Cowdry family fonds
38.5 cm of textual records. -- 27 photographs
Nathaniel Harrington Cowdry, 1849-1925, born in England, and his brother John Cowdry, 1857-1947, born in Toronto, Ontario, moved from Ontario to Regina in 1882 and then to Fort Macleod, Alberta in 1886. They established the town's first bank, known as Cowdry Brothers in 1886. In 1905 the bank was sold to the Canadian Bank of Commerce, at which time Nathaniel continued in the banking business in Ontario, and John took up ranching near Pincher Creek. Nathaniel married Anna Ingham and they had one son, Edmund. In 1885 John married Emma Gaisford Whitney, 1866-1893, and they had four children, Mary Adelaide (Hanning), 1887-1942, Frederic Thomas, 1888-1888, Augustus Nathaniel, 1891-1935, and John, 1893-1893. John Cowdry's second marriage was to Annie Augusta Thompson, in 1898 and they had one daughter Augusta Edith Alice (Chamberlin), 1899-1986. The John Cowdry family subsequently moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, where Augustus worked for the Dominion Machinery Company and Anglo-American Trading Company in the late 1920s and 1930s. For further information see Henry Klassen's article "Cowdry Brothers : Private Bankers in Southwestern Alberta, 1886-1905" in Alberta History. - vol. 37, no. 1 (Winter, 1989) and The Banker and the Blackfoot: a memoir of my grandfather in Chinook Country / J. Edward Chamberlin. - Toronto: Knopf Canada, 2016.
Some of these records (M-6584) were salvaged from the Hollinsworth Building, owned by Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, before the Bankers Hall project renovations were begun.
Scope and Content:
The fonds consists of family papers: invoices from Fort Macleod firms (1892-1901); property documents; and Augustus Cowdry's diary (1906), correspondence with his father (1920-1925), miscellaneous business records (1913-1934), and photographs. Also consists of Cowdry Brothers records: bank pass books, deposit slips and cheques (1886-1904).
RECORDS RELATED TO THE FOLLOWING SUBJECTS ARE ALSO IN THIS FONDS. SEE INVENTORY FOR DETAILS: Alberta Railway and Coal Co., Bain and Hamilton, R.B. Barnes, Black Diamond Mining and Development Co., C. Rejan and Co., Agnes Emma Cameron, C.N. Campbell, Carson and Shore, Cochrane Ranche, Cornish Cattle Co., D.W.Davis, Samuel W. Davis, Cecil Denny, Cameron Fraser, A.F.Grady, Gray and Higgins, A.C. Hare, Harris and Burns, Frederick Haultain, Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) stores, Ibex Mining and Development Co., Kaslo (BC), R.C. Laurie, Col. James Farquharson Macleod, E. McFarquhar, Peter Mclaren, Maunsell Brothers, E.J. Mitchell, William Henry Moore, Harry H. Nash, Peigan Indian Agency, Reach and Co., A. Rouleau, North-West Mounted Police (NWMP), Clarence E. Steele, Maj. Samuel B. Steele, H.H. Storey, W.W. Tuttle and T.P. Wadsworth.
Source of Acquisition:
Gifts of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Donald Tannas and Doris Ramsay, 1962-1984.
The material is in English.
No restrictions on access.
Inventory available. Please consult before requesting material.
View finding aid / scanned documents:
(M=manuscript; N&P=photos; R=sound recordings; S=slides; F=films)
M-280, M-1456, M-2244, M-6584