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Michael Bliss fonds
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Flavelle biography - Collected material

Flavelle cont’d. Box contains files of collected research material for the Flavelle biography. Records include original correspondence from various bodies, including the Imperial Munitions Board and Canada Life, clippings and addresses given by Flavelle and others. Dates range from approximately 1919 to 1939. Box also includes an appointment book from 1978 of Bliss’.

Bliss, Michael

Personal and professional records of J. W. Michael Bliss, Professor in the Department of History.

Personal records of Michael Bliss, professor of history, consisting of correspondence, consulting and editorial work, manuscripts and publications, lecture notes and associated teaching files, addresses, references; 1,216 slides illustrating a wide variety of subjects in Canadian history; 93 slides illustrating the Montreal smallpox epidemic of 1885; photographs relating to themes in Canadian business and general history.

Michael Bliss fonds

  • UTA 1070
  • Fonds
  • 1881-2006

Fonds consists of 4 accessions

B1986-0032: Personal records of J. W. Michael Bliss, Professor in the Department of History. (9 boxes, 1958-1975)

B1987-0043: Personal records of J. W. Michael Bliss, Professor in the Department of History. (11 boxes, 1962-1982)

B1988-0076: Correspondence regarding and drafts, with comments, of manuscript for J. W. Michael Bliss's book, "Northern Enterprise: five centuries of Canadian Business" published by McClelland and Stewart, 1987. (5 boxes, 1985-1986)

B2006-0015: Personal records of Michael Bliss, professor of history, consisting of correspondence, consulting and editorial work, manuscripts and publications, lecture notes and associated teaching files, addresses, references; 1,216 slides illustrating a wide variety of subjects in Canadian history; 93 slides illustrating the Montreal smallpox epidemic of 1885; photographs relating to themes in Canadian business and general history. (31 boxes, 1881-2005)

Bliss, Michael

Flavelle illustrative material

Flavelle illustrative material: pictures, cartoons, etc. used in A Canadian Millionaire, w. alternatives and discards; assembled from a wide variety of sources, inc. signed photo of Grey of Fallodon.

Book reviews; writing projects; Canadian business history projects

Book reviews: 6 folders of ms of book reviews submitted to a variety of sources, inc. the Globe and Mail, Saturday Night, the Globe and Mail Report on Business, and academic journals; 1 folder regarding my 1976 review of Naylor’s history of Canadian business.

Writing projects: a miscellany of 17 folders regarding articles and projects: letter to Saturday Night re its disgraceful apology for Paul Rose; bio. of George Cox for the Dictionary of Canadian Biography; Dome Petroleum bailout; article on Trudeau for Time; Trudeau article for Granatstein & Cohen vol; various encyclopaedia articles; articles on the Charter and the Constitution, 1981-2; “The Rise of King Street” for Loyal She Remains; articles on Conservative leadership, 1983; bilingualism article, Globe, 1983; the evolution of Canadian industrial policies article for the Economic Council of Canada; article on the founding of the Foreign Investment Review Agency; articles on Canadian topics for a German encyclopaedia

Projects relating to Canadian business history: 20 folders, inc. notes on an overview of the Canadian business mind; speech on business history as a tool of public relations, 1970; draft paper on George Stephen of the CPR; notes on Stephen & Van Horne; notes and photocopies re the Macdonald-Stephen relationship/correspondence; outline of the 1920s chapter for Northern Enterprise; pre-publication talks relating to Northern Enterprise; post-publication talks; exchange with H.V. Nelles re his review of Northern Enterprise; post-publication feedback re Northern Enterprise; corres. with Manulife re Northern Enterprise project; expense statements re NE; notes on the branch plant in Canada; ms of Alan Sullivan’s unpublished bio. of F.H. Clergue; file of notes on John Macdonald, businessman; talks and articles on Canadian business history, early 1980s (2); oral biography of John Bradfield, c.e.o. of Noranda, compiled from interviews by MB; notes on letters of A.E. Kemp; Business History 2005 – MB visit to Joe Martin’s business history seminar at Rotman

Right Honourable Men: The Descent of Canadian Politics from Macdonald to Chrétien: manuscripts and reviews

Manuscripts of Right Honourable Men: The Descent of Canadian Politics from Macdonald to Chrétien [2004]: Two complete manuscripts: (1) the print-outs used in the basic editing of the manuscript – with queries and comments from Phyllis Bruce, my editor, as well as Jack Granatstein & David Bercuson, and my responses; (2) the final copy-edited manuscript, with queries from the copy-editor and my responses.

Reviews of Right Honourable Men: one folder

Slides and pictures

Box 002P: Canadian History Slide collection: 12 double-trays of slides containing 1,216 black-and-white and colour illustrations relating to the widest possible number of subjects in Canadian history. Printed list of the contents. [includes double tray of slides (#501-600) removed from box 012 – note by Harold Averill].

