Fonds 96-012 - Gavin Henderson fonds. 1996 additions

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Gavin Henderson fonds. 1996 additions

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  • Textual record

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

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  • 1951-1996 (Creation)
    Henderson, Gavin

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12 cm of textual material

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Biographical history

Gavin Henderson was born in 1911 and raised in England. In his early twenties he visited Canada with a friend. In 1934 Henderson emigrated to Canada and worked in the Eaton's art gallery in Toronto. He attended monthly meetings of the Toronto Anglers and Hunters Association.

Eventually Gavin came to know Frank Kortright and when a conservation council was established Kortright offered Gavin the position of secretary in 1952. Working in the council enriched Gavin's circle of acquaintances in the conservation and preservation fields. As editor of the Council's Bulletin he read everything he could that pertained to conservation and preservation. Throughout all of this he pushed the concern of conservation to the masses. He wrote articles in the Ontario Naturalist, gave lectures and briefs to government agencies, speeches and seminars to espouse his cause. He left the Conservation Council in 1965.

Henderson was appointed a member on a standing committee advisory to the Minister of Lands and Forests 1959-1970. He was also director of the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada. (Taken from: Wareki, George Michael. "Protecting Ontario's Wilderness: A History of Wilderness Conservation in Ontario, 1927-1973." Doctoral Thesis, McMaster University, 1989.) He founded the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada and was the first executive director from 1964 to 1974. He has sat on a number of committees and associations involved in the conservation and preservation of Canada's natural resources. In 1985, he received Parks Canada's National Heritage Award. In 1989 he received the J.B. Harkin Medal from the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. His leadership helped save Quetico Park from large scale commercial lumbering and prevented massive resort development at Lake Louise. He helped to establish ten new national parks, two of which, the Nahanni and Kluane, were declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites. For this service to Canada Gavin Henderson was recognized and on October 27, 1993 he was invested into the Order of Canada.

Custodial history

This fonds was created by and in the custody of Gavin Henderson before he donated it to the Trent University Archives.

Scope and content

This addition to the fonds consists of correspondence between Gavin Henderson and Professor George Warecki; Harvey Locke when President of Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society; and, the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. The fonds also contain the program and letters of congratulation regarding Gavin's Order of Canada which was conferred in 1993. Records pertaining to the St. Lawrence Islands National Parks and the Thousand Islands Heritage area, early minutes of the Conservation Council of Ontario (1951-1955), brochures published by the Council as well as articles by Gavin Henderson are also included in the fonds.

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This fonds was donated by Gavin Henderson.


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For related records see: 86-002.


This fonds is an addition to 93-012.

General note

Box 1


1: Minutes of the Conservation Council Of Ontario, 1951-1955

2: Conservation Council of Ontario, 1955-1964. Publications: Water Pollution in Ontario (1964); A Report on Fish and Wildlife Conservation, 1956; Ontario's Future? Conservation or Else, (1955).

3: Gavin Henderson, brief to Royal Commission on Seals and the Sealing Industry in Canada, 1985; Gavin Henderson, Remarks re sealing, 1967.

4: Reports and correspondence regarding St. Lawrence Islands National Parks and the Thousand Islands Heritage Area concept, 1976-1983.

5: Gavin Henderson, "James Bernard Harkin: The Father of Canadian National Parks," in Borealis, Fall, 1994; Gavin Henderson, "Looking Back: The Founding of the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada and the People and Events Involved," Park News, Summer, 1988.

6: Program, Order of Canada, 1993

7: Materials relating to Noranda mining plans as threat to Yellowstone National Park and correspondence between Henderson and Harvey Locke, President of Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, 1994-95.

8: Draft history of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society prepared by the society in 1995 which purported to record the achievements of the National and Provincial Parks Association/CPAWS since 1963. The critical comments of Henderson and those of Prof. G. Killan, University of Western Ontario, are included.

9: Correspondence, 1964-1968. Includes International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.

10: Correspondence, 1985-1996. Includes Wildlands League, press release regarding Gavin Henderson awarded Parks Canada Heritage Award, 1984, Henderson's comments on the Canadian Assemble held in Banff in 1985, Henderson's critical comments on Prof. George Warecki's account of the founding of Quetico in Islands of Hope, 1992, report from Borealis, Issue 15, regarding Henderson's Order of Canada award.

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