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A historical collection of letters, diaries, maps, plans, account books and other unpublished documents - records of the public and private lives of Canadians from the 18th century to our own time - can be found on the 5th floor of the Toronto Reference Library.

In 1886 our first Chief Librarian, Dr. James Bain, purchased an account of the Seven Years' War in America written by an anonymous officer. With this, Dr. Bain started the Baldwin Room Manuscript Collection to preserve Canadiana and make it accessible.

The core of the collection consists of the personal papers of several major figures in the history of Upper Canada, including William Dummer Powell, his wife Anne, Samuel Peters Jarvis and William Allan. The correspondence of Robert Baldwin and his father, Dr. William Warren Baldwin, record the reform movement.

Some manuscripts can be viewed on the Digital Archive.

Term of Capitulation of Town of York, 27 April 1813 Term of Capitulation of Town of York, 27 April 1813

Items of Historical Significance

Current Focus and Strengths

Dr. Donald T. Fraser in uniform c 1915 Dr. Donald T. Fraser in uniform c 1915

For Your Research

Access to the Baldwin Collection of Canadiana Manuscript Collection is by card catalogue.

More detailed finding aids are also available.

Digital Reproduction Services are available. Some restrictions may apply.