Archive Finding Aids

Here are detailed file-by-file descriptions of the contents of specific fonds and/or links to scanned documents.

William Pearce, [ca. 1880s]
William Pearce, [ca. 1880s]

William Pearce family fonds

To view brief biography and summary of contents click here.

Table of Contents

indicates that the series includes scanned documents or photographs.

Series 1 Calgary General Hospital records. -- 1890-1903
Series 2 Miscellaneous family papers. -- 1884-1988
Series 3 Photographs. -- 1858-1942
Series 4 Unprocessed records


Series 1

Calgary General Hospital. -- 1890-1903. -- 6 cm of textual records. -- The series consists of records kept by William Pearce, who was on the Board, related to planning, designing and fundraising for a new hospital in Calgary.

M-2462-1 Hospital Seal. -- 1890-1891
M-2462-2 Letters re printing clinical charts. -- 1891
M-2462-3 Hospital plans - correspondence. -- 1891-1892
M-2462-4 Letters re William Pearce as Director on the Hospital Board. -- 1892
M-2462-5 Papers re W. Pearce's subscription to the building fund. -- 1890-1895
M-2462-6 Plan of the Calgary General Hospital. -- [ca. 1890-1903]
M-2462-7 Proposed locations of hospital. -- 1894
M-2462-8 Letters re nurses seeking positions. -- 1894
M-2462-9 Correspondence with Mrs. H.G. Mackid, Women's Hospital Aid Society, re fundraising drive. -- 1896
M-2462-10 Correspondence giving statistics about Calgary General Hospital's operation. -- 1896-1897
M-2462-11 Correspondence between Bishop Cyprian Pinkham and William Pearce re possible bequest. -- 1896
M-2462-12 Appeal for funds by Women's Hospital Aid Society. -- 1897. -- Includes circular letters of appeal signed by Mrs. Jean A. Pinkham and William Pearce; and replies from possible donors: W.H. Little (H.W. McNeill Coal Company), C.C. Chipman (HBC), Sir William Van Horne (CPR), Conrad Brothers (Lethbridge), J. George Jessop (Red Deer), Dr. D. McEachran (Walrond Ranche), W.A. Thompson (Red Deer), D.A. Stewart (CPR), C.R. Hosmer (CPR), Thomas Brown (Lethbridge), R. Duthie (Pincher Creek), Joseph Fisher (Millarville), T.G. Shaughnessy (CPR), R. T. Riley (Winnipeg), E.B. Osler (MP), James Ross (Montreal), T. Van Thiel (Calgary),
M-2462-13 Appeal for funds by Women's Hospital Aid Society. -- 1898. -- Consists of circular letters of appeal signed by Mrs. Jean Pinkham and the CGH Board; hospital statistics, lists of donors, and replies from the following: H. Smith and E. Tee (High River), George Emerson, Thomas W. Robertson (High River), H.M. Hatfield (Pincher Creek), F.W. Drewry (Winnipeg), G.F. Galt and J. Galt (Winnipeg), George Lane (Nanton), H.w. Nanton (Winnipeg), Lord Strathcona, Reverend John McDougall (Morley), J.D. Morrision (Nanton), Hiram Walker and Sons (Walkerville), Nanton, Hammond and Osler (Calgary and Edmonton Railway),
M-2462-14 Statistical statement re Calgary General Hospital. -- 1899. -- Consists of notes re costs, subscription lists, and financial statements.
M-2462-15 Appeal for funds by the Women's Hospital Aid Society. -- 1899. -- Consists of circular letters signed by Mrs. Jean Pinkham and William Pearce, hospital statistical statement, list of donors, and replies form the following: C.C. Chipman (HBC), F. White (Merino Ranche), W. MacDonnell (Wetaskiwin), T.G. Shaughnessy (CPR), F. Van Thiel (Calgary), W.E. Cochrane (Little Bow Cattle Company).
M-2462-16 Letter re location of nurses' home and maternity hospital. -- May 25, 1899
M-2462-17 Correspondence re Nurse Tyers' request to serve in South African War. -- 1900
M-2462-18 Correspondence re Matron's position. -- March-April. -- 1900. -- Re successful candidate, Miss Monica J. Carswell.
M-2462-19 Letter from T.G. Shaughnessy re free Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) pass for Miss Fortescue. -- April 19, 1901
M-2462-20 Cards and notifications of Calgary General Hospital meetings. -- 1902
M-2462-21 Correspondence between William Pearce and Colonel Gilbert Sanders (NWMP) re subscription and position on Board.
M-2462-22 Draft of resolution re establishment of sanatorium. -- 1902
M-2462-23 Report on hospital by directors William Pearce and A.E. Cross. -- april 14, 1903. -- Includes details of equipment, and recommendations for basins, sterilizer and skeleton.
M-2462-24 Miscellaneous correspondence. -- 1903. -- Consists of letter of appeal for donations; letter re proposed isolation hospital; and notice of meeting.

