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Authority record

Alfoldi, Tom

  • Person

Tom Alföldi is a scientist and photographer. He holds Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Engineering degrees, and spent most of his career at the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing, a part of the federal Department of Natural Resources. In 1971, while studying for his bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering, he took a summer job doing aerial photography in the Canadian arctic, to provide stereo air photos of engineering sites for a graduate student, Rob McCuaig. During his time in the Northwest Territories he also took many personal photographs.

Alternatives North fonds

  • Corporate body

Alternatives North, originally named 'Northern Support Group,' was formed in April 1977 in support of the principles of aboriginal right to land ownership and self-determination. Initially, the group served to present non-native, northern opposition to the proposed Mackenzie Valley Pipeline. When the name 'Northern Support Group' was officially registered by a group of Yellowknife businessmen supporting the pipeline, the new name Alternatives North was adopted.

Anderson, Jack

  • Person

Jack Anderson was a carpenter at the Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company between 1937-1938. He died in 1983.

Anderson-Thomson, John

  • Person

John Anderson Thomson was born on April 30, 1900 in Glengairn, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. He served in the Royal Flying Corps. during World War I, joining in 1917 at the age of 16. After being wounded and spending time in recovery, John immigrated to Canada in 1920, settling in Unity, Saskatchewan. He spent the next several years farming sheep and teaching school. In 1926, John returned to Scotland and married Janet Paterson, from Braemar, who had been born June 18, 1902. The Thomsons returned to Saskatchewan after their marriage. In the 1930s, John attended the University of Saskatchewan and in 1934 was a student assistant with the Geological Survey of Canada in the Arctic. In 1936, he graduated with a degree in geological engineering. John worked at the De Santis Gold Mine in Timmins, Ontario from 1937 to 1941 as geologist, mine engineer, and mine superintendent. From 1941 to 1942 he was Chief Engineer at Delnite Gold Mine, also in Timmins.
John served as an RCAF navigation instructor in Manitoba during WWII, from 1942 to 1944. On April 6, 1944, while still in uniform, he arrived in the north, employed by the General Engineering Company of Canada as a field engineer and geologist. Janet followed soon after. General Engineering had a contract to evaluate the mining properties of Yellowknife Gold Mines and Yellowknife Bear Mines. By 1946, General Engineering was no longer active in Yellowknife, but John decided to stay, gaining a contract with Negus Mines. Together with J. A. Buchanan, Dominion Land Surveyor (DLS) of Edmonton, he formed Thomson & Buchanan Engineers, Geologists and Surveyors. John articled under Buchanan and earned his own DLS commission in 1956. John also filled in as Mine Superintendent at Negus in 1949 when the regular superintendent was on leave.
John’s surveying and geological investigation work took him all over the Northwest Territories and what became Nunavut, to mining claims, communities, and larger centres such as Fort Smith, Fort Simpson, Hay River, Iqaluit, and Yellowknife. His work included water and sewer main layouts, roads, power line rights-of-way, lot and block surveys, site certificates, legal mineral claim surveys, and surveys for mining companies. John undertook many significant surveys over the years, including surveying the power line from the Discovery Mine to Bluefish Hydro, laying out the route of the Mackenzie Highway proposed by the Federal Government in 1947 and suggesting a better route, doing DEW line surveys and laying out airstrips in 1954, finding river crossings for a pipeline from Alaska to Alberta in 1969 (not constructed), surveying a pipeline from Norman Wells to Zama pipeline in 1979, and surveying and investigating the Slave River as part of a hydro feasibility study.
When John broke his knee-cap in the spring of 1958 and was unable to do fieldwork for the rest of the season, he took the opportunity to teach geology and surveying at the University of Saskatchewan. From 1958 to 1966, John spent summers doing field work in the north and winters teaching in Saskatoon and drafting plans. This winter/summer transition led to the Anderson-Thomson being the first travellers on the unfinished highway between Fort Providence and Yellowknife when they left too late in the season to bring their vehicle back to Yellowknife by ice road.
John Anderson-Thomson’s business was run under the banner of “Thomson and Buchanan” for a number of years, then as “John Anderson-Thomson”, and “John Anderson-Thomson Engineering & Surveying Ltd.” as of April 30, 1976. After working in cooperation with Underwood McLellan Associates, out of Edmonton, for a few years in the late 1970s, John Anderson-Thomson officially sold his business to them as of December 31, 1981 and retired from official practice in 1982, although he remained on retainer as a consultant. The name of the Yellowknife business became Thomson Underwood McLellan Surveys Ltd.
John was involved with a number of organizations and had many interests outside of his business. The Yellowknife Branch of the Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy was established at the Anderson-Thomson house in 1945. John was also a member of the Saskatchewan Land Surveyors’ Association, Canadian Institute of Surveying, Association of Professional Engineers of Saskatchewan, and Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of the NWT. John received a Canadian Engineers’ Gold Medal Award from the Canadian Association of Professional Engineers in 1983.
In 1952, John assumed command of the No. 7 Company Canadian Rangers, on the request of the Governor General, Lord Alexander of Tunis. The Rangers participated in Exercise Bulldog III, a scenario to defend Yellowknife, in 1954, with great success. In 1954, he was appointed as Magistrate and Justice of the Peace, a position he held for the next 22 years. He earned himself the reputation of being a “hanging judge”, but received a special award from the RCMP at the end of his service. In 1959, John was invited to join the Royal Commission to determine the route for the Great Slave Lake railway from Pine Point to the current end of steel in Alberta. One of three commissioners, his minority report in favour of the western route, managed to convince Prime Minister Diefenbaker.
John also had a founding role in the layout of the Yellowknife Golf Course in 1947 and was a member for several years. He was also enjoyed shooting and curling.
Janet Anderson-Thomson was also influential, assisting John in his work, designing the NWT tartan, and accompanying the junior and senior choirs at Holy Trinity Anglican Church. Avid supporters of the NWT Pipe Band, the Anderson-Thomsons were given honourary membership in 1979. John and Janet were also joint recipients of the Commissioner’s Award for public service in the NWT in 1975.
Janet Anderson-Thomson died 1983. John passed away two years later on September 15, 1985 at his daughter’s home in Ontario. Their two daughters, Mary and Myrtle were each already married and had families of their own in Ontario.

