take place, but Little died before he was able to report on its workings. In the ensuing disruption, W.C. James, the Chairman of the Board of Regents, was persuaded to give up his public relations career and assume the post of Bursar. In doing so, W.C. James had written into his job description an extra responsibility for the publicity and public relations of Victoria University.

The immediate result of the public relations role was the production of a published booklet, Victoria Reports on a biannual basis, edited by the Bursar. It was included primarily for the members of the Board of Regents as a means of keeping them informed on current affairs in Victoria. However, it became widely read, particularly by the alumni who began to treat it as though produced for their benefit. The Bursar remained editor for some twenty years, but eventually, in 1972, the Bursar relinquished the publication to the alumni, and it was renamed Vic Reports.

The restructuring of the business administration saw the promotion of F.C. Stokes from Assistant Superintendent to Superintendent, and the separation of the posts of Bursar and Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds. The Superintendent continued to use the Bursar's Office for secretarial and administrative support, but his files were held separately from the Bursar's. These files were accessioned in the Archives as 1987.173V. Concurrent with these changes, was the appointment of an Accountant, K.M. Dinsmore in 1950, and the establishment of an Accounting Department; the first since Little became Bursar in 1932 and gave up his post as Accountant. In 1951 the National Trust Company ceased to act as financial agent for Victoria University and the finance and accounting business was transferred to the new Accounting Department.

In 1961 the Management Consultants, Woods, Gordon & Co. were commissioned to draw up a detailed study of Victoria University's organisation and administration. They drew up a position description of the Bursar's post, and amongst the major responsibilities they listed were included the supervision of the Accounting Department, Buildings and Grounds and the "auxiliary enterprises" which referred principally to Residences and Food Services. The Bursar also made all banking arrangements for the University, edited Victoria Reports and dealt with loans to students and to academic staff. The position description identified new supervisory and personnel responsibilities. The Bursar directly supervised five members of staff whose work was only loosely connected with finance: the Living Endowment Clerk, the Graduate Records Clerk, the Book Bureau Manager, the Switchboard Operator and the Clerk Typist to the academic staff. The Bursar was also responsible for staff appointments and dismissals.

The last major development in the period covered by these records which affected the work and responsibilities of the Bursar occurred in 1974 with the Memorandum of Agreement between the University of Toronto and the federated institutions. This provided for new financial arrangements whereby the University of Toronto received the annual government grant which it then distributed among the federated institutions instead of their receiving the grant direct. At the same time the basis for grants to Victoria University was altered. Previously, as a church-related university, Victoria had received only a half-grant per student, but from 1974, under new Provincial rules, Victoria received a full grant for students in Victoria College while continuing to receive a half-grant for students in Emmanuel College. These two changes in funding structure made the fees work of the Bursar more complex. In particular the Bursar became heavily involved in negotiations with the other federated institutions and with the administration of the University of Toronto. As a result, more of the financial and accounting work was delegated to the Accountant, leaving the Bursar free to concentrate on policy issues and negotiations. A further consequence of the Memorandum of Agreement was the closer integration of the staff of Victoria with the staff of the University of Toronto, and this led to greater involvement in unions which in turn involved the Bursar more in personnel matters and labour relations.

Currently the Bursar is responsible for the management and overseeing of properties and buildings, maintenance and repair as well as auxiliary services such as food and catering, conference services and housekeeping.


