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Robert William McKay fonds

  • UTA 1626
  • Fonds
  • [192-]-1965

Fonds consists primarily of the academic and professional records of Robert William McKay and
is divided into five series:

  1. National Research Council,
  2. Manuscripts and publications,
  3. Reports,
  4. Education, and
  5. Employment.

Apart from materials from McKay’s time as a student at the University of Toronto, the fonds is
mostly devoid of personal records.

McKay, Robert William

National Research Council

Series contains is composed of records dating from McKay’s time at the National Research Council. During the Second World War, the organization was mobilized to support the Allied war effort. As a result, most of the series’ records relate to military research and development. Canadian Army Operational Research Group (C.A.O.R.G.) reports compose approximately half the files that make up the series. These reports cover subjects ranging from blast measurements for anti-tank mine clearance to the number and distribution of Japanese paper balloons in North America. There are also two summary reports on Japanese balloon incidents.
The remainder of the textual and graphic records are made up of committee minutes, general Department of Defence documents, and a short paper on Canada’s part in the development of the radio proximity fuse, which McKay contributed to as assistant to project leader Professor Arnold Pitt.

Also included in this series are the remains of a Japanese paper balloon. Paper balloons, also known as balloon bombs, were a by-product of an atmospheric experiment by Axis scientists, which discovered a powerful air current traveling across the Pacific at about 30,000 feet [1]. Taking advantage of this knowledge, the Japanese military developed what may well have been the first intercontinental weapon in the form of explosive devices attached to paper balloons. These balloons were released in Japan and carried along the Pacific by a jet stream, ultimately finding their way to North America’s West Coast. Although the Japanese are thought to have released as many as 9,000 paper balloons, only 1,000 or so are thought to have reached North America, resulting in a total of six casualties [2].

NOTES

  1. Johnna Rizzo, “Japan’s secret WWII weapon: Balloon bombs,” National Geographic, 27 May 2013.
  2. Ibid.

Education

Series documents McKay’s time as a university student. The physics and chemistry workbook
belongs to his undergraduate years as do the correspondence and clippings regarding his scholarships. Max Planck’s Treatise on Thermodynamics was gifted to McKay when the British Association for the Advancement of Science awarded him a bronze medal. Although the academic hood does not have a date, McKay most likely received it upon earning his Doctorate in 1934.

Marie Peterkin fonds

  • UTA 1642
  • Fonds
  • 1918-1919

One University of Toronto pin and two Pi Beta Phi pin as well as a photo album documenting University College graduate, Marie Peterkin (B.A. 1919). Snapshots in album show Ms Peterkin with classmates on campus, at a convention and working at the Government Experimental Farm in Vineland Ontario.

Peterkin, Marie

Peterkin Williamson Family fonds

  • UTA 1661
  • Fonds
  • 1906-1951

Fonds consists of 2 accessions

B2013-0020: 1910-1918: Documents, photographs and artifacts document three generations of the Peterkin - Williamson family. Most of the items relate to Marie Peterkin (B.A. 1919) including a photo album with family photos, photos of fellow students, house parties in Bala and the Toronto Island, convocation,, fellow female workers on break at the munitions factory during World War I. There are also a few items for Ruby Peterkin, aunt to Marie Peterkin, who served in Salinika as nurse in the No. 4 Canadian General Hospital. There are a few photos including two from Salonika as well as an engraved letter opener from her time overseas. Marie Peterkin married John Williamson (B.A. 1910) and their daughter is the donor of this accession Mary Williamson (B.A. 1955). This accession includes the graduating portrait for each as well as two UT letters earned by Mary.

B2014-0013: Photo album originally belonged to John D. Williamson (B.A. 1910) and documents various members and activities of the Williamson family members. Photos show campus views of grounds and students ca. 1906 – 1917 as well as a trip to western Canada 1912, and to Temagami 1916 and 1917. There are also two portraits of J.Peter Williamson, son of John D. Williamson.

Peterkin Williamson Family

Frank Wayne Peers fonds

  • UTA 1673
  • Fonds
  • 1932-2016

Personal records of Frank Peers, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Political Science. Records relate to his personal life, education and to his activities as a donor to and alumnus of the University of Toronto and University of Alberta. Included are biographical materials; personal correspondence; photographs; yearbooks; diplomas; his MA and PhD dissertations; and files relating to his donations to the University of Alberta and the Univesity of Toronto.

Peers, Frank

Biographical and personal

This series contains passports, daily agendas (58 volumes) and an address book, as well as files relating to the Banff School of Fine Arts, Professor Peers’ academic life, awards that he received and books that he wrote. Also included are a class photograph of the East Coulee School where Peers taught and was principal from 1939-1942, personal correspondence, photographs of Peers with friends, travel documents and records relating to his 90th birthday and the memorial service held upon his death. The series concludes with a file of records relating to David Rayside, a U of T professor and close friend of Peers.

