Fonds F0500 - Cathro, Matthews family fonds

Identity area

Reference code



Cathro, Matthews family fonds


  • 1893-2001, predominant 1893-1950 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

45 cm of textual records. -- 1 audio cassette. -- 1 photograph

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Francis Revington Cathro, 1866-1950, was born in Middlesex County, Ontario. He moved to North Dakota, USA then in 1905 to Alberta. He established the Casa Loma Stock Farm in Simon's Valley, just north of Calgary, and pioneered in the raising of Aberdeen Angus cattle. The family home was in Calgary. His wife, Fanny Tait, ?-1947, was born in Whitevale, Ontario. The Cathros had two daughters, Grace Miriam (Matthews) and Hilda (Anderson). F.R. retired from ranching in 1938. Charles Curtice Matthews, 1893-1970, was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA, and moved to Alberta with his family in 1910. They homesteaded at Indus. In 1916 his father, Ernest Richard Matthews, established a piano business, Matthews Music House Ltd., in Calgary. In 1917 Charles married Grace Miriam Cathro, 1896-1951, and they had three children, Donald Charles, 1918-1996, Francis Richard, 1920-2013, and Alison Cathro (Hankins). In 1953 he married Ethel Fisher, ?-1991. Charles joined the piano business in 1919 and took it over in 1929. His sister, Ruth Matthews Samuelson, 1902-1991, also worked in the store. Matthews Music House folded in 1943. Charles was president of the Calgary Branch of the Alberta Musical Festival Association from 1927 to 1932. In 1933 he had bought land near Springbank and established the Highland Stock Farm, which specializes in Aberdeen Angus cattle. His son, Don, took over the farm.


Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Gift of Don Matthews, 1992-1993, and gift of Alison Cathro Matthews Hankins, 2001.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The fonds consists of F.R. Cathro's diary (1920-1924), stock book (1893-1922), Aberdeen Angus registrations and pedigrees (1905-1929, 1940-1946) and account books (1929-1950); Matthews Music House piano sales books, tax returns and financial statements (1916-1943), and an interview with Ruth Samuelson about the store (1991); Highland Stock Farms basic herd records, cashbooks and posters (1947-1966); and personal papers of C.C. Matthews and other family members. Includes the minute book of the Alberta Musical Festival Association, Calgary branch (1920-1931).

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

No restrictions on access.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

The material is in English.

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

No finding aid, but the photo has been digitized.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

There is biographical information about the C.C. Matthews family, and records about their house, in the Alberta Historical Preservation and Re-Building Society records, at Glenbow.

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title based on contents of records.


There is a biography of Don Matthews in the case file which can be added to the biographical history when we get more substantial records of Highland Stock Farm.


The AHPRS records are M 8431.


Link added to Archives Photographs on August 7, 2018.

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Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

Tuesday, August 07, 2018




Accession area