Fonds F94 - Gerry Stephenson Canoe History fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Gerry Stephenson Canoe History fonds

General material designation

  • Graphic material
  • Textual record
  • Moving images

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Reference code

CA ON00334 F94

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  • 1903-2003 (Creation)
    Stephenson, Gerry

Physical description area

Physical description

5 m of textual records
1 m of photographs (c 2500 photos [800 in Series M, N and O])
16950 feet of film

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Gerry Stephenson (1938-2003) worked for Bell Canada in Peterborough. After early retirement he turned his attention to the career of his grandfather, John Stephenson, and his identification with the history of the Peterborough Canoe. He was greatly assisted by the ongoing research of Dr Cameron who presented his findings to the Peterborough Historical Society in 1975. Working from this base, Gerry pursued patent records and newspaper and magazine account. In 1987, he published his findings in a Peterborough Historical Society occasional paper entitled “John Stephenson and the Famous ‘Peterborough’ Canoes” (1987). He continued to pursue research on wooden canoes and boats and at his death was pursuing the influence of George Stephenson in Maine canoe-making.

Custodial history

The papers were donated to the Trent Valley Archives in 2004 by Mary Stephenson, Peterborough, Ontario. The papers have been organized as closely as possible in the system developed by Gerry Stephenson.

The papers contain materials that were inherited by Gerry Stephenson from his mother and father (Mr and Mrs Alfred [Fred] J. Stephenson), from his grandmother (Mrs Joseph Sucee) and from his uncle (Mel Sucee).

Scope and content

The fonds is organized in the following series. Those series most pertinent to Gerry’s work and interest in canoes and history are Series A to F. However, the photographic collections found elsewhere contain many shots related to canoeing history. The papers are also distinguished by materials related to the lives of his parents and grandparents and his uncle, Mel Sucee.

A. Wooden Canoe Heritage Association, 1993-2003 (Files 1-120, 902- ) 1.5 m
B. Heritage Canoe Festival, 1985-1996 (Files 121-157) 25 cm
C. Canadian Canoe Museum, 1990-2003 (Files 158-165) 7 cm
D. Peterborough Centennial Museum and Archives, 1986-1987 (Files 166-169, 585-586) 5 cm
E. Peterborough Historical Society, 1987-1998 (Files 170-192) 20 cm
F. Peterborough Canoe History, 1976-2003 (Files 193-519, 587-593) Research materials from 1850s to present 1.5 m
G. Cottage life, 1977-1992 (Files 520-558, 797, 898-901) 45 cm
H. Bell Canada, 1970-1995 (Files 559-565) 13 cm
I. Mary and Gerry Stephenson, 1938-1993 (Files 566-584; 594-622) 35 cm
J. Gerry Stephenson photographic, 1967-2000 (Files 623-720, 773) 60 cm
K. Gerry Stephenson slides, 1949-1993 (Files 721-757) 25 cm
L. Dainard family, 1951, undated (Files 758-764) 5 cm
M. Fred Stephenson and family, 1940s-1990s (Files 765-796, less 773; 809-829; 867-885, 897) 35 cm
N. Joseph Sucee family, 1904-1930 (Files 798-808, 886-896) 15 cm
O. Mel Sucee, 1890s-1940s (Files 830-866) 10 cm
P. Mel Sucee, moving film collection

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Open to researchers.

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Available on site.

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None expected.

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