The “biographical information” file [/003(04)] contains, amongst many other items, several pieces that Professor Peers himself penned between 1980 and 2002 about his family and background and his years as a high school teacher. Included with this is a CD from one of his nieces, Bev Swanton, titled “Acadia Valley Homecoming 2012”, that celebrates the hamlet, the surrounding farms (including that of the Peers family) and includes the centennial parade.

Education

This series contains Professor Peers’ yearbooks, diplomas, dissertations for his MA and PhD as well as other records relating to his education.

University of Toronto

This series contains records relating to Professor Peers’ activities as a professor and professor emeritus, as an alumnus, and as a very generous donor to the University of Toronto and also to Queen’s University. Included is general information about his retirement, correspondence and related material regarding the Department of Political Science. There are also extensive files of correspondence, donor agreements, endowment reports, and other material regarding scholarships and fellowships that he funded in the Department of Political Science and elsewhere, and a file on the purchase of and later transfer to the University of Toronto of his condominium at 190 St. George St.

Advocacy

Throughout his teaching career at the University of Toronto, Prof. Rayside has been an advocate on gay, lesbian and feminist issues. His university advocacy activities are numerous. Between 1985 and 1987, he served on the Ad Hoc Committee on the Status of Women, University of Toronto. Prof. Rayside was also a Member of the Sexual Harassment Hearing Panel, University of Toronto, 1988-1992. In this capacity, he heard the first case under the new Sexual Harassment Policy, Torfason vs. Hummel. He was a founding member and coordinator of the Committee on Homophobia from 1989-1991 and remained a member until 1994. In addition, between 1989 and 1994, Prof. Rayside was a member of the Men’s Forum. He also served on the Teach-In Committee and was responsible for organising a university-wide teach-in on sexism and violence against women in 1990. Prof. Rayside also participated on the Ad hoc crisis team to handle the case of a U. of T. residence student with AIDS, 1991-1992, and helped prepare a discussion of report on university AIDS policy. He also assisted in the organisation of the “Queer Sites: Studies in Lesbian and Gay Culture” Conference in 1993.

Records in this series document Prof. Rayside’s advocacy activities and leadership on equity issues relating to gender and sexual orientation. Types of records include: correspondence, reports, briefs, notes, meeting minutes, programmes, and conference posters.

Committees documented in B1998-0029 are: Ad Hoc Committee on the Status of Women; Ad hoc crisis team to handle the case of a U. of T. residence student with AIDS; Men’s Forum, Queer Sites Conference Organising Committee; Sexual Harassment Hearing Panel; and Teach-In Committee.

Groups or committees documented in B2008-0023 include: Committee on Homophobia, Men’s Forum, Positive Space Campaign, Lesbian and Gay Academic Society, Toronto Centre for Gay and Lesbian Studies, Working Group on Policy Issues (response to homelessness) and the Equity Committee for the Canadian Federation of Humanities and Social Sciences. Other files generally document Rayside’s involvement on issues of pay equity, diversity, human rights as well a gay and lesbian rights. There are two files that document the Bent on Change conferences in 2000 and 2002 of which Rayside was a key organizer. Finally, filed separately because of restrictions are two files documenting Rayside’s legal challenges against councillor Betty Disero over election funding.

Groups or committees documented in B2013-0015 include the Bill 7 Coalition, The Body Politic, Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, Canadian Union of Public Employees, Community Research Initiative of Toronto, Free the Press Foundation, Committee on Homophobia, Positive Space Campaign, Right to Privacy Committee, and the Toronto Gay Community Council. There are also select files related to court cases and affidavits Prof. Rayside was involved in, or wrote, and files related to activism carried out within the University of Toronto, as well as his work related to gender issues, including the Hummel case. Files are arranged alphabetically by name of the group, organization, or person they pertain to, and in rare cases, the name of the issue they concern, if no group, organization, or person name is available. This series also contains one file of photographs and one file of artifacts.

Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer. Office of the Camp Wardens fonds

  • UTA 1706
  • Fonds
  • 1919-2014

The fonds originated in Haultain’s office in the Department of Mining Engineering at the University of Toronto, in his capacity as one of the Ritual’s proponents and as a key player in its creation. Although he did not attend any obligation ceremony except his own, Haultain served in numerous official capacities: as Secretary of the Seven Wardens (1930-1939); and as a Warden of Camp One (1926-1961), for which he was also the first chairman. He was also co-opted as a Corporate Warden (1939-1961). It is difficult to draw too fine a distinction between the records of the Kipling Ritual as a whole and those pertinent to Camp One as a subsidiary body of the Corporation of the Seven Wardens. In effect, the documents of the fonds are Haultain’s records of the Ritual first and then gradually emerge as the records for Camp One.

The research value of the records is significant regarding the origin of the Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer and the social interaction between the major figures responsible for its implementation and enfranchisement in Canada. The fonds includes substantial documentation about Haultain, Kipling, Fairbairn, Ross, and most of the major figures in the EIC. Also the records offer a fairly comprehensive portrait of the interactions between mining and engineering professionals between 1920 and 1950. The material is primarily of historical value and spans the creation of the Ritual, the development of the Camps and the efforts of the Wardens to control the text and dissemination of the Ritual. The material after the 1950s concerns mainly the day to day administration of the Ritual, the ordering of rings and the preparation of ceremonies in the Camps.

