Fonds PR1014 - Knaut, Knaut and Rolf fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Knaut, Knaut and Rolf fonds

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

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    • 1907-1966, predominant 1915-1966 (Creation)

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    Physical description

    4.65 m of textual records. – 5 maps

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    Name of creator

    Administrative history

    The law firm of Knaut, Knaut and Rolf was founded circa (ca.) 1915 by Christopher George Corneille (1873-1944). He was born in Melbourne, Ontario to Alecia and John Meadows Corneille. Corneille had his early education in Glencoe and London, Ontario and graduated in Arts and Theology from Victoria College at the University of Toronto in Toronto, Ontario. He had a pastorate in western Ontario and then traveled to Alberta where he became a pastor at Spruce Grove, west of Edmonton. He then resided for a time in Wetaskiwin, Alberta before moving to Camrose where he began working in the law firm Burgar and Davison.

    Corneille attended law school and was called to the bar in 1915, opening his own firm called C.G. Corneille, soon after. The firm dealt mainly with civil law cases, including probate (wills and estates), immigration and naturalization, and property (real estate) cases, though the firm was also involved in debt collection. The main offices were located in Camrose, Alberta, but over the years the company did do business on some days of the week in various other towns in the area, including Daysland, Killam, Hardisty, Bashaw, Forestburg, and Sedgewick, Alberta.

    Wilfred Laurier (Duke) Knaut (1897-1961) joined the firm ca. 1920. Born at Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, he served in the armed forces during World War I and, after his discharge in 1919, moved to Camrose, Alberta. Knaut articled at C.G. Corneille before being called to the bar in 1922. In ca. 1931 Knaut became a partner in the law firm, and the name of the firm changed to Corneille and Knaut, remaining so until the death of C.G. Corneille in 1944. Knaut retained the firm upon Corneille's death, changing the firm's name to Wilfred L. Knaut ca. 1946.

    Knaut's son, G. Rodney Knaut (1926-2013), was called to the bar in 1954 and joined his father's firm that same year, the name of the firm changing ca. May 1954 to Knaut and Knaut. Wilfred L. Knaut died on December 25, 1961, and G. Rodney Knaut retained the firm, changing the name to Knaut, Knaut and Rolf after Norman A. Rolf (1929-2017) became a partner in 1964.

    Custodial history

    Scope and content

    Fonds consists of the business records of Knaut, Knaut and Rolf, and includes correspondence with clients about various probate, property, immigration, and collection matters, various legal documents regarding the same, accounts receivable/payable ledgers containing information about client accounts, legal diaries containing daily entries and accounts, and township maps depicting an area within Townships 37-48, Ranges 1-22, West of the 4th Meridian (37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48-1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22-W4). Fonds also includes some personal correspondence and separate correspondence files dealing specifically with collections for St. Mary’s Hospital in Camrose, Alberta. The fonds has been divided into the following series: Correspondence (1907-1966); St. Mary’s Hospital Account (1951-1956); Accounts Receivable/Payable (1915-1951); Legal Diaries (1917-1959)

    Notes area

    Physical condition

    Most of the ledgers and legal diaries have been damaged by water and some have broken bindings and detached pages.

    Immediate source of acquisition

    Mr. G. Rod Knaut, of the firm Knaut, Johnson and Sawle, deposited these records in the Provincial Archives of Alberta in two separate accessions, one each in 1974 and 1982.


    The correspondence in accession PR1982.0382 is arranged in alphabetical order within each date group, although the correspondence is not in alphabetical order within each letter group. The letters are filed alphabetically according to the name of the sender or receiver of the letter, so that some correspondence about clients may be filed under the name of the law firm representing the other client. After 1940 most correspondence is filed under the client's name. Most correspondence dealing with banks is filed under the name of the bank and virtually all correspondence with the registrar of lands is filed under the letter 'R'.

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        A small number of the records are in French.

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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 lists are not available.

        Associated materials

        Other records pertaining to C.G. Corneille can be found in the Camrose United Church fonds located at the Glenbow Archives in Calgary, Alberta.

        Related materials


        Further accruals are not expected.

        General note

        Information for the administrative history was taken from the July 5, 1944 and December 27, 1961 issues of The Camrose Canadian newspaper, and from the records. The area covered by the maps in this fonds is represented by the Alberta Township Survey (ATS) system.

        General note

        Includes accessions PR1974.0382 and PR1982.0075.

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