Fonds 1063 - Robert H. Blackburn fonds

Identity area

Reference code

UTA 1063


Robert H. Blackburn fonds


  • 1942-1989, 2004-2014 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

0.78 m of textual records (6 boxes)
0.07 m of graphic records (19 photographs)

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Biographical history

Robert Harold Blackburn was born in Vegreville, Alberta on February 3, 1919. He graduated from the University of Alberta in 1941 with an M.A. and then enrolled at the Library School at the University of Toronto in 1941. He graduated with a Bachelor of Library Science degree in 1942. After service in the Royal Canadian Airforce, he worked for a year a the Calgary Public Library. He returned to the University of Toronto as Associate Librarian in 1947. In 1948 he received a M.S. degree from Columbia University. He was appointed University Librarian in 1954, succeeding W. Stewart Wallace. He retired as Librarian Emeritus in 1982.

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Scope and content

Fonds consists of 3 accessions

B1987-0074: 19 photos of false ceiling at Robarts Library, 1983. (1 folder, 1983)

B1989-0036: Personal records of Robert H. Blackburn, University Librarian, consisting of personal correspondence (1955-1981); RCAF flying log books (1942-1945); correspondence files arranged by author, A-W (1981-1986); files relating to his Carnegie tour (1950-1952), his being an editorial advisor to Collier's (1953-1988), and chair of the board of the Streetsville Public Library (1964-1965); addresses, with covering correspondence (1961-1987) and notes, research documents relating to and a typescript of his history of the University of Toronto library system, "Evolution of the Heart". (5 boxes, 1942-1989)

B2014-0008: Contains correspondence and several drafts of Robert H. Blackburn's memoir "From Barley Field to Academe". Much of the correspondence is between Karen Turko, the Director, Donor Relations and Development of the U of T Libraries, Chief Librarian's Office, and numerous proof readers and several publishing companies including the U of T Press. Also includes a copy of Blackburn's speech for the book launch. (1 box, 2004-2014)

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