- 1939 - 2021 (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
90 textual material folders (0.73m)
1 record sleeve
9 video discs : DVD-R
7 optical discs : CD ; audio
47 optical discs : CD-R ; audio
16 audio discs : 45 rpm ; 7 in. , vinyl
15 audio discs : 33 1/3 rpm ; 12 in. , vinyl
1 metal card
1 optical disc : CD-R ; data
Name of creator
Jerry G. Gray was born in Toronto in 1933. He graduated in Dentistry from the University of Toronto. In 1953, at Camp Naivelt, The Travellers, a folk music band, was formed by Gray, Sid Dolgay, Helen Gray, Jerry Goodis, and Oscar Ross. Initially associated with the United Jewish Peoples Order, the group was linked to the labour movement. Membership of the band changed over time, with Simone Johnston, Pam Fernie, Aileen Ahern, Marty Meslin, Ray Woodley, Ted Roberts, Joe Lawrence Hampson, and Don Vickery joining the group at various periods.
The Travellers debuted on television in 1954 on CBC. That year they adapted Woody Guthrie’s song “This Land Is Your Land” to a Canadian context, releasing the song as a single in 1957. In 1961, they performed at the Mariposa Folk Festival. In 1962, they toured the USSR, and in 1964 they performed for Queen Elizabeth II at the celebration of PEI’s centennial. In 1970, the band played at the Canadian Pavilion of Expo 70 in Japan. The group continued to perform into the 2000s. In 2001, an NFB documentary, “This Land Is Your Land,” was directed by Robert Cohen.
Beginning in 1999, Jerry Gray began teaching courses at the University of Toronto, Ryerson University (now Toronto Metropolitan University), Florida Atlantic University, and George Brown College. These courses covered Folk & Protest Music, as well as Yiddish Music.
“The Travellers.” The Canadian Encyclopedia. September 7, 2018. https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/the-travellers-emc
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Content and structure area
Scope and content
Fonds consists of material related to the life and career of Jerry G. Gray. Records are predominantly related to his membership in The Travellers, but also include material related to his career as a lecturer on Folk and Protest Music and Yiddish Music. Records dealing with the Travellers include photographs, audio recordings, video, event listings, programmes, and newspaper and magazine clippings. There is a large collection of reference material related to Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, and folk music in Canada and the United States, as well as reference material related to Jewish music. The fonds also includes records from Gray’s adolescence, including his early musical performances at Camp Naivelt and the University of Toronto, and his amateur athletic career in secondary school and at the University of Toronto.
Fonds includes the following Series:
Series 01: The Travellers
Series 02: Jerry Gray Adolescence
Series 03: Songbooks, Books, and Magazines
Series 04: Woody Guthrie & Pete Seeger Publications
Series 05: Jewish Music Publications
Series 06: Civil Rights Songbooks
Series 07: Recordings
Series 08: Lectures and Teaching Materials
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
No further accruals expected.
System of arrangement
The collection has been arranged into series based on the donor’s existing organization structure. Material in Series 01 is largely arranged chronologically.
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Preservation concerns may limit access, consult archivist.
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Media Commons Archives does not own copyright of collection materials. Consult rights holder for reproduction(s).
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Dates of creation revision deletion
Created September 22, 2023 by Andrew Edmonds.