Sous-fonds SF69 - Lorne and Edith Pierce collection. Thomas Swanston sous-fonds

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Lorne and Edith Pierce collection. Thomas Swanston sous-fonds

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Sous-fonds

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CA ON00239 SF69

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Date(s)

  • 1 Oct. 1868-11 Nov. 1871 (Creation)
    Creator
    Swanston, Thomas

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Physical description

150 p.

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(fl. 1868-1888)

Biographical history

Thomas Swanston, of Scottish descent, was a fur trader and employee of the Hudson’s Bay Company for twenty years, 18 of which were spent in the Mackenzie River District, until retiring in 1880. Based on archival notes, he was most likely born in 1849 though whether this occurred in Canada or Scotland is unclear as he travelled from the UK with his mother and three sisters in the summer of 1855, at the age of 6, to rejoin his father in Canada, an employee of the HCB. A note makes reference to his mother and ‘children’ having arrived in Aberdeen, Scotland in the autumn of 1852 from Moose Factory making it reasonable to assume he may have been born in Canada. As an adult he is described as a ‘wealthy and prominent citizen’ who ‘lived in a state with a great many servant in a fine house with extensive grounds and stables, altogether in the manner of an English country gentleman’. He and his wife, who was part Cree, had ‘a great many children’ though all but one passed away early in life. His only surviving child was a daughter named Frances who married a Red River colony McBeth, a family that had settled at Prince Albert during the 1870’s and were distantly related to the author Rev. R.G. McBeth.

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Scope and content

Diary of clerk in charge of Hudson's Bay Post at Fort Resolution, Great Slave Lake. Bound hand written diary of Thomas Swanston, Hudson's Bay Company clerk in charge of Fort Resolution N.W.T.-Letter (November 12th, 1935) from Hudson's Bay Company London office secretary confirming to I.MC. Thompson of Toronto that Mr. Swanston was in charge of Fort Resolution from 1868-1871-Typed letter (July 24th, 1936) to Dr. Lorne Pierce from a former editor of the Topographical Survey of Canada, from whom the diary was acquired, outlining the author's recollection of Mr. Swanston and his home life. Author's name is not clearly legible but presumed to be I.M.C. Thompson from previous letter.-Typed summary of information regarding Thomas Swanston from the Hudson's Bay Company Archives London-Letter (March 9th, 1964) from John S. Nicks, archival assistant at the Saskatchewan Archives Office at the University of Saskachewan, to Mr. E.C. Beer, Archivist in Douglas Library at Queen's University, regarding mention(s) of Swanston in the Saskatchewan archives.-Hand written notes based on diary - not clear who the author is. -3 black and white photographs: 1) HBC camp - location unknown 2) Men in canoes - Ile-a-la Crosse - Saskatchewan 3) 3 men outside HBC camp building-2 maps of northern western Canada.

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  • English

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Location of originals

2001.1

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Open

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Public domain

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  • Shelf: 2001.1