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Richard Barrington Nevitt fonds

1871-1886, predominant 1871-1879

Physical Description:
18.5 cm of textual records. -- 46 photographs

Richard Barrington Nevitt, 1850-1928, known as Barrie, was born in Savannah, Georgia, USA. During the Civil War he sought refuge from the conflict in Canada, where he continued his education at Bishop's College School, Lennoxville, Quebec and Trinity Medical School, Toronto, graduating as a physician. For financial reasons he joined the newly formed North-West Mounted Police (NWMP) as assistant surgeon in 1874. He spent nearly four years in or near Fort Macleod, taking part in many of the significant events of the time. He returned to Toronto in 1878, where he married Elizabeth Eleanor Beaty, 1852-? and had a long and successful medical career. They had six children, Robert Barrington Nevitt, 1879-1918, Mary Louise (Ryerson), 1880-?, Irving H. C. Nevitt, 1882-1963, Adena Sarah (Black), 1884-1966, Richard E. A. Nevitt, 1888-ca. 1960, and Bertram Tschudi Nevitt, 1895-1916. Adena Black and her husband Davidson Black, 1884-1934, had two children, Dr. Davidson Black, 1920-1988, and Rev. Nevitt Maybee.

Custodial History:
Dr. Black originally loaned Glenbow the Nevitt letters in 1978. He officially donated them to Glenbow in 1988. Seventeen other Nevitt letters were in the possession of Mrs. A.A. McArthur, niece of Dr. Nevitt's daughter-in-law, Mrs. Irving Nevitt. They were donated to the Glenbow in 1989, although an earlier typescript of these had been loaned to the Glenbow in the early 1970s and were published as A Winter at Fort Macleod in 1974. These letters filled in a gap in the letters donated by Black.

Scope and Content:
The fonds consists of Nevitt's detailed letters to Elizabeth Beaty, photographs of his sketches of NWMP activities and native peoples, a newsclipping about his march west with the NWMP, and a menu for Christmas dinner at Fort Macleod.
RECORDS RELATED TO THE FOLLOWING SUBJECTS ARE ALSO IN THIS FONDS. SEE INVENTORY FOR DETAILS: David Akers, Edwin Allen, Frank Baxter, Blackfoot, Blood (Indians), Ephrem A. Brisebois, P. Brooks, John Bunn, Simon John Clarke, Charles Conrad, cricket, Crowfoot, Lief Newry Fitzroy Crozier, Cecil Denny, Francis Dickens, Father Leon Doucet, Alphonse Ferland, Fort Benton, Fort Calgary, Fort Kipp, Fort Walsh, Fort Whoop-Up, I.G. Baker and Co., Serge Gagnon, John Glenn, Bishop Vital Grandin, Acheson Gosford Irvine, Thomas R. Jackson, H.A. "Fred" Kanouse, Dr. John Kittson, Kootenay (Indians), James Farquharson Macleod, Rev. John McDougall, Metis, Hugh Munro, Harry Nevitt, Peigan, Jerry Potts, Father Constantine Scollen, Stoney (Indians), Treaty 7, James Morrow Walsh, Vernon Welch, and William Winder.

Source of Acquisition:
Gifts of Dr. Davidson Black and Mr. and Mrs. Alexander A. McArthur, 1988-1989.

The material is in English.

Originals and Reproductions:
Nevitt's letters, December 1874 to June 1875, have been published as A Winter at Fort Macleod / edited by Hugh A. Dempsey. - Calgary : Glenbow-Alberta Institute, 1974. A more complete publication of the letters appears in Frontier Life in the Mounted Police : The Diary Letters of Richard Barrington Nevitt, NWMP Surgeon, 1874-1878 / edited with an introduction by Hugh A. Dempsey. -- Calgary : Alberta Records Publication Board, Historical Society of Alberta, 2010.

The originals are restricted due to fragile condition. Photocopies, typed transcripts, and scans are available for research purposes.

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

View finding aid / scanned documents:

Call Numbers:
(M=manuscript; N&P=photos; R=sound recordings; S=slides; F=films)
M-892, M-893, PA-3125, NA-1434, NA-2917, NA-2992, NA-3586

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