  1. Board of Regents Minutes, Sept. 30, 1920.

  2. Ibid., Nov. 25, 1932.

  3. Report of the Bursar and Superintendent, year ended June 30, 1945.

  4. Board of Regents Minutes, June 13, 1935.

  5. Ibid., March 12, 1936.

  6. Ibid., Sept. 18, 1936.

  7. Ibid., Nov. 2, 1939.

  8. Report of the Bursar to the Board of Regents, year ended June 30, 1950.

Victoria College (Toronto, Ont.). Principal's Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1928-

The Office of Principal was created in 1928, when Victoria College was established to supersede the former Faculty of Arts headed by a Dean. The Principal continued to oversee the arts programme at Victoria and to serve on University of Toronto academic committees, and also acted as chair and chief administrative officer of the newly created Victoria College Council. In 1944, the name of the office was changed to Dean, but it reverted to Principal in 1951. The first men to hold office, R. P. Bowles (1928–1930) and E. W. Wallace (1930-1932), held it in addition to their positions as President and Chancellor of Victoria University. The Principal's Office became more distinct during the incumbency of W. T. Brown (1932-1944), who also served as President after 1941, and especially during the term of H. Bennett (1944-1959). These two men carried out their duties of office on a part–time basis, while continuing to teach a reduced load of courses.

The Principal's Office in recent times has been served by a succession of accomplished scholars on the teaching staff of Victoria College including Northrop Frye, Professor of English, who served as Principal during 1959–1966. While Frye was on sabbatical leave during the 1964-1965 academic year, Professor Kingsley J. Joblin acted as Principal. After Frye's term ended in 1966, President A. B. B. Moore acted in this capacity until a new Principal was appointed in 1967. John E. Hodgetts (1967-1971), a distinguished political scientist, officiated during a period of rising expectations and increasing involvement by students in university government. This period, inaugurated by the 1967 "MacPherson Report", saw the end of the old Honour and General Courses, and the introduction of a New Programme which allowed students more freedom to design their own courses of study. Hodgetts was appointed President in 1970, and the following year relinquished the Principalship to John M. Robson (1971-1976), Professor of English and General Editor of the John Stuart Mill Project. Robson officiated during one of the most crucial periods in the relationship between the U. of T. and its federated colleges. In 1974, Victoria signed the Memorandum of Agreement, which removed the base of academic decision–making from college departments and centralized it in newly created U. of T. Departments. His successor, classicist Gordon L. Keyes (1976-1981), had to deal with issues arising from the Agreement. He coordinated Victoria College's input and response to the work of the "Kelly Committee", which published its review of the undergraduate curriculum in 1980. Alexandra Johnston (1981-1991), English Professor as well as General Editor of the Records of Early English Drama, was the first woman appointed to the Principal's Office and served two full terms; she then returned as Acting Principal in 2003-2004, when David Cook was on leave.

Although the main functions of office remained the same through all of these terms, the 1960's saw the first in a series of structural changes to the relationship between the University of Toronto and its federated colleges. These changes, especially the 1974 Memorandum of Agreement, which centralized academic programming in U. of T. Departments, altered the ways in which recent Principals have carried out their official functions.

List of Principals:

  • Edward Wilson Wallace 1930-1932
  • Walter T. Brown 1932-1941
  • Harold Bennett 1941-1959
  • H. Northrop Frye 1959-1966
  • John Edwin Hodgetts 1967-1970
  • John Mercel Robson 1971-1976
  • Gordon Lincoln Keyes 1976-1981
  • Alexandra Ferguson Johnston 1981-1991
  • William J. Callahan 1991-2000
  • David B. Cook 2000-2012
  • Angela Esterhammer 2012-

Victoria College (Toronto. Ont.). Registrar's Office

  • Corporate body
  • 1837-

The Registrar was appointed by the Board of Regents, but had a closer working relationship with the Senate; as Secretary, he kept the records of the latter body. The Registrar's responsibilities included conducting elections of graduate representatives to the Senate and the Board of Regents, arranging enrollment into and withdrawal from Victoria College, course transfers, applications for scholarships, petition requests, examination requests, and timetable problems; as well as advising on academic matters and organizing functions such as the Charter Day Convocation, Baccalaureate Convocation Service, and the Emmanuel College Graduation. Although the Registrar was technically responsible for Emmanuel, the theological school appointed one of its own staff members to administer the registration of its students.