Box 003P: Smallpox slide collection: Two double-trays containing 93 slides of illustrations relating to the Montreal smallpox epidemic of 1885; compiled to illustrate Plague: A Story of Smallpox in Montreal. Printed list of slides. (Some, but not all of these slides were made from prints in the folder in Box 24)

Prints, negatives, relating to themes in Canadian business history – and general history. 3 folders, approx 300 pictures. Most of these were accumulated as possible illustrations for Northern Enterprise: Five Centuries of Canadian Business; most came from collections I had access to as described above. Some of the best of the prints were made into slides, as above; but not all.

William Osler: a life in medicine

William Osler: a life in medicine : two folders, one on negotiations with the publisher (1999-2000) and the other on the book launch, 3 Nov. 1999. [prepared by Harold Averill]

Flavelle biography

Flavelle bio. (A Canadian Millionaire) research material. 24 files of research notes, correspondence, photocopies, working papers etc. Includes researchers’ work on the family and early Peterboro history, the Scott act controversy of the mid-1880s; my interviews on Flavelle; extensive clippings from farm periodicals on the pork packing industry in Canada; files on J.W. Allison and Sam Hughes; the bacon scandal 1917; my notes from family correspondence – the Barrett Papers – which have since gone to Queen’s; various miscellaneous and retrospective notes, letters, etc.

Flavelle originals – 1 folder with 3 original JWF letters and one page of 188_ accounts in JWF handwriting

(This is material remaining after a major culling of my files, that included disposing of large quantities of photocopies made from the Flavelle Papers at Queens and the Imperial Munitions Board papers at the National Archives. What remains is material that could not easily be culled from those collections, indeed often comes from a wide variety of other sources, some of which, such as corporate minutes, may be virtually impossible to track down otherwise)

Flavelle bio and Plague: A Story of Smallpox in Montreal

Flavelle cont’d: 21 files as above, including extensive files on the University of Toronto, Victoria College, Toronto General Hospital, the Methodist and United Churches, JWF’s philanthropies, corporate minutes of Simpson’s, the Bank of Commerce, National Trust; JWF will; JWF published speeches and pamphlets; MB research expenses re JWF project

Reviews of Plague: A Story of Smallpox in Montreal. 1 folder

Manuscript of Plague: The final manuscript, used in copyediting and typesetting, with editorial queries and authorial responses

Illustrations used in Plague. Prints of pictures used in the book, some prints and photocopies of alternatives. See also slide collection.

Lecture notes by subject

120 folders of lecture notes, labelled by topic, but otherwise unsorted – given mostly in Canadian history survey courses (inc. HIS 262) and my course in strategies of Canadian economic development, HIS 361 – various years from the early 1970s into the late 1980s.

Lecture notes, course material, Harvard folders

30 folders of lecture notes by subject, as above

1 folder of 1987 lectures in a course in the history of Canadian business

18 folders of miscellaneous course material, including lectures, course syllabi, lectures on business history, exams and essay topics

2 Harvard folders: re Social Sciences 12 course in Canadian Studies at Harvard, 1967-68; Bibliography compiled by MB for Claude Bissell at Harvard

Canadian health care and Canadian politics seminars; PhD field readings; course evaluations; research notes relating to the history of Noble-Collip drum (re shock in mice)

16 folders of course material relating to my Canadian health care and Canadian politics seminars, 1990s-2005, including syllabi, presentation topics, etc.

1 folder related to Ph.D. field readings

2 folders of course evaluations (anti-calendars, etc)

Noble-Collip drum (re shock in mice) – research notes relating to its history

John P. Robarts biography

John P. Robarts biography; MB correspondence relating to the rewriting of the manuscript to make it suitable for publication in the Ontario Historical Studies Series, 1986; two copies of the manuscript – the original by Alan McDougall, and MB’s revised manuscript

Conservatives and the Constitution and Meech Lake to Carlottetown

Conservatives and the Constitution: 6 folders relating to a confidential project commissioned by Joe Clark to prepare a history of the Progressive-Conservative Party’s role in constitutional reform, 1980-81. The folders contain MB’s interviews with various Conservative front and back-benchers, including Joe Clark, John Crosbie, Jake Epp, and many others; also extensive party documents and memos, many private and confidential, relating to the constitution (most, but not all of these copied from the files of Rick Clippingdale, who had served as Clark's principal secretary)

Meech Lake to Charlottetown: 5 folders of various documents relating to the debates about constitutional reform, 1987-1992, including correspondence and documentation of MB activities, Deborah Coyne ms history of the struggle, various clippings, etc., crank letters to MB

Various consulting projects

10 folders relating to a miscellany of consulting projects, boards, etc: Bill Kaplan’s CCPRM; Historica; Gairdner Fdn; Canadian Museum of the History of Medicine; Founders Hall, Charlottetown, PEI; PEI History Project, Ed Macdonald; Bank of Canada; Beaver editorial advisory board; Simon Fraser University, CD-ROM project re Prime Ministers; oral history of academic medicine/interview; deliberations of the jury to choose the design for the Canadian Museum of Human Rights

"Chasing Rainbows" and Medical Research Council of Canada consulting projects

“Chasing Rainbows”, CBC Series, 1986 – : Folder of appraisals by MB, various scripts in various stages of development, with notes, comments, etc. by MB