Series 2

Miscellaneous family papers. -- 1884-1988. -- The series consists of small amounts of material donated to Glenbow over the years by the Pearce family. Includes letters, writings, invitations and greeting cards, biographical information, house plans, etc. relating to William, Margaret, Harry and Frances Pearce. -- The material is arranged in the order in which it arrived at the Archives.

M-85 Margaret Pearce. -- 1884, 1941 and n.d. -- 3 items. -- Consists of an invitation to the marriage of Bella Hardisty and James Lougheed in Calgary (1884); and two letters from R.B. Bennett, a thank you letter from R.B. Bennett after he received his appointment as Viscoun (1941), and a letter written after the death of his mother (n.d.).

William and Harry Pearce papers. -- 1895-1930. -- 20 items. -- Consists of the following:

Seven original watercolour Christmas cards sent to Harry J. Leslie Pearce by his father William Pearce, 1895-1901 [in oversize box]
Report on the benefits of irrigation
Article re construction of main line of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) from Montreal to Port Moody, together with chief western subsidiary, the Crowsnest Pass Railway, 1930
Better Balanced Farming by G.R. Marnoch
Article re proposed CPR mainline routes and Crowsnest Pass Railway, 1924
Letter re history of Rocky Mountain parks by Thomas E. Wilson, 1922
Letter re Port Moody, British Columbia, 1923
Maps of Alberta and Saskatchewan issued by the Irrigation Branch of the Department of the Interior
Last will and testament of Harry John Leslie Pearce
Invitation to celebration of William Pearce's 79th birthday, 1927

M-953 William Pearce - Address re Riel Rebellion. -- October 27, 1923. -- 3 pages. -- Consists of a Morning Albertan newspaper article on William Pearce's speech to the Alberta Military Institute on the causes and suppression of the 1885 Riel Rebellion. See also M-4843-355 below.
M-955 & M-955-oversize William Pearce's house "Bow Bend Shack". -- 1888. -- Consists of specifications. location map and plans for Pearce's residence. The plans were produced by C.O. Wickenden of Winnipeg. Note: one sheet of the house plans has been missing since 1992.

William Pearce - Letters and writings. -- 1892-1925. -- 25 pages. -- Consists of the following:

Personal letters about High River and Sheep Creek Irrigation Company, 1892
Letter from Samuel B. Steele, 1914
79th birthday invitation and correspondence, 1927
Memo re wildcatting for oil and gas in Alberta prior to the discovery of oil at Dingman well #1 in 1914
HIstory of the establishment of the chief parks in the Rocky Mountains, read at a meeting of the Historical Society of Calgary, 1924

M-957 William Pearce's service record. -- 1952. -- 6 pages. -- Consists of a letter to Harry Pearce from the Department of Resouces and Development re the service of his father.
M-958 William Pearce's railway passes. -- 1884-1896. -- 7 items
M-959 William Pearce and Frances Pearce - Invitations, greeting cards, etc. -- 1890-1946. -- 3 cm of textual records and 1 volume. - Consists of certificates, newspaper clippings and invitations of William Pearce; two brief reminiscences about William by his daughter Frances; and Frances' scrapbook of greeting cards, postcards and menus.

One of the postcards has been scanned. scanned documents View now.

M-2320 Frances Pearce - Program for the Pirates of Penzance, performed at Hull's Opera House. -- 1896. -- 20 pages
M-2761 Frank Slide. -- 1903. -- 7 pages. -- Consistsof a letter written by William Pearce, who was sent to the slide with a detachment of Mounted Police the day after the disaster, to R.W. MacIntyre.
M-2762 Coal output in Alberta. -- 1922-1923. -- 2 items. -- Consists of charts compiled by William Pearce.
M-3938 Christine Dobek's university history paper about William Pearce. -- 1969. -- 14 pages. -- Consists of a paper about the life of William Pearce, written for a University of Albertah history cource, and later given to Harry Pearce. It concentrated on his personal life rather than his career.
M-4241 Article on the development of the Anglican Church in Calgary and William Pearce's role. -- n.d. -- 11 pages. -- Author unknown. Collected by Harry Pearce.
M-4288 G.A. Dunsmore's notes of interviews with Harry and Frances Pearce. -- 1973. -- 3 pages
M-4308 "Roots and Trees" by Harry Pearce. -- n.d. -- 1 volume. -- Consists of genealogy of the Pearce family. See also M-4843-34 below.
M-4472 Article on the causes of the 1885 Riel Rebellion by William Pearce. -- n.d. -- 23 pages
M-4843-27 William Pearce's reports. -- 1916. -- 2 volumes. -- Consists of report to the Economic and Development Commission of the government of Canada on the economic and social conditions of the four western provinces.
M-4843-33-oversize Calgary Irrigation Company plans. -- 1896. -- Consists of right of way of the Calgary Irrigation Company's ditch from Elbow River to William Pearce's property in east Calgary.
M-4843-34 "Roots". -- n.d. -- 1 cm of textual records. -- Consists of an essay on William Pearce and the genealogy of the Pearce family, including photographs, newspaper clippings and maps. Possibly written by Harry Pearce. See M-4308 above.
M-4843-289 "William Pearce manuscript". -- 1951. -- 3 cm of textual records. -- Consists of short essays about the history of transportation and settlement of the prairie provinces.
M-4843-290 Correspondence about the possible pubilcation of the "William Pearce manuscript" (see above) and identification of illustrations. -- 1949-1955. -- 1 cm of textual records.
M-4843-355 North-West Rebellion. -- 1966-1988. -- Consists of articles concerning the policies of William Pearce and the origins of the 1885 Riel Rebellion. Includes transcription of a 1923 speech by William Pearce from the Morning Albertan newspaper. See also M-953 above.

