Fonds F2020 - James J. Hill fonds

Identity area

Reference code



James J. Hill fonds


  • Microfilmed 1985 (originally created 1866-1916) (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

48 microfilm reels

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

James Jerome Hill, 1838-1916, was born near Guelph, Ontario. In 1856 he moved to St. Paul, Minnesota, and for the next decade worked for several steamboat companies. In 1866 he founded his own transportation and warehouse company, called James J. Hill & Co. In 1867 he married Mary Theresa Mehegan, 1846-1921. He subsequently founded other businesses, and soon became heavily involved in railways, acquiring the St. Paul & Pacific Railroad (later renamed the St. Paul, Minnesota & Manitoba Railway) in 1877-1879, in conjunction with Donald Smith, George Stephen, and others. From 1880 to 1883 he was involved in the construction and operation of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR). In 1890 he became president of the Great Northern Railway Company. In 1907 he gave up the presidency to become chairman of the board, a position from which he resigned in 1912. For further information see David G. Burley's entry, "James Jerome Hill", in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography, volume 14.


Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The fonds consists of letterbooks of personal correspondence (1874, 1877-1916), pre-railway business correspondence (1866-1878), and railways correspondence (1877-1898).

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

Inventory available. Please consult before requesting material.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

The originals are held by the James Jerome Hill Reference Library, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA.

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title based on contents of records.



Alternative identifier(s)

Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

Tuesday, January 22, 2019




Accession area