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Archival description
Roy Daniells fonds
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Audio-Visual Recordings series

Series consists of seven sound recordings and two videotapes. The audiotapes include lectures by Daniells, practice tape, radio broadcasts, and an interview. One videotape is a copy of a filmed CBC interview of Ethel Wilson by Daniells. The other is a copy of a film made in 1949-50 by students of Daniells who asked him to read the script.

Biographical Materials series

Series consists of biographical information and memorabilia compiled by Daniells about himself and his family members. Materials include genealogies, CVs, academic records, appointment notices, passports, certificates, and articles.

Broadcasts series

Series consists of scripts of radio broadcasts, chiefly from the nineteen forties and fifties. Most of Daniells' broadcasts were done for the CBC and were carried nationally. The CBC generally retained the scripts, and Daniells kept only a small selection.

Coates/Cassidy sous-fonds

Carol Coates was born in 1906 in Japan, where her parents were missionaries. She received her early education in Japan and later attended the University of British Columbia. Her future husband, Eugene Cassidy, and Roy Daniells became close friends, sharing a love of literature. The Cassidys were married in 1930 and returned to Japan, where they remained for some years. The correspondence with Daniells is romantic, savouring of spiritual and poetic inspiration and unrequited love (she called him "Dante" and signed herself "Beatrice"). After returning from Japan, Coates taught in Toronto and was connected with Steiner education in New York, England and Edinburgh. She published two books of poetry, Fancy Free and Invitation to Mood.
Eugene Cassidy was also born in Japan to missionary parents, was educated in Japan, and attended British Columbia University. He returned to Japan in 1930, where he taught school and became intensely interested in photography. He and his family came to Canada in 1938, and Cassidy began work as a photographer in Toronto. He and Coates later separated, and Cassidy went to New York to become a successful contract photographer for Conde Nash. His photography, particularly his Japanese landscape work, has received considerable recognition, and in 1981 there was a retrospective of his work at the Art Gallery of Ontario. However, because of his frequent moves, many of his Japanese photographs have disappeared, and it is probable that some of the small prints in this collection are unique.
The sous-fonds consist of letters, hand-made poetry books, photographs, a photograph album, and an album of Japanese "shugibukuso," envelopes the Japanese use to present money. The correspondence dates from 1930 to 1953, the majority of the letters being written in the 1930s from Japan.
The materials in this group of papers were segregated from the main series primarily because they were fragile and easy to use. The correspondence was initially been in chronological order by year with other correspondence. The photographs and small poetry booklets, however, had been kept separately. A large portion of the correspondence between Daniells and Coates was returned to Carol Coates in 1942 and subsequently destroyed.

Correspondence series

Series consists chiefly of incoming correspondence with a few carbon copies, or manuscript copies interspersed outgoing correspondence. The material is arranged in chronological order by year. Daniells' life integrated personal, scholarly and academic work, and the post reflects this. First names or nicknames have been used if the writer is unidentified. For ease of use, most of the letters from Daniells' parents have been separated from the rest of the correspondence but kept within the yearly chronology. The Coates-Cassidy correspondence, which was original with this series, has been removed because of the fragility of the materials and grouped with other Coates-Cassidy materials. For privacy reasons, some correspondence has been restricted for a short time period. There are also letters in other series, including speech, broadcast, subject, student records, research, and miscellaneous series.

Financial Records series

Series consists of accounting and insurance records and has been reduced to a small proportion of its original volume. No financial records earlier than 1948 were kept with this series, but some may be found with the diaries. Daniells worked in a bank in his youth and was interested in bookkeeping.