Series 3

Photographs. -- 1858-1942. -- 314 photographs. -- The series consists of views of the Red River Settlement, Lethbridge, Calgary, southern Alberta, northern Alberta waterways, First World War battalions and Bow Bend Shack.

Some of these photographs have been scanned. View now.

NA-20, NA-36 et al.

Various views. -- 1858-1942 and n.d. -- 162 photographs. -- Consists of views of the Red River Settlement and Manitoba; North-West Mounted Police; Dominion Land Surveyors; early Lethbridge; Galt Mine; North Western Coal and Navigation Company; irrigation works; Pearce estate and house; early Calgary streets and events; Calgary Tigers football team; 2nd Battalion and 56th Battalion CEF; etc. These are predominantly copy negatives made from the original photographic prints described below.

Scanned Document View now.

[Includes the following call numbers: NA-20, NA-36, NA-218, NA-325, NA-339, NA-429, NA-652, NA-665, NA-710, NA-780, NA-806, NA-842-2, NA-878, NA-890, NA-922, NA-988, NA-1004, NA-1039, NA-1322, NA-1426, NA-1618, NA-1744, NA-1769, NA-1822, NA-2111, NA-2289, NA-2301, NA-2850, NA-3898, NA-5445, NA-5673]

PD-1, vols1-4

Four photograph albums. Consists of the following:

Historical views of Lethbridge and surrounding district. -- [ca. 1885-1890s]. -- 1 album (41 photographs). -- Numbered 1-41.

"Galt Irrigation Canal System, Southern Alberta, Canada". -- 1 album (20 photographs). -- Numbered 42-61.

Northern Alberta rivers and towns. -- n.d. -- 2 albums (44 photographs). -- Includes views of Lesser Slave Lake, Athabasca River, Fort Chipewyan, Peace River, Fort Vermilion, Fort St. John, Bishop Grouard, Fort Resolution, and Fort Dunvegan. Numbered 62-104.

Many of these photographs have been scanned. scanned documents View now.


Red River Settlement and early Calgary. -- 1858-[ca. 1911]. -- 77 photographs

Many of these photographs have been scanned. scanned documents View now.

PA-90 Picture postcards. -- n.d. -- 28 photographs

Some of these postcards have been scanned. scanned documents View now.


Loose album pages. -- [ca. 1913-1942]. -- 37 photographs. -- Includes Tigers football team, First World War battalion, William Pearce and Margaret Pearce.

Some of these photographs have been scanned. scanned documents View now.

PA-1250 Bow Falls, Banff, Alberta. -- 1902. -- 1 photograph
PA-2052 Mountain waterfalls and lakes; First World War; William Pearce. -- n.d. -- 8 photographs
PB-32 Views relating to William Pearce and the First World War; and Alberta and Manitoba views. -- [ca. 1914-1918] and n.d. -- 13 photographs

One of these photographs has been scanned. scanned documents View now.

PB-37 Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) officers at council. -- 1887. -- 1 photograph
PB-144 Western Canada College group. -- 1904. -- 1 photograph
PB-509 Bow Bend Shack. -- [1890s].-- 6 photographs

Some of these photographs have been scanned. scanned documents View now.

PC-109 Aerial view of east Calgary. -- [ca. 1971]. -- 1 photograph
PC-171 Bow Bend Shack, Bishop Sherman, William Pearce's 79th birthday gathering, etc. -- [ca. 1880-1927]. -- 5 photographs

One of these photographs has been scanned. scanned documents View now.

Series 4

Unprocessed records. -- This material has not been catalogued. Please consult with an archivist before requesting.

Unprocessed records. -- 4 cm of textual records. -- ca. 50 photographs. -- Includes subdivision plans for the Pearce estate; copy of Pearces' passport; illustrated letters to family; and other material. [accession 2004.091]
M-9720 Unprocessed records. -- [dates pending]. -- 6 cm of textual records and photographs. -- Consists of copies of articles by William Pearce, photos and newspaper clippings re Louis Riel, and photos, etc. re the Pearce Memorial in Calgary. [accession 2015.040]

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