Fonds 81-003 - Trent University Archives. Frost Taping Project

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Trent University Archives. Frost Taping Project

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  • Sound recording
  • Textual record

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the subject of the fonds.

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  • 1978 (Creation)
    Frost, Leslie M.

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Physical description

13 cm of textual records
6 audio cassettes

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Name of creator

Biographical history

The Honourable Leslie Miscampbell Frost, lawyer and Premier of Ontario, was born in Orillia, Ontario on September 20, 1895, the son of William Sword Frost and Margaret Jane Barker. He was educated at the Orillia Public School and the Orillia High School. He later attended the University of Toronto and Osgoode Hall. He served in the World War I in France and Belgium, with the 20th Battalion, Queen's York Rangers, and was discharged with the rank of Captain in 1918, after being severely wounded. Frost was called to the Bar in 1921. He was a member of the legal firm Frost, Inrig and Gorwill, among others, and was an honorary bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada. He married Gertrude Jane Carew in 1926. They never had children. Leslie M. Frost had a long and successful political career. He was first elected to the legislature of Ontario in 1937, and he was consistently re-elected at each election until his retirement in 1959. He was Treasurer of Ontario and Minister of Mines in both the George Drew and T.L. Kennedy Administrations. In 1949, Frost was chosen leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party, and was sworn in as Premier and Provincial Treasurer on May 4, 1949. He remained Provincial Treasurer until 1955 and Premier until 1961. Besides his legal and political career, Frost took on many other obligations. He was a member of the of the Board of Governors of the University of Toronto and the first Chancellor of Trent University. He also held several directorships, including: the Bank of Montreal, Air Canada, Corporate Investors Ltd., Lever Brothers Ltd., KVP Company Ltd., John Deyell Ltd., Canada Life Assurance Company, Victoria and Grey Trust Co., Massey-Ferguson Ltd., and radio station CKLY. Frost was also keenly interested in history, primarily military history and the histories of Victoria, Peterborough and Haliburton Counties. He was the author of several books: "Fighting Men", "Forgotten Pathways of the Trent", "Pleasant Point Story: a History of Pleasant Point" and "The Records on Sam Hughes Set Straight." Leslie M. Frost died at Lindsay, Ontario 4 May 1973.

Custodial history

The Frost Taping Project was created by the Trent University Archives in 1978, with the assistance of a grant from the Ontario Historical Studies Series. Jamie Benidickson, a graduate of Trent in 1967, was the interviewer.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of 6 oral history tapes on cassettes; photocopies and original drafts of interviews; and final transcripts of interviews by Jamie Benidickson on the subject of Leslie M. Frost. Interviewees include Malcolm Montgomery, Dorothy Swallow, Marjorie Porter, Jack and Eileen Beal, and Bill Leishman.

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This fonds was acquired from Trent University Archives.


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The original master tape is held by the Ontario Historical Studies Series in Toronto, Ontario.

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Associated materials

For related records see: 77-024 and 77-027.

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General note

Box 1


  1. Cassettes (2) and photocopied transcripts of interviews with Malcolm Montgomery, Q.C.

  2. Cassette (1) and photocopied transcript of interview with Miss Dorothy Swallow

  3. Cassette (1) and photocopied transcript of interview with Mrs. Marjorie Porter

  4. Cassettes (2) and original transcript of interview with Jack and Eileen Beal, joined in the later stages by Bill Leishman

  5. Carbon copy of Beal/Leishman interview transcript

  6. Photocopy of draft transcript of Beal/Leishman interview, as edited by Jack Beal

  7. Working draft transcripts of interviews

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