Andreasen, Ole

  • Person

Ole Andreasen came to the North on a whaling ship that was possibly captained by his brother. He was a trader who operated the trading post at Shingle Point in the Richardson Islands in the early 1930s for T.C. Pederson. He also had a post at Point Atkinson (Nuvoraq) in the early 1920s. He traveled with Vilhjalmur Steffanson on several of Steffanson's expeditions in the Canadian Arctic and owned the ship the 'Gladiator'. He married Susanna, also known as Atugpik and had two sons, David and Jasper.

Andru, Peter

  • Person

Peter Andru was born in Phoenix, AB on November 3, 1930, the son of John and Mary Andru. He was raised in Edmonton, AB and graduated from the University of Alberta in 1954 with a B.S. in civil engineering, followed by an M.Sc. At the U of A in 1956 and an M.S.E. specializing in river engineering from Princeton in 1958. Peter Andru was employed by the federal government in the Department of Public Works - Harbours and Rivers Branch, moving to different offices across Canada within the Department. His specialties were harbour and river hydraulics dredging, and breakwaters. While in the Edmonton office from 1962-1965 he worked on projects in the north, including wharf repairs and pile foundation design and installation in Fort Chipewyan and Aklavik. Later working for Swan Wooster Engineering Company in the 1970s he was also involved in a project for Imperial Oil, designing a man-made island in the Beaufort Sea to support an oil drilling rig, the first of its kind. His career also spanned work in Thunder Bay, Vancouver, St. John’s, the US, and Karachi, Pakistan, and included 30 years total service in Public Works. He retired from the engineering profession in 1993.

Peter Andru married Evelyn (nee Frame) on July 22, 1961, and had six sons: Peter John, James Franklin, Stephen Lawrence, David Michael, Robert Paul and Gordon Neil. Peter played football when he was young and enjoyed bowling, curling and competitive bridge. He died on June 9, 2005 in Vancouver, BC.