Victoria University (Cobourg, Ont.). Department of Medicine

The Department of Medicine was established in 1854 when John Rolph's medical school in Toronto became attached to Victoria College. In 1866, L'École de médecine et de chirurgie de Montréal also became affiliated with Victoria College. No classes were actually given in Cobourg, however the medical diplomas were issued by Victoria College/University because neither medical school was empowered to grant degrees on their own. The Department's Medical Board of Examiners was established in 1875 to examine students with certificates from medical schools who wished to obtain M.D. degrees. Dr. Uzziel Ogden taught on the Toronto Faculty for many years. The name of the Department was changed when Victoria University was constituted in 1884, and the Department ceased to exist when Victoria University became affiliated with the University of Toronto.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Senate

  • Corporate body
  • 1841-

The Senate was first given the power and authority to confer degrees in 1841 and consisted of four members of the provincial government, visitors of the College and ex-officio members of the Board and Senate. The Senates was also given power to establish student awards, summon Convocations, "make regulations and deal with all such matters of a strictly educational nature as have not in this Act been assigned to either of the Colleges", and "deal with other matters and affairs as may from time to time be committed to it by the Board". The Victoria University Senate's Executive Committee has the authority to confer honorary degrees to recognize the outstanding accomplishments of graduates of Victoria College and Emmanuel College and to honour the exemplary lives of others who have made extraordinary contributions to society. The Victoria College Registrar serves as Secretary of the Senate.

Canadian Society for Renaissance Studies

In 1976, the Canadian Society for Renaissance Studies/Société canadienne d'études de la Renaissance was founded by an informal group of Francophone Canadian scholars called Les Seiziémistes, the Centre d'études de la renaissance in Sherbrooke, and the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies in Toronto. The CSRS is a bilingual, interdisciplinary society dedicated to the study of the Renaissance; it was formally recognized as a learned society in 1976.

Wallace, Edward Wilson

  • Person
  • 1880-1941

Edward Wilson Wallace was born in Cobourg, Ontario, the son of Francis Huston Wallace and Joy Wilson. He studied at Victoria University and Columbia University before being appointed to China missions in 1906. After serving in various capacities in China missions, he was appointed Chancellor and President of Victoria University in 1929, serving until his death in 1941. While at the University, he was also Professor of Missions at Emmanuel College, 1932-1941. Edward Wilson Wallace, Jr. is his son.

Edward Wilson Wallace is the elder sibling of Paul Anthony Wilson Wallace and Muriel Joy Wilson Wallace.

Victoria University (Toronto Ont.). Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies

In 1964, the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (CRRS) was established by the Board of Regents to be: a research institute dedicated to the Renaissance and Reformation while having the Andrew James Bell Erasmus collection at its core, and; to develop a broader collection of reference works, texts, and bibliographical material for the period of ca. 1500-1700. The CRRS was co-publisher of the journal Renaissance and Reformation, it later began publishing the journals Early Theatre and Confraternitas, as well as five lines of books.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Stephenson House

  • Corporate body
  • 1940-2010

Stephenson House was established in 1940 as a male Christian co-operative residence by the Board of Regents in accordance with Trust agreements made by Dr. F.C. Stephenson, a Methodist and later United Church minister and fundraiser. It came under the general supervision of the Board of Stewards, a body that included University officials and House representatives. Originally located at 77 Charles Street, it was moved to St. Mary Street in 1953, then moved back to a different address on Charles Street in 1990 (63 Charles). It became a co-ed residence in 1983. The house at 63 Charles is currently used as Victoria University office space. It's last year as the Stephenson House residence was the 2009-2010 school year.

Robins, John D.