Most of the routine administrative documentation has been arranged in the first four series of the fonds, all of which also include some correspondence. Series 1 contains legal documents pertaining to the copyright and incorporation of the Ritual and the Wardens; Series 2 is for documents related to the drafting of the Book of Authority; Series 3 includes extensive meeting minutes for the Camp Wardens and for the Corporate Wardens; and Series 4 includes detailed financial reports and accounts. The correspondence in Series 5 includes a large number of copies and often conveys both outgoing and incoming mail. Series 6 contains primarily informal lists, ceremonial documents and various forms or texts used in actual ceremonies. Series 7 and 9 include documents that are primarily external to the main operations of Camp One, such as collected publications concerning the Ritual and correspondence with other camps. Series 8 contains the documentary record of the various attempts at historicizing the Kipling Ritual undertaken by the Camp and Corporate Wardens for the information of the obligated engineering community (see Note on arrangement).

Records after 1950 tend to be more related to the activities of Camp One than to the intricacies of the Corporation of Seven Wardens. Newer accessions are also less delineated than those of the first accession B1982-0023. Generally, most files created after 1965 will be found in Series 5. These more recent files often include minutes and other material rightfully belonging to other series, which, however, have been arranged in Series 5 to preserve the original chronological file order of the Camp One records and because there are typically many fewer records in these later accessions. The exception to this trend is in Accession B2009-0029, which includes comprehensive meeting minutes arranged as part of Series 3.

The fonds does not include the original Kipling letters, which were returned to the Kipling estate in 1960 at the request of Kipling’s daughter Elise Bambridge (1896-1976). The letters were added to the Wimpole Archive, which was deposited with the University of Sussex Library in 1978 on behalf of the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty (UK). The ancient landmarks are kept by the individual universities affiliated with Camp One, as are the official obligation lists. The Book of Authority for Camp One is in Series 2. All of the ancient landmarks have historical origins. The original anvil for Camp One was donated by Fairbairn, but was lost in a fire in the Sandford Fleming Building at the University of Toronto in 1977. The current anvil used at the ceremonies at the University of Toronto has a cutting attached taken from the hatch coverfrom the sunken Ocean Ranger drilling platform. The 1935 ‘Peter Wright’ anvil used at the Ryerson University ceremonies have a sheared rivel attached taken from the failed Pont de Quebec. At the University of Ontario Institute of Technology the landmarks are a five-decades anvil from Windfields Farm and a chain from the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station.

Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer. Office of the Camp Wardens

Correspondence

The correspondence series follows three distinct ordering systems. Those files that were separated as Haultain’s personal correspondence are placed at the front of the series (Box 006) and arranged in chronological order. The “personal” designation appears to have been imposed on the records by the rearrangement of Edith Birkett (see Series 8). Also included in this series are some miscellaneous Haultain correspondence files on a variety of topics, including the Ritual, and some personal correspondence that was filed with the Ritual records.

Boxes 007 through 009 are arranged chronologically and include correspondence between the Wardens and the Camps, some committee correspondence and general Kipling Ritual correspondence. The alphabetical arrangement appears to have been mostly applied following Birkett’s arrangement of the Kipling Ritual files and includes significant correspondence with Camp and Corporate Secretaries and Wardens including Norman Parkinson, Louis Trudel, Robert Marshall and Thomas Hogg. These letters are arranged alphabetically (Boxes 009 through 012).

In later accessions the records are mostly arranged in chronological order and are interspersed with various attachments such as receipts and meeting minutes. Largely these records contain the details of the activity of the office of the Camp One Secretary. For correspondence with the other Camp secretaries see also Series 7. Files (07) and (09) in B1982-0023/006 include early examples of the hand-hammered iron rings.

Expansion of the ritual

The series contains primarily correspondence with Camps Two through Nine, much of it dealing with the matter of verifying candidate credentials from different jurisdictions. There is also some correspondence of a social nature related to the establishment of authorities and Camp Wardens in new jurisdictions. The system of record keeping by Camp appears to have stopped in 1954, after which correspondence pertaining to the Camps may be found in the individual correspondence files in series 5. Arrangement is by Camp number, followed by the records pertaining to discussions of expanding the Ritual to the United Kingdom, India and the United States.

Camp Ten records pertain to a proposed camp in Ottawa, which was never established. Camp Ten, when it was established, became the camp for the Université Laval in Québec City in 1956. Camp Twelve was established by Carleton University in Ottawa in 1958. The B1995-0040 accession includes one file of material, from 1978-1987, related to the expansion of the “Links” programme of the Order of the Engineer organization, based in the United States. The records for Camp Five contain an example of an early iron ring.

Joyce Katharine Rous fonds

  • UTA 1728
  • Fonds
  • 1949-1950

Correspondence, clippings and memorabilia relating to the social activities of Rous while in 4th year general course in Arts at Trinity College.