James and Constance Daniells sous-fonds

James MacFarlane Daniells was born in England in 1867. He came to Canada before the turn of the century but returned to England after a short time. In 1910, after some business reverses, he emigrated with his family to Victoria, B.C. where he worked as a builder, first in James Bay, then on Cook Street, and eventually he built a home on Cochrane Street where he lived until his death in 1951. Mr. Daniells was an overseer in the Gospel Hall and was a devout student of the Bible. Constance Maynard Daniells, nee Stevens, was born in England in 1876. In 1901 she married James Daniells, and they had one son, James Roy Daniells, who was born in 1902. She died in 1957. Constance and James joined the Plymouth Brethren in Victoria. The Plymouth Brethren were a sect of Christian believers originating in the early 19th century in Ireland. Brethren ideas of baptism were differing (RD was baptised by immersion) and they expected the second coming of Christ. The Lord's Supper was observed each Sunday. The Brethren had a tendency to follow new leaders and to divide to form new congregations. They were basically fundamentalist and considered the Scriptures the only true guide. There were no officers in the Victoria Hall. James Daniells was one of the "overseers" for a time. The privileges and duties of the ministry depended on the ability of the members.
The sous-fonds consists of correspondence (including many letters from Roy Daniells), journals, legal documents, financial papers, maps, greeting cards, newspaper clippings, verses and family information of James and Constance Daniells. There is also a series of records relating to the Plymouth Brethren, both in London and in Victoria, B.C. including incorporation documents, tracts, sermons, notes, hymn books, bibles, booklets etc. Photographs and postcards have been kept with the Roy Daniells collections.

Journals and Diaries series

Series consists of journals and diaries regularly kept by Daniells from 1921 till two days before his death. Included in most of the years are simple accounts of daily activities and cash accounts. In some years, particularly in the 1930s, there were more intimate emotions and anxieties. Programs, invitations etc., that were kept with the diaries have been left in place (except for those disturbed by vandalism). Daniells' parents also kept regular diaries that record most of the events of his life before 1921, when his diary-keeping began.

Manuscripts - Poetry series

Series consists of poetry manuscripts by Daniells in various styles. Daniells published two volumes of poetry and poems in many different journals. However, despite requests from publishers and friends, he did not publish or try to publish the majority of his poetry. His work falls into several different categories. His serious poems were traditional both in subject matter and form. He wrote a considerable amount of religious verse, love poetry, and (latterly) poems about the environment. He enjoyed writing what he described as "occasional verse" and frequently asked his colleagues and friends to do so. In addition, he wrote, with lightning speed, small limericks and verses which he threw away but were often gathered up by others and returned.
Materials in this series were vandalized in a burglary before being transferred to the Archives, and it was impossible to restore the original order. A rough chronological order has been attempted, but if verses were found in folders together, apparently in an order established by Daniells, they have been left together. During the burglary, some of Daniells' teaching materials were mixed in with his poetry, and it is possible that even after processing, a few may still be in this series.

Manuscripts - Prose series

Series consists of prose manuscripts. Daniells customarily wrote first drafts in longhand; second drafts were usually typed. Revisions were often made by cutting and pasting. Files were frequently kept under the person's name or journal for whom the work was being done. The first part of the series includes university essays, articles for periodicals, contributions to books, etc., and a short piece that he wrote a few hours before his death as a farewell statement. The second part consists of drafts, in manuscript and typescript, of Milton, Mannerism and Baroque and the completed, but not revised, the manuscript of Daniells' planned book on mannerism in English literature.

Memorabilia series

Series consists of invitations, cards, and other materials kept for sentimental value. However, most of the current and intimate family memorabilia have been retained by Daniells' wife and children.

Miscellaneous series

Series consists of materials scattered throughout the papers after the original order was destroyed. They were not kept in Daniells subject files but appeared separate from the materials they were found with.

Newspaper Clippings series

Series consists of clippings, many of which were sent to Daniells by his parents. Those of a general nature from the Victoria newspapers files have been discarded. The remaining news clippings found loose in the correspondence files have been brought together and organized by type.

Offprints series - Daniells

Series consists of offprints of articles and published lectures by Daniells. In addition, some of his published speeches and lectures have also been catalogued separately.

Offprints series - Others

Series consists of offprints and published speeches and represents a considerable number of subjects. Most of them were given to Daniells by friends. He was very interested in cross-disciplinary topics, which is reflected by this series.