Medical Research Council of Canada, consulting projects, 1992-2000: 8 folders relating to several projects engaging JMB, including the development of the MRC’s first strategic plan, 1992-3, and the meetings about revising the plan which led to the decision to create the Canadian Institutes of Health Research

MB student essays and reports; study of pre-Freudian sexuality; addresses, projects; Adjudication of Fisher Fellowship, Massey College

-MB student essays and reports, 1960-66 – 10 folders, inc. Methodist Church & WW I, undergrad. essays on Marx & Bakunin, US civil war historiography, reports on Farrer pamphlet, Pacific scandal for DG Creighton’s seminar, essay on John A. Cooper for GR Cook seminar, essay on the Reconstruction Party
-Sex: 8 folders re a study of pre-Freudian sexuality that I became sidetracked in during 1970-1, inc. several drafts of unpublished manuscript
-Addresses, projects: 19 folders relating to talks, activities, etc., including anti-abortion activities, free trade talks, Flavelle, Canada’s future, anti-vivisectionionism
-Adjudication of Fisher Fellowship, Massey College, 1998-9

Various family and personal records

-7 folders relating to royalties from my books and corres. with the Colbert agency
-A printout of invoices and expense statements, 1898-1991
-4 volumes of our family’s financial accounts, 1975-1986
-31 folders of income tax returns and supporting documents for JMB and EB, 1968-1991

Various family and personal records

7 folders of personal correspondence: Skican, 1983; Kingsville Book Party, 1984; Donwood Institute, 1984-5 (2); Leaside Traffic issue, 1991; letters to children, 1983; unsorted family correspondence, 1991-2004 (much of this removed from general corres. files).

Various correspondence

-General Correspondence, Mar 1- July 1, 1987 (this file seems to be out of order)
-Outgoing Correspondence Jan – Mar 1993 (printouts)
-Misc. Correspondence, 1994-6 (mostly fax)
-Correspondence, mostly incoming 1995 – indexed
-Outgoing Correspondence, 1996 (printouts)
-Correspondence, mostly incoming 1996 – numbered and indexed
-Correspondence, mostly incoming 1997 – numbered and indexed

42 folders of correspondence, general and by subject

Correspondence, 1998; Misc Corres 2004-05 (2); History Dept Information 1968; Bliss cv; Bliss Personal; Bliss, re Move, 1995; Bliss Fax 1995; Bliss Book Orders, 1995- ; Nelles corres – exchange with Viv Nelles re our theses 1972; Bliss-Paul Rutherford corres; Office of Research Administration corres, 1980; Canadian Studies, corres. 1984; Royal Society, 1984; Garneau Medal, 1984; Canadians for Clark, organization, 1983; Duke University (possible move to), 1986; Bronfman bio. project, 1987; Plague grant corres 1987; Hannah Inst. Advisory Comm. 1988; Wiegand Lectures, 1990; Trillium Prize jury, 1992-3; Givertz & Purdy (Queen’s graduate students), 1993-4; Bliss Open House (office warming), 1995; Bliss Sabbatical 1996; Prime Ministers tv series, 1996; University of Toronto Press, 1996; AMS-Hannah dismissal of Jim Connor, 1997; Jacquie Duffin, re UofT appointment, 1997; Massey College; Civitas; University of Toronto history project; Medical Biography chair; University Professorship; Bliss Publicity; Dominion Institute; Gooderham history project, 1997; Gooderham & Worts historic site; Trudeau Fellows program; Writers Union; Jean Crowe; Organization for the Study of the National History of Canada; Misc. extra corres. See also: Box 17, corres. re the constitution and Meech Lake

15 folders of correspondence

Note from Bliss: "15 folders of correspondence, 1994-Oct. 1999, files made by Andrea Clark. Mostly outgoing, but when I passed on incoming corres to Andrea, sometimes with notes for disposal, she would keep it in these files."


Note from Bliss: "These files consist of all my incoming and most of my outgoing correspondence for the last 22 years of my career at the University of Toronto. Most of it is filed in rough chronological order, though sometimes there are indexes. I am not consistent about back-to-front or front-to-back filing. Some of my correspondence is filed according to specific subjects. Particularly specialized correspondence, such as student reference letters, is in other series. My filing systems were always fairly ad hoc, and especially in the 1980s everything tended to be thrown into the general correspondence files, as it came in, everything lumped together, including much family material that should be in the files in series 2. Major changes in my system occurred late in 1986 when I first began using a computer for my correspondence, and again in 1995 when I moved to 88 College and had the help of a secretary, Andrea Clark. Generally these files contain material of every kind relating to a busy family, writing, and professional life."

Various correspondence

  • 2 folders of miscellaneous correspondence, mostly incoming, 1986-1995 (completely unsorted – I believe these were letters that I threw into a bin in my office, as opposed to the more regular filing at home in these years)
  • Correspondence Catalogue, Oct. 1988 – Oct. 1993. This is an author/subject list of the next 1446 items of correspondence, which are numbered. The list was made, I believe, by my daughter Laura, who did some secretarial work for me in these years; after 1446 the index seems not to have been compiled.
  • 3 folders of numbered general correspondence, Oct. 1988 – Oct. 1989 (numbers 1 – 228)

(Containing indexes, but folding paper unseparated)

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