Fonds PR2625 - J. MacGregor Smith fonds

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J. MacGregor Smith fonds

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    • Source of title proper: Title based on the content of the records.

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    • [ca. 1875] - 1989 (Creation)

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    Physical description

    1.38 m of textual records and other material.

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    Name of creator


    Biographical history

    John Macgregor Smith was born in 1887 in Scotland. In 1905, he immigrated to Manitoba and worked on a large farm for five years. In 1910, he began attending the Manitoba Agricultural College. In 1913, he graduated from University of Manitoba and joined the University of Saskatchewan as an Assistant Professor of Agricultural Engineering. In 1921, John Macgregor Smith joined the University of Alberta as its first professor of Agricultural Engineering. He headed the Department of Agricultural Engineering until his death.

    Smith's chief research interest lay in soil-preserving tillage methods and farm machinery. He held membership with the Agricultural Institute of Canada and of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers and was an honorary Life Member of the Undergraduate Students' Agricultural Club. He published regularly in his field and frequently gave academic lectures at universities in North America. Some publications include: "Knotter Troubles", "Binder and Knotter Troubles", "Plows and Plowing", "Rope Knots and Hitches", and "Better Belt Lacing".

    He married Florence Ida Baldwin (1884-1964) in Philadelphia in 1915. He died in Edmonton in 1950.

    Custodial history

    Scope and content

    The fonds consists of records related to John Macgregor Smith's academic and research work including research notes, exercises booklets, study guides, exam guides, articles, theses, publications, photographs, certificates, programs, and correspondence dating from 1905 to the 1940s. In particular the fonds features numerous images of agricultural equipment dating from the early part of the 20th century. The fonds also includes research notes created in 1989 during the preparation of the John Smith Macgregor material for reference use in the Department of Agricultural Sciences reading room.

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    Physical condition

    Immediate source of acquisition

    In 1966, Professor Thomas Preston of the Department of Agricultural Engineering at the University of Alberta donated the material comprising accession PR1966.0014 to the Provincial Archives of Alberta. It's unknown how Thomas Preston obtained custody of the material. The Department of Agricultural Engineering also held some of Macgregor Smith's records.

    In 1989, the Department of Agricultural Engineering hired a student of library sciences to physically sort and arrange the material for use in the Department of Agricultural Sciences reading room. In 1995, Bryan Corbett of the University of Alberta Archives donated the material comprising accession PR1995.0272 on behalf of Dr. Ken Domier of the Department of Agricultural Engineering.


    Material comprising accession PR1995.0272 was physically arranged while in the custody of the Department of Agricultural Engineering.

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        The material is in English.

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        Restrictions on access

        Access Conditions: None

        Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

        Use Conditions: Permission for use required. Subject to the Copyright Act.

        Finding aids

        File list is not available.

        Associated materials

        For a biography of John Macgregor Smith, please see the B.T. Stephanson fonds at the Provincial Archives of Alberta.

        For more material on John Macgregor Smith, please see the Department of Agricultural Engineering fonds at the University of Alberta Archives.

        Related materials


        Further accruals are not expected.

        General note

        For access to publications by John Macgregor Smith, please visit the University of Alberta Library. Images from the fonds may be located in the Provincial Archives of Alberta Reference Photograph Section under the numbers A7752 - A7776.

        General note

        Includes accessions PR1966.0014 and PR1995.0272,

        Physical description

        The fonds also includes 603 photographs, 95 glass plate negatives, and 56 negatives.

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