Photograph series

Series consists of photographs received by Roy Daniells, James Daniells and Constance Daniells or created by or for them. They have been classified by family group if the information was readily available, and later by form and chronology, for detailed family names, see genealogical materials in Box 10. For other photographs in the Daniells papers, see the Coates/Cassidy subgroup and the occasional photo in the correspondence and subject file series. There are 19 cartes-de-visite, 25 cabinet portraits, c. 59 studio portraits before the turn of the century, plus 92 studio portraits pre-1950, 1 tintype, 2 glass photos, 9 professional photos of student theatre productions, circa 810 photoprints of which a large number are early, most of which are annotated, approximately 250 need more identification. The postcards noted in this series are family photo prints on postcard stock. There is a total, including photographs in albums, of slightly over 1100 photographs in this series. Combined with the Cassidy prints and others in subject files, there are circa 1500 photographs in the Daniells papers.

Postcards series

Series consists of postcards saved by Daniells since childhood. They are arranged roughly in chronological order. The art cards were collected mainly for research purposes. There are 481 early (chiefly pre-1910) postcards and circa 480 later cards for a total of 960 postcards.

Posthumous Letters of Sympathy sous-fonds

The sous-fonds consist of correspondence from Daniells' family after his death from friends. While many of these are laudatory or conventional, others contain interesting recollections. For this reason, they have been placed with the collection even though they are not, technically speaking, part of the Roy Daniells papers.

Research Files series

Series consists of research files arranged by Daniells as "early," "current," and "student research," respectively. The "early research" files were set up in the 1930s and were cumulative and alphabetic. A file could contain essays by Daniells or others, student notes of Daniells, lecture notes, newspaper clippings, offprints, correspondence. They were used for speeches, lectures etc. or to give to students. Some of the contents have disappeared. The "current research" files were set up less structured than the first set and were generally focused on specific information required for particular publications or lectures. Some of the materials may have been in the earlier research files, consisting of early class notes. The student research files consist of copies of essays of particular interest to Daniells.

Roy Daniells fonds

  • UBCA-ARC-1067
  • Fonds
  • 1884-1979

Fonds consists of Daniells' personal and professional incoming and outgoing correspondence, diaries, speeches, radio broadcasts, manuscripts, poetry, subject files, research files, postcards and postcard collections, clippings, financial records, audio material, photographs, memorabilia and printed material. Also included are the records of Roy's parents, James and Constance Daniells. The correspondence series contains thousands of letters from prominent literary figures such as Earle Birney, Robert Finch, Desmond Pacey, Northrop Frye, Herbert Davis, E.K. Brown, A.S.P. Woodhouse, as well as writers, poets, and artists such as Paul Hiebert (Sara Binks), Carol Coates, Max Maynard, Jack Shadbolt and others. His works are represented by manuscripts of his poetry, fiction, drama, scholarly work on Milton and modernism and Canadian literature, speeches and broadcasts, autobiography, diaries, and many letters to his family. The fonds also contains notes of sympathy received by Daniells' family after his death.

Speeches series

Series consists of speeches given by Daniells to clubs, teachers' organizations etc. From 1939 on, he kept many of his notes and addresses. In addition, he sometimes kept the correspondence relating to the requested talk filed with the talk itself or his general correspondence. In some cases, the speeches or lectures which were part of a larger occasion may be found in subject files rather than in this series. Page numbers (not always noted) refer to the manuscript or typescript only.

Subject Files series

Series consists of correspondence, notes, published materials, and other materials containing what Daniells considered helpful information. Up until 1972, he weeded these files fairly frequently, incorporating the correspondence into his correspondence files, leaving only cumulative files. Post-1972, they were weeded less often. Files are arranged alphabetically by subject - oversized materials are filed separately.

Teaching Material series

Series consists of summaries of courses sent to students in the courses; class lists and marks; individual student files containing correspondence, exams, and marks; a sampling of Daniells' lectures. After his retirement, he weeded these records out extensively. The few remaining samples give a good picture of his teaching methodology and his concern for students.