The fonds contains the records of James Fraser, consisting of personal correspondence, articles by Fraser primarily about gay archives and history, newspaper articles about Fraser’s gay activism, a collection of historical editorials about homosexuality compiled by Fraser, and miscellaneous records…
James Andrew Fraser (1946-1985) grew up in New Brunswick and attended St. Thomas University there, completing a BA in Canadian history in 1969. He worked at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick from 1972-1974 and during this time wrote a number of local histories. After a year of travelling and casual work, he settled in Toronto in 1976. He worked at the City of Toronto Archives and devoted much of his free time to the Canadian Gay Archives (now the ArQuives). He was instrumental in the development of the archives from “some small boxes of material culled from files of the Body Politic” to “one of the most comprehensive gay and lesbian archives in the world.” He began the Masters of Archival Science program at the University of British Columbia in 1983 but fell ill and was unable to complete the program. He died of AIDS in March of 1985.
Scope and Content
The fonds contains the records of James Fraser, consisting of personal correspondence, articles by Fraser primarily about gay archives and history, newspaper articles about Fraser’s gay activism, a collection of historical editorials about homosexuality compiled by Fraser, and miscellaneous records pertaining to Fraser’s life and organizations with which he was involved. The fonds also includes obituaries and memorials for Fraser. While most of the records pertain to Toronto, his academic work was done in British Columbia, and some records relate to his early life and family in New Brunswick. The collected editorials are drawn from Canadian newspapers.
/01 : C.02.01.03
/02 : C.01.04.01
Artifacts Collection: East Side Story t-shirt (belonged to Fraser, his name is on the back); Happy Birthday card by The Studio Bookshop (inscribed to Fraser); Dumbbell card (inscribed to Fraser)
Photo Collection includes photographs of Fraser.
Vertical Files: James Fraser; Wilde ’82 History Conference
Monograph Collection: Lesbian and gay heritage of Toronto pamphlet by Fraser and Alan V. Miller;
Organizing an archives : the Canadian Gay Archives experience booklet by Fraser and Harold Averill
Fonds: The Body Politic fonds
The collection is open to researchers. Banking information and addresses restricted from publication.
As there was no discernible original order, the records were grouped logically into files, primarily by documentary form (correspondence, newspaper clippings, etc.).