Fonds 74-006 - James W. Curran fonds

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James W. Curran fonds

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  • Textual record

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  • 1938-1967 (Creation)
    Curran, James W.

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Physical description

15 cm of textual records and photographs

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Biographical history

James Watson Curran, newspaper editor and author, was born in Armagh, Ireland, on April 24, 1865. When he was eight years old, his family emigrated to Canada, eventually settling in Orillia, Ontario. The Curran family was in the newspaper business and James' father owned two newspapers, the Essex Chronicle and the Orillia News-Letter (1884). James became the first news editor of the latter. In 1890, James moved to Toronto to work first as a reporter for the Toronto Empire and then as city editor. In 1895, he moved on to Montreal to become the city editor for the Montreal Herald. Six years later, while passing through Sault Ste. Marie, he became so impressed with the city that he quit his job at the Herald and bought the Sault Ste. Marie Star, which at the time was a weekly newpaper. By 1912, Curran had turned the Star into a daily paper. Curran was also a promoter of Sault Ste. Marie as an author and his two books "Here Was Vinland" (1939), and "Wolves Don't Bite" (1940), are examples of his enthusiasm for the region. He married Edith Pratt and they had a number of children including Jane W. who married Judge H. Deyman. Curran died in Sault Ste. Marie on February 20, 1952 just before his 87th birthday.

Custodial history

This fonds remained within the custody of the Curran family until it was donated to Trent University.

Scope and content

This fonds consists of correspondence, copies of articles, and manuscripts relating to the book "Here Was Vinland" (Sault Ste. Marie, 1939). It also includes family papers and miscellanea. The correspondence includes letters from C.E. Brown, L. Burpee, Dr. T.P. Christennen, Dr. K. Christofferson, J.E. Dodd, A.J. Erikson, E. Greenaway, Judge A. McComber, the Smithsonian Institute, V. Stefannson, and others.

The fonds is organized into 3 series: Correspondence; Articles and manuscripts; and Family papers and miscellanea.

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The fonds was donated by the Curran family in 1968.


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For related records see the Trevor Lloyd fonds (87-014). More information on this material can be found in the Archives Newsletter #57 (2016):

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