Glenbow Museum - Where the World Meets the West

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Great West Saddlery fonds


Physical Description:
75 cm of textual records. -- 12 photographs

The Great West Saddlery Company, which grew out of a harness-making business founded by E.F. Hutchings in Winnipeg in the early 1880s, was incorporated in Winnipeg on July 5, 1899. In 1900 the firms of Carson and Shore and Hutchings and Riley of Calgary amalgamated with it forming the Great West Saddlery Co. Ltd., with head offices at Winnipeg and branches throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan. The Calgary branch, under the management of vice- president, R.J. Hutchings, was the headquarters for Alberta and became the wholesale and distributing centre for a large area of the country. The company has always specialized in saddles and western wear. One of its principal accounts was supplying saddles for the North-West Mounted Police (NWMP). The company later diversified into other retail fields and was sold to eastern interests in 1958 although the name has been maintained. For further information see "Robert J. Hutchings and Great West Saddlery" in A Business History of Alberta / Henry C. Klassen. - Calgary : University of Calgary Press, 1999, p. 132-133 and David G. Burley "Elisha Frederick Hutchings" Dictionary of Canadian Biography (

Scope and Content:
The fonds consists of Winnipeg head office records: annual reports (1932-1956), and financial audit (1927); Calgary branch ledgers (1899-1912, 1925-1946); and Edmonton branch records: correspondence (1907-1931), financial records (1907-1910), and employee time book (1932). Includes photographs of GWS premises and products.

Source of Acquisition:
Gift of Great West Saddlery Company, 1960.

The material is in English.

No restrictions on access.

Finding Aids:
Inventory available. Please consult before requesting material.

View finding aid / scanned documents:

Letters of R.J. Hutchings about the saddlery business are in the Hutchings Family fonds (M-7952) at Glenbow.

Call Numbers:
(M=manuscript; N&P=photos; R=sound recordings; S=slides; F=films)
M-1469, M-1470, M-1471, PA-234, PA-330

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