- 1844-1935, predominant 1879-1928 (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
55.3 cm of textual records Some material is fragile.
Name of creator
George Blair (1852-1935) was a prominent member of the Burlington, Ontario community as a builder and fruit farmer, an elder and treasurer of Knox Presbyterian Church and a municipal councillor. He also served several terms on both the public and high school boards and was also a member of the Fruit Growers Association. Many of the houses that Blair built are still standing and several of them have plaques from the Burlington Heritage Committee. Blair was born at Harper's Corners, Ontario and as an adult, lived and worked as a carpenter in Kilbride. In 1886, he built a home for his first wife, Lorentia (nee Parkin) and their family at 472 Burlington Avenue, Burlington. In 1893, the now-widowed Blair married Hannah Smith (nee Shepherd), who was also widowed. George Blair feared the effect of city living on their sons and so bought a 50-acre fruit farm on Brant Street. Though rural in character, it was still within the boundaries of the Town of Burlington. Together, the couple raised their several children: George's two sons H. Melvin and Ferguson G., and daughter, Mary Grace, Hannah's two sons, Henry Melvin Smith and Edward (Ted) Shepherd Smith, as well as the couple's sons George Stanley and John Nicoll, and daughters Eva Marion and Mabel Beatrice.
The fonds was kept in boxes in the Blair family home, until 1994 when George Blair's youngest son, Stanley, died at 104.
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Fonds was acquired in 1995 from Edward (Ted) Holmes, son of Mabel Holmes (nee Blair).
Content and structure area
Scope and content
The fonds consists of personal papers and correspondence, household receipts, farming accounts and correspondence, and solicitations for business, building contracts, building accounts, business receipts and correspondence, banking papers, income tax papers, legal papers, assessment rolls and tax notices for the Township of Nelson and the Municipality of Burlington, wartime papers, education papers, Federal government papers, voters’ lists, Fruit Growers Association Reports, Ontario Department of Agriculture bulletins and other booklets about growing fruit collected by Blair. There is also considerable material pertaining to Knox Presbyterian Church including annual reports, financial statements and account books, quit claims, mortgage, deeds etc., lists of subscribers to the building fund, membership list, and magazines. Items with very early dates were acquired by George Blair in course of his professional life. The records were not consistently organized and were received by the Archives after the family had sorted them. Fonds is comprised of the following series: Account books 1861-1915. - 11.5 cm. Banking papers 1878-1928. - .5 cm. Business records 1878-1928. - 20 cm. Federal government papers 1887-1919 (artificial series). - .5 cm. Household receipts 1879-1928. - 1.5 cm. Income tax papers 1918-1924. - 1 cm. Insurance policy papers 1893-1927. - 1 cm. Investment papers 1889-1927. - .5 cm. Knox Presbyterian Church 1844-1930 (artificial series). – 1.5 cm. Legal papers 1850-1923. - .3 cm. Municipal records 1861-1928. - 12 cm. Personal papers 1860-1928. - 3 cm. War papers 1914-1918 (artificial series). - 2 cm.
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use area
Conditions governing access
Open. Access to very fragile items may be restricted.
Conditions governing reproduction
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script notes
Physical characteristics and technical requirements
An inventory is available.
Allied materials area
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
Related units of description
Some papers have been encapsulated in Mylar. Some very fragile papers have been photocopied. Five account books have undergone professional conservation.