John D. Robins was a professor, creative writer and editor of note who had a lengthy and distinguished teaching career at Victoria University. Born in Windsor, Ontario in 1884, to Thomas Brackhill Robins and Elizabeth Snelson Plant, he attended Albert College in Belleville before graduating with a B.A. (1913) and M.A. (1922) from Victoria University, and a Ph.d. from University of Chicago (1927). He began his teaching career at Victoria as a Lecturer in German in 1910, went on to become a Professor of English and Head of the Department, 1941–1952, while also serving as the Librarian, 1945–1952. In addition to his academic endeavors, he edited the highly regarded "A Pocketful of Canada" (1946), and wrote the popular non-fiction book "The Incomplete Anglers" (1944), as well as the novel "Cottage Cheese" (1951), and was also recognized for his knowledge of folklore. John D. Robins died suddenly in 1952.

Victoria University (Toronto, Ont.). Students' Administrative Council

The Council was constituted in 1970 by members of the Emmanuel College Student Society and the Victoria College Union Council. Its mandate was to derive policy and administer all matters of concern to the Victoria University student body.

Currently, VUSAC has twenty-five elected and appointed members who provide services such as the administration of student clubs, host events, and represent the Victoria College student body.

Wallace, Edward Wilson, Jr.

  • Person
  • 1916-1942

Edward Wilson Wallace, Jr is the son of Edward Wilson Wallace and Rose Wallace (Cullen), daughter of Rev. Thomas Cullen. He is the grandson of Francis Huston Wallace and Joy Wilson. He married Velma Mary Hamill in 1929.

Wallace, Paul Anthony Wilson

Paul Anthony Wilson Wallace (1891-1967) was born in Cobourg, Ontario. He attended grade school in Toronto, and high school at Harbord Collegiate Institute in Toronto. He received a B.A. from Victoria University at the University of Toronto in 1915, an M.A. in 1923, and a Ph.D. in 1925. He was active in World War I as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force from 1916-1918. He was a teacher in a one room county school at Baraca, Alberta in 1915, and lectured in English at the University of Alberta from 1919-1922, and at the University of Toronto from 1922-1925. In 1925, he began as Chairman of the Department of English at Lebanon Valley College in Pennsylvania. From 1948-1967 he was a staff historian with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

Wallace was a prolific writer and published many articles and books, mainly in the field of Pennsylvania and American Indian history, including biographies of Conrad Weiser, Henry Melchior Muhlenberg and his three sons, and Milton Hershey; a history of Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania, Seed of a Nation; a history of Lebanon Valley College; and three works on the Indians of Pennsylvania and New York: The White Roots of Peace, The Indians of Pennsylvania, and Indian Paths of Pennsylvania. One of his books, "White Roots of Peace" an historical work on the founding of the Five Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy, was selected for inclusion in the White House library.

He was married to Dorothy Eleanor Clarke in 1919; their two children are Anthony Francis Clarke Wallace and David Harold Wallace.

Wallace, Muriel Joy Wilson

  • Person
  • 1885-1974

Muriel Joy Wilson Wallace (1885-1974) is the daughter of Francis Huston Wallace and Joy Wilson. She was a high school teacher in Peterborough, Ontario and at Bloor Collegiate Institute in Toronto.

Wallace, Francis Huston

Francis Huston Wallace was educated in a series of private schools, including Upper Canada College in Toronto, where he was head boy in 1868-69. He enrolled in University College, Toronto, the following year. Although he was not impressed with the quality of teaching, he graduated with a first and a gold medal in classics in 1873 and secured an MA a year later. Wallace and his family had assumed that following graduation he would enter Knox College and become a Presbyterian minister. During his second undergraduate year, however, he became greatly distressed about his spiritual condition and his vocation. He agreed with his father as to the absolute necessity of a conversion experience as the foundation of a truly Christian life, but he was deeply depressed by his failure to achieve it.