Rous, Joyce Katharine

Edith Kathleen Russell fonds

  • UTA 1735
  • Fonds
  • ca. 1886-1964

Fonds consists of 3 accessions
-B1984-0041: Papers of E. Kathleen Russell, former head of the School of Nursing, including correspondence, press clippings and publications, as well as files relating to the Florence Nightingale International Fund (2 boxes, ca. 1886-1960)
-B1987-0058: Correspondence, articles, lecture notes, addresses, photographs and certificates documenting Russell's career in nursing education (3 boxes, 1903-1964)
-B1989-0034: Medals and pin (1 box, 1933-1949)

Russell, Edith Kathleen

Frederick Raymond Scandrett fonds

  • UTA 1746
  • Fonds
  • 1911-1985

Certificates, engineering drawings, memorabilia and photographs reflecting Fred Scandrett's undergraduate years and career in civil engineering as well as his interest in rugby football and in the University of Toronto Rifle Association.

Scandrett, Frederick Raymond

Etta Taube Sherman fonds

  • UTA 1766
  • Fonds
  • 1925-1989; (predominant 1967-1989)

Consists of 2 accessions

B1988-0041: Addresses, correspondence, certificates, medals and photoprints relating to Etta Sherman's work with the the Women's Auxiliary of the Alpha Omega Fraternity and Canadian Friends of the Hebrew University.

B1989-0005: Correspondence, programmes, invitations and newsletters relating to the Alpha Omega Fraternity and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Sherman, Etta Taube

John Albert Sherman fonds

  • UTA 1767
  • Fonds
  • 1915-1984

Fonds consists of 3 accessions:

B1984-0031: Material on inventions of dental equipment; the International College of Dentists and the American College of Dentists; awards, certificates, and honours; etc. Note that official records of Alpha Omega are at Canadian Jewish Congress Archives in Toronto. (10 boxes, 1917-1981)

B1985-0003: Biographical material, correspondence, diaries, photographs and other records documenting John and Etta Sherman's activities with regards to the University of Toronto, professional dentistry associations and Jewish organizations in Canada and Israel. (9 boxes, 1915-1984)

B1986-0005: Correspondence and photograph concerning the awarding of the achievement medal of the Alpha Omega Fraternity to Albert Einstein; correspondence and publication regarding Einstein's efforts on behalf of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. (1 box, 1950-1954, 1979)

Sherman, John Albert

Sir Charles Scott Sherrington fonds

  • UTA 1769
  • Fonds
  • [1903]

Academic hood used by Sir Charles Scott Sherrington on receiving an honorary doctorate (LLD) from the University of Toronto in 1903. Inside label reads "Sherrington".

Sherrington, Charles Scott, Sir

Harold Gordon Skilling fonds

  • UTA 1778
  • Fonds
  • 1828-2001

Personal records of Gordon Skilling, Professor of Political Science and a specialist in East European (especially Czechoslovak) studies. Fonds consists of 18 accessions:

B1983-0013: Records of conferences and meetings attended; drafts of and correspondence regarding articles written; correspondence relating to the writing of "Communism, National and International" and "Governments of Communist East Europe"; personal files (1961-1979) and correspondence (1974-1983); lecture notes as visiting professor, Columbia University, 1952 (9 boxes, 1952-1983).

B1984-0044: Lecture notes on international politics and international organization, University of Wisconsin and Dartmouth College (1941-1959); files for courses on Soviet politics at Dartmouth College and the University of Toronto; lecture notes for courses on Eastern Europe and comparative communism at the University of Toronto; lecture notes by Hazard at Columbia University (1949-1950). (20 boxes, 1941-1984).

B1985-0029: Addresses, radio scripts, correspondence, lecture notes; files on the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe (1980-1981); files relating to the publication of "Interest Groups in Soviet Politics" (1971). (6 boxes, 1937-1982).

B1987-0064: Correspondence, articles, reports, and related material on East European studies at the University of Toronto and elsewhere, including a study of the U.S. Helsinki Watch project prepared by the Ford Foundation (4 boxes, 1977-1986)

B1987-0083: Addresses; correspondence with students, 1970-1986, and on the Chair of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Toronto, 1980; course outlines in political science, 1960-1980 (2 boxes, 1958-1986).

B1988-0007: Records documenting Skilling's expertise relating to East European studies with particular emphasis on Czechoslovakia and his role in the the Centre for Russian and East European Studies. Contains addresses and speeches; manuscripts and publications including related correspondence and reviews (books included are "Czechoslovakia's Interruped Revolution", "Charter 77 and Human Rights in Czechoslovakia", and "The Czech Renaissance in the Nineteenth Century"); lecture notes; subject files, mainly of associations; sound recording, video and photographs; University of Toronto administrative files including the Centre for Russian and East European Studies, the Department of Polical Economy, Committee on International Studies as well as the Centre for International Studies (3 boxes, 1945-1986)

B1989-0030: Addresses, articles, correspondence, minutes of meetings and financial files documenting Gordon Skilling's activities as a specialist in East European studies, with particular emphasis on Czechoslovakia (4 boxes, 1965-1989).

