Agricultural History and Rural Heritage

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The Agricultural History and Rural Heritage collections are a rich resource demonstrating the Library's strong commitment to agricultural and rural life and reflecting the history and rootsof the University. The beginning of our agricultural history collection dates to the founding of the Ontario Agriculture College in 1874. This section contains farm business papers, equipment and sales brochures, manuscripts, correspondence, diaries, and books.

Particularly notable are our extensive Apiculture Collection, containing the Burton Noble Gates Collection, and the Rural Heritage Collection that features the Massey-Harris-Ferguson and International Harvestor records. These materials document the history of agricultural collectives in Ontario, information crucial to understanding changes in rural farming and communities in Ontario. A comprehensive collection of rural and agricultural periodicals is also available. The collections are diverse, and range from items of national significance to small, personal collections. Rare items are included and date to the 16th century with strengths in the practice of agriculture, crops, and agriculture technology.

Material relating to agriculture can also be found in portions of the Regional and Campus Collections that contain data on past graduates and their subsequent agricultural careers. As well, the Scottish History Collections contain diaries and correspondence that may be of particular relevance. Overall, the Library's commitment to Agricultural History and Rural Heritage is significant, a choice unsurprising considering the roots of the University. 

Agricultural and Rural Heritage Collections

A list of all Archival & Special Collections Resources
Title Description Dates
Ralph S. Staples Papers Personal papers of Ralph S. Staples related to co-operatives. 1932-1988
Rural Learning Association Organizational archives. 1943-2007
Sallows Collection Photographs of Reuben Sallows. ca 1836-1986
Sawyer-Massey Co. Correspondence, financial accounts, photographs, advertisements, catalogues & bulletins, company history and other materials from the Sawyer-Massey Company. 1835-1987
Scott General Store fonds Thresher's books, receipts, cash books, accounts, correspondence and other materials. 1891-1973
Stephen Sylvester Main Collection Collection of glass negatives taken by Stephen Sylvester Main, Sheffeld, Ontario. ca 1886-1929
Sylvester Bros. Mfg. Co. Catalogues of agricultural implements, photographs, newspaper clippings relating to Sylvester Bros. Mfg. Co., Lindsay, Ontario. 1881-1989
Templin Manufacturing Co. Templin Manufacturing Company, Fergus, Ontario manufactured carriages and farm equipment. 1902-1983
Toronto Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association Financial accounts and minutes of the Toronto Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association. 1940-1978
Tweed Steel Works Ltd. Catalogues, newspaper articles, advertisements, photocopied photographs relating to Tweed Steel Works Ltd., Tweed, Ontario. 1909-1936
Vineland Growers' Co-Operative Limited fonds Materials related to Vineland Growers' Co-Operative Ltd. 1913-1988
Waterloo Manufacturing Co. Catalogues, price lists, annual reports, biographies, sales records for the Waterloo Manufacturing Co., Waterloo, Ontario. 1865-1984
Waterous Engine Works Co. Photographs of Waterous Engine Works Co. engines and equipment, Brantford, Ontario. 1877-1900
Watford Stock Yards Account books for the Watford Stock Yards. 1937-1952
White Farm Equipment Co. Catalogues, correspondence, advertisements, operator’s manuals, parts lists, blueprints for the White Farm Equipment Company. 1966-1989
Wilfred L. Bishop Collection Personal records relating to his education and family farm, addresses on Co-operative Farm Marketing, Agricultural Associations in Ontario. ca. 1925-1977
Woodlands Orchards Ltd. Collection Financial ledgers, farm journals, correspondence, minutes, plans, resolutions, by-laws & agreements for Woodlands Orchards Ltd. 1921-1983