Fortunately, at this juncture he was befriended by several perceptive and sympathetic Methodists. Inspired by their counsel and by participation in Methodist services, he eventually felt "his heart strangely warmed," as had John Wesley, and he became "gloriously happy in the joy of salvation." Despite his father's anger and grief, Wallace rejected the Westminster Standards, adopted by the Church of Scotland in 1647, and the prospect of becoming a Presbyterian minister. His Methodist friends quickly decided that he would be a valuable recruit for the Methodist ministry, and with their encouragement, he was accepted as a local preacher in 1873. Nathanael Burwash, the founding dean of theology at Victoria College in Cobourg, hinted at an eventual appointment in the college. Wallace enrolled in Drew Theological Seminary in Madison, N.J., in 1873. After graduating in 1876, he proceeded to the University of Leipzig, then a leading institution in biblical studies attended by many foreign theological students, where he spent a year. He would return to Germany in 1911-12 to study at the University of Berlin and, in particular, to enroll in the course offered by the eminent and radical church historian Adolf von Harnack, whom he later privately described as a "Unitarian of the highest type."

Wallace was ordained in the Methodist ministry in 1878 and subsequently appointed to pastorates in Peterborough, Toronto, and Cobourg, positions in which he acquired several prominent lay supporters and the friendship of Samuel Sobieski Nelles and other members of the teaching staff at Victoria College. In 1887 he was appointed professor of New Testament literature and exegesis in Victoria's faculty of theology; he began teaching the following January. Wallace was a member of the faculty until 1920 and its dean from 1900. A respected and committed teacher and administrator, he helped to shape the development of the faculty and the theological outlook of many in the Methodist ministry in Canada, during a period of profound intellectual upheaval - a generation influenced by Darwin's writings, the development of higher criticism in biblical studies, and growing awareness that Christian theology is a transitory construction, as are other forms of human thought. By 1920 Victoria's faculty of theology and the Methodist community in general had come to accept the implications of contemporary biblical scholarship and were probably more distressed by the moral implications of World War I than by arguments about Genesis and prophecy.

At Victoria, from 1892 located in Toronto, this process of adjustment was marked by two controversial incidents and facilitated by Wallace's own approach to biblical studies and his constructive appointments to the faculty. He played no formal part in the first issue, the resignation of his friend and colleague George Coulson Workman in 1891. He concluded, however, that Workman was a Unitarian and therefore unsuited to instruct Methodist theological students. Again, in 1909 his friend George Jackson, newly appointed professor of English Bible, was threatened with dismissal for stating publicly that the account of creation in Genesis is not a historical one. The dispute was resolved through a statement prepared by John Fletcher McLaughlin, Workman's successor, and signed by the entire faculty of theology. It declared that, "so long as our theological professors maintain their personal vital relation to Christ and Holy Scripture, and adhere to the doctrinal standards of our own church . . . they must be left free to do their own work," a position later accepted by the General Conference of the Methodist Church.

A quiet, firm, but tolerant scholar, Wallace believed that the New Testament is "all alive with the experiences, difficulties, struggles, antagonisms, heresies, arguments, appeals, eloquence of the men and times to whom Jesus Christ spake." Historical study enabled Christians better to understand "the living realities of the Bible and of Christian experience." Wisely and perhaps deliberately, he left public controversy to others. His preaching was scholarly and balanced, and he welcomed changes in the role of the church. Wallace did not neglect his duties as a minister. He was a strong advocate of the establishment of the deaconess order in the Methodist Church and an effective supporter of union with the Presbyterian and Congregational churches, achieved in 1925. His home was a hospitable place where he welcomed each generation of students. Above all, he strove to make Victoria's "work in theology equal in scholarship to that of the very best institutions on this continent." He left his colleagues and his students with a "memory of good words and good deeds" that would help constructively to shape the college's role in theological education.

Wallace was married in 1878 to Joy Wilson, the daughter of Bishop Edward Wilson of New Jersey. She died in 1918. His eldest son, Edward Wilson Wallace, was a missionary to China and became Chancellor of Victoria University. His daughter Muriel taught in Peterborough, Ontario and at Bloor St. Collegiate Institute, and his son, Paul, was a professor of English at Lebanon Valley College, Pennsylvania. Two other children, Dorothy and Polly, died at an early age.

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