B1989-0045: Bibliography on communism in Czechoslovakia and the history of the Czech Communist Party, 1918-1958; files pertaining to Gordon Skilling's publications, "Charter 77 Documents", "Socialist Opposition in Czechoslovakia" (proposed), and "Samidzat and Independent Society in Central and Eastern Europe" (1988), including correspondence with Jan Kavan (5 boxes, ca. 1958-1988).

B1991-0037: Manuscripts, correspondence, addresses, lectures, conference files, subject files, greeting cards and index cards documenting Gordon Skilling's teaching and research interests in East European affairs, with particular reference to events in Czechoslovakia (6 boxes, 1949-1991).

B1993-0028: Diaries, notebooks, personal and research correspondence, manuscripts, articles, press clippings and photoprints relating to Dr. Skillings trips to Eastern Europe, his personal life and his research and writings. Included is research material for: "Samizdat and Independent Society in Central and Eastern Europe" (20 boxes, 1934-1988).

B1994-0011: Correspondence, addresses, lecture notes, minutes of meetings, memoranda, reports, manuscripts, publications, notes and press clippings documenting Professor Skilling's interest in Eastern Europe, particularly Czechoslovakia, and his association with the Commission on Security and Co-operation in Europe and the Royal Society of Canada. Also includes consultant files, foreign language clippings and collected papers on Czechoslovak history and politics (7 boxes, 1927-1993).

B1999-0017: Personal records of Gordon Skilling, relating primarily to the Czech Republic, including professional and private correspondence with colleagues and friends, including Vilem Precan (1969-1996); drafts of his "Memoirs of a Canadian" and articles, with covering correspondence; addresses; conference papers, photographs (13 boxes, 1969-1997).

B2000-0027: Personal records of H.G. Skilling, relating primarily to his interest in Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic. Includes early correspondence with his wife Sally, correspondence with friends and associates in Czechoslovakia, grant applications, itineraries, subject files relating to human rights groups, publishers and the medal that he received from the Royal Society. The records also include a printout of Skilling's autobiography entitled "The Education of a Canadian: My Life as a Scholar and Activist" (5 boxes, 1936-1999).

B2001-0017: Records documenting the history of the family of Harold Gordon Skilling, including his wife, Sara (Sally) and his own life and career. Sous-fonds I: Skilling family. Documents Gordon's father, William Watt, his uncle, Ernest (a Shriner), and his brothers Donald and William, who fought in World War I (Donald was killed in action). Sous-fonds II: Sara (Sally) Bright Skilling. Her education in the United States, her travels with Gordon in eastern Europe in the 1960s and her skill in entertaining. Sous-fonds III: Harold Gordon Skilling. Focuses on his research and writing of books on T. G. Masaryk and Alice Masaryk, on his travels, especially in Eastern Europe, and on the seminars he held in his residence during the last years of his life. These records consist primarily of correpondence (personal and professional, including with Vilem Precan (1993-2000) and Vaclav Havel), diaries, drafts of books and articles, reviews, addresses, index cards, scrap books, and photo albums (64 boxes, 1828-2001).

B2002-0020: Bibliographic references and research notes on index cards, with some accompanying notes, compiled by Professor Gordon Skilling for his book, 'Czecholslovakia's Interrupted Revolution', along with three boxes of other notes and references relating to Samizdat and dissent, Charter '77, Czechoslovak history and Czech-German relations (14 boxes, n.d. - ca. 1985)

B2002-0024: Personal records of H. Gordon Skilling, consisting of: Masaryk medal awarded by the Czechoslovak Association of Canada, 1985; certificate, case and medallion relating to honorary degree awarded by Charles University, Prague, 1990; Komensky medal awarded by Komensky University, Bratislava, 1990; certificate and medal for the Order of the White Lion, Third Class, Czechoslovakia's highest honour for non-citizens, awarded by President Vaclav Havel on Professor Skilling's 80th birthday, 28 February 1992 (3 boxes and 1 folder, 1985-1992).

B2009-0032: Correspondence, research notes, manuscripts etc. of Prof. Gordon Skillling relating to his career as professor of political science. Includes files for Josef Pekar, Czech politics, etc. (1 box, 1985-1987).

B2012-0005: Further personal records of Gordon Skilling, Professor of Political Science and a specialist in East European (especially Czechoslovak) studies, consisting of research notes for and drafts of his doctoral thesis, 'The German-Czech national conflict in Bohemia, 1779-1873', with subsequent revisions; correspondence with scholars in East European studies, publishers, and editors. Also address books, 88th birthday greetings, slides and photographs, and medals. (12 boxes and medals, 1917-1997).

Skilling, H. Gordon (Harold Gordon)

Skilling 2001 accession

Records documenting the history of the family of Harold Gordon Skilling, including his father, William Watt Skilling; his uncle, Ernest John Skilling; his brothers, William John, Andrew Douglas and Edward Donald; and his wife, Sara (Sally) Bright Skilling.

