Fonds 1425 - Gilbert Edward Jackson fonds

Identity area

Reference code

UTA 1425


Gilbert Edward Jackson fonds


  • [191-?]-1958 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

2.48 m of textual and graphic records (22 boxes)

Context area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Gilbert Edward Jackson was born on March 2, 1890 at Hedon, East Yorks, England, to Dr. John L. Jackson and Ida Beatrice (nee Bird), daughter of Henry James Bird of Market Rasen in Lincs. He received his education in England, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1911 from St. John’s College, University of Cambridge. In 1911, Mr. Jackson immigrated to Canada and in that same year, joined the University of Toronto as Lecturer in Economics. In 1916 he took leave from his academic duties to serve in the 2nd Battalion, Queen’s Own Royal West Kent Regiment, and British Army. He was later promoted to 2nd Lieutenant in the 6th Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. After his discharge in 1919, Mr. Jackson resumed his position at the University of Toronto where he eventually became a professor of economics, a position he held until 1935. Mr. Jackson became the Editor of the Canadian Forum (1920-1925) and was appointed the first Director of the course in Commerce and Finance at the University (1926-1935). While on the faculty of the Department of Political Economy he also served as Secretary and Member of the Ontario Commission on Unemployment (1915-1916), President of the University College Literary Society (1920-1921), Chairman of Ontario Employment Service Council (1921-1923), Speaker at the Hart House Debates (1924-1926), and was the first Economist for The Bank of Nova Scotia (1926-1935).

In 1921, Mr. Jackson married Marjorie Lillian Kirkpatrick of Toronto and they had two children, John Denison and Joan Mary. Marjorie Jackson died tragically in the spring of 1927 when the children were still young. Mr. Jackson married Maria Elizabeth (Liesel) Ewringmann, the children’s governess in 1932 and during the Second World War they adopted a young girl named Mary whose parents were lost at sea. In 1944, his son died in action while serving in Normandy during the Second World War. His second wife died shortly after. By 1956, Mr. Jackson married Sadie McCool.

In 1935, Mr. Jackson resigned from the University to become Advisor to the Governors of the Bank of England, a position he held until 1939. On his return to Canada in 1939 he became a general business consultant for numerous corporations. During the Second World War he was acting Director of the School of Commerce at McGill University (1940), a member of the Industrial Disputes Enquiry Commission, National War Labour Board (1941-1943), and member of the National Selective Service Advisory Board (1942-1945). His services during the war were honoured by Britain when he was made Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1946 and appointed to the Order of King Christian X of Denmark for war work.

In 1944, his firm of consultants became Gilbert Jackson & Associates, a ‘think-tank’ focusing on business and economic issues. Among the consultants in his firm were retired Colonel William Wallace Goforth and John L. (Lorne) McDougall. He also founded an investment management company Canadian York Finance Company Limited in 1939. In 1947 the name was changed to Sentinel Associates of Canada Limited which continues in operation to this day.

During this period, Mr. Jackson was a member of numerous clubs, which included: Savage (London); Carlton (England); the Cambridge Union Society (England); York (Toronto); Arts and Letters (Toronto); the University Club (Montreal); and the Rideau Club (Ottawa).

Mr. Jackson was the author of An economist’s confession of faith (Toronto: Macmillan, 1935), If thine enemy hunger! (Canadian Institute of International Affairs, 1941) and Facts in the Case (Ambassador Books Ltd., 1944). In addition he served as editor of the Canadian Forum
1920-1925), published papers on economics, and delivered speeches in Britain, the USA and Canada. He died June 16, 1959.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Majority of records transferred from the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library which received them in 1978 from Mr. Kendall Cork, literary executor of the Gilbert Jackson estate.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The fonds consists of the personal papers of Gilbert Edward Jackson, a former professor of economics at the University of Toronto. Compiled from inventories of three accessions, the fonds documents Mr. Jackson’s career, participation and achievements as an economist, consultant and professor in Canada and England, during the early 1920s to late 1950s, with the greatest emphasis being on the mid 1930s to early 1950s. Arranged chronologically by function, the fond is divided into ten series. They include: Personal material, related to various activities, accomplishments and events that occurred in Mr. Jackson’s private life; Teaching activities; Manuscripts written by Mr. Jackson; the Canadian Tariff Board; the National War Labour Board; the National Selective Service Advisory Board; Other Federal Government research and reports; the Bank of England; his consulting firm, Gilbert Jackson & Associates; and Photographs.

Within the fonds, a cross over among these series exists as the research Mr. Jackson completed for himself was also utilized for assignments produced for other consulting economists and firms. For instance, the research that was completed to write submissions to the Canadian Tariff Board (Series 4) was also utilized to publish articles located in Series 3 (Manuscripts) and Series 9 (Gilbert Jackson & Associates). Related topics can also be found in Series 5 (National War Labour Board) through Series 7 (Other Federal Government research and reports, as they document the extensiveness of Mr. Jackson’s involvement and research completed for the Federal Government of Canada between the late 1920s to 1950s. Although the material within the series are for different Boards, this cross over among the series documents Mr. Jackson’s involvement and active role within the world of Canadian economics during the mid twentieth century.

Although Mr. Jackson taught at the University of Toronto for roughly 15 years, only a small amount of records exist in the fonds that document his teaching career. The records that do exist in Series 2, (Teaching activities) provide a brief overview of the themes covered and issues addressed during his lectures delivered in the 1950’s. However, additional documents related to Mr. Jackson’s academic career at the University of Toronto can be found in Series 3 (Manuscripts), the correspondence in Series 8 (Bank of England), and Series 9 (Gilbert Jackson & Associates) as the records within the files highlight his relationships, activities, teaching and mentoring of graduate students who attended the University of Toronto.

This fonds will be of great interest to researchers studying the financial condition of Canada and England during the Great Depression and First and Second World Wars. An individual who sharpened the minds of the youth at the time, Gilbert Jackson’s fonds documents the ideologies that shaped the economic world of today, as “it has been said that half the leading economists in Canada today studied under him” [1]


  1. “Gilbert Edward Jackson”. Wed. 17 Jun. 1959. Newspaper clipping in case file B2004-0026.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Since no original order existed within the collection and no archival bond was identified between the records, the series were arranged chronologically by function.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

All records are open.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

  • English
  • French

Script of material

Language and script notes

The material in this Fonds is all in English, except Series 1 (Personal), Series 3 (Manuscripts) and Series 9 (Gilbert Jackson & Associates) which have a couple of books, articles and newspaper clippings in French.

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

Uploaded finding aid

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