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Adamson, Anthony, 1906-
MacRae, Marion, 1921-

Anthony Adamson and Marion MacRae fonds. -- 1946-1992; predominant 1958-1992. -- 4.6 m of textual records, graphic material and architectural drawings. -- ca. 7,000 photographs; 792 negatives; ca. 5,000 col. slides.

Anthony Adamson, architect, author, teacher, and administrator, was born in Toronto in 1906. He studied architecture at Cambridge University and London University. After completing his education, he became an architect and architectural planner and then a professor at the University of Toronto from 1955 to 1965. He also served as an elected municipal official for the Township of Toronto. He was awarded honorary degrees from Queen's University (1975) and the University of Windsor (1985). The recipient of many honours including the Order of Canada (1974) and the Gabrielle Léger Medal (1981), he contributed greatly to the architectural heritage of Ontario and to the visual and performing arts. He lobbied for the restoration of Dundurn Castle in Hamilton, Ont. and then served as General Consultant to the project which was completed in 1967. He also served for several years as Chairman of the Ontario Arts Council and was a member of the Board of the Ontario Heritage Foundation. Anthony Adamson died on 3 May, 2002.

Marion Bell MacRae, architectural and design historian, was born in Apple Hill, Ont. in 1921. She entered the Ontario College of Art in 1947. She completed her post-graduate studies at the University of Illinois in the years 1951-54. From 1949 to 1969 she was an instructor at O.C.A. in Museum Research and subsequently lectured in Design History from 1969 to 1986. She also taught History of Canadian Architecture part-time at the University of Toronto from 1973 to 1978 and acted as a Special Research Consultant to the Dundurn Castle restoration project which was completed in 1967. Marion MacRae died on 11 August 2008.

Having first collaborated at Morrisburg, Ont. on the Upper Canada Village project, MacRae and Adamson continued working together on a survey of the historical houses of Ontario. The resulting work, written by MacRae and with a preface and a last word by Adamson, explored the history of the province through its architecture. The Ancestral Roof (1963) was well received and has had many printings. This team would co-operate on two more works on the history of Ontario architecture. In 1975 MacRae and Adamson published Hallowed Walls (Governor General's award for non-fiction), an exploration of ecclesiastical architecture of Ontario. They also collaborated on Cornerstones of Order (1983) which looked at pre-1900 public buildings (court houses and town halls) in Ontario. MacRae also wrote MacNab of Dundurn, a biography, was published in 1971, which not only explored the life of MacNab but also his life's work, Dundurn Castle.

There have been six accruals. The first accrual (38-1995 and 43-1995) is arranged in four series, corresponding to the four published works in order of publication: Ontario houses; Dundurn Castle; Ontario churches; Ontario public buildings. It consists of manuscripts, correspondence and research files including notes, plans, maps, sketches, pamphlets, articles, photographs and slides as collected or created by MacRae and Adamson. The second accrual (27-1996) consists of 9 plans for Dundurn Castle prepared by Adamson. The third accrual (26-1997) consists of the typescript for Hallowed Walls, photographs for use in The Ancestral Roof, Hallowed Walls, and Cornerstones as well as drawings and floor-plans, correspondence re the book and the Governor General's Award. The fourth accrual (42-1997) consists of 792 negatives taken by Philip Shackleton, 1963-1983, to illustrate MacNab of Dundurn, Cornerstones of Order, and Hallowed Walls. The fifth accrual (31-2003) consists of photographs, mostly for Cornerstones of Order and 2 items of correspondence. The sixth accrual (26-2004) consists of a typed letter, dated 9 / 1971, from P. Roy Wilson to Marion MacRae.

Researchers may also wish to consult the Clarke, Irwin & Co. fonds for further correspondence.

Title based on content of fonds.
The first accrual was donated in two installments in 1995, by Anthony Adamson and Marion MacRae who retain copyright ownership of all original material. The second accrual was acquired from Anthony Adamson via J. Waite in 1995. The third accrual was acquired from Marion MacRae via Stephen Otto in April 1996. The fourth accrual was acquired from Philip Shackleton and Hugh MacMillan in October 1997. The fifth accrual was acquired from Stephen Otto in July 2003. The sixth accrual was acquired from the Art Gallery of Ontario Special Collections where it had been deposited by Stephen Otto.
Finding aid available in hard copy and electronically.
There are no access restrictions. Copyright in the negatives in the fourth accrual rests with Philip Shackleton.
Further accruals are not expected.

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Last Reviewed: January 26, 2009