Anglican Church of Canada. Diocese of the Arctic

  • Corporate body

The Diocese of the Arctic was formed in 1933 and incorporated in 1961; however, the administrative boundaries of the Anglican Church in the Northwest Territories have changed many times. In 1884, the Anglican Church created the Diocese of the Mackenzie River and it included parts of the Yukon and the Northwest Territories. In 1891, the Diocese of Selkirk was established and split off the Yukon from the Diocese of the Mackenzie River. In 1933, the Diocese of the Mackenzie River was abolished and the Diocese of the Arctic established. The new diocese consisted of the former Diocese of the Mackenzie River and parts of the Dioceses of Moosonee and Keewatin. It stretched across northern Canada from the Yukon-Alaska boundary to the Quebec-Labrador boundary and included the Ungava Peninsula and the Canadian islands north of the mainland. In 1970, the Episcopal District of Mackenzie River was established, however it rejoined the Diocese of the Arctic in 1974. Today, the Diocese of the Arctic spans the Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Nunavik (Arctic Quebec). Originally the See city was in Aklavik with All Saints as the Pro-Cathedral, but in 1972 the See city became Iqaluit, when the Episcopal District of Mackenzie River as formed. The Diocese of the Arctic had has six bishops, Archibald Lang Fleming (1933-1949), Donald Ben Marsh (1950-1973), John Reginald Sperry (1974-1990), John Christopher Richard Williams (1991- 2002), Andrew Atagotaaluk (2002-2012), and David W. Parsons (2012-). The Diocese has also had several Suffragan Bishops, starting with Henry George Cook.

Appleby, Carlton R.

  • Person

Carlton R. Appleby was a deckhand on the riverboat the 'Beaver Lake' during the summer of 1946. He traveled along the Athabasca and Slave Rivers for the summer and then boarded the 'Dease Lake' on September 1, 1946 and traveled to Fort Rae. During his time in the north, he also worked on the Yellowknife Hotel. He now resides in California.

Archaeological and Geological Reconnaissance of Alberta, Mackenzie Valley, and the Upper Yukon fonds

  • Corporate body

In September of 1937 Alden Hayes and Wesley L. Bliss began an archaeological and geological survey in Alberta for the University of New Mexico with the cooperation of the Department of Geology, University of Alberta. An expedition was then organized to work in the Mackenzie River basin, from the Sikanni River in British Columbia to the Arctic, and from there into the upper Yukon system of the Bell and Porcupine Rivers to Fort Yukon. This 1938 expedition was funded by the American Philosophical Society and the University of New Mexico. Its members included: Alden Hayes, Douglas Osborne, Joseph Maloney, Thomas Cain, Richard Hayes, and was led by Wesley Bliss.

Arctic Public Legal Education and Information Society

  • Corporate body

The Arctic Public Legal Education and Information Society (Arctic PLEI) was established in 1987. It was a non-government organization formed to assist people of the Northwest Territories to become more aware of the law and the legal system, and how to use it more effectively. The organization's programs aimed to reduce and prevent legal problems, increase people's knowledge about the law, the legal process and the justice system and encourage people to protect their rights by understanding the laws that affect them in their everyday lives in areas such as social services, assault, theft and labour. Arctic PLEI provided the public with an opportunity to access free legal advice by coordinating a toll free phone line, produced printed information (in English and Inuktitut) about the law aimed at the general public, produced videos and audio cassettes for use by schools and community groups, visited schools and community groups and held workshops on law-related topics based on needs identified by communities. Workshops were hosted on such topics as family violence, court procedures, women's rights and youth and the law. The organization formerly dissolved in 1996.

Arctic Red River Oral History Project

  • Corporate body

The Arctic Red River Oral History Project was conducted by Alestine Andre between 1989-1990. The aim of the project was to collect information on the traditional lifestyle and cultural beliefs of the Gwichya Gwich'in in Arctic Red River. Ms. Andre compiled a list of the 13 oldest people in the community and interviewed five who agreed to participate in the project. Those interviewed were Hyacinthe Andre, Jerome Andre, Joan Nazon, Annie Norbert and Nap Norbert.

