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Fonds F0007 - W.O. Mitchell fonds

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W.O. Mitchell fonds


  • 1888-2011 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

22.08 m of textual records and other material.

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Canadian author and playwright William Ormond Mitchell was born in Weyburn, Saskatchewan, on March 13, 1914. Died in Calgary, Alberta, on February 25, 1998. Biographical information available in The Oxford companion to Canadian literature, 2nd ed., p. 759-760; The Oxford companion to Canadian theatre, p. 343-344; and W.O. : the life of W.O. Mitchell : beginnings to Who has seen the wind, 1914-1947, and W.O. : the life of W.O. Mitchell : the years of fame, 1948-1998, by Barbara and Ormond Mitchell (Toronto : McClelland & Stewart, 1999).

Archival history

Acquired between 1976 and 2005. Accession 679/00.10 donated by the Estate of W.O. Mitchell. MsC 46 donated by Alan Yates in 1983. MsC 307 donated by Steven Hawkins. Msc 321 donated by Sheila Latham in 2005.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Fonds includes material relating to the life and works of W. O. Mitchell as a writer, teacher, playwright and performer. Included are personal, general and business related correspondence; manuscripts of novels, short stories, stage plays, radio plays, television plays and film scripts; audio-visual recordings of interviews with Mitchell and dramatizations of Mitchell’s works; promotional material such as posters; teaching materials relating to his positions as writer-in-residence across Canada; financial files; awards such as honorary degrees; personal records including scrapbooks; and an electric typewriter used by Mitchell.
Also includes five appendices (MsC 44, 45, 46, 47, 48) consisting of material relating to W.O. Mitchell and acquired from other sources. MsC 46 consists of sound recordings On mining the subconscious notebook, a documentary profile of W.O. Mitchell prepared for broadcast and use in Canadian literature programs; and On the stage of the mind's eye, a taped discussion of the radio dramatic art form which includes an interview with W.O. Mitchell and others. MsC 47 and 48 contain promotional material for a reading given by W.O. Mitchell and for world premiere of For those in peril on the sea. For descriptions of MsC 44 and 45 see entries under National Film Board of Canada and Saskatchewan Writers Guild respectively. MsC 307 consists of 2 audio discs recording a benefit performance given by W.O. Mitchell for Centaur Theatre in Montreal, Quebec, May 8, 1978. MsC 321 consists of 1 audiocassette recording of Peter Gzowski interviewing W.O. Mitchell, May 30, 1997.

All sound recordings are digitized and can be accessed upon request.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


MsC 19, MsC 44, MsC 45, MsC 46, MsC 47, MsC 48, MsC 307, MsC 321, 625/98.1, 679/00.10, 920/13.19, 941/14.6, 2016.006

System of arrangement

Fonds consists of the following series: correspondence; manuscripts; published works; audio-visual recordings; promotion; pubic speaking; teaching materials; business records; awards, honours, tributes; adaptations of W. O. Mitchell work by other authors; works by other writers mentored by W. O. Mitchell; objects; and personal records.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Some items restricted.
All sound recordings are digitized and can be accessed upon request.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

File level inventory for Accession 679/00.10 in attached PDF.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

For additional archival material relating to W.O. Mitchell see the Morris Surdin fonds (MsC 60) and Winnipeg School Division No. 1, Collection relating to W.O. Mitchell (Acc 625/98.1).

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title based on contents of the fonds.


Further accruals expected.


Includes ca 1400 photographs, 18 audio discs, 5 audio reels, 2 audio cassettes, 2 film reels and 2 videocassettes.

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