What’s New in Archives and Special Collections?

Dr. Clara Thomas, longtime friend, supporter and ally of York University Libraries Archives & Special Collections passed away peacefully on 26 September 2013, the blog posting by Anna St.Onge can be accessed here.
A tribute to Professor Emerita Clara Thomas, one of York University’s founding faculty members, was submitted to YFile by Professor Emeritus of English, John Lennox, can be accessed here.

Donations can be made in her memory to York University at

Current Exhibits:

Letters Home : a selection of wartime correspondence from the Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections is now online. Based on a 2009 exhibit of wartime correspondence held by the Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections, “Letters Home” highlights some correspondence exchanged by soldiers with their parents, siblings and friends during the First and Second World Wars.

This online exhibit would not have been possible without the generosity of family members who, over the years have donated their family records for the benefit of students and scholars of York University. In particular, archival staff would like to thank Dorothy Stepler, John Lennox, the late Bettie Lennox Locke, and Nick Aplin. A special thanks must be made to Vicki Ryckman. She found the letters of Charles Shore in an old barn in Prince Edward County where she grew up and donated the letters to the archives in 2008.

Mariposa : celebrating Canadian folk music is now online.

This project of the Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections, was made possible in partnership with The Mariposa Folk Foundation, the Department of Canadian Heritage and the Canadian Council of Archives. The 50th anniversary of Mariposa was featured on CBC’s Metro Morning (July 2010).

You can read more about the online exhibit on the Archives blog and in the Y-file.

Ruth Dworin Collection : A glimpse into a special collection that contains many classic, forgotten and often-censored works of lesbian fiction from the early to late 20th century is now online.

This online exhibit is made possible through the contributions of M.A. student Renee Jackson in the Faculty of English at York University.

Annual Competition for the Kent Haworth Archival Research Fellowship: information now available!

Recent Events:

More Toronto Telegram images have gone up online in YorkSpace, including There’s Lots to See at the CNE… and Caribana.

New Fonds

The Clara Thomas Archives is receiving new material all the time and our holdings continue to expand. Some of the new fonds d’archives that we have received over the last six months include the following. More extensive descriptions will be posted on our fonds registers as they become available.

  • Women, social justice, and Canadian trade unions collection
  • Virginia Rock fonds
  • Rex Battle fonds
  • George E.A. Reid fonds
  • Knowlton Nash fonds
  • Sig Gerber fonds
  • Alison Pick fonds
  • William Wicken fonds
  • Naomi Black fonds
  • Hilary Armstrong fonds
  • Giles Endicott fonds
  • Ruth Jones McVeigh fonds
  • David Higgs fonds
  • Obsidian Theatre Company fonds
  • Allan Novak fonds
  • Portuguese Interagency Network (PIN)
  • Mary Jane Warner fonds
  • Canadian Italian Business and Professionals Association
  • Didi Khayatt fonds
  • Theresa Burke fonds
  • Varpu Lindström fonds
  • Obsidian Theatre Company fonds
  • Marilou McPhedran fonds

Recent Donations to Existing Fonds

Clara Thomas Archives has received numerous accessions to existing fonds over the course of the last year including new material in the following fonds d’archives:

  • University archives:
    • Office of the President.
  • Private archives:
    • Stevie Cameron fonds
    • Barbara Godard fonds
    • Lee Lorch fonds
    • Mary Young Leckie fonds
    • John N. Smith fonds
    • Avrom Isaacs fonds
    • Cameron family fonds

Award winning Archives:

The Clara Thomas Archives and Special Collections has won the Archives Association of Ontario’s 2008 Institutional Award.

The award was presented as part of the AAO’s 2008 Conference banquet in Windsor, Ontario on June 6, 2008.

Why York University Archives was Renamed:

York University Archives was named in honour of Dr. Clara Thomas, Professor Emirata of English at York University from 1961 to 1984. The Clara Thomas Archives at York University has been a beneficiary of Dr. Thomas’ extensive literary connections, moral and financial support, and good will for many years.