Arden, D'Arcy

  • Person

D'Arcy Arden was born in England, but came to Canada as a young boy. He was educated at Ridley College, and trained to enter the Royal Navy; however, he was only five feet tall and was denied entry to the service. He decided to join a large survey in Labrador, where he learned to drive dogs. After a period of doing office work in Ottawa, he was sent to the Yukon where he served from 1900 to 1911, when he moved to Herschel Island. In the winter of 1913-1914, Arden met John Hornby. In 1914, Arden settled at Dease Bay, although he had originally planned to travel to the arctic coast. He married Marie Adele Neitia (Arimo?) and had three sons (D'Arcy Jr. "Sonny", Hugh, and James) and one daughter, Catherine. In 1925, he was working in the Peace River area watching over the buffalo at Wood Buffalo National Park. Sometime in the 1930s, he returned to the Great Bear Lake area, and in 1933, he discovered and staked pitchblende claims at Hottah Lake. In 1938, he moved to Yellowknife where he and D'Arcy Jr. ("Sonny") set up a mink farming operation. He died ca. 1959.

Arsenault, Spud

  • Person
  • 1899-1981

Ulric Joseph Octave 'Spud' Arsenault was born in Wellington, Prince Edward Island on April 21, 1899, the son of Gertrude (nee Cormier) and Joseph Felix Arsenault, who was an Acadian businessman and member of the PEI Legislative Assembly. His childhood was spent in Wellington PEI, Minnesota, Quebec City and Summerside PEI.

At the age of 16 he enlisted with the armed forces in World War One and served with the Canadian Expeditionary Force in the 105th, 26th, and 13th Battalions and was wounded in action in Amiens, France. He was discharged in 1919.

After farming and working on railways in Wellington PEI, he moved to western Canada in 1921, working on railways in Fort McMurray Alberta ca. 1921-1922, and for the Alberta Forestry Service as a fire ranger ca. 1922-1928. In the winters he had a cabin and trapline on the Athabasca River. In 1928 he began prospecting and mining with various companies including Dominion Explorers (1929), Eldorado Company (1931-1934), Althona (1935), Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company (1938), Ruth Mine (winter 1941/42), and Frances Lake, Yukon (1943-1944).

In 1945 Arsenault returned to the Yellowknife area to work as an independent prosepector, and staked some lapsed claims that he'd originally staked for Consolidated Mining, now the Spartan (Arsenault) group of claims. Working with friend Bill MacDonald this group of claims was purchased by Beaulieu Yellowknife Mines for $100,000 and 250,000 shares in a new mining company to be named Spud Arsenault Mines Ltd. Arsenault's story became a media sensation, but the collapse of the fraudulent Beaulieu Yellowknife Mines meant that the Spud Arsenault Mines project never materialized.

Despite prospecting again in Yellowknife in 1946 and 1976, Arsenault moved to Edmonton where he lived in semi-retirement for approximately ten years, and then moved to Vancouver Island.

Ulric 'Spud' Arsenault died in Victoria, B.C. on June 10, 1981 at the age of 82. His remains were buried in St. Paul's Roman Catholic Cemetery in Summerside, PEI.

Ayrhart, James

  • Person

James Ernest "Ernie" Ayrhart was born in Campbellford, Ontario circa 1898. He married Mildred Dale of Brampton, Ontario in 1945. He was a prospector whose first experiences and successes occurred in northern Quebec. He was later convinced to travel to Yellowknife and explore mining possibilities in the Northwest Territories. During his time in Yellowknife, Mr. Ayrhart became distressed by the extreme costs of flying in the north. In an effort to prove that Canadian Pacific Airlines (CPA) was over charging for its services, Mr. Ayrhart purchased a DC3, which he called the Yellowknife Express. Charging about one half the rates of CPA, the Yellowknife Express flew passengers and freight to Grande Prairie, Peace River, Fort Rae, Yellowknife and Norman Wells. Having shown that air travel could be run less expensively, Mr. Ayrhart sold the Yellowknife Express to CPA on the express conditions that their rates be reduced. After leaving the north, Ayrhart returned to Quebec where he again became involved with the mining industry. Ernie Ayrhart passed away in 1993.

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