Sous-fonds I: Skilling family. The emphasis is on William Watt, a shoemaker who emigrated from England to Canada in 1907; on Ernest, who was a very active member of the Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine; on Donald, who was killed in action during World War I, and on his brother, William, who was wounded but survived.

Sous-fonds II: Sara (Sally) Bright Skilling. The records focus on Sally’s education in the United States, her travels with Gordon in Eastern Europe in the 1960s, and on her love of entertaining. They document the crucial support, intellectual and otherwise, that she provided to Gordon as he pursued his career.

Sous-fonds III: Harold Gordon Skilling. The documentation here is primarily on Gordon’s education and early career and his later years as an expert on Russian and East European politics and on Czechoslovakia, in particular. An extensive combination of correspondence, journals, lectures, writings and photographs reveal much about Skilling’s ideas and his relationships with the principal figures in recent Czech history.

Skilling family sous-fonds

This sous-fonds documents the activities of various members of the Skilling family, principally Gordon’s father, William Watt Skilling, and brothers, Andrew Douglas and Edward Donald Skilling; his uncle, Ernest John Skilling, and his (Ernest’s) mother, Emma Louise Skilling. Included is correspondence, biographical and other notes, programmes for wedding anniversaries, obituaries, a will, photographs, a photograph album, and a box of mementos of military service during World War I.

The photo album was assembled by Ernest John Skilling and begins with a trip he made to the western United States in 1926 to a Shriner’s convention. The trip back across Canada by train includes images of ‘Hindus [in] British Columbia’, of the Royal North West Mounted Police, Indian chiefs in regalia, the Rocky Mountains, the prairies, northern Ontario and Lake Superior. The album concludes with photos taken during a tour of Kentucky and Alabama and Tennessee by the 48th Highlanders; photos of the Canadian Expeditionary Force cemetery in France and Donald Skilling’s grave, taken on a family visit to the site in 1919; and of ‘natives in Africa’, showing domestic and hunting activities associated with the missionary work of Reverend Albert Wilkinson. Many of the photoprints in the album have detailed information written on the backs thereof.

The box of military service mementos belonged to Gordon’s brother, Private Edward Donald Skilling, #157689, 1st Battalion, Canadian Infantry, Canadian Expeditionary Force, who was killed on his first day in action at the front on 4 May, 1917. It contains the following items: a Queen’s Own Rifles pin (Donald spent 6 months with the QOR before the war as a bugler in its bugle band); his ‘dog tag’ (1st Battalion); a shoulder badge – ‘Canada’ [CEF]; two hat badges, one marked ‘Canada’ and the other ‘111, Canada’ [111th Battalion] (probably a souvenir); two brass buttons (tunic and cuff); a piece of soldier’s ration; a hollow candle of the type used in dugouts in the trenches; a .303 calibre bullet and a shell fragment; two medals – the British War Medal and the Victory Medal (Inter-Allied War Medal), each inscribed on the rim: ‘157689 Pte. E. D. Skilling 1-Can. Inf.’, and a silver cross presented to Donald’s parents in his memory by the Minister of Militia and Defence.

Harold Gordon Skilling sous-fonds

This sous-fonds documents the life and career of Gordon Skilling, especially his family, his formative years as a student, and his later years as an internationally recognized expert on Russia, Eastern Europe and, especially, Czechoslovakia. Researchers seeking to fill the obvious gaps in this accession should refer to the earlier accessions in the Skilling fonds in the University Archives that were donated by Professor Skilling over a period of almost two decades, beginning in 1983.

Education

This series covers the Gordon Skilling’s formal education from his attendance at Grace Street Public School through Harbord Collegiate, the University of Toronto (BA 1934), taking his Rhodes Scholarship at the University of Oxford, and the writing of his doctoral thesis at the University of London. The files are arranged chronologically by degree.

For Grace Street Public School, the files include letters from his classmates at Grace Street Public School and certificates. At Harbord Collegiate, in addition to his studies and piano lessons from the Toronto Conservatory of Music, Skilling was very active in extra-curricular activities: he was president of the Literary Society, editor of the Harbord Review, battalion commander of the cadet corps, and played defence on the basketball team which won the city high school championship in 1928-1929. These activities are documented in the form of term papers, examinations, speeches, scholarship essays, and a scrapbook [box 011] that covers his activities at Harbord Collegiate and the University of Toronto, and documents his trip across North America in the summer of 1933 (see also Series I in this sous-fonds). The scrapbook contains correspondence, dance cards, maps, press clippings, programmes, announcements of student activities, pamphlets, and photographs.

At the University of Toronto, Skilling studied British and colonial history and some modern Canadian and American history, standing first in his class in all but his final year. He was very active in campus politics, including the University College Literary and Athletic Society (of which he was elected president), the Students’ Administrative Council. He helped reorganize the Fabius Club in the autumn of 1932 and a year later, following his momentous trip across North America, was a founder of the CCF Club. Other activities included serving as associate editor of the Varsity and as a member of the Hart House Debates Committee.

His academic activities are well documented in the form of term papers for each of his undergraduate years and in his BA thesis. These files and those on the CCF Club and the Hart House debates are of particular interest. They document his movement from an apolitical period in high school to an activist in the social and political ferment of the time and, soon, to accepting the socialist philosophies promoted by many of his professors at the U of T and, later, at Oxford.

In December 1933 Gordon was informed that he had been awarded a Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford University. He left for Christ Church, Oxford, in September of 1934, where he remained until 1936. While there, he studied under what he described as “outstanding dons, including Michael Foster and A. J. Ayers, in philosophy; Roy Harrod, in economics; Keith Feiling, in British history; and the Hon. Frank Pakenham in politics and international relations. He also, in the summer of 1935, visited Central Europe for the first time and in the autumn met Sally Bright, then a student at the London School of Economics. In the fall of 1936, having received a high second at Oxford, and having had his scholarship extended, Gordon went to London to complete his doctorate under R. W. Seton-Watson, under whom his growing interest in Czech culture and politics flourished, as did his relationship with Sally. At Easter in 1936 he and Sally spent five weeks in Chepstow in Monmouthshire, a time that is preserved in an album that he compiled (see Series XII, Appendix III). In 1940 Gordon successfully defended his thesis, ‘The German-Czech national conflict in Bohemia, 1879-1893’.

The files on his graduate work contain detailed notes on readings and tutorials, especially on political theory, social philosophy and social psychology. There are also exam questions for his courses at Oxford, correspondence relating to the degrees of BA and MA (Oxon.), and a copy of his doctoral dissertation. Accompanying these files is
a scrapbook, containing press clippings, programmes, photographs and memorabilia covering his years at Oxford and the University of London, with additional material for his visit to London in 1948 [see /012].

Skilling’s diploma from Harbord Collegiate is filed in /003(03).

Photographs relating to his basketball team at Harbord Collegiate have been removed from box 008 (08) to box 009P (01) – (03). Loose photographs relating to his activities at the University of Toronto have been removed from the Harbord Collegiate/ University of Toronto scrapbook [box 011] to box 009P(04) – (07).

Skilling’s University College ‘letter’ [badge] is filed as B2001-0017/008(26).

Skilling 2nd 2002 accession

Personal records of H. Gordon Skilling, consisting of: Masaryk medal awarded by the Czechoslovak Association of Canada, 1985; certificate, case and medallion relating to honorary degree awarded by Charles University, Prague, 1990; Komensky medal awarded by Komensky University, Bratislava, 1990; certificate and medal for the Order of the White Lion, Third Class, Czechoslovakia's highest honour for non-citizens, awarded by President Vaclav Havel on Professor Skilling's 80th birthday, 28 February 1992.

Skilling 2012 accession

The material consists of the personal records of Professor Skilling and focuses primarily of Skilling’s academic work, and includes research notes and drafts of his doctoral thesis, The German-Czech National Conflict in Bohemia, 1779-1873, as well as notes and drafts supporting the revision of this thesis, which Skilling worked on for several years. There is also some correspondence with other scholars in the field of Eastern European studies, as well as publishers and editors.

The accession also contains some of Professor Skilling’s personal belongings and awards, such as medals, honorary degrees, and photographs and slides of his personal and professional life.

Awards and recognition

This series consists of awards, diplomas, certificates, honorary degrees, and medals awarded to Professor Skilling throughout his career—many of which are from the Czech Republic. In May 2012, several items were loaned for an exhibition in Prague (and have been returned).

All items in box /007 are oversize materials and were tightly curled. They are now stored in individual folders within a flat document box.

The medals remain in their original cases and have been indicated below. The boxes have not been numbered individually, however they should be identifiable based on the descriptions below. All medals and other artifacts are boxed together.

When appropriate, the original Czech text has been listed along with approximate English translations in square brackets.

Omond McKillop Solandt fonds

  • UTA 1791
  • Fonds
  • 1915-1994

When Dr. Solandt started donating his personal records to the University of Toronto Archives in 1988, beginning with his certificates and diplomas, the richness, diversity, and volume of the material still to come was only hinted at. Over the next five years further donations were made, punctuated by telephone conversations about the need for still more boxes and folders and archival methods of arrangement and description. Dr. Solandt was very interested in our professional approach to managing his records and was determined (as always, I was to discover) to do things in the proper manner. Twenty years after his death his widow, Vaire, donated the last of his personal records; they had been partially arranged by Dr. Solandt and stored above the garage at the Wolfe Den.

Dr. Solandt’s running commentary on his past life, as the boxes piled up for transfer to the Archives, proved of considerable assistance. I faced a huge volume of records documenting wide-ranging, complex, and often inter-related events, which he had divided into categories roughly equivalent to his numerous activities. These were to form the basis of most of the forty-six series in this inventory. In addition, beginning several years before, he had undertaken to do what few individuals have ever had the time or the inclination to attempt – an overview of each principal activity. There are more than twenty of these, totalling several hundred pages. Each demonstrates the clarity of thought and an understanding of the essentials of any problem facing him that characterized his work and enabled him often to juggle several divergent projects at once. They proved invaluable as I sought to make sense of the mountain of material in front of me, and should be equally useful to researchers.

The records, dating from 1915 to 1994, encompass most of the media one might expect to find in an archives, the bulk being textual records, graphic material (primarily photographs and slides), maps and plans, and publications. The material pertaining to his personal life consists primarily of biographical files (including press coverage), correspondence and diaries, files on his travels and, especially, on his canoe trips as part of the “Voyageurs” group.

Most of the records, not surprisingly, document his extraordinarily active and productive professional life, from the beginning of World War II to the end of the 1980s. The earlier portions of his career, especially his years with the Defence Research Board, Canadian National Railways, de Havilland, and the Electric Reduction Company are not well represented here as the records are largely found elsewhere. The volume of records begin to pick up in the mid-1960s and the greatest strength is to be found in those generated from the early 1970s on, when Dr. Solandt’s activities became complex indeed, with directorships in many companies, many consultancies, trusteeships and advisory committees. Three activities which seemed to please him most were ...the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Legislative Assembly of the Northwest Territories [1976-1982]..consultancies for international agricultural and medical research [1975-1988]...and Senior Consultant to the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Toronto, enabling him to retain a close association with the University.

This finding aid for this fonds is arranged by series, with the accessions clearly designated. In the series that are grouped by activity, the arrangement, once career changes are identified, is largely chronological. The principal concentration of activity in any project is the determining factor in the order. Organizations that predominate in one series may be represented in another, particularly those dealing with international agricultural and medical research, such as the umbrella Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research. Most accessions have more than one series.

Dr. Solandt’s abiding interest in scientific research and development is a recurring theme throughout and was instrumental, for instance, to his agreeing to chair the newly established Science Council of Canada (1966) and in joining the IMASCO/CDC Research Foundation (1978). Similarly, it was his acknowledged excellence as a manager that, in later years, brought him into contact with the international research agencies that needed professional advice on internal structural problems. On another level, the canoe trips he began at the age of 41 nurtured an interest in wilderness conservation and, subsequently, involvement with the Quetico Foundation and the Wilderness Research Foundation. One factor linking all these activities was Dr. Solandt’s inter-disciplinary approach to ideas and problem solving; it is a recurring theme in his correspondence and in his introductions to the series.

Solandt, O. M.

Biographical and personal files

This series is divided into two sections. The first contains biographical sketches and curriculum vitae, press clippings and articles about Dr. Solandt, along with photocopies of his birth certificate and copies of his will and that of his first wife, Elizabeth. There is correspondence with Elizabeth regarding their marriage, with relatives and friends, and relating to appointments. Also present is a cash book detailing personal expenses between 1923 and 1946, a diary of Dr. Solandt’s first trip to Europe in 1929.

The first portion of this series concludes with the programme for the Solandt Symposium on Organizing and Managing the Practical Application of Science to Problems in Peace and War (Queen’s University at Kingston, 1994), programs for dinners of the Royal Canadian Engineers 3rd Field Engineer Regiment and the Royal Canadian Signals 11th Signal Regiment, a presentation copy of Donald Y. Solandt’s Highways to Health, and a resolution by Donald M. Solandt (Omond and Donald’s father) to the Presbyterian Synod of Manitoba in 1915.

The second section of this series consists of diaries and daybooks (largely the latter), beginning with an account of Dr. Solandt’s trip to Europe in the summer of 1929 while he was an undergraduate at the University of Toronto. Dr. Solandt kept only the occasional diary, of which three are represented in this series. The first is for May, 1945 as the war ended in Europe. The last two both cover his trip to Japan in October-December, 1945 to study the effects of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. These diaries are followed by "CDRB's U.K. Visit" (undated); an account book of Solandt's visit to the United Kingdom in November, 1966, and his American address book.

The remainder of the volumes in this series are daybooks and “pocket diaries”, of which Dr. Solandt created a large number. In the former, usually with the manufacturer’s label of as “diary” or “date book”, he recorded his appointments and, occasionally, his expenses and other related notations. These date from 1941, when he first went to Lulworth, to 1988. The volumes for 1945, 1947,1948, 1957, 1958, 1979, and 1986 are absent, either because they were never kept or, perhaps, were not written up in the same manner. For 1945, for instance, there are entries for January, June, and July in two different volumes, but none for the whole year. For two years (1956; 1971, where the second volume has "Mayo Muir" below Dr. Solandt's name and the entries are not in his hand) there are two volumes.

The "pocket diaries" complement the appointment books. The earliest year represented is 1945, the latest, 1988. There are no volumes for 1948-1951, 1953, 1957, and 1959-1965. For 1958, there are also two volumes containing notes on Dr. Solandt's European trip in March and appointments for another in July, and "at a glance" volumes both for 1958 and 1959.

For accounts of travel experiences, either for pleasure or work, see Series 11: Canoe trips and Series 13: Travel.

Canoe trips

Dr. Solandt was introduced to canoes at an early age but did not take up the sport seriously until he was 41. The group that assembled for the first canoe trip into Quetico Park in 1952 formed the core of what subsequently became the

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