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Fonds F0583 - James Kennedy Cornwall fonds

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James Kennedy Cornwall fonds


  • 1861-1955 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

12.5 cm of textual records. -- 33 photographs

Context area

Name of creator


Biographical history

James Kennedy Cornwall, 1869-1955, was born in Brantford, Ontario. He came to Alberta in 1896 and spent two years in railway construction in the Crowsnest Pass. He was briefly lured to the Yukon during the gold rush, and returned via the Peace River country. He settled in the area, trapped, and later opened a string of fur trading posts in partnership with W.F. Bredin. When these were sold to the Revillon Freres in 1906, he formed the Northern Transportation Company, which ran steamships on the Athabasca and Slave Rivers and Lesser Slave Lake. From 1908 to 1912 he sat in the Alberta Legislature as the Liberal Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for Peace River. He recognized the agricultural possibilities of Peace River and actively promoted the region. In 1910 he invited and escorted a group of prominent writers and agriculturalists through the as yet unsettled district. He was known as "Peace River Jim". He was officer commanding of the 8th Battalion, Canadian Railway Troops, CEF during First World War. During the 1920s and 1930s he was also president of the Athabasca Shipping Company which ran steamships on the Mackenzie River and adjoining lakes. During his travels he collected original records from Fort Resolution, a Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) fur trading post on the south shore of Great Slave Lake, NWT. He married Evelyn Beatrice Tierney, 1880-1977, in 1908, and they had three children James Anthony, 1922-1944, Catherine Peace (Hudson), 1911-1996, and Norah (Pollard), 1913-1996. The family was based in Victoria although Jim spent most of his time in the north. For further information see David W. Leonard "James Kennedy Cornwall", Canadian Encyclopedia [online]; and North With Peace River Jim / Leroy Victor Kelly, edited with an introduction by Hugh A. Dempsey. - Calgary: Glenbow-Alberta Institute, 1972.


Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Gift of Catherine Peace Hudson, 1973-1978.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

  • The fonds consists of newsclippings about his life (1912-1955); his articles and reports on the Peace River country and the fur trade; photographs of the north, natives and Cornwall; and miscellaneous personal papers. Includes Fort Resolution post diaries (1861-1862, 1880-1883), profit statements and list of goods (1881).
  • RECORDS RELATED TO THE FOLLOWING SUBJECTS ARE ALSO IN THIS FONDS. SEE INVENTORY FOR DETAILS: George W. Allan, Beaulieu family, Beaver Indians, William Carpenter Bompas, Robert Randolph Bruce, Julian Stewart Camsell, Laurence Clarke, Rev. Nicholas Coccola, Rev. Dupire, T.C. Elliott, Finlay River (BC), James Flett, Fort St. James (BC), C.W. Frank, Charles P. Gaudet, Great Slave Lake, Frederic William Howay, David Laird, Rev. Dickson MacDonald, Roderick Macfarlane, Dr. William M. Mackay, Alexander Mackenzie, Chief Charles Martin, Monkman Pass, Alexander Campbell Murray, William Norn, Pacific Great Eastern Railway, Charles V. Sale, Sir George Simpson, Simpson Pass, Wapiti pass, and water power.

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

Existence and location of copies

Also available on microfilm.

Related units of description

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title based on contents of records.


M 271 should be amalgamated with M 272.


The microfilm, done in 1994, has no accession number.



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Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

Tuesday